From his mother's basement to the shelves and showcases of millions, Robert Reder co-founded Monogram models in 1945 — choosing the larger 1/24th scale over the industry standard 1/25th. By the 1960s, Monogram had the box art to beat.

With the car-customizing craze feeding the model-building hobby, kits were flying off the shelves, and Monogram was fighting a battle of the boxes with rival Revell. Both companies relied on awesome box art to win the eyeballs of young builders. Upstart competitor AMT kept pace by focusing on cars alone, while Monogram and Revell both extended to boats, planes and military gear. Others geeked out on Formula One cars.

By the 1970s, Monogram had been purchased by Mattel Inc., and by the mid-1980s both companies had the same owner, Odyssey Partners.


Reder died this past February 20, less than a month after the death of AMT pioneer George Toteff. [Hemmings]