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Moderate but correct critics of kits please


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AMS is a curse I threw off a while ago, seeking perfection, or at least near perfection is theoretically possible but usually impractical taking all the fun out of a build and stalling projects sometimes for years! Just crazy! Now, when I build a kit where I can see a flaw I just call it

 

'a perfect what if!'  . . . Ha!

 

I tend not to get stuck on minutiae, for example, every grey jet I've built for the past 15 years have all been Halfords primer! No one noticed! My best advice, don't take a measuring device to your kits, you 'will' find inaccuracies! and 2D scales plans don't equate to a harmonious build in 3D. 

 

I'm just hugely grateful to the manufacturers who invest in new kits or reissue the old ones, without them we have no hobby, so I don't complain, if there is something I don't like or feel needs improvement, (I enjoy older Airfix classics, so lots to work with) I'll use my modelling skills, or develop new skills until I'm happy with it.

 

A perfect kit that just falls together with ease? Where's the fun in that? may as well buy die cast.

 

 The fun part is the research into the type and how it goes together adding to my overall knowledge base in aircraft engineering, history, and model kit manufacture.

I suppose for me, modelling is the journey, not the destination

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Well said @Kes, very much my philosophy too. To my mind, life is too short to be beating myself up over slight inaccuracies & striving for the unattainable, but then, each to there own too. Whatever floats your boat.

Steve.

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7 hours ago, Kes said:

A perfect kit that just falls together with ease? Where's the fun in that? may as well buy die cast.

Eh. Just means you can go completely nuts on the paintwork without worrying about fit/steps/seams. 

They have their own merits :) 

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 The fun part is the research into the type and how it goes together adding to my overall knowledge base in aircraft engineering, history, and model kit manufacture.

I suppose for me, modelling is the journey, not the destination

That is how I look at it too (maybe that's also the reason I skip those '46 things)

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11 minutes ago, alt-92 said:

 

That is how I look at it too (maybe that's also the reason I skip those '46 things)

 

The whole 'what if?' concept including those '46 things can be a useful tool against getting hung up on details and minor inaccuracies, also it's fun to revise history in your own way, also a good way of using those old classic kits that have seen better days and have now replaced with superior new counterparts.

 

Because the design can be yours, they are never wrong!

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Is it possible that a lot of AMS stems from what I call the "superkit?"

As a child of the 60's to 70's a kit was a few bob that I built over a weekend  and looked good as a spitfire or hurricane or whatever on the shelf in my bedroom.  Nowadays we are in the era of the "superkit" that costs £50-£100+ and expectations of accuracy are high, so modellers are trying to match their skills to these kits, and consequently are now trying to apply those expectations to lesser kits.  To me that is a prime cause of AMS.

 

Selwyn

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34 minutes ago, Selwyn said:

Is it possible that a lot of AMS stems from what I call the "superkit?"

As a child of the 60's to 70's a kit was a few bob that I built over a weekend  and looked good as a spitfire or hurricane or whatever on the shelf in my bedroom.  Nowadays we are in the era of the "superkit" that costs £50-£100+ and expectations of accuracy are high, so modellers are trying to match their skills to these kits, and consequently are now trying to apply those expectations to lesser kits.  To me that is a prime cause of AMS.

 

Selwyn

 

Not sure, IMHO what really changed between the '60s/'70s and today is that we were kids back then and we're not anymore...

Can't tell much about the '60s as I was born at the end of the decade, but looking back at the '70s there were superkits even then, for example the Airfix 1/24 kits. Some of Monogram 1/48 kits could also be considered as the equivalent of certain superkits of today when it comes to detail. Of course none of these was something that a kid like me could think of buying with his pocket money, as while a couple of seriously good kit came thanks to Christmas and similar, mine were generally cheap kits built in a couple days with very little paint.

However I remember that even when I was a kid there were some seriously talented modellers out there and I saw some real masterpieces when I visited my first model show. These were the work of adults who sure used to put a lot of time into every build. I remember in particular a couple of British biplanes, could have been Wallaces or Wapitis as were built from a Frog kit, where everything was visible, the modeller had scratchbuilt the whole internal structure and left this visible. A few year later I met someone who knew the modeller and he told me that the guy had an artisan casting parts in silver and pewter from masters he had made, so that he could have a supply of certain details common to several types. I was also told that someone was getting some parts made using the same technique used for printed circuits... that is what we know as photo-etch. Then I saw a series of Italian WW2 fighters scratchbuilt in 1/24 scale, with operational landing gears and control surfaces...

Of course not all modellers were at such level, but sure there were enough that suffered from what we would call AMS and spent considerable amount of money on a model. And then there were the kids like me, who were happy with their 1000 Lire Matchbox purple series Zero, proudly displayed in the original 2-colour used by that company.

Guess that the same is true today, there are modellers who obsess over every little detail and others who don't mind. The good thing of today is that even the modellers with not much interest in superdetail can have a much better detailed model thanks to the effort of the manufacturers. And if they are not interested they can leave the details off the model.

Edited by Giorgio N
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5 hours ago, Giorgio N said:

Not sure, IMHO what really changed between the '60s/'70s and today is that we were kids back then and we're not anymore...

This.

 

For the US, a 1960 dollar is worth $8.74 today, a 1970 dollar is $6.68. So today's $150 kit was $22 in 1970. Pricey but, IIRC, consistent with those expensive kits back in the day. Also recognize the technology of model and mold making is wildly different, today is altogether better, faster, cheaper than it was then.

 

Building and research are my favorite parts. As such, I do enjoy honing my modeling skills when that's my expectation of the kit. My painting is usually good technically, but somewhat lacks is devoid of any manner of artistic flair, which is why I paint clean models. :)

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That's it. As a kid I had simply different expectations on a kit than today. Furthermore, today, in contrast to the 60s/70s one has easy access to a myriade of references to detail every hidden corner of your kit.

Not only is there a wealth of specific publications specifically geared to the (super) detailer but with the Internet many people have easy access to detailed walkarounds of almost every subject imaginable, almost for free. So in contrast to earlier decades it is comparatively easy today to assess a kit and get information to detail it further. Of course, today we have a big aftermarket industry too which supplies you with resin, photoetch, 3D printed update/detail/conversion parts, decals, weathering products, ...

 

This all can be a blessing and a curse as ones own standards often rise due to the influences of magazines, forums and such publications where superdetailers show what's possible (a bit of "peer pressure" to follow the "standards" which are presented to one).

 

In the end, every modeller has to find the "sweet spot" in the hobby. Some like the competitive (contests) aspect, others like to superdetail the hell out of each kit which means they may build just one kit per year, others like the research aspect and some just want to stick some plastic/resin together.

That's the nice thing about modelling today, you have wide range of choices today how you want to pursue the hobby. Just don't let anybody tell you how you have to enjoy the hobby (applies to real life too :D).

 

Cheers

Markus

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Hello!

 

Of the yesterday, Bf 109 and CAD modelling. MTT has drawing for Bf 109 engine cowling which directly gives most of the necessary dimensions (in three dimensions!) with a fraction of millimeter at times. More than helpful for CAD modeller. Unfortunately the oil cooler shape is not included in this basic cowling geometry. Perhaps interesting detail: the drawing has a small shaped bulge over the upper engine bearer. You can see that same for example on Zvezda 1/72 Bf 109 F cowling but on real life the shape seems to be there but not a well defined bulge as on the drawing. In my opinion Zvezda (and now Tamiya) are the best 1/72 Bf 109 F-G shapes.

 

This is just to say that CAD modeling of Bf 109 is possible. I have attempted it couple of times successfully, but real work or other time restraints have come to way. Now I have time, but no CAD program...

 

Cheers,

Kari

Edited by Kari Lumppio
Zvezda, not ICM!
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On 9/5/2020 at 2:05 AM, Kes said:

I suppose for me, modelling is the journey, not the destination

I think I shall adopt this as my motto.  Fine words to explain never finishing anything.

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On 8/19/2020 at 12:17 PM, bentwaters81tfw said:

Go and build a Mach 2 or Unicraft kit, then get back to me. :tmi::wink:

I have a mach2 WB-57F at the paint stage and it's been mostly enjoyable so far - the only thing bugging me is it might turn out better than I thought and I'll wish I'd put a resin cockpit in it.

 

I also just finished a High Planes RB-57D and that was enjoyable up until the moment that it was finished except no amount of hacking the u/c would get it to sit right.

 

Sometime overcoming problems is what makes things enjoyable.

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20 minutes ago, Seahawk said:

I think I shall adopt this as my motto.  Fine words to explain never finishing anything.

Exactly! Ha!

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On 8/19/2020 at 10:26 AM, Tim R-T-C said:

Sounds like Advanced Modeller Syndrome.

 

Where you end up getting so deeply into specific details of a kit (eg. reading a 200 post debate about the correct green for a cockpit handle) that you spend 6 months on each build and start to lose any enjoyment from it.

Six months? That's about average for me and then the end result isn't super accurate anyway :P

 

To be honest I can't get to hung up about taking something, scaling down every feature of it by a factor of anywhere between 24 and 144 and then worrying about minimal alleged deviations with the original, as long as it 'looks right'. I put these between apostrophes because that is of course a personal thing, but I think we are quite lucky that as modellers we live in a time where for most well-known and quite a few lesser known types we have multiple decent kits to choose from that all, at least from my perspective, 'look right'.

Edited by sroubos
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On 8/19/2020 at 6:17 AM, bentwaters81tfw said:

Go and build a Mach 2 or Unicraft kit, then get back to me. :tmi::wink:

The only Mach Poo kit I still have is their C-123 Provider. I sold or traded away all the others over the years. I was going to unload the C-123 after I picked up a Roden C-123, then decided I was going to do a kinda joint build. The only change was I plan to put some C-130 nacelles & props on the Roden kit, to make it as the one off C-123T that the Royal Thai Air Force flew. The Roden kit will use my Siam Scale RTAF decals, and I should have enough spare Thai markings in my stash for the C-123T. I think it will be a fun build, as long as I realize what my expectations are of the Mach 2 kit. :wall:

Larry

 

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