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ghodges

IPMS/USA Member
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Everything posted by ghodges

  1. Got mine in FLA this last week! GIL
  2. While I agree that modeling at least involves an artistic bend, I might not go so far as to to label it AS art. And, in relation to our PR problem, I don't think we want to put model building on too high of a pedestal, which trying to equate it to "art" might do. Why? Because, as pointed out above, there are SO many levels of model building. However, the VAST MAJORITY of model builders are simply that: "builders". It's a hobby; perhaps one of several they pursue. Most model builders are not as "serious" or as "dedicated" as they perceive the typical IPMS member to be. And keep in mind that ANYONE who belongs to a model club, whether they belong to IPMSUSA or not, is seen as an IPMS "type" by them. Don't forget how intimidated YOU may have been by your first invitation to come join the local club (I know I was!). Thus, IPMS not only has to overcome the PR problem of being too nitpicky and accuracy anal, it has to overcome that initial feeling that you need to be a GOOD model builder to belong. In a way, IPMS has impeded this by doing its job: helping its members learn how to be better model builders! As cited above, just take a look at what shows up on our tables at meetings and in contests and the average, everyday non-member is blown away! It's NORMAL to think that they do NOT belong in our group! Yes, we want to trumpet our successes! BUT, we need to temper that with a very clear message that IPMS invites and encourages the beginner builder and the run-of-the-mill "I do it for fun" builder to join our ranks. They need to know that there as many of THEM in IPMS (and probably more) than there are "artists" who turn out head turning masterpieces. GIL
  3. Got my Journal and the card with the ballots for both the election and the survey is in it. I'll be sending mine off tomorrow! GIL
  4. Doesn't seem to be black electrical or "friction" tape either, which was common at the time. Of course, they could have simply painted masking tape....easy enough to do and it would account for the "blending in"..... GIL
  5. Welcome back to the funny farm Cezary! Unpack, make yourself at home, and post some pics of your work once you're back in the saddle. Glad to have you here with the rest of us plastiholics! GIL
  6. That's one of the fun parts of the hobby...learning new things! That first pic not only shows flush guns, but only 2 guns/wing. While the taping of the gun ports makes sense if only for the purpose of keeping debris out (and would pose no problems firing through), the taping off of the ejection chutes makes no sense, as it renders them useless unless it's removed before flight, and can't be clearly seen in pics taken on the ground. I'm surprised this isn't better documented and more well known. It'll be interesting to find the answers! As far as modeling goes, it would seem you have the documentation for some leeway, though I still believe it'll raise a few eyebrows! GIL
  7. Holy cow! That is some SHARP camo painting! What green were you using, that covered so well without brush strokes? GIL
  8. Very intriguing....I've never seen a P-40D/E without the guns. Even on war weary trainers, if the guns were removed, the bump fairings are usually still present. I'm not aware of ANY version of the P-40 with "flush mounted guns". I have seen some pics of guns protruding on some P-40Ms without the bump fairings, but the barrels still stick out very noticeably. I would concur that the wartime censors, for some inexplicable reason, wanted to try to make it look like that group was a training group instead of an Alaska based defense group. I found another pic of a P-40E the same squadron in front of a hangar and you can just barely see the vestiges of tape streaming back on the wing bottom from the leading edge...but no protrusions in the leading edge and no gun barrels showing. This was 1942, and we were concerned about defending the west coast and Alaska and the censors would have wanted to keep the Japanese as much in the dark as possible as to our strength and where groups were stationed. I also doubt the pics fooled anyone... If I was building a model I'd have it armed, unless you wanted to actually do a "censored" model as in the pics! And then ya better document it for the judges! GIL
  9. Glad you're here! Make yourself at home and post some of your work. Cheers! GIL
  10. Paul: I can see where you'd be frustrated since you're stuck with some very lousy looking parts. Have you actually tried to take the warpage out, and do you know how? If not, and you'd like to try, email me at: slowhandshodges@bellsouth.net and I'll try to help you get them where you might be able to salvage them and at least build the kit. GIL
  11. Noel (and all): I totally agree with you, and IPMSUSA has JUST begun to try to step us in the direction of de-emphasizing the contest. They've recently mandated that beginning this year and at all future conventions the host MUST have as many Display Only tables as their venue can provide. Of course that is AFTER they've taken care of the contest area first, so it will vary from show to show. Still, up til now, "display" has been only an occasional afterthought. Now IPMSUSA is going to encourage guys who don't want to compete to bring their stuff to display. Personally, I've reserved 2 display tables for ANYONE that'll be dedicated vacuform and resin models. There are two major differences here in the USA as compared to the UK and Telford. First and foremost, our Nats is the way it is because it started out with a competition format and has steadily grown from there. It's a VERY successful show, and the old adage "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" applies to a great degree. Would it be as big and successful with less of a contest here in the USA? Perhaps.....but I'm not sure any host wants to take that financial risk since the current format is a "money maker". In other words, we're sort of stuck with what we have because it's what we've always done and it works well! The second difference, as I mentioned before, is our vast distances to our shows. Anyone in the UK is a day's drive from Telford. Even a lot of Europe can be there in a single day's travel time WITHOUT having to hop on a plane. That makes the transport of models and stuff needed for booths much more practical. I consider the upcoming Chattanooga show to be an easy drive, and it'll be close to 7hrs. I plan to drive to the Texas show in 2020, and that will involve two days of driving and probably no less than 20hrs travel time. The rest of the shows involve airplanes where you're lucky if you can carry more than one model on, not to mention the hassle of TSA security checks! Only in the eastern US, or possibly southern CA, where there's a greater density of clubs per state, could we possibly have what Telford has with club booths...but with no tradition of doing that, the "clubs" never really consider it. Rick Jackson NAILED IT in his post above. Just bring your models, put them on the contest tables and go enjoy the show for the sake of the show and don't worry about winning or losing! GIL
  12. That's one pretty P-38! Love the NMF and the markings. Did you paint the d-Day stripes o the bottom, or are they decals? Congrats Bill, and thanks for sharing! GIL
  13. Sounds cool.....but it wasn't the color of Floquil, it was its qualities that made it such good paint. It didn't leave as many brush strokes as most enamels, thinned easily with Diosol (not their later thinner) and sprayed easily and smoothly. Best of all, their whites and yellows went on thinly and opaquely. Is THAT what they're going to produce, or simply the "colors"? GIL
  14. Noel: I believe Brits are every bit as passionate about their modeling as we are. However, I believe the difference is Americans are FAR more competitive by comparison, and unfortunately in IPMSUSA, that's bled over into our convention and show contests. Thus, we're always questioning and debating rules, judging, and how IPMSUSA is looked upon because of the way we do things here in the states because it may determine who may get an edge on someone else. In case you're not aware, we're expecting around 3000+ models in Chattanooga for the CONTEST! While Telford may have more models by comparison because of all of the club displays, our "display only" area is quite small and almost all models brought to the convention are competing for awards. Part of this is due to the impracticality of club displays due to the large distances we have to travel compared to modelers in the UK; but it's also how we're raised.....we compete in almost all areas of life; for better or worse! GIL
  15. Yup......been having the same problem for days....including today....and it's the ONLY site that does this among those I surf daily. Slow to load in, slow to respond for replies, and VERY slow to load in pics in topics! GIL
  16. Finished the Trumpy Vigi this evening. The build was more enjoyable than I anticipated, with the fit being a little better than expected. I used the Nautilus laser-cut wood re-enforcement set for the interior, since Trumpeter designed it with the traditional left/right half fuselages, which leaves the top and bottom center seams weak if not beefed up somehow. I also used a Black Box resin interior I had for it. It fit almost like a glove. The only adjustment to it was to make it mesh properly with the Trumpeter nose gear well, which had to be removed from the kit cockpit structure. The wing fold is a kit option, as are the deflected leading and trailing edge flaps. One of the major drawbacks to the kit is a lack of intake trunking....Trumpeter provides two complete engines, but they just "sit" in the fuselage interior with nothing leading into each of the engine fronts. I left the engines out and added plastic card intake covers. That meant I had to do so cutting and fitting of the engines to install the rear halves of the engine exhausts so they'd fit within the Nautilus supports; but that wasn't difficult, and also allowed me to paint and add the burner cans at the end of the build. I used MM enamels for the gloss white and 36440 Gull Gray. The metal leading edges were done with Alclad. The weathering was done with a wash made from Mig pigments dissolved in water with a drop of dish washing soap. The panel lines were done with a brown colored pencil. I used some Two Bobs decals that came with the very first issue of Aerospace Modeler magazine back in 2005. The markings are for a Vigilante based out of Albany, Ga @1970; just a few years before I lived there. Rumor had it that the Vigilante pilots would take back to back tours of sea duty just to avoid going back to small town "Allbenny"....Anyway....on to the pics! Now I have the recce RA-5C to go along with my A-5A Viglante bomber conversion I did years ago. Questions, comments, and critiques welcome as always. Cheers! GIL
  17. Personally, I like the skill level idea. I remember my very first contest of ANY kind...which just happened to be the 1978 IPMS Nationals in Atlanta. To say I was in over my head was an understatement! The skill level idea does open up other cans of worms..... 1) The first "gut" reaction would be that we need to triple the categories.... needing one each for the levels of "novice", "intermediate", and "master". That's not really true of course, since you could design the novice AND master cats to be more general on the theory that those two will have the least amount of people in them by comparison. 2) "The awards costs would be too much"....true, if you simply tripled the standard Nats awards....but why do we have to do that? IF (and I say IF) we were to go to 3 levels of competition, then you have 3 levels of awards: Certificates for the novices, ribbons for the intermediates, and medals/plaques/trophies (whatever) for the masters. This saves money AND also gives an incentive to move up in the rankings. 3) "There'll be a resentment to being "ranked" by your building ability within IPMS"....could be....but then isn't there an un-official ranking among IPMSers now? Don't we all KNOW who the honchos are? And based on our own personalities, don't we either admire or resent their "celebrity" and ability to repeatedly win? And if IPMSUSA was to allow you to select the ranking you compete in to BEGIN with (until you rise by dent of winning), then how could you complain about having to compete on the level you chose? 4) "Creating a MASTER CLASS of builders will create resentment among the lesser members"...sort of a caveat to the above...and I think it's disproved by the many other societies that DO have "master modelers". They're generally admired and the desire to join THEIR ranks is the general reaction to being in their club, competition, and company. I'm not sure it could be done at this late date, but I do think the idea has some merit. If YOU think back on your decision to join your local club and IPMSUSA, I'm betting there was some intimidation you had to overcome. "I can't join them...THOSE guys are good and know what they're doing"! It's the same when it comes to contests....you have to overcome the intimidation of going up against "honchos" and learning to swim in the deep end as things are designed now. Adding skill levels lowers the level of intimidation, allowing newer members to start in the shallow end if they feel the need to build their confidence before stroking for deeper competitive waters. Gil
  18. Great progress on a myriad of projects Duke! If I might suggest for the canopy glass on the Widgeon.....IF it is essentially a series of flat glass panels, then use clear packing tape. Tear off a piece and then carefully stick it in place over one side, being sure it's a part of the tape with no fingerprints or smudges. The, using a brand new blade, cut off the excess leaving a thin piece of "frame" where it's stuck to your fuselage. Then paint that thin strip of clear tape to match your fuselage. Repeat as needed to form the 3-4 panels for the canopy. NOTE: BE SURE to completely blow out and eliminate ALL dust and sanding residue from the interior before doing this! Anything left floating around inside will end up sticking to the inside of your tape glass! Hope this helps! GIL
  19. Very cool conversion! It's really nice to see some old-fashioned kit-bashing going on! Thanks for sharing! Rusty: The round circle on the canopy connects to a round device on the canopy ledge. It was present on the F-84G's, and may have had something to do with helping partially pressurize the cockpit, but I cannot remember for sure. In any case, I believe the round area provided direct access to the device. GIL
  20. JIM: the reason I asked was because there are no winners listed prior to 1992. That means there's no listing, let lone picture of the Judge's Grand Award winner (before G. Lee's name was attached to it) from '64-'91. It would seem like a good idea to flesh out the list, with pics whenever possible, in order to make it complete. It's true that the farther back you go, there are no pics to glean from the Journal, Quarterly, or Update; but that's where members such as myself may be able to help out, especially if we know what model to look for within our own private convention pics. GIL
  21. Nice! And for those who call us the I. PLANE M.S. society....only 5 or so of the past 28 Winners were aircraft..... Question: Are you looking for more past pics of winners? I may be able to provide 2 or 3 myself....and if so, who/where do I direct them to? GIL
  22. Nice heads up on the cameras! Question: Are you going to have panels open on the nose to see them, and if not (knowing how lousy most clear camera windows are on models) how will you show off those nice items? GIL
  23. Superb conversion! That's some real skill, doing that much cosmetic work and still being able to put a great looking NMF on the model. Congrats, and thanks for sharing! GIL
  24. If you, as an IPMS member are happy with how IPMS is (like Nick), and you don't care how the rest of the modeling world views us; then as mentioned above YOUR mind is made up and YOU'RE not going to change. However, DAK is absolutely correct: we have a real PR problem with too many modelers. As the saying goes....perception IS reality! You may tout the PR problem as springing from mere myth, but remember that myths usually have a truth they spring from. The idea that IPMSers are rivet counters and color Nazis springs directly from our hair-splitting competition. Sure, we can amply justify the hair-splitting. We can explain that the hairs were split over basics and not accuracy; but all that outsiders see is that we got VERY nit-picky! And even we judges KNOW of several quite famous times when the WRONG hairs were split and deserving work went by the wayside. The base of the problem has NOTHING to do with the Nats. This almost all stems from local and regional shows, as well as club meetings. That's where the non-members are in as great or greater numbers than the IPMSers.That's where the opinionated local members are who don't actually belong to IPMSUSA.That's also where the least trained and experienced judges are, which leads to questionable results which in turn leads to those horror stories about how IPMS is counting rivets and condemning wrongly painted models to a pantheon of shame. And MOST of the time, the judges making those mistakes are NOT IPMS members! And MOST of the time the attendees or local club members who are making snide know-it-all comments about models are not IPMS members (nor judges). However, since it happens under the umbrella of an "IPMS show or meeting", WE are responsible and WE get labeled. It may be wrong, and perhaps even unfair, but THAT is the reality of the PR problem. We have a label hung around our necks that cause many others to take one look at us and quickly run for cover. I share Ron's frustration in that there's no easy answer or silver bullet. This is not a problem that can be solved in a year with any sort of ad campaign or new slogan. However, I do differ in that I do believe that if we ARE willing to change and adapt, then we CAN overcome our bad press over time; and by time, I mean a decade or two. How? We need to take competition at our shows down a notch or two. We need to dial back the hair-splitting by allowing more good models to be recognized. This is why I keep touting the need for IPMS to start embracing GSB at their shows. It allows us to keep the requirements of good basics and solid building and finishing. It allows us to set standards where you have to EARN an award. BUT, it also allows us to award one model without eliminating any other one in order to do so. That elimination of so many deserving models is what makes IPMSUSA look like a dog-eat-dog "winning is all that matters" group of modelers. It will not keep us from ever needing to split hairs...but when we do split them, it will only affect the model in question, and no others! And this MUST be done from the BOTTOM up. As I said before, our PR problem stems from the local and regional shows, not the Nats. It's the local and regional shows that will need to finely hone GSB to the point that the Nats will finally adopt it as the "norm" and to conform to the rest of the country. What else? Nick had a good point....stop trying to apologize and trying to get absolutely everyone to like us! IPMS is for modelers who do like to compete! While I think we need to dial it back, I do NOT think we should try to be a display only society. What I'm for is making some changes and then proudly putting those changes out there for everyone to see. Tell people they are welcome no matter what they build (unlike many other genre-oriented clubs), but if and when you compete, we're going to demand that you meet certain standards in order to be awarded; feelings be damned. I freely admit this may or may not actually succeed. It will take years to accomplish. GSB, or some sort of less cut-throat competition will need to become the norm and the non-IPMS members who attend those shows will need to see us be less cut-throat and more rewarding over a substantial period of time. That way when the "myth" of rivet counting arises, the new comment will be: "no, that's they way they were; but since they dialed back their contests, they're not that way anymore". At least that's my hope! GIL
  25. Mike: Will there be extra Desert Bar tickets available for purchase on Thursday? I may need one if my wife decides to attend with me.... GIL
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