To my mind, a Scale Glider never looks complete unless there is someone in the cockpit. I know others may not agree and prefer the looks of a well made empty cockpit seat .I might even agree if the Glider was on the ground and static. However, in the air, a Full Size glider needs human input , so why not a scale pilot in our models.
Consider the site of your much cherished scale ship doing a low shrieking pass over the slope with all the thrill that entails, only to see, as it flies close by, that there is nobody at home. Your glider becomes no more than a pilotless drone and looses the scale effect you have been striving to achieve
Pilots can be as cheap or as expensive as your funds will allow. Indeed it is like buying a car. You have to decide at what level your funds will allow. Do you really need a Rolls Royce of a pilot as made by Axel’s Scale Pilots with all the extra detailing available ( for well in excess of £130 or the cost of a new scratch built model) or are there other options available to us. But of course you do get exactly what you pay for!! The quality and detail seen on any of Axel’s products is quite the best to be seen anywhere. I mean you actually get genuine “Polaroid” sunglasses with 22:ct gold rims!! Plus a ticking “Breitling” watch!! Personally speaking if I can get away with somethoing cheaper and acceptable to me, then I will. I must have some Scottish blood coursing through my veins.
We must remind ourselves that this hobby of ours can be extremely expensive and enough to deter many newcomers, particulary the young and not all can afford the best
But a personal plee though, PLEASE no fluffy animals or beany toys.
So what else is there available?
1: You can carve your own out of balsa or blue foam
My personal attempts at this have been just about satisfactory, but I am no sculpture. If you go this course then, to add detailing to the face and hands, try coating the surfaces with plaster of paris then scratch away until you are satisfied with the results, then paint. I would suggest that you never make the eyes look straight ahead as they tend to look like a lifeless stare, just make them look sideways. For more on painting pilots go Here
If you are lucky, you maybe able to convince one of the female members of your family to knit a jumper. They might even find that they enjoy the challenge.
2: Childrens toy dolls
Two Latex Pilots in my own quarter scale Slingsby T-31.