As many of you may be aware, there is a worldwide shortage of balsa wood at the moment.
Balsa wood is a fast-growing hardwood that thrives in the climates found in parts of South America and South East Asia - principally Ecuador and Papua New Guinea (PNG).
At VMC we have become used to a regular supply of lovely, even-grained balsa from PNG that is perfect for laser-cutting everything from peanut-scale, free-flight models to large RC planes. Although there are some limited supplies of balsa from Ecuador, we have found it less consistent, more dense and harder to laser cut than its PNG equivalent and so we are reluctant to use it.
The sad fact now is that we have very low stocks of PNG balsa.
The "word on the street" is that balsa is being acquired in large amounts for use in wind turbine blades for green power generation and so both demand and price are increasing dramatically.
You will have noticed that many of the kits on our website are showing as "Out of Stock" and this is as a direct result of the balsa shortage.
We still have some stock of nice 1/16" balsa sheet and so we can continue to produce our Magnificent Flying Machines range and some of the smaller scale rubber models into next year, but models requiring 3/32", 1/8" and greater thicknesses will gradually sell out.
As well as looking for new sources of balsa, we will be looking at new opportunities and materials in order to continue producing model aircraft kits that are fun to build and fly. This year, we will be producing RC models using laser cut foam board and plywood - all with a vintage twist of course.
Thank you all for your patience and rest assured that the moment we have more balsa wood, we'll be laser-cutting day and night to produce the full range of kits you know and love.