Replica or Real?

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Replica military vehicles should be clearly labelled as such and no one should try to pass them off as the real thing, writes Jim Dowdall

An exhibition of more than 250 historic vehicles took place on Arromanches beach on June 6, 2019, the 75th anniversary of the D-Day Landings and the Battle of Normandy

The vintage vehicle and aeroplane community has long been at odds with what constitutes a ‘genuine’ machine.

If the rarest of machines is ‘restored’ using mostly refabricated parts (given the engineering skills seemingly available these days) does that then detract from the historical significance?

In the world of aircraft restoration, it is now possible to build a totally new aeroplane if one has obtained just the manufacturer’s plate from inside the original aircraft, which shows the date and place of manufacture and the original frame number.

Based on that, for a Spitfire for instance, there are now completely modern-made manufactured parts to build the aeroplane from scratch. How does one designate this aeroplane? Is it a ‘fake’, a ‘restoration’ or as many would classify a representative of a bygone era and worthwhile ‘heritage’ to be left for future generations?

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