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Nick Filippone

IPMS/USA Member
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Everything posted by Nick Filippone

  1. No, indeed, they were not intended to be arrogant. They were intended to serve as a reminder that if we will have competition, we will have winners and losers- regardless of what methods and criteria we use to evaluate quality in craftsmanship and regardless of what system is used to dispense awards. All may join IPMS and enter our contests. That has never been an the issue. Young people do not enter our contests because young people do not build models. But if you think they are not competitive, watch them salivate over a video game contest! But if anyone is arrogant, I fear it is all of us in America (and the Mother Country?) We assume that because we do not see modelers in our countries in the same numbers as 50 years ago, the hobby is retracting. Somebody is buying all this stuff. In China, Japan, South Korea? Modelers in the now resurgent Central and Eastern Europe? More power to them! They may be supporting the industry that entertains us all, even as we no longer can by ourselves. Nick
  2. Comments that are critical of ‘finding the flaws’ and ‘ignoring the bigger picture of what the model actually represents’ ( I don’t even know what that means) frustrate me as an experienced and scrupulously objective judge. As long as we as judges are required to identify three winners and X numbers of losers in a finite amount time, we will need a system that is efficient while also is able to be fairly applied to all entries. While theoretically you could compile all the things done correctly on each entry, that would be too time consuming. So efficient knowledgeable judges will start be looking for where most builders make common mistakes. These are craftsmanship competitions NOT an assessment of how much enthusiasm the modeler has for his or her subject. Likewise, the judges are not trying to answer the question: ‘What is the artist trying to say?’ In modeling contests, as in war, the winner is often the one who makes the fewest mistakes. There is a very simple way for the builder to get past this first cut of common faults. Read the Competition Handbook and do what it tells you to do. Despite this, the common errors appear with predictable frequency- admittedly more at the lower level shows than at the Nationals- but they are always there. Most categories will thankfully contain the gross misalignments, the wide-open seams, sloppy paint work, the silvered decals. Once these are out of the running, the really hard work in a 1,2,3 system begins. Now comes the necessary nit-picking. Now some of the virtues of a G,S,B system become apparent. But under either system, there are going to be disappointed entrants. If you do not want to be one of them, you have two choices: build better models or keep your models on the display-only table. Nick Filippone, Senior National Judge
  3. Gil, Do you know that they are making brewed de-caf now? LOL! Chill, man. It’s only a hobby. Peace out! Nick
  4. But then there would be no figures because they are almost always made of something other than plastic. Oops! There go a few more IPMS members. Embrace diversity, Gil! Regards, Nick
  5. Mark, The main landing gear is installed inside-out. You might want to turn them around before presenting it to your friend. Regards, Nick
  6. I have a better idea. I have used this approach myself. Contact Academy and be honest. Then ask them if you can buy the sprue you need. The worst that can happen is that they say no. With luck they will charge you a few bucks to sell it to you. Good luck. Nick Filippone
  7. You can renew on line by clicking on the “Join IPMS/ USA” at the top of the website home page. It covers new members and renewals as well. And it is easily done on line. Regards, Nick Filippone
  8. Gil, Well said! Thank you for speaking for all concientious judges. Nick Filippone. Senior National Judge
  9. Mr. Willis: What you wrote, although a little more detailed and therefore longer than what our Survey working group would have prepared, is exactly the way we wanted the description of the 123 judging system to appear on the ballot- factual, unemotional, objective. Designed to inform, but not to persuade. Kudos to you! You must not have slept through those Civics classes that covered voting in an open honest system of government. At least somebody else gets it! Thank you. Regards, Nick
  10. But the original intent of the survey was never to persuade people one way or the other, pro or con, for one system over the other. It was meant to simply be a fact finding effort to determinine the attitude of the members toward judging at the National Convention Contest. There was no reason to assume that, while the working group could be unbiased in it’s presentation of the description of open, GSB judging, we could not be trusted to be equally unbiased in presenting the description of 123. The working group, in fact, had a broad representation across the spectrum of opinion on this matter and as a group we worked well together. We fought, “pounded the table,” and expended a lot of electrons. In the end, we arrived at a description the GSB system that was only fact based as a good ballot should be. And, again, remember, at the beginning, to their credit, the NCC allowed us to write the entire ballot. Without consulting anyone else, Rusty decided, more or less, that we could not bring the same intellectual honesty to the description of 123. Rusty’s poor decision could not have tainted the process anymore effectively than if that had been the motive in the first place. It was a decision as arbitrary and unilateral as any of which we have accused the NCC. But then, Rusty, you have been a member of the NCC. I guess you can take the man out of the NCC, but you can’t take the NCC out of the man. Nick Filippone
  11. Let me now provide the history of the preparation of this ballot It began after last year’s National Contest with the annual forum debate on open judging (GSB) vs. 123. I joined the discussion and innocently made what I believed to be a practical suggestion: attach a simple tear-off ballot to the National Convention Contest registration form, deposit it in a box at the time of registration and add them up. That was rejected by the IPMS leadership, but, to their credit, they asked a working group of those interested in the question to create a ballot that would be included in an issue of the Journal so members could vote. I was one of the group, as was Rusty White. Again, to the credit of the leadership of IPMS, we were to be allowed to prepare the entire ballot. Our goal was to prepare a dispassionate, objective description of each system. It would be brief, fair, balanced and unemotional. At the beginning of the preparation of this ballot, I offered to write the initial description of our current 123 judging system for this ballot. However, Rusty White, who, from the start, had arrogated to himself the position of working group leader, rejected this offer and unilaterally decided to have someone from IPMS administration prepare the portion of the ballot that would describe the 123 system for the voters. I can only assume that Rusty decided that I, who he perceived as having some deep-seated and unalterable pro-123 bias, would somehow scupper the attempt to create a fair ballot. No one else in the group was allowed any input in this decision.There was never any question about the group’s other members being able to be objective about GSB open judging. I, however, was apparently not to be trusted to be fair. The irony is that I worked as hard as anyone in the group to prepare an accurate and fair description of open judging. We argued back and forth to create what you now see as the “position paper” for open judging. I insisted, as did others, that it take the form you now see. We wanted to provide basic facts and let the members decide. The Forum can provide the platform for debate and comment. We did not want that discussion to take place on the ballot. Then, without any warning or preparation from Rusty, the entire ballot suddenly appears as you see it. The working group was not permitted to sign off on it in it’s entirety. We never would have! And that is because the “position paper” for 123 was everything the group wanted to avoid. It is not brief or fair or balanced or unemotional! It is electioneering ON THE BALLOT by the very people who will be counting the votes. If I sound like I am whining, it is because I am. I am trained as a scientist. I want facts obtained honestly and objectively. I also have great respect for fairness in any vote. This ballot, as presently constituted, is not fair and should be seen as an embarrassment to this organization! I worked hard on this project. So did the others. We deserved the opportunity to produce something we could take some satisfaction in, regardless of the outcome of the vote. That opportunity was taken away from us by the very person in the working group who assumed the leadership position for himself and got out- manouvered. Please don’t blame me. Thank you. Regards, Nick Filippone, Senior National Judge.,
  12. It is just a stupid old vaudeville joke. One guy says “ I am going to get rich. I will buy gloves for $1.00 a pair and sell them for .50 a pair.” The other guy asks “How will you make any money?” The first guy responds, enthusiastically “Volume!” Your perfect description of we modelers’ blinkered financial planning reminded me of this silly old routine. Regards, Nick
  13. One member of our club had a solution for this problem. Instead of having to buy kits, we should be able to just rent them. But Noel’s friend’s observation about buying kits then selling them at a loss can be turned into profit with one word - VOLUME! Good luck. Nick
  14. What would be a pity would be to discover that we have all followed the Forum rules, but are threatened with being shut down because one person with the authority to do so, locks the thread for reasons the rest of us do not understand and, apparently, are not to be made privy to! Nick P.S. And what the heck is “flaming” anyway?
  15. Without doing any research on this and, dangerously trusting my memory, I am pretty sure that the Hasegawa Buffalo was issued in two different forms- one being specifically- supposedly- of the version used by the Finns. I have built the shorter nosed version in American pre- war markings. The kit is designed with separate fuselage parts forward of the wing roots. The Finnish version has different and longer forward fuselage parts. I do not know if the cowl differs. I have always been fuzzy about the subtle differences between the various iterations of the Buffalo. I will think your most reliable reference source would be the Squadron Publication on the Buffalo. This was written by a former chapter member of ours Jim Maas and is thorough and authoritative. The Buffalo was his passion and he was exhaustive and demanding in his research. Additionally, as with most Squadron Publications, they are a good source of variations through their drawings. Good luck. I am going to my library now to scope this out some more. Nick Filippone
  16. Rusty, With all due respect, I guess you will have to be more explicit about which part of my post violated those rules. I am being straight now. What part lacks a ‘Nihil Obstat?” Nick
  17. But was it tongue in cheek? What rule did I violate, please? I am curious. I used no bad language. I singled no one individual out for insult. I did not use all capital letters or coloured type. So what rule has been violated? Thank you.Regards, Nick
  18. The British are a much more disciplined people than we are. We are a nation of common louts and nobody is going to tell us what to do, by God! Nick Filippone
  19. Good judges do not make “ arbitrary decisions.” They even-handedly apply the rules to the best of their ability in order to be fair to everyone. One could hardly expect an unbiased opinion that might affect his or her chances of winning to come from the modeler him or herself! We might as well start asking modelers to judge their own work. Nick Filippone, Senior National Judge
  20. Yes, Rusty, my remark was intentionally insulting! It was a measure for measure response to insensitive, uninformed and insulting criticism of those members of IPMS who bust their rear ends to entertain us each year at the National Convention. If one is going to dish it out, one should be prepared to take it! Mr.Kimbrell’s remarks are why so many people think IPMS stands for “ International P***ing and Moaning Society.” I offer no apology. Nick Filippone
  21. Indeed, Archer makes such strips of rivets. They can be used to excellent effect as demonstrated by an IPMS member on this Forum I think about a year ago. He took the old Monogram DC-3 (the about 1/96? scale from the 50’s) and did a great job restoring the raised rivets with this product. In can be done. I actually book marked it on my old i-Pad. I will try to find it. Nick
  22. I do not think the presence of rivets would be a disadvantage per se even if they were not in scale. It would not affect how I would judge it. The challenge of rivets or raised panel lines arises when the builder fills seams and cleans up joints and the adjacent detail is sanded off. Now it has to be somehow reintroduced or else there will not be consistency in the appearance of the surface of the model. Raised panel lines are not too difficult to replicate, but rivets are a challenge, at least in my experience. Unless you are able to re-introduce the lost rivets with an appearance similar to those rivets left behind, I think you are better off removing them all. Regards, Nick Filippone, Senior National Judge
  23. “ I do not know how hard it is to put on an event...” Therein lies the classic disclaimer of those members who are uninformed about the process but positively overflowing with criticism! IPMS is never lacking for members who have no understanding of or appreciation for the effort these groups of VOLUNTEERS put in each year to entertain us, and who themselves have never lifted a finger to help and actually learn something. Your last sentence would be almost funny if it was not so insulting to our hosts- especially coming from someone who, by his own admission, is completely ignorant of the challenges involved in hosting a National. Perhaps you are so well off and so sophisticated that mundane matters such as cost never have to concern you. How fortunate. Many members, I bet, are quite willing to do without the rose water in the lobby and free fluffy slippers of which you have so great a need, just to be able to attend a National at all! When we get to Chattanooga, I’ll be sure you get a turn-down for your bed each night and a chocolate on your pillow. Nick
  24. It is always about cost. It is always about the host chapter being able to find a venue that is affordable with a room price that is not out of the attendees’ price range. It is a complex calculus that cannot be replicated in every city, year in and year out.The host chapters put so much work into putting on these shows that as a membership we should nit-pick less about such trivialities and, instead, enjoy the show for the reasons we go. If it’s high class, Park Avenue style you seek, you are definitely in the wrong hobby! Nick
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