Profile Photo

  • 680 articles
  • 49,056 karma
  • 125 friends

Best grab your WNW kits while you can

Richard Alexander of WNW has announced they will not be re-opening. WNW is over.

This apparently has to do with a larger issue involving government subsidies to film production in “Wellywood” and Sir Peter Jackson’s company Weta.

Sprue Brothers has a nice selection, so does Kitlinx.


12 responses to Best grab your WNW kits while you can

  1. Sad to hear, even though I’ve never built one of theirs, as they seem to be good kits of hard-to-find subjects..

    Best of luck to Mr. Alexander, and thanks for the heads up Tom.

  2. Is this beyond the email from Alexander to Dave Wilson and others about the “grim” situation, then, Tom?

  3. WW1 model fans,

    Perhaps a little clarification is warranted.

    Here is a link to Mr. Wilson’s original post and the subsequent thread: https://forum.ww1aircraftmodels.com/index.php?topic=10978.0

    Mr. Wilson stated in the subject line of his post, “Shock News—Wingnut Wings is closing”. Wilson, who stated on Hyperscale that he is a professional journalist, further stated that his original message was based on multiple sources with information who did not want to be named.

    Subsequently, a former employee weighed in on Hyperscale, stating he would not be surprised, although he stopped short of a confirmation of closure.

    After his first report, Mr. Wilson posted the following on the above-mentioned forum:

    “Richard Alexander, General Manager of Wingnut Wings has responded to the Forum request for an official comment on what is happening with the business right now and the reports it is being closed down permanently.

    He says: ” Nothing is finalized yet but it looks pretty grim. Very sad. I hope you understand that I have nothing else I can say at this time.”

    It’s understood final decisions on the future of the company will be made in the next week or so.

    Dave Wilson
    Gold Coast
    Australia“

    Gently now, this is short of an announcement of closure.

    Other facts that may be related. Weta no longer has reference to Wingnut Wings on its website. Jackson’s Vintage Aviator website was inaccessible earlier in the day but is up again as of the time I’m posting. The WNW website was still taking orders as of yesterday (Saturday) but with no immediate delivery due to Covid-19 restrictions. Note, however, that Mr. Wilson stated that the cause of the alleged permanent closure should not be confused with effects of the ongoing health crisis.

    As noted earlier on this forum, there is speculation that improper use of government funds, an ongoing and major issue, may be at the heart. And, notwithstanding the above, there is plausibly Covid-19 and its economic impacts, which cannot be helpful to profitability or solvency.

    Others have plausibly cited the sudden release of less expensive kits without decals, the Dr.1 kits and large, ambitious and esoteric kits as pointing towards poor business decisions and tell-tales of financial trouble and attempted solutions. I myself was very surprised (but grateful) at the time by the super deep sale on their 10th anniversary last year. However, to my knowledge, no one with insider information of WNW’s financials has shared them publicly, and so these types of observations, IMO anyway, are not particularly valuable and can fuel only speculation.

    So, on the facts as we have them, there is plausibly still some slender window of hope based on the statement of Mr. Alexander, yet remember that he wrote that the situation is “pretty grim”. Too, and importantly, he specifically declined to elaborate as to cause. Apparently, we’ll all know soon.

    If my summary is inaccurate, anyone , please accept both my apologies, not wanting to hurt anyone, and offer factual clarification and/or correction.

    My job continues for now, so I boldly got a Pfalz kit from Spruebros. Such a cool plane. My interest is building, not collecting, and I am glad that Eduard, Gaspatch, Roden and CSM, among others, offer very nice 1/48, 1/72 or 1/32 kits of WW1 subjects. In frustration, I crumpled a Hanriot floatplane a couple of months ago after dropping and shattering it, nearly complete and with dozens of hours expended. Yet, I think I can and will salvage it. Third hand or stand desired!

    Unfortunately, commentary on other forums is running a bit hot and ragged. As a physicist, trained to deal dispassionately with facts, this saddens and frustrates me, and I hope personally to do better.

    Take care, all, in these trying times. I wish the innocent folk at WNW the best, too.

    Kind regards,

    Jim

    • Whistle past the graveyard all you want, but when businesses say things like this, they’re just trying to keep the creditors at bay till they can say “we gone.” Wish I was wrong, but I’m not. Wingnut Wings was never more than a niche – it was my niche, but it was a niche.

      Just went to Sprue Brothers and got that Fokker D.VII early I’d been thinking about.

      • Good afternoon, Tom!

        I understand how upsetting the news is these days, and I know everybody is on edge. Our elderly wives, husbands, brothers, sisters and parents are dying; I just lost a sister to this plague two weeks ago yesterday. To admit a weakness, which is unwise in a dog-eat-dog world (surely not this forum!), I feel the strain of these times myself.

        Modeling and interpersonal discord related to it will not be among those strains, though; hell, I have little time for it anyway, and I sure won’t allow it to intrude on important things.

        Yet, in any time and especially in our times, facts matter; I’m certain you wouldn’t disagree.

        A public facing assertion that (emphasis added) “Richard Alexander of WNW *has announced they will not be re-opening*” in my estimation would not be a true statement and could yet potentially do reputational and economic harm to any who may have been misrepresented. A legal matter? I hope not! And such an error wouldn’t be anyone’s intent, no doubt: just an honest mistake, not in any way inflammatory or attention seeking.

        Let’s just address facts rather than ignoring them. Digging deeper into falsehoods is poor form–common man, we’re better than that! Your point (“whistling past graveyards”) isn’t novel or particularly insightful, frankly. Hence, I said “a slender window of hope” as my personal reaction to Mr. Alexander’s actual statement (the only one we, the public, has, unless you have something others don’t). I’m sure that your reply wan’t an intentional distraction from your apparent error and a low-key ad hominem attack.

        To again quote Mr. Alexander (emphasis added): “*Nothing is finalized yet* but it looks pretty grim. Very sad. I hope you understand that I have nothing else I can say at this time.”

        And from Mr. Wilson, not Mr. Alexander, I believe, based on the punctuation in Mr. Wilson’s post copied and pasted above (emphasis added):
        “It’s understood *final decisions on the future of the company will be made in the next week or so*.” He has not justified that statement with public data, to my knowledge, but I would be keen to learn otherwise, if I gave a s**t or if I could positively impact someone’s well-being. I can wait for a week or so, or forever. I’m just interested in the local truths around me in this matter.

        Regarding the point of your post, I beg of you to please provide Mr. Alexander’s statement that it’s over for good. I don’t have it. Just facts, *please*. No warmed-over non-sequiturs about the world of high finance and big business, *please*. Nobody here ever involved in business is that ignorant. I know that I’m not; I am someone who has been in technical charge of a $2.5B proposal to NASA for a major aerospace contractor and received awards for that work, etc., etc. Common, man.

        It’s clear I wrote with careful thought to accuracy; I provided the source material so people can look it up themselves and make up their own minds.

        By the way, didn’t we first ‘meet’ on a Southern Railroad list back in the late 1990s? I was a wee youth then, between my Master’s and PhD programs and with young ones of my own, designing tracker algorithms for AGM-114L at Northrop Grumman, and I have a remembrance; perhaps it was someone else. Still, I’ve observed behaviors here and elsewhere more recently, and, honestly, I expect a certain kind of comeback. I hope that it is I am who is proven false on that. Again, irrelevant to the facts concerning the subject matter of your post, but it will paint a picture of behavior, and one that I will immediately act on.

        This forum is not for me if harmful untruths and aggressive behaviors are tolerated. Any future ad hominem attacks from anyone–even slight back-handed ones–will simply cause me to immediately quit here. I don’t suffer fools anymore, and I do have many demanding things to do for the Navy in my professional work and will not even suffer a glance rearward.

        Still in slight hope of comity and truth, sir,

        -Jim

  4. Wingnuts future is a very hot topic in the web for the past days. If things go dire I hope they will reopen under a new label or at least the moulds will become available again under new management. Hope to see their DrI available at least

  5. This will be sad.

  6. I am really bummed about this. Managed to buy an Eindecker from the local online store in a panic buy.

    This is life, but it still sucks.

Leave a Reply