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Steve Collins from Arizona


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Hi, everyone. I live in Glendale, AZ, and have for about 16 years now. I started modeling when I was about 8 or so. I got the kit of the prototype of the Mustang (automobile type) for Christmas from my uncle. Since I had no clue what to do, I asked him for help. He proceeded to build it while I stood by and watched. But it still seemed pretty cool, so I started saving money for my next one. That turned out to be one of the Aurora WWI planes. Those all quickly followed, since for about $2.00, you could get the kit, paints, and a tube of glue. Of course, it took a lot of soda bottles to make up $2.00. Those kits led to the Monogram and Revell kits, sticking mostly to the aircraft. I did eventually reach the point where I was (mostly) painting them the right colors anyway, but, well, you know. As most of us do, I slacked off the building for quite a while when I discovered cars and girls, or girls and cars, depending on priorities of the moment. I did have one kit that I kept for a long time that I was rather proud of. It was the Revell F-4C in 1/72, given to me by another uncle who was a crew chief on them in the Air Force. I joined the Air Force out of high school in 1972, serving at 6 bases in under 3 years, saw the elephant, and decided the military wasn't what I wanted to do. I got out, started college, and picked up model building again fairly seriously. Of course, I was more interested in the colors and the markings than in accuracy or in finesse in the building. After a couple of years of college, I decided that wasn't what I wanted to do, either. So, I bounced around a bit, played in a rock band that was just on the verge of making it when life matters overtook four of the five members almost simultaneously, causing it to explode. So, back into the Air Force I went. I got married shortly after that and (lovely Air Force) got sent to Korea. That was where I entered my first contest. It was sponsored by MWR (you military guys will know what that is). I was really miffed when my beautifully painted and decaled P-51 didn't win, so I asked someone why it didn't. Seems I was still building almost the same way I did when I first got back into it. Apparently you need to do something about the joint seams besides give them a good scraping with a knife blade. After that, I spent a year in Minot, ND, where I got more interested in figure painting (and occasionally less interested thanks to a regiment of Highlanders commissioned by another guy), followed by six years in Germany where I slowly improved my techniques and finally got the hang of that darned air brush. I came back to the States and moved to Austin, Tx, where I ran into a wonderful bunch of guys called the Austin Scale Modelers Society. I learned a great deal from them and started entering (and occasionally winning at) contests. They convinced me to run for office, where I was first treasurer, then president. That was my first stint as an IPMS member, too. I also ran the local contest once and was head judge a couple of times. I moved to Phoenix in 1993 and became associated with the Craig Hewitt chapter of IPMS through a friendship with a local hobby shop owner, Don Cluff. My first IPMS Nats was the Albuquerque Nats and won awards for a figure and an airplane. My next Nats was Santa Clara where I did the apprentice judge thing with Chris Bucholtz, starting a friendship (and beer-drinking partnership) that last to this day. I had drifted away from the local chapter because of some personalities involved with the club at the time, but was coaxed back by Dick Christ after a couple of years. Since then, I've been head judge at the local contest several times and president of the chapter for the last year and a half. Additionally, I was involved with the 2004 IPMS Nats in Phoenix and was asked by Dick to co-chair and be the contest chair for the 2010 Nats.

 

I build (almost exclusively) 1/72 aircraft, with recent diversions into 1/72 armor. I'll build just about anything that flies, but I've got a particular thing for P-51s, F-86s, F-4s, and Israeli aircraft. In the armor, I tend toward that used in the Middle East wars. Lately, my interest has been rekindled in WWI things with sticks and strings. I suffer horribly from AMS. Trying to do a kit out of the box almost causes a nervous breakdown (I couldn't even finish a HobbyBoss kit without doing something to it).

 

Steve

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This is awesome Steve! It is great to see another 1/72 scale armor builder here. Hopefully I'll be able to see some of your work. I'd love to see you at an Orangecon someday.

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Yeah, that would be good. Maybe Jim Clark and I can make a road trip out of it sometime. Or you can come to Phoenix next year. If I can get the time before going to Columbus, I'll post a picture of my latest on the forums somewhere.

 

Steve

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We actually met before, in Chicago. But that was a long time ago. And we corresponded about Dennis Dennison a few times. Thanks for the welcome.

 

Steve

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Hi Steve,

Thanks for the info - good to know you!

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Hi Steve! Man, you get AROUND! great to have ya here. By the way, since you mentioned Columbus, be sure to bring some of your 1/72 Saberjets (and FJ Furies) for my display tables! Glad to have ya on board!

 

GIL :smiley16:

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Orangecon! Ya I think we could do that. I made one quite a few years ago and it was quite a nice little contest. It would also give me a chance to hang with Cyrus the Virus :smiley16:

 

Jim

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Yeah, that would be good. Maybe Jim Clark and I can make a road trip out of it sometime. Or you can come to Phoenix next year. If I can get the time before going to Columbus, I'll post a picture of my latest on the forums somewhere.

 

Steve

 

Excellent. I'm already making plans for Phoenix since I can't make Columbus. Hopefully I'll make it this time.

 

Orangecon! Ya I think we could do that. I made one quite a few years ago and it was quite a nice little contest. It would also give me a chance to hang with Cyrus the Virus :smiley16:

 

Jim

 

OK, now I gotta ask, who's Cyrus the Virus?

 

 

Looking forward to meeting you two.

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Cyrus Tan lives in Orange Ca and is one of the better mdelers in So Cal. He's even won Tamiya con and a trip to Japan. An absolute hoot to hang out with especially sinc ewe build the same stuff , 48th modern jets.

 

Jim

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