New Volvo FH Globetrotter XL, Short Sunderland update and more

New Volvo FH Globetrotter XL, Short Sunderland update and more

 

Welcome to the third edition of our Die-cast Diaries blog, which aims to bring the world of Corgi model development direct to the collector.

In our latest blog, we have an extremely exciting New Tooling announcement to make, but before we move on to that we'll reply to some very valid comments that have appeared on our forums and social media channels over the past few weeks. We are really pleased that our new development blog has received some very positive and encouraging feedback since it was launched, but we will always be looking to make this an interesting, regular read, with the Corgi collector very much in mind. In support of this aim and in response to a number of social media posts, we can very much confirm that we will be featuring all the model ranges in the Corgi catalogue and not just aviation models. The Aviation Archive range is an extremely important section of the Corgi catalogue and enjoys a large collector following, but it will have no greater importance in future Die-cast Diaries content than any of the other Corgi ranges. We will always try to prioritise new and recent product development information in our features, but will be looking across the entire Corgi model range. As usual, we are always happy to receive your comments and suggestions via our social media channels, with a view to making Die-cast Diaries as interesting as possible.

 


 

New Tooling Announcement – Hauliers of Renown

It has been some time since the Hauliers of Renown range has benefited from a New Tooling announcement, so collectors will be really pleased to hear this exciting news. Producing magnificent replica models of the impressive vehicles that carry the commodities of everyday life across the roads of Europe, the Hauliers of Renown range appeals to a wide range of collectors, from highly knowledgeable enthusiasts, to the actual drivers of the vehicles themselves. Whichever group you would class yourself as being in, we have some very exciting news for you – a brand new Corgi tooling.

 

Volvo FH Globetrotter XL

 

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Line drawing of the Volvo Globetrotter XL 6X2 Centre Tag Line

 

Corgi are proud to announce their brand new tooling of the Volvo FH cab in the Hauliers of Renown range of 1/50th scale model trucks. This announcement is being made very early in the development of the model, so we will have the opportunity to chart the progress of this project throughout its development in future editions of Die-cast Diaries. We appreciate that this will come as extremely welcome news for the modern truck collector, so let’s take a closer look at what the Corgi team have been doing behind the scenes.

The Volvo FH series of trucks are quite simply some of the most powerful and technologically advanced haulage vehicles on the road today and represent the pinnacle of haulage design and innovation. As the truck manufacturing industry embraced the changes imposed by Euro 6 engine emission legislation, many took the opportunity to re-design their vehicles, to produce highly advanced vehicles that would both comply with the legislation changes and also introduce new technology for haulage operators and drivers alike. Volvo, as one of the world’s leading manufacturers, were determined that they were going to produce something really special and in the world of road haulage and in the FH series, they certainly did that.

 

 

There will obviously have been significant development around the engine and transmission technology used on the new truck, so that it not only complied with the new emission legislation, but also produce the pure power and torque it would need in working situations. However, the aesthetic appeal of the new vehicle would very much depend on the work done around aerodynamics and driver comfort. The Volvo design team looked at the driver experience and built the new cab around their needs. Re-design of the chassis allowed the cab size to be increased, with a much more luxurious feel and greater flexibility around driver living space. The dashboard was ergonomically designed to be right at the driver’s fingertips and changes to both the seat and steering wheel positioning options, were all incorporated to make driving the Volvo FH both comfortable and extremely safe. Everything is much more intuitive, allowing the driver to keep his eyes firmly on the road.

Importantly, this is one of the safest vehicles on the road, with a host of advanced features designed to protect the driver and ensure that the new Volvo is operated safely. In the unfortunate event of an accident, a new cabin escape hatch serves as both an important driver self-preservation addition and a welcome increase in general cabin illumination. The Globetrotter XL cab provides even more space for the driver and will allow all but the tallest people to stand upright in the cab.

 

Development of the new Corgi Volvo FH

 

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CAD screenshot from the new Volvo FH project

 

Obviously, Volvo are rightly proud of their new truck and are fiercely protective of what they have created. This would be a factor in the development work required for the new Corgi model, which rather than start with plans, or scanned data, actually started life as a CAD design file supplied by Volvo themselves. This information would have to be imported into the specific model design software operated by the Corgi engineers, as they would need to be able to split the files into the component parts of the model tooling, whilst remaining faithful to the detailed shape supplied by Volvo.

 

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CAD screenshot from the new Volvo FH project
This also raises an issue that has become rather significant in the production of die-cast models over the past few years – that of licencing. You would probably expect to have some licencing work to complete if you were thinking of producing a model of an iconic new vehicle/aviation design, but this also has to be considered when looking at more historic items. Indeed, as many of the original manufacturers of vehicles and aircraft have merged, been taken over, or simply disappeared, it can be quite a task to ascertain if a licencing agreement needs to be obtained. No matter how difficult and time consuming this proves to be, it has to be methodically completed, as it could be critical to the success of the intended model. Importantly, with some of the iconic designs that Corgi regularly come into contact with, the actual ‘shape’ of the scaled down vehicle has to be passed by the licencing company. This could result in some delay in product development as nothing can proceed until this important authorisation has been obtained.

 


 

Producing a Volvo truck in 1/50th scale die-cast

 

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Early CAD screenshot of the new 1/50th scale Volvo FH model - both front badge positions displayed

 

The Corgi design team now have some significant work to do, in reducing the Volvo FH CAD data to allow the production of a 1/50th scale die-cast tooling mould, whilst retaining the integrity of the iconic shape of the subject vehicle. The Raw CAD data, once converted to the Corgi format, is developed by the design team, to produce files that will enable the manufacturing facilities in the Far East to begin their own tooling design work and provide Corgi with a quote for producing the tooling. At the same time, the proposed new model, in particular the shape of the model itself, has to be approved by Volvo themselves. Once this approval has been granted and the quote from the tool makers has been accepted, the project is effectively live and even though there is much work still to do, the model will take its place in a future Corgi catalogue.

 

Corgi Volvo FH Globetrotter XL – Early Notification

As you will no doubt be aware, the production of a new model tooling can be extremely costly for the manufacturing company and as there is only a finite amount of development investment available, all the Hornby Hobbies brands and their sub-ranges have to argue their case for any new tooling investment, which is why the announcement of any future new tooling is a significant development. The Corgi team were extremely keen to bring their collectors news of the new Volvo as early as they were allowed, which is where we are at this present time. Significantly, we are so advanced with the announcement of this project that we still don’t have any stereotype, or first metal shots model samples to show you at this stage, just CAD image data. We are, however, sharing this information with you much earlier in the process than we would normally do, but we feel that our loyal collectors would rather have the information and share in the development of the project, than wait until it is much closer to release.

 

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Early CAD screenshot of the new 1/50th scale Volvo FH model

 

Let us take a look at some of the details of the new Volvo FH tooling:

Volvo FH Globetrotter XL

Cab Options
The cab of the new model will have two panel options under the windscreen:

Panel Option 1 – Including the Volvo badging.
Panel Option 2 – Without the Volvo badging.
Grill Option 1 – Including the Volvo badging.
Grill Option 2 – Without the Volvo badging.

Some of the grill components will be produced in a chrome finish.

Chassis Options
The new model will be tooled as a 6 X 2, with skirts and two variations:

Chassis Option 1 – 6 X 2 Centre tag axle
Chassis Option 2 – 6 X 2 Rear tag axle

The bottom bumper light bar will be incorporated into the tooling.

 

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Early CAD screenshot of the new 1/50th scale Volvo FH model - both front badge positions displayed
Even though this new model is still in the very early stages of its development, we hope that it will be good news for collectors of the Hauliers of Renown range. We very much look forward to bringing you regular updates on the project over the coming weeks, leading right up to its eventual release and it taking its place on the display shelves of British and European collectors.

We would like to thank Stuart from Code 3 Models, for his invaluable assistance in the production of this Volvo FH feature.

 


 

What’s on the Desk?

Scania Fuel Tanker update

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Pre-production model sample of CC13775 Scania R Highline Fuel Tanker in Eddie Stobart livery

 

Staying with the Hauliers of Renown range for a moment, one of the models spotted on the Corgi designers desk recently was this extremely attractive pre-production sample of the Scania R Highline, in Eddie Stobart fuel tanker livery. As some of the highest profile haulage vehicles on Britain’s roads, Eddie Stobart trucks have to be regarded as some of the most popular models ever to appear in the Corgi 1/50th scale range and this latest release looks certain to continue this tradition. CC13775 is scheduled for a December release and the existence of this lovely PP sample suggests that everything is nicely on track!

 

Short Sunderland update – classic release on track

 

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The magnificent new Short Sunderland Mk.III is now ready for production

 

As we were planning the latest edition of Die-cast Diaries, it did not go unnoticed that a rather large and interesting box had appeared on the desk of the Corgi design team – this warranted further investigation. Lurking inside was the final sample of the new and much anticipated 1/72nd scale Short Sunderland flying boat, which was awaiting final sign off. Over the past few months, this significant project has been subject to some highly intensive development work as the new Sunderland is scrutinised down to the smallest accessory parts, as it heads towards its eventual release. This latest sample was hopefully the final incarnation of the tooling and would satisfy the critical eye of the team who have worked so hard on this model, over the past few months.

 

ImageKClose up detail of the new Corgi Short Sunderland

 

The Sunderland has to be one of the models most requested by Aviation Archive collectors in recent years and as such, this project has proved quite a challenge for the Corgi development team – they were determined to produce a model that they could be proud of. They have very much achieved this aim, as the sample model is nothing short of magnificent – it is also a return to the days of very heavy aviation models, very much reminiscent of the magnificent Avro Lancaster, in the same scale. Collectors will be absolutely smitten with this new Short Sunderland, which has now been signed off and will be released for production. With a scheduled release date of November 2015, we don’t have to wait too long for this beauty.

 

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A selection of images, which illustrate the bomb rack options on the new model

 

The attached images have been taken from the final pre-production sample model and even though there may be a few small details that are in need of attention, they certainly show the quality of the new Short Sunderland release. We can start to get excited about the arrival of this impressive new model!

 

And finally – new Hurricane Images

 

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The new 1/72nd scale Hurricane Mk.I has just been released

In the previous edition of Die-cast Diaries, we gave readers an insight into the development of the all-new, 1/72nd scale Hawker Hurricane Mk.I tooling. For some reason, the sample model that we had hoped would complete the feature perfectly did not turn up in time and we promised to bring you these images in the next edition. Thankfully, we have it now and here are the pictures we promised – AA27601, Hawker Hurricane Mk.I V7434 DZ-R, flown by Pilot Officer Irving Smith, RAF No.151 Squadron, Digby, October 1940. This is a really impressive new Hurricane tooling and a fantastic way to mark the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.

 

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AA27601 is a fine representation of a Battle of Britain Hurricane

 

That’s it for another edition. What livery would you like to see on the new Volvo FH Globetrotter XL? Is there something that you would like to see covered in future editions? Discuss this week's blog on the Die-Cast Diaries forum, or drop us a line through Facebook or Twitter using #CorgiDiecastDiaries.

Until the next edition of Die-cast Diaries, enjoy your collecting!

The Corgi Team

 

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