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Vintage Footage as Research and Inspiration

The internet has always been a great source for reference photos and information when it comes to building model cars. Not to be overlooked though is vintage footage. If you're like me and love to build models of early automobiles, footage like this can be sometimes be hard to find. Luckily, there has been an increased amount of footage that has been making its way to the web along with vintage newscasts and documentaries. While a photo might be more useful for side by side comparison when building your model, there's nothing better than footage for getting a real sense of the vehicle in motion.

The film archive British Pathé hosts car footage from as far back as 1890.  A quick search can bring up footage of auto races from as early as 1903, but you can also find footage of test runs, experimental cars, early landspeed races (including famous cars such as "Bluebird"), or even drivers talking about their cars. Footage of motorcycles, and more modern cars are also available in the archive. Each movie has still shots of the footage available as well as a written description of everything that occurs in the film, so you can decide if the film shows what you need or nab that shot of the engine before you even hit play.

Even if you're into more modern cars, browsing through vintage footage can be a source of inspiration. Fims showing unusual vehicles such as a car that looks like a locomotive, a car with an innovative way of turning, or even an "avromobile" can be a source of inspiration for kit modifications. Many film archives exist, so take a look around and see what's out there.


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