|For several years Corgi produced both Legends
and Aviation Archive models. Legends were packaged in plastic shells mounted
on cardboard platforms; Aviation Archive models were sold in two-part
vacuum-formed plastic shells slipped into various styles of cardboard
boxes. The AA models are considered the more desirable, largely because
they can be displayed with gear up or down (what I call the "plop-option",
since the down gear, most often, collapses under the weight of the model).
Both types of models have pilot figures, spinning props (jets excluded,
of course), and excellent paint quality.
The models I have in this series include Spitfire, Bf-109E, Mustang, Harrier,
Stuka, Corsair, Hunter, Mosquito, Zero, Thunderbolt, Fw-190A, Meteor,
P-40E, ME-262, Typhoon, and Lysander. Generally, the Legends meet or exceeded
the build quality of the boxed versions, the main difference being the
permanently extended gear.
On the negative side, Legends have problems with the stands holding the
models within the plastic shells. The stands are made up of a dome base
and a vertical cradle, the model sitting on the cradle. The cradle and
base are held together with a screw, and the screw has to be removed to
get to the model. Unfortunately, the screw is a bear to remove, especially
if a proper sized screwdriver with a substantial handle isn't available.
Corgi also made the mistake of securing models to the cradle with small
but grippy rubber bands. The bands often damage the top of the models.
They can also squeeze models so hard that the paint wears off where the
underside of a model rests on the cradle. On my copies, I've put tissues
between the models and the cradle arms to prevent further damage.