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ipmsusa2 last won the day on May 13

ipmsusa2 had the most liked content!

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About ipmsusa2

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    Plastic Habit
  • Birthday 12/10/1942

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  1. Those writers who are satisfied to write for the joy of writing or seeing their name in print tend to fall into one of two categories. They have a full time job and their writing is literally a hobby. This despite the fact that much of their writing is good enough to be paid for. The flip side are those who think that they are good writers but really aren't. It's this second group that will likely fill the gap that professional writers (we who get paid for our work) leave publications like MCM. While MCM may...and I stress MAY...find writers to provide the content they need for free, I would suggest the quality of the articles will tend to go rather steeply downhill.
  2. Noel, I hate to agree, but your analysis in your last post is absolutely correct. At this point, I would suggest that the only thing left for MCM is to shovel the dirt into the grave. While it is true that many, many magazines...both web and print...do not pay anything, those who write for them know it going in. Transitioning from a paying publication to a non-paying one is not only difficult...bordering on the impossible...but requires being up front with both your writers and readers. it also means you will have a different stable of writers who can afford to write for the sheer joy of writing or simply seeing their name in lights, so to speak. As for the thread you refer to being deleted, that is one of the advantages/disadvantages of forum threads.. Depending on your level of ethics, you can be honest and let all posts fall where they may, or you can limit all comments to those that are glowing and positive to leave the impression that everything is wonderful and you never have a problem. While it's true that some posts need to be removed...they're either spam that snuck in or contain offensive comments that do no one any good, limiting all posts to those that are totally positive or show you as someone that is perfect is a guarantee that readers will eventually ignore even the forum site.
  3. ipmsusa2

    Kinetic 1/48 E2C Hawkeye Build Series, Part 5

    Good idea, Ralph. Probably wouldn't have worked on the E2C nacelle seam, but would on most. Thanks for an excellent tip.
  4. ipmsusa2

    Kinetic 1/48 E2C Hawkeye Build Series, Part 5

    Gil, I use Micro Mark Same Stuff, which is more or less the same thing as our late lamented Ambroid ProWeld, although it's just a shade hotter. I suppose it's that that helps in this regard. In any case, I go ahead and apply solvent to the seam...in some cases I flat slop it on, depending on the seam...then wait til it evaporates off the surface of the part before strapping things down with a rubber band. Works most of the time, but occasionally I have to clean up the surface where the solvent has run under the bands. If you're working with engraved detail, that really isn't a problem, though it does make for a little extra work. In the case of the E2C, I went so far as to slop solvent on the nacelle/wing mating surfaces so they would begin softening slightly before I brought the two together, then mated the two, added more solvent to the top seam, waited til the excess evaporated from the surface and strapped everything down. Keep in mind that this approach does not require pinpoint application with specialized applicators like so many prefer these days. Matter of fact, the pinpoint method wouldn't even work in this case. Most of the time all I use for most of my plastic kit construction is the applicator brush that comes attached to the bottle cap and is relatively sloppy by comparison. All I can say is that it works for me. Hope some of this helps.
  5. Installment #5 of the Kinetic E2C 2000 build series has been posted in the Buids Sub-Forum. All comments welcome.
  6. Hi all, Here's the latest progress on the Kinetic 1/48th E2C 2000. A recess in the bottom of the fuselage gives you the option of replicating the CEC (Cooperative Engagement Capability). This is the route I needed to go and I didn't anticipate any problem. I was wrong. It turned out that when the CEC insert is properly aligned, there's a .020" gap on the port side. Press the insert down for a tight fit and you wind up with a slight step in relationship to the fuselage. The solution is simplicity itself. All you need is a .020" x .030" Evergreen strip to fill the gap. If you're careful, all you'll need is a very light touch with a sanding stick to blend everything together. Now for the fun...installation of the wing center section. While the center section fits as it should, you won't be able to simply drop it in place and add solvent. In this shot, the center has been installed and snugged down with a couple of rubber bands. Here's a closer view of what it took to attain a proper installation. The aft end of the center section has to be pulled down with a rubber band that wraps around the fuselage. Because of this, you want to make sure the CEC is thoroughly dry before doing so. Then another rubber band goes under the fuselage and up over the wing stubs. Seen from the side, you get a better view of exactly the rubber bands were used to pull the center section down. Also, notice the internal detail thru the crew door. There's no interior detail in the fuselage beyond the cockpit other than this insert that allows you to position the door open if you choose. When everything's dry and the rubber bands are removed, you'll discover two problems in the form of seams that have to be filled. One, the largest, is at the aft end of the center section where you had to use the heaviest rubber band. The other's at the front and doesn't go all the way across. Just like the gap on the CEC insert, a strip of .020" x .030" Evergreen strip solves the problem. And the same thing up front. If you're careful, you'll barely need any sanding at all. The port nacelle is next and you will definitely need more rubber bands. Take a close look at this shot and you'll see that the heavier rubber band goes over the seam between the nacelle and the wing, then under the nacelle. In order to have continuity from the wing to the nacelle without a step, this is essential. Then another rubber band loops under the front of the nacelle,over the wing and under the aft part of the nacelle. This pulls the aft part of the nacelle up into position. Everything fits exactly as it should, but it takes this approach to get it there. Just in case you're confused by my previous description, this side view should help clarify things. I repeated the process for the starboard nacelle and finally wound up with what you see here. When everything dried and the rubber bands were removed, I was looking at a perfectly fitted wing center section and a pair of nacelles. Next installment you'll see how well things worked out before we tackle the canopy.
  7. ipmsusa2

    Kinetic 1/48 E2C Hawkeye Build Series, Part 4

    Mark, I know about tire weights and have use'em myself. Only problem is that they're hard to cut because of their composition. The Great Planes weights can almost be bent with your bare hands. Thanks for your kind comments. Next installment will be coming soon. By the way, if you want all the installments in one place, don't forget that the C-46 E-book is now available. And the E2C will be an E-book as well.
  8. Installment #4 of the Kinetic E2C 2000 build series has been posted in the Buids Sub-Forum. All comments welcome.
  9. Hey all, It's been a while, but the C-46 is done and shipped. So now it's back to the Kinetic 1/48th kit of the Northrop Grumman E2C Hawkeye 2000. Some of you may find it helpful to go back and review the first three installments of this build. As with the C-46, this is a commission build for another client. O.K., y'all up to speed? Then let's see if I can get you a ways farther down the road. Besides the normal canopy, the E2C has three round windows located in the starboard fuselage. Kinetic provides individual inserts that fit perfectly. Due to the extended tab attached to each window, there's no problem with solvent fouling the clear. On the outside, these are some of the easiest windows I've seen to mask. Slap a piece of blue masking tape over each, run your fingernail around the window seam, follow that with a #11 blade and you're done. Whether you opt for extended or folded wings, that large radome guarantees that this little critter is a tail sitter and then some. Since there's enough room, l picked up a package of self-adhesive lead weights from Great Planes....try your radio control airplane shops if you can't find them elsewhere. With the cockpit installed in the starboard fuselage, I packed in close to a full ounce of lead in front of and behind the cockpit. The white arrows show you exactly where. Since each 1/4 ounce piece has VERY sticky tape on the back, you won't have to worry about the weights coming loose. But do be sure you have'em where you want'em before applying pressure because you won't be gettin' them loose. Another 3/4 ounce or so of lead was added to the port fuselage. Not only did this make sure that it wouldn't tail sit, it also tells you why those Scale Aircraft Conversion metal replacement gear are essential. If you haven't had an Oops! event while working on models, you haven't been building very long! Here I got ahead of myself and joined the tail end of the fuselage before adding the tail hook well. Fortunately the solvent hadn't cured too long, so a lot of care and a new #11 blade made splitting the aft fuselage fairly easy. Rather than split the entire fuselage, I wrapped a rubber band around the fuselage about halfway up, then shoved a spring clothespin into the gap to keep the fuselage halves separated,. With the tail hook well properly installed, the fuselage halves were rejoined and a rubber band along with another spring clothespin was used to keep everything snug until the solvent dried. Partly because of its size, the fuselage is not one that can be held together and watch the seams disappear. I had to work my way around a few inches at time, as well as employing the assistance of a number of rubber bands as I went.
  10. Noel, you may as well call me a semi-luddite. I've been reading since I was three years old and on an adult or near adult level since I was six. There's nothing I like better than the feel of a real book in my hands while I kick back and read while turning each page. The tactile interaction creates a bonding with the subject of the book, be it non-fiction, fiction or reference, that no tablet, computer or smart phone will ever match. At the same time, it has now reached the point that it is now impossible to make a living in the area I deal with without being immersed in the digital world. If you refer to the good old days of print books and magazines, those who have grown up with digital toys virtually from birth will have one response: That's progress. They're right, of course, but they forget that not all progress is good or that there is room for both the old and the new.
  11. Noel, all publishing is cutthroat and brutal, though it's probably more extreme in the specialist niches. As for the editor of MCM insisting that the MCM forum is a website and not a webzine, he's splitting hairs. Whether you call it a website, webzine, forum, blog or whatever, what you end up calling it depends on the specific content, format and what you decide to call it. If MCM publishes what readers consider standalone articles on a somewhat regular frequency with the forum as part of the website, then it's a webzine that doesn't charge a fee. If the preceding is true and he runs ads from manufacturers that are identified as sponsors, then he's running a sponsored webzine that is being supported by the fees the manufacturers are paying him. If he's making enough from the sponsor fees that he's paying contributors for their articles, then......... You see where this is going. The nuances as to what you call his website are virtually endless. In some respects, the internet actually works against those of us who write in the hobby/model field for a living. Why? Because most people expect anything they find on the internet to be free. As a result, there's an automatic resistance to the idea of paying to access a website or buying content. Build posts abound, ranging from very good to average and mediocre. Does this mean those build posts shouldn't exist? Not at all because all of us have something useful to say that others would find of value. If you don't choose to buy something with a price on it, so be it. That's certainly your choice. But what I am saying is that none of us should EXPECT everything to be free. Let that happen and some of the best material will never see the light of day, such as the articles you can/could produce if MCM would pay you for them.
  12. Noel, publishing is a cutthroat business and this doesn't apply to just magazines. All you have to do is look at the history of major publishers. The competition is brutal and the sheer number of writers and wannabe writers far outstrips the number of potential readers who are willing to pay money to buy your latest article that is "better than anything anyone has ever written". As a result, most of us who try to make a living writing about models...or even a little extra income... write for niche markets which automatically creates a limited income for a magazine's publisher from which they can pay you for your work. In fact, if you check out a book called Writer's Market, you'd be amazed...or shocked...at the number of magazines in various genres who think it's both fair and ethical to offer writers three copies of the magazine as your total pay. For example, at the present time, Airfix World Magazine has the huge circulation of 13,149 copies per month. HOWEVER, they are part of Key Publishing that produces a very wide range of magazines that makes the Airfix numbers quite acceptable and reasonable. You also have to keep in mind that Airfix World is in England, so you can't make a fair comparison with a U.S. publication. Robin, you're correct with your observation about the wider distribution of car, truck and star wars kits. At the same time, notice that the higher dollar, higher skill, dedicated modeler kits in those categories are generally missing. Another factor is the lower cost that they manage to negotiate with kit manufacturers/distributors. For example, if you bother to print out a coupon, you can generally get any model kit from Hobby Lobby for 40% off and Michael's will also honor Hobby Lobby coupons, though they don't advertise the fact. Now what's going to happen with the kit mix at Hobby Lobby with the demise of Revell/Monogram is going to be interesting. Another factor affecting the wider availability of car/truck kits at stores like Hobby Lobby and Walmart is the even wider availability of toy cars that are available is some form for virtually every age group starting at birth. That has a lot to with why so many people describe what we modelbuilders do as "playing with toys".
  13. ipmsusa2

    Model car builders

    Well, I can't resist adding my two or three cents to this thread. I've made my living...for the most part...writing about models, as well as building models, both kit buildups and scratchbuilt, on commission. I am first and foremost an aircraft nut, preferably WW-II. HOWEVER, I have built darn near every subject from aircraft thru armor, cars, trucks, big rigs, railroad structures, locomotives, figures and architectural. I've also produced concept proof models of subjects that you'd probably rarely think about, such as mailboxes, eyeglass lens gauge and...hang on for this one...an eyelash dye clip. The one common theme that runs thru all of these subjects is that TECHNIQUE IS TECHNIQUE. I have used whatever technique gets the job done, regardless of what subject I might have been building when I developed that technique. The bottom line is that you use whatever technique works and if you don't have one you develop it, never mind what the subject of the moment is. Gee, I feel better now!
  14. Noel, Keep in mind that NASCAR/Stock Car Racing is very big in the U.S., particularly the Southern U.S. It is not uncommon to see an attendance of 200,000 or more at some of the larger tracks, such as Texas Motor Speedway here in Fort Worth, Texas. And let's not forget the Indianapolis 500 in Indianapolis, Indiana, though that event has nothing to do with stock cars. That kind of following helps support print publications that focus on automotive models. Still, print publications of all kinds are bucking a stiff headwind as a result of the digital revolution. Some are surviving and even thriving, such as FSM, while many others are hanging on by their teeth if they continue to exist at all.
  15. ipmsusa2

    Hobbico files for bankruptcy...

    Dave, when it comes to Italeri having a distribution agreement with Tamiya, Italeri had an earlier distribution agreement with Testors. At that point in time, I had had a long term relationship with Testors and Testors was not owned by Rustoleoum. For reasons I never learned, some kind of disagreement resulted in Testors severing their relationship with Italeri (or vice versa). Since that event, it's been all downhill for Testors, as least as far as we modelbuilders are concerned. BTW, another effect of the increased cost of model kits is the decreased commission builds that I obtain, in turn reducing my income and switching my focus to how-to ebooks and CD-ROM photo galleries. I agree that we've done it to ourselves and suggest if we don't find a way to reverse the trend that we will be the cause of our own demise. While that sounds negative, there is a practical limit to how much any of us can afford to pay for a single kit without having to keep our bank's loan officer on speed dial.