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Ron Bell

IPMS/USA Executive Board
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Everything posted by Ron Bell

  1. Just FYI. If you kept your name badge from the national convention, take out the inside card and your CDC covid vaccination card fits in it perfectly. You should not laminate it as it may need to be updated, so this protects the card without hindering any future processing.
  2. Out of curiosity, I counted the steps from my room to the registration area. The total was 650. Times 3 feet per step yielded a journey of 1/3 of a mile each trip. Do that twice in a day (minimum) and you walked a mile and a third just to get to registration, never mind steps in the venders' and contest rooms. At least the venue was carpeted. On concrete, that could have put a serious hurt on the feet. Next time we have such a venue, I'm going to rent a golf cart and charge for rides to the convention area. I should make enough to cover my venders' room expenses anyway. 🛺 😀
  3. I know others have said it in other posts, but I thought it would be nice to have a specific topic for this. I've seen quite a few conventions from the inside and out, and this one was a winner. Thank you, Las Vegas, for a wonderful convention put on under very difficult circumstances. All the applause at the awards ceremony were well deserved and well earned.
  4. Just FYI for future conventions, on Saturday morning there was a judging team available to give you feedback on your models. They would not have compared them to any other models and would not have know what the actual judges of your models saw, but they could have given general feedback from a judging point of view.
  5. I was trying to find a way to kill some time before the nationals as I didn't want to start a big project and then leave it for a week or so, so I dug around and came up with this. It's a old, bagged kit that I got as part of a job lot of kits I bought. The decals were unusable, so I had to find some alternative a/c to build. I didn't want to do the usual shark mouth deal nor the three color camo job, so I looked around and found this, a Russian P-40B painted in a not usually seen way. I did it OOTB as I didn't want to make more of it than it is, but did replace the guns and added the vane antenna. The markings were scrabbled together from my spares. It's obviously no contest winner, but it was a fun little diversion from a bunch of scratch building, detailing or wrestling with PE parts.
  6. Rigging is stretched sprue. You get it taught by lighting a match and then blowing it out and putting the line to be tensioned in the smoke. It springs taught as it shrinks. It takes a bit to get the hang of it and you may melt a few lines, but they are easily replaced.
  7. I'm a fellow 'nostalgia modeler" and can attest to the fact that it's still possible to have actual 'fun' building a model instead of wrestling with a bunch of tiny detail parts and fiddly photo etch stuff. Great job on the B-26. Let's see more.
  8. I got this kit in a grab bag of kits I bought. It's from the 1956 molds and even had the pilot's head molded in halves integral to the fuselage sides. There are many inaccuracies and omissions, so to build it 'right' would be a real waste of time as there are now many other much better representations, including Airfix's own excellent re-tooled one. But I decided to do it just for fun, so I did it as a desk model and since it was to be in flight, I added the 'spinning' prop. I also rigged it, which was not called for in the instructions, and added the antenna, which you may notice is the wrong configuration, but since there were so many other 'problems' and it was simpler to do this way, I settled for it amongst all the other inaccuracies, which includes the markings. The kit's decals were useless, so I got some out of the spares box. They actually belong to a Hawker Fury of First Squadron, but hey, in for a penny in for a pound, inaccuracy-wise.
  9. I'm reading Holland's "Sicily '43". In a chapter entitled "Airpower", he tells a story of a pair of Spitfires out of Malta equipped with "auxiliary fuel tanks that could be discarded ..." I'm no aircraft expert, but I don't recall ever hearing mention of Spits being so equipped nor seen a photo of one. Anyone out there have more info on this?
  10. I started working on this as "stuff" dried/set on another model, then got caught up in it as it was turning out pretty nice. Typical Frog kit with few parts and no interior detail, so I painted up the crash test dummy like pilot they provide just to fill in the space. For it's age, it's a nice little kit and was actually fun to build with few hassles or problems.
  11. These are wargamming kits, but are very nicely detailed, especially given their size, and just fall together. They are darn fun to build. The only things I added to these were the fuel lines to the outside tanks and the antennae and pennants. The quarter is there for size perspective.
  12. This is actually a war game miniature and you get three in one box. They say it's 1/72 but next to other 1/72 Sherman tank kits (I know the RAM was it's basis), it's huge! The suspension and tracks are one-piece assemblies, but with the exception of the guide horns not being correct, they are very nice. The gun mount is very simplified as well so I reworked the gun mount adding a gun sight and the control wheels and a gunner's seat. I also added an instrument panel for the driver. And by the way, you get a complete crew and the figures are pretty well done, if a bit plump, but I didn't use them all as it would have been very crowded in there. I also drilled out the gun barrel and muzzle brake, cut open the driver's viewing hatch and replaced it from the spares box and removed the slab molded-on handles on the side and replaced them with wire. The stowage comes in the kit. No decals are provided and I did not have any appropriate ones, so if I do find some later, I'll add them on. I was surprised how nice it looks for a war-game miniature and wouldn't mind trying another of their kits.
  13. You might try mini saw blades for your Exacto. They have very fine teeth and are very thin and come in all sorts of shapes. Several companies sell them. They usually come on something like a PE fret. They are not for the larger plugs you find on resin kits, but work well on flash and in tighter places. Here's some available from Micro Mark Tools.
  14. This is from the dual kit with the Char B1 bis. Before the accuracy police get started, I know it's a WW 2 version, and I know that there were many small and some large changes from the WW 1 versions and that this kit has been called to account for inaccuracies and it's very name has been questioned. However, in general, it looks more like an Ft-17 than anything else on my shelf and fills a hole in my WW 1 collection. I know there are other kits of it out there, but not any to which I have access, so this will have to do. That all being said, it's actually a nice little kit to build, if a bit fiddly getting the hull together in alignment and with no seams. The detail is typical Matchbox in that what there is, is kind of 'mushy' or heavy handed. I added all the tools and the jack from the spares box to busy it up and the camouflage is from a photo I found on the internet. When done, it measures about 2.5 inches long and I think it makes a rather pleasing little model.
  15. Yeah! what he said! (?????)
  16. Heck, they stuck those things on normal trucks, putting it on a half track would be no problem. Have at it.
  17. The greatest part of this is that you can't tell the vacuforms from the Eduard kit. A tribute to your skill. I dabble in vacs and know what it takes to wrestle these things together. Outstanding work.
  18. Duke, You never cease to amaze! I don't think anyone enjoys modeling as much as you. Keep it up and bring 'em to Vegas in 21.
  19. Here's another trip down memory lane. This kit dates from 1970. For those not familiar with FROG, they were making wooden model aircraft kits as far back as the 1930's and were one of the first to transition to all plastic kits. The name, FROG, stands for "Flies Right Off the Ground", as most of their early rubber band powered models did. I had to do a little research as I knew very little about this a/c. It's got an Allison engine instead of the later Merlin and came with two 20mm cannons, although the British models exchanged these for four 50 cal. mgs. From what I read, it was not intended to be a fighter-bomber, rather as a pure fighter, so the hard points under the wings for ordnance were removed. HOWEVER, obviously, Frog intended the kit's parts to suffice for both versions, so they compromised, using the mg wings, but including rather clunky bomb racks under the wings. So, thinking it looked cooler with ordnance under the wings, I ground off the kit's bomb racks and substituted ones from a Blenheim kit. In addition, even though the racks were there the kit did not come with bombs, so I pirated two from the same Blenheim kit. The rest is OOTB with the exception of the decals. The ones in the example I got were too far gone to salvage, so I used ones from the spares box. The invasion stripes are painted on. I don't know how accurate the outline and/or dimensions are, but it looks like a P-51A to me.
  20. Welome to the group, Rene. While covid has things in a knot, please take a moment and go here, https://calendar.ipmsusa3.org/chapter-map , to see if you can find a local IPMS Chapter near you. Most are either meeting with the appropriate precautions, have Zoom meetings, or have established internet groups where they "gather" virtually. Having this local connection can be very rewarding as they share techniques and info about kits.
  21. I have used Woodland Scenics "Snow". After its in place, you can experiment with using hairspray on it to add different glosses/crusts.
  22. I was working on the Airfix Buffalo kit with the jeep 'passenger', but I wanted to do the Buffalo as an ambulance vehicle, so I needed to figure out what to do with the jeep, if anything. Then it hit me, why not a Jeep ambulance? A quick internet search produced a score of possible variations on this theme, so I chose one and had at it. The stretcher support frames are plastic rod stock with the exception of the curved one in the front, which is from brass wire. I sistered in a dash panel from another kit as the Airfix one is blank, a different steering wheel and column, brake, clutch and accelerator pedals, gear shift levers and used a different seat as the kit one was pretty plain looking. The stretchers are rod stock wrapped in masking tape with tape straps. The flag was printed from the internet onto regular paper and cut to fit the thin rod stock pole. The extra stowage was from the spares box. The decals were translucent, so I cut out circles of white decal that I applied first, which brightened them up. For an afterthought of a project, I am quite pleased with how it turned out.
  23. Andy, Glad to have you. You don't mention if you've actually joined the society. If not, I'd encourage you to do so and find a local chapter to join as well. You can learn so much more in person (virtual or otherwise) than by just looking. Ron
  24. Remember when kits had maybe a dozen or so parts? Remember when there were actual instructions that used real words to convey how to put together the model? Remember how nothing fit right? Well, here's a prime specimen. I got this in a sort of 'grab bag' purchase and after a few frustrating outings on more modern kits, I decided to just build it and have a little old fashioned modeling fun. It's OOTB with two exceptions. One is I sanded off all the raised panel lines. The second is that I blanked off the inside of the nose intake so you can't look all the way through the a/c. Fit was as you would expect it, but with careful prep and assembly amazingly little putty was required. The finish is Tamiya rattle can AS-12 Metalic Silver. The decals were way far gone, so I used some from the spares file. Took quite a bit of weight in the nose to get it not to sit on it's tail, but it was fun, didn't fight me and could have been an award winning model at a 1963 model show, which is when the kit came out.
  25. Hey Bob, note that this kit also originated at Stanton Hobbies! It may have sat on the shelf right next to your B-36.
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