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Everything posted by ghodges

  1. Is there any way to get a further breakdown in responses, such as the answer percentages for those who were first time attendees, versus the same answers for those who've attended 5-10 Nats, versus those who've attended 20 or more Nats? That might be a bit more perceptive than the percentages on the whole... Gil
  2. ghodges

    Stripe Decals

    I have several of the old MicroScale and Scale Master stripe sets. I just want to give a cautionary note on them.... My sheets are pretty old and those stripes tend to be fragile and break easily. SO, if you can buy sheets that are "newer" from the manufacturer, go for it. But I'd advise against buying from someone's private stock or even from a vendor. You can put a coating over them to keep them from breaking, but then you lose a lot of their flexibility making them much harder to apply, especially around tight tubular things like missiles. I've also used the Woodland Scenic dry transfer stripes and they work well EXCEPT for trying to bend and burnish them over round/tubular shapes. They might work if they were applied and sealed onto a clear decal sheet, and then cut out and applied to the model/object. Hope this helps! Gil
  3. If I make it, I can drum....I have 30+yrs playing in classic rock bands, playing 60s-90s stuff. I can even sing a little, especially back up, and lead if it's in my range. Gil
  4. All the aftermarket adds a lot of work, but the results certainly justify it all! Nice! Gil
  5. Good job in adapting and overcoming the engineering limitations of the kit. It never ceases to amaze me when manufacturers design parts to be added so that they stick out in the way for much of the build. Someone should force them to build what they designed! Gil
  6. Coming along nicely.... and at least the Black Widow has large enough canopy space to where much of your work will still be visible! Gil
  7. Now that's some old school skills to make a very unique model! And although you didn't mention it, it had to involve extra elbow grease for the NMF not to show all the work you did. Very nice! Gil
  8. Amazing start! Looking forward to more! Gil
  9. Yes DAK... as "designed" it worked.... in that as being designed to ONLY accept reservations for the 2-5th. Considering EVERY previous convention registration system allowed people to designate the dates they wanted to reserve, AND the actual HILTON system allowed you to manipulate the dates of the reservations on their page (despite being designed NOT to accept ANY variations), the "design" was flawed. So, saying it worked as designed didn't allow for anyone who wanted to reserve Tuesday the 1rst (almost every vendor) as well as many regular attendees who just want to be there when the vendors open on Wednesday. There's nothing basically wrong with that "design".....BUT.....the knowledge that that option of changing the dates was NOT going to be accepted in the system was a crucial piece of information that was missed, and that led to the failure of reservations for many regular attendees, and especially vendors. I too "played" with the reservation page ahead of time to be sure I was familiar with the process, but unlike Nick and others, missed the fact that changing dates would lead to failure. So despite "practicing", it didn't help me; and I was NOT alone. My contention is that had Len and his staff been more diligent in questioning the Hilton reservation people, and if they'd performed "Beta tests" to see where failures could happen, AND then passed along those warnings to us (as requested by me here on the DF weeks ahead of time); perhaps much of this could have been avoided. Len says this was beyond his and his host group's control. I contend it was a problem that was avoidable. We'll simply agree to disagree there. But for you to say "the system work as designed" is misleading and a whitewashing of what actually occurred. Gil
  10. Len: You'll need to be specific about what language you're referring to. I've never in ANY communication here or on FB have referred to you, your staff or ANYONE in any vulgar way. On the other hand, if you didn't like my reference to the SYTEM being a "CF" on the previous page....I'll stick by that personal opinion. If YOU had gone through the hoops I tried to jump through, had the useless and roundabout conversations with the reservations people that I did; YOU would feel the same way about the HILTON SYSTEM. I have no problem to agree to disagree. You say you did all you could, and I think you dropped the ball. However, IF I'd desired to personally insult you or your staff, I'd have done so in my previous replies, AND HAVE NOT DONE SO. And yes, I'll KEEP it public here.....because here my every reply can be seen to NOT insult you, but merely to bring to light the problems I encountered, offer my opinion, offer a suggestion or two going forward, and even some encouragement at the end; which you have conveniently overlooked. Gil
  11. Let me very clear....I'm not implying ANY malfeasance... nor hankypanky....I also know they booked a block of as many rooms as they could, even if that number was lower than we would desire. I'm saying that while Len and his crew did an admirable job in trying to give everyone a fair shot at making a reservation and to prevent gaming the system; they failed to follow through with important information they should have known and passed on to us. If you check out the DF here under the "UPDATE" thread, you'll see I was asking Len and his team to get with the Hilton folks to find out ANYTHING we needed to know to book using their system. There's NO reply after Aug.10th to my inquiries. After a single reply to my first set of questions that generally just reassured us they were working to prevent gaming the system, there's no answer to my request to ask the Hilton more specific questions and pass those answers on to us. Yes, they opened the system on time, and it worked smoothly and quickly as long as you DIDN'T ATTEMPT TO CHANGE THE DATES. Almost every failure I've read of, and mine included, failed because the system automatically rejected ANY attempt to add Tuesday the 1rst to the reservation attempt. I think this is information that Len and his team could have known, should have known, and failed to pass on to us. The system itself was misleading. The system allowed you to change the number of rooms being booked, as evident by several people saying they booked multiple rooms. The system also allowed you to change the number of attendees from "1 adult" to 2 adults (or whatever your needs). The system also ALLOWED you to CHANGE THE DATES....implying that it wouldn't be any problem, but it is now clear that doing so caused a failure. Some people were quick enough to drop back, drop Tuesday and go with the set 2-5th and got their reservation; which is yet more proof that THAT was the "glitch". IF the hosts had gotten with the Hilton folks and asked the simple question: "What can make a reservation attempt fail automatically"?; they might have been told "trying to book outside of the dates 2-5th. Again, MY personal beef is that after almost begging the hosts to follow through with the Hilton group to find out that kind of info; they didn't. IF they did, they never posted it on the DF were I posted my concerns; nor did they post it on their FB page either. All they provided were the links, the code, and the assurance it would operate. Unfortunately those assurances came up short. As I said elsewhere, this will at least provide a learning opportunity for the future, by the new Nats Committee as well as any future hosts. Whether the answer is to be sure the contract allows for expanded dates during the week, and/or a better job of communication about the reservation system being used, as well as better and more concise information for our members before reservations go live; I hope it works toward a smoother booking system for all. I'm also sure that Len and his crew will work towards trying to help people like me going forward by making us aware of cancellations, as well as toiling to provide a great convention for the attendees. This was an unexpected hiccup, and hopefully will be one of very few going forward. Gil
  12. Yep, yet another cluster f**k! I hit "book" at 1:07 and it wouldn't confirm. Called the reservation number and they said it had already sold out. Tried calling the hotel directly and although reservations answered (but they're "sold out"), no one at the front desk would answer the phone when they tried to connect me. SO now I guess we wait to see IF the hosts can expand the room block to give us another chance to get in. NOW you may see why I was harping on seeing if the Hilton was ready or not. Find it hard to believe they sold out in LESS than 10 minutes! Gil
  13. Thanks for the info and links Len! Now lets hope that their system works as advertised tonight! Gil
  14. That's the great thing about modeling....there's no expiration date on them! Gil
  15. ghodges

    Ten Years After

    Interesting.....I like the contrast of the upswept wings with the bent wingtips. So what's to keep you from finishing it now? Gil
  16. Looking good! It's always more fun when things start coming together! Gil
  17. That's going to turn heads and starts tongues wagging wherever you take it, especially when lit up! Thanks for letting us ride along the build and congrats! Gil
  18. Has there been any answers from the HILTON/EMBASSY SUITES themselves as to how THEY are preparing to meet our needs when we try to make our reservations. Have they offered up any reassurances that they're ready and prepared? It's now just a WEEK away! Gil
  19. Very cool plane that eventually led to the T-Bolt! Are you going to do a NMF, or a later OD version? Gil
  20. Love it! I'm sure more than a "couple swipes with a sanding stick" was involved to get that level of NMF, so congrats on your perseverance. Very cool subject of a very under appreciated Cold War/Korean War aircraft! Gil
  21. Terrific T-Bolt, and in not often seen markings! Gil
  22. I made it the same size as the one beside it...6ft long x 2.5ft deep x 6ft tall, and it'll hold 10 30"x20" glass shelves. Here's a pic of the one I just filled up....and it has 112 1/48 and 1/32 scale builds in it....
  23. Finished my new display case! It took 10yrs to fill the last case of this size with 112 models. I will feel very blessed if the Lord grants me another 10yrs to fill this one! The only thing left is to buy and install the glass shelves...but that will be done as needed after the bottom of the case is filled up. I think I'll christen the case by building a 1/48 Monogram B-29! GIL
  24. Len, thanks for the concise reply. I agree that waiting to post the codes and links needed til just before the opening time is good "insurance" against people who want to game the system. It's clear you and your staff have a good idea of what needs to be done and are taking action on the items within your control. I also agree that the rush may indeed be unavoidable no matter the time you select. However, can you please check, address, and pass on to us what preparations THEY are making to accommodate the rush? Are ALL 3 of their reservation systems (website, 1-800#, and the San Marcos ES hotel) prepared, or just the link you'll be publishing? I hate to think that despite your plans and precautions that IF that website crashes, or people hold on the reservations phone line for 20-30mins (or worse, cannot get thru at all) and then cannot get a room; that you and your staff will be blamed for their lack of preparation. Having been a member of the 1997 Nats committee, and a long time IPMS member and Nats attendee (over 30 shows), I understand and sympathize with the stress of trying to "get it right". It's been my experience that it's the hotel system (including last year's early sales) that's caused the consistent problems of not giving the convention rate on all 3 systems, or telling people that that the room block's sold out prematurely, or simply not being prepared so that people cannot get on line or through on the phone. Thus my harping on what THEY are doing to avoid these problems. Thanks! Gil
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