I have seen these small planes for sale on airports in Germany and Austria, I assume they are also available in some toystores, but, being perfect scale reproductions, I would say they are not intended for playing or as a toy you buy for a child, but for teenagers and adult collectors.
I found two of them in flea markets over the years, plus a third one loose, and All three together will make a nice blog entry. Note that all three have Austrian stickers, although I am quite certain that they were also available with stickers from Lufthansa and many other major airlines. Schabak planes are made in 1:600 scale, or sometimes in 1:520.
What I like most about them are the boxes, small, with the picture of the actual plane, and the logo of the company, each box in the right size for the model inside. Very cute. The planes are protected with a soft paper, I don't know if this is original, or a later addition of the previous owner of these items.
The two boxed units are from the early 90s, while the loose plane is much more modern, probably from around 2008.
The company is based in Nurnberg, Germany, and is now property of Schuco. The story of these two companies is very much related, as I will explain next.
Schabak was founded in 1966 by Max Haselmann, Gerhard Hertlein, Horst Widmann and Wolfang Stolpe, and originally, it was a toy distributor, mainly for Schuco Modell. When Schuco went out of business in 1970, Schabak purchased many of their casts and tools (both for cars and airplanes) to start producing their own toys, although other companies like Gama did the same and also bought casts from Schuco and after several agreements with airlines, started producing these nice series.
Schabak’s cars are all German-makes, first in 1:43 scale: BMWs, Volkswagens, Audis… many of them, officially approved by the manufacturers.
Later, Schabak moved to larger scales, producing miniatures of the same German cars in 1:24 scale. The products were oriented to an adult collector, and that’s why the brand is rather unknown, even for great die-cast collectors.
FACTS AND FIGURES:
- Name: AUSTRIAN AIRLINES FOKKER 50, AIRBUS A310-324, and AIRBUS 321-111 (WB514, WB515 and NN)
- Scale: 1:600
- Year: Around 1993 and 2008
- Company: Schabak (Germany)
- Size: approx. 4 to 6 cm