Category Archives: Standard

Parker Models Standard Vanguard Phase II Saloon

By Maz Woolley

When listing my collection I realised that I had a missing Parker Model. Although released some time ago this model is  is still available from Parker Models so I obtained one to complete my collection.

The Standard Vanguard was launched in 1947 with a classic 1940s American Style “beetle back” which looked modern when seen alongside many of the warmed over pre-war cars being sold by most other carmakers. Although sales were initially good Standard’s one model policy meant that they needed the cars to sell strongly and sales started to fall off as others launched their new post war models. In 1951 Ford launched the new Ford Consul and Zephyr which aped US Fordor styles and Vauxhall launched the Velox E series with its Chevrolet influence. Both ranges were three box saloons based on contemporary American styling.

Standard’s response was the Vanguard Phase II model which had been re-styled in a three box “notchback” shape. The boot size increased by 50% and the larger rear window improved visibility. At the front a new wide grille was added. Under the skin the car had changed little with some modifications to the suspension and tyres and a slight increase in engine compression. A contemporary test by The Motor magazine, without the optional overdrive, recorded a top speed of 80mph. In 1954 Standard became the first British car maker to offer a diesel engine as a factory fitted option. The chassis was stiffened to take the weight of the heavier engine and performance suffered with only a 66mph top speed.

Parker Models are 1:76 white metal kits primarily designed for the railway modeller. The model consisted of: A body shell with all features moulded in; a chassis with wheels, bulkhead and seats cast in; a steering wheel, and a vacform. The casting was clean and the painting and assembly of the model is straightforward. As usual with Parker Models the model captures the original car very well.

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John Day Models – 2016 releases

By Maz Woolley


Daryle Toney continues to gradually improve and develop the John Day Vehicles ranges. The standard range continues to get updated castings and even some new derivatives whilst the Post Office Range is growing too. All the latest releases have separate wheels, cleaner castings, and new improved vacforms which are thinner and clearer than before. These models are all designed and cast in the UK from White Metal and are only available as kits from the supplier by mail order or through the suppliers eBay listings. Daryle has a web site which shows what is currently available and details of how to order models at Like Parker Models these kits are aimed primarily at railway modellers looking for something a bit different for their layout.

All models shown have been assembled and painted by the Author who has a very basic level of skill and would be even better made by a skilled model maker.

SRV112 Austin A70 Hereford Pickup truck

The Austin Hereford A70 pickup would carry a 15cwt load and had a bench seat to allow three to sit in the cab. There was no A70 van. At around £700 painted but with no extras it was not a cheap vehicle. Powered by a 2.2 litre four cylinder engine it was a powerful commercial vehicle though the high cost and high running costs would mean that it only had a small market compared to the A40. It was exported for local assembly in Australia where a large pickup like this would have been more appropriate. The A70 is a rare car now and only a very few of the pickups survive.

The John Day model is based on the A70 Countryman which is already in the range. It has been adapted by Daryle with a good representation of the rear of the cab and load bed. The rear end has also had a lot of work to represent the body mouldings, that drop down flap, and the scattering of lights and reflectors fitted by Austin.

GPO 03 Morris J4 Mail Van

Launched in late 1960 the J4 was a direct competitor to the Bedford CA and Ford Thames ranges. The Post Office were big users of this type of vehicle in many forms. This version from John Day has been finished with the type of security fittings on the rear door used for deliveries of higher value items to Post Offices. It also has the number plates fitted on the roof as was done with some, but not all Post Office Vans.

The effort to produce the Post Office specific details is excellent as the diecast makers have made plenty of 1:76 Postal Vans but none fitted with the security equipment.  Parker Models has already made a J4 Van but again that is standard van.

The decals provided with the kit are very fine and even include the details for the door and the number plates.

GPO 06 Standard 6cwt Utility

The Standard vans were based upon the Standard 8 and 10 saloons. The John Day range already includes a Standard 8 car and the Standard van and pickup. This model for the GPO range has has been updated to represent a linesmans van which was trialled by Post Office Telephones a similar van in red was trialled by the Post Office for postal deliveries. It should be noted that this van with ladder rack and ladders is also supplied as SRV114 with decals for a building firm.

The van was rejected after trials so no more Standards were bought and the Morris Minor Van continued to be the most widely used vehicle by the Post Office in this market sector.  Had Standard succeeded in breaking into the large public utility market it might have meant they stayed competitive in the smaller car sector but with limited sales the Standard Vans did not make a large contribution to company profits.

This model includes very fine decals for number plates as well as the crown symbols and Post Office telephone details on the door. The Standard Van casting has been tidied up considerably from its first releases in the standard range and the ladder rack and ladders are unbelievably fine castings.

Yet again a small UK artisan producer has filled in some gaps in the UK’s motoring history in miniature. The models are great fun to make up and look quite well displayed alongside Oxford Diecast models to the same scale.

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Scalelink Standards

By Maz Woolley

Scalelink have been producing a wide range of white metal models and kits aimed primarily at the railway modeller in the UK for many years. Amongst this output is a range of 4mm, 1:76 scale, vehicles.  Models from this range can still be bought new from the manufacturers but they also turn up regularly at lower prices built, or unbuilt, on eBay and at swapmeets. The kits are constructed in a similar manner to John Day Vehicle Scenics or Parker Models and cover a wide range of largely pre-war vehicles to go with layouts modelling the “golden age of steam”.  If you want a model from the early days of motoring for your layout or collection Scalelink covers this period in 1:76 with vehicles like a De Dion Bouton Tourer from 1904, a Rover 6HP Tourer from 1906, a Renault AX Tourer from 1908 and an Aquila ‘Italiana’ from 1913. The newest vehicles in the series were introduced just before the Second World War like the Vauxhall 10 from 1939.

This article looks at two models of the Standard Flying 8 one a tourer and one a saloon. 8 horsepower saloons were popular in the pre-war period and the Standard was one of the dearer models in a marketplace. Other 8hp saloons included offerings from Austin (as modelled by John Day), Morris Series E (as modelled by John Day and Oxford Diecast), and the Ford Model Y (modelled by Scalelink and Varney). The Standard Flying 8 was introduced in 1938 and the initial version lasted until 1941. It was re-launched largely unchanged after the Second World War, losing the “flying” appellation, and lasted from 1945 to 1948.

The Flying 8 was the first small British car with independent front suspension and was well appointed. Two versions were available from the launch of the model: A two-door all-steel saloon, and a 2/4-seat open tourer. The former body was built for Standard by Fisher & Ludlow at a newly erected plant at Tile Hill, Coventry. This was not far from the Standard factory in Canley. The open tourer bodies were built by Carbodies at Holyhead Road, Coventry. The tourer featured cut-down door tops and a fold-flat windscreen. Both cars were capable of reaching 60 miles an hour and had a 1021cc four cylinder engine with a three speed gearbox. Total production of the vehicle is unknown due to loss of factory records from the pre-war period. Estimates suggest that around 25,000 may have been made in all including some sold as kits for export. Contrast that to the Morris Series E introduced at the same time which sold over 120,000 including the brief period it was sold post war.

Scalelink SLC081 Standard Flying 8 Tourer 1938

This model is supplied with two hoods one folded in the down position and one in hood up position. Unfortunately the windscreen tope edge does not fit to the hood well and would need careful “fettling” to achieve a reasonable fit. The folded hood is a rather better fit. The cut down sides have been modelled neatly.

All in all this is not a bad model not as well cast as Parker models but better in some respects that the older John Days which have not yet been upgraded.

Scalelink SLC082 Standard Flying 8 saloon 1939

Much the same standard of casting here. And it makes up into a neat model too. The bumpers on both models are often bent when the model arrives but can be carefully straightened as needed.

The model I received did not have a vacform and the windows had to be created with Kristal Klear in both vehicles and for the first time I have used this on the headlights too. It is certainly rather effective.

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