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A survey for our older members...

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  • Member since
    January, 2006
  • From: Pineapple Country, Queensland, Australia
A survey for our older members...
Posted by Wirraway on Monday, June 19, 2017 10:10 AM

With mandatory retirement 6 years away, and assuming that SWMBO will leave me to retire in peace, I was thinking I WILL get more time to model.  I was curious to ask of those of us who have finished our working lives, has modelling filled the gap ?  Do you have more time to model now, and do you use it to model ?  Or do other pursuits take up space in your day ?

"Growing old is inevitable; growing up is optional" GIF animations generator
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  • Member since
    June, 2014
  • From: New Braunfels , Texas
Posted by Tanker - Builder on Monday, June 19, 2017 11:15 AM

I will take the plunge first ;

   Giving that the myth surrounding retirement persists . I have actually less time and money ( we won't go there ) Than I had working . When working I had Saturdays and Holidays and most evenings to model . Not so now .

      To spend time away from folks who mean well , I go to the rail Museum and build train stuff . Then I come home and try to work on my commission . Then there's Doctors visits . Then of course there's the budget . At 74 I wound up with something I didn't want or need , Car Payments !

   My model budget went right out the window ! Now it's like it was when I was a kid . I have to wait for an allowance to appear between the bills . Then I can buy supplies .

 There doesn't seem to be enough time to actually work on a model from box opening to finish ! When there is , I actually sit and wonder what can I work on , that will be finished in a week or so . Some have wound up being a three or four Year build , Not a week or so  .And I don't even play Golf anymore because of my back .

 Then when it all starts to make sense the body betrays me . I don't know how old you are , But take care of your body , your heart , and read and do crosswords when you can . My doctor says this helps keep The risk of Alzheimers down . Walk or otherwise exercise and stay healthy . If you imbibe . Cut down ( Your liver is one organ that after a certain point will NOT regenerate it's tissue .) Cirrohosis is not a good thing to deal with . 

   Eat well and figure out your builds while walking , cycling , or even running .You'd be surprised how many problems of assembly , painting or whatever can be solved by getting completely away from the bench ! I solve many problems just by reading . Well , there you have my input . Remember though , I am 74 and have learned already , old age is definitely as they say " Not for Sissies "

     God bless and be good to yourself , you worked hard to get there .  T.B.

  • Member since
    March, 2013
Posted by patrick206 on Monday, June 19, 2017 1:50 PM


With mandatory retirement 6 years away, and assuming that SHMBO will leave me to retire in peace, I was thinking I WILL get more time to model.  I was curious to ask of those of us who have finished our working lives, has modelling filled the gap ?  Do you have more time to model now, and do you use it to model ?  Or do other pursuits take up space in your day ?


Interesting question. Although I stay busy with model building now at age 76, while I was working I had way more than abundant free time to do it then. The difference is, now I don't have to leave for my trips and put a hold on projects, for a few days at a time.

Mandatory retirement came for me 16 years ago, so while my building regimen didn't change all that much, these days other things that interested me have also occupied a good bit of my time. Like amateur astronomy, photography and gardening. I'm also getting in more reading than I used to.

A series of strokes with some residuals have made a real dent in my physical abilities, model building has changed to a degree, but I still can manage a decent build with help from my supportive wife. She never had an interest in the hobby before, but now she enjoys doing some of the more delicate building and really likes airbrushing. I'm a lucky guy.


  • Member since
    November, 2008
  • From: Florida
Posted by plasticjunkie on Monday, June 19, 2017 7:31 PM

I retired 11 years ago and modeling fills the gap when house chores are completed.

I really enjoy my time at the work bench or at the garage air brushing my builds. Commissions help fund the hobby so that helps out a lot.

  • Member since
    February, 2006
  • From: Boston
Posted by Wilbur Wright on Monday, June 19, 2017 7:50 PM

I expect to model full  time when I retire.  Get to those big kits like the 1/35th Leopold, HobbyBoss M1070  and do them justice.  

I don't have a big stash but those I do have are big complicated kits saved for retirement.

Of course my other half may have some say.  But not much.

  • Member since
    September, 2004
  • From: Denver
Posted by tankboy51 on Monday, June 19, 2017 8:24 PM

I retired last year, at the same time I had a minor stroke and had to start dialysis.  I have been modeling as much as I can.  I have have dialysis 3 time a week 4 hours a day.  Really boring.  I am very tired after, but I am fine the next day.  Other wise I am fine and model as much as always, maybe 2 a month.  I have a good sized stash and have been building since I was 10 years old.

  • Member since
    January, 2007
  • From: Coatesville, Pa.
Posted by fox on Monday, June 19, 2017 8:59 PM

I retired in '98 at the ripe age of 58 with Drs. orders to take it easy after a Kidney transplant. It took a few years to complete the "Honeydo" list of things to do around the house but I managed to get in a few hours a week at the bench. Now, with that done (I hope) I get a lot more time to build and go to contests. But, as age creeps up at a very fast pace, we spend a lot of time with never ending Dr. appointments of one kind or another. That takes up a lot of time along with the home repairs that are also the result of old age. The stash that I have built up over the years has been very helpful in maintaining my building as kit prices keep going up. Don't think I'll ever build "full time" but hope to get closer.

No matter how much time you get, enjoy.

Jim  Captain



Photobucket Main WIP: Rebuild of Monogram 1/8 "Big Deuce" with 1/8 Pocher V-12 in rear - 10%

   On the Bench:   Revell 1/48 Ju 52/3m - 50%;  Revell 1/96 USS Kearsarge - 20% 

I keep hitting "escape", but I'm still here.

  • Member since
    December, 2015
  • From: providence ,r.i.
Posted by templar1099 on Tuesday, June 20, 2017 4:11 AM

Like almost everything else in life,it depends. What other responsibilities do you have,commitments or obligations made,other outside interests,etc. I also find that out here on the right coast the seasons play a major role,with Fall and Winter being more conducive to bench time. I've been retired for 22 years and have never been busier.

"le plaisir delicieux et toujours nouveau d'une occupation inutile"

  • Member since
    November, 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Tuesday, June 20, 2017 9:01 AM

One difference, beside whether I have more time in total, is that I can choose times more freely.  I can model during the mid-day of a normal working day.

I sometimes have more modeling time, especially during the winter. It takes less time to snowblow my driveway than it does to mow yard in summer.

Usually, lately, I do not have any more time than I did while working.  The problem is that I have slowed down.  As I age, it takes longer to do necessary chores and household projects. It takes me longer to read paper in mornings, etc. (although I get to read paper in one sitting, rather than a bit before I went to work, and finish (most of it) after I got home in afternoon.

I suspect it also takes me longer to finish a model, due to the same slowing down, so I don't turn out any more models per year.


Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    March, 2015
  • From: Streetsboro, Ohio
Posted by Toshi on Tuesday, June 20, 2017 9:12 AM

Due to a work related injury, (I was found under 250lbs. of board) in 2010 I had to go into a forced retirement at the age of 43.  Due to the injury, I don't remember the last 4-5 years of my life.  After that, it was clinical depression of where life had no meaning to me.

Then one day at therapy, I got a Testors 1/72 F4U Corsair.  And that was it.  My next kit was the venerable Monogram/Revell P-61 Blackwidow.  I got my fine motor skills in check, my memory is getting better, and I can slowly read again among many other things.  Modeling has saved my life.  I've only been modeling for 2 years and 3 months.

I am much more busier than ever in my life.  I try to do everything for Mrs. Toshi when I can or if I'm capable as I'm still handicapped.  I see my grandson almost everyday.  He turns one in a few days and he definately keeps me on my toes.  I cook (I used to be an Executive Chef and a Master Sushi Chef trained by the student of the Master Sushi Chef of the Empreror of Japan) I've learned to enjoy life and embrace it more than ever.

I love love retirement (Life).  I used to model everyday, now I'm so busy with everything I mentioned above, I'm modeling when I can have the time.  A little here and a little there everyday.  It's been a long journey for me but you must realize one thing, retirement is just the beginning to a whole new exciting and very busy world.


P.S. To live is an awfully big adventure!


Retired due to work related injury

Married to the most caring, loving, understanding, and beautiful wife in the world.  Mrs. Toshi



Revell B-17G Flying Fortress 


Mrs. Toshi just purchased for me a Tamiya 1/48 Ki-61 via eBay, when it arrives, as always, I’ll do a WIP.  Thanks to M.Brindos and Model Maniac for the heads up and the inspiration in obtaining this kit for my next build.

  • Member since
    August, 2013
Posted by Jay Jay on Tuesday, June 20, 2017 9:40 AM

I'm 68 and retired at 62 to Wrinkle City , Florida. i started modeling again to have something to do with my hands because I am unable ,due to injuries, to do much carpentry anymore. At my age I am loathe to discover that it takes me much longer to anything including modeling ,so even though I now have time it's mostly taken up by that afromentioned fact. The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.  On the up side ,if I don't get it done today there's always tomorrow. 

In January I had to get a part time job to supliment my SS income because although my needs where barely met, my wants where totally lacking. Wants like modeling, fishin stuff and juice. So now I find myself sleeping more (funny but true ).

All in all i am enjoying retirement . I can basically do what I want ,when I want ,if I had the money do do it.






 I'm finally retired. Now time I got, money I don't.

  • Member since
    April, 2009
  • From: Longmont, Colorado
Posted by Cadet Chuck on Tuesday, June 20, 2017 9:46 PM

I retired at age 58 in 1999.  I am very fortunate to have this modeling hobby for the last 60 years, as I have heart problems that limit my activity and mobility now.  Modeling keeps me occupied, keeps my brain active, and maintains my motor skills.  Without it, I don't know what I would do, except become a vegetable.

This forum is also a blessing, allowing me to interact with others who share this wonderful hobby.  Thank you all for being here to interact with me.

Computer, did we bring batteries?.....Computer?

  • Member since
    August, 2013
Posted by Jay Jay on Wednesday, June 21, 2017 8:48 AM

Cadet Chuck, Yes I agree.

I check and read the forums every day to gain knowledge, get inspired ,marvel at other's works and have the pleasure of interacting with the Buds on here. modeling is truly a lot more fun for me when others share and explain their  skills and identify with the various maladies encountered during works in progress. The old adage misery like company is so true in this otherwise solitary hobby. Like there's nobody around my imediate area that does this and the neighbors think I build toys ,but since I became involved with FSM I no longer feel like a pork chop at a Jewish wedding.






 I'm finally retired. Now time I got, money I don't.

  • Member since
    December, 2002
  • From: Fort Knox
Posted by Rob Gronovius on Thursday, June 22, 2017 10:45 AM

I retired in July 2011 after 24 years of active duty in the US Army. I actually had more time to model while on active duty. If I had to travel, I brought small 1/72 scale armor kits in a plastic shoe box to work on while away. While deployed, working on simple kits (older Tamiya ones were best) because you could do basic construction with minimal tools.

I stayed idle for the first year, going to my kids' school events that I normally missed and built quite a bit. The next year I applied for a job that I thought I would only keep for about 6 months. Nearly 5 years later, I am still working and modeling less. My commute plus work hours keeps me occupied from 2 PM to 1 AM daily. Work keeps trying to convince me to take on higher levels of responsibility, but I know if I do, my work week plus commute would jump immediately to 60 hours and potenitally 70-75 hours. I am supposed to be retired and do not want to work that much.

When I do build, it seems like I build those easy to assemble Star Wars kits from the last two movies and 1/48 scale Tamiya armor kits. I wish Tamiya made modern US armor beyond the couple of HMMWV kits they've done. I would like to make the complete series of US tanks I crewed on in 1/48 scale, stretching from the M48A5 to the M1A2.

The kits I complete are not up to the same standard that I used to build to (that's why I don't post photos), but I still get enjoyment just putting glue to plastic. Anyone who hasn't build a Tamiya 1/48 scale tank kit should pick one up for fun. The Bandai Star Wars kits are awesomely engineered as well. I've seen some guys build those things to a very high standard.

  • Member since
    June, 2017
  • From: Winter Park, FL
Posted by fotofrank on Friday, June 23, 2017 3:39 PM

I'll be 71 on Wednesday, the 28th. I've been retired for a year and have just gotten back into the hobby. Since my wife still works I've assumed much of the household work except cooking, unless cooking involves the crockpot. Anyway, modeling takes maybe 2 to 3 hours a day, sometimes more if I'm lucky. I haven't completed anything yet. Three planes waiting for paint and one still being built. I have two hobbies that tend to suck the life out of a SS check: Model building and photography. If I'm not at the workbench building yet another Mustang I might be found at the nearby executive airport, my Pentax K-3 and 300 mm lens in hand doing some plane spotting.

  • Member since
    January, 2006
  • From: Pineapple Country, Queensland, Australia
Posted by Wirraway on Saturday, June 24, 2017 7:01 AM

If you imbibe . Cut down ( Your liver is one organ that after a certain point will NOT regenerate it's tissue .) Cirrohosis is not a good thing to deal with .

Tanker, that is good advice. Lost my Dad to liver cancer last week. Would have been operable, but for the damage he had caused to his liver from 50 years of "imbibing"

"Growing old is inevitable; growing up is optional" GIF animations generator
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  • Member since
    June, 2017
  • From: Winter Park, FL
Posted by fotofrank on Saturday, June 24, 2017 7:17 AM

Yeah, I had to kiss my whiskey and cigars goodbye some years ago. Another reason to start the model building hobby back up...

  • Member since
    June, 2014
  • From: New Braunfels , Texas
Posted by Tanker - Builder on Sunday, June 25, 2017 12:20 PM

This is for Wirraway and Fotofrank :

    Hey guys , I said cut down ,Not stop ! Even my Cardiologist said a glass of wine or four or five ounces of good Brandy or Whiskey won't kill you . Just space them out . My intake is about four to five ounces a MONTH !

 So I can look forward to that two ounces at rest in a good chair looking out the window or on the porch Sipping and watching the local Hummingbirds and " Birds " that go by . Ah ! Even with pullbacks , life is indeed Grand , Physical crud and all !      T.B.

  • Member since
    August, 2014
  • From: Willamette Valley, Oregon
Posted by goldhammer on Sunday, June 25, 2017 6:55 PM

I got back to this 3 years ago after the wife passed, just to keep from going completely outhouse mouse.  After 3 heart attacks in 2010, an ICD implant, and a 25% heart function,  we both figured she would outlaast me, but not in the cards.  I'm more or less semi-retired but still working (auto body tech), but can't do the heavy hits anymore.

I do a little modeling at home, but most is done at work during slack times.  Thank goodness I have a boss that doesn't mind.

I think that you will find more things will encroach on your time than they do now, just be sure to find/make time to do what you enjoy.  Whatever you do, just stay active.  That is the only medicene for retirement.

  • Member since
    December, 2002
  • From: NYC, USA
Posted by waikong on Sunday, June 25, 2017 9:27 PM
@Toshi, everytime I hear your story, I am inspired by your courage and attitude. @Rob. I have missed seeing your builds. We are often our own harshest critics. Would love to see your next 1/48 armor build.
  • Member since
    May, 2012
  • From: Lincoln, NE
Posted by F-4 Phixer on Sunday, June 25, 2017 10:27 PM
Sure glad to read of older folks turning to model building. I get those funny looks sometimes when I tell others what I do for a hobby at age 69. It's a comfort to know you guys are out there and building also. Thanks for the encouragement folks ! Have been building off/on since I was a kid but never seemed to have the time. Just got serious about it a couple years ago and now I am really hooked. As some here have said that Winter is more time for building I also find those hot humid days of Summer are plentiful too. Right now my afternoons are spent in my basement shop building various different kits and I thoroughly enjoy the relaxation and satisfaction I get from it. My biggest problem is space to display them all. I certainly enjoy these forums also. Have learned a lot reading them with all the tips that get posted. Steve S. in Nebr.

Steve S.

  • Member since
    April, 2016
  • From: Parsons Kansas
Posted by Hodakamax on Monday, June 26, 2017 10:31 AM

I'm 74 and people do look at you funny when you say your a modeler. I suppose they're busy watching TV while I'm having a good time and keeping my brain working. Models are certainly not a full-time endevour but they do fill in idle time slots. Winter comes to mind and the Kansas Summer can drive you inside, all good reasons to model. There's no pace or schedules to keep, plenty of problem solving happening, skills being used and even improved, not an expensive hobby compared to bass boats, airplanes and motor vehicles, even a social thing with the forum. Even the W.I.P. is fun. In the end you have the final product to hopefully amaze your friends and even wife. When I get crankey my wife sometimes says that it's time to build a new model. Therapy, I forgot to mention. How about educational? I always learn something, paticularly history when building and researching the project.

Modeling can also involve competition as in club or serious competition which always leaves me humbled but further educated and sets new goals for the next project. Try as I might, I can't think of any negative attributes to this hobby. It keeps me out of bars, at least in the daytime, just kidding. What more can I say. Ok, I'll probably think of something, but that's it for now. Keep on Modelin'. I highly recommend it.  Geeked


  • Member since
    June, 2017
  • From: Winter Park, FL
Posted by fotofrank on Sunday, July 02, 2017 1:50 PM

Hey, Tanker, I hear ya and I tried "moderation" and it never worked for me. I'm an "all or nothing" kinda guy so I had to quit both completely. The cool thing about being all in on building model airplanes again is my lovely wife is completely supportive of my newly reacitvated hobby.

  • Member since
    August, 2013
Posted by Jay Jay on Monday, July 03, 2017 12:02 PM

Max,you hit the preverbial nail right on the head. Ditto on all of the above,my feelings exactly.  

Photofrank, I also am blessed with a supportive wife who even suggests the models she would like to see me build and I try very hard to accomodate her.he he. For instance, I was not actually into ships but she wanted me to build a PT-109 so I did the research ,learned much history and ship building techniques along the way and the thing came out pretty good. So now I'm on to my second ship. So through her, I discovered yet another interesting phase of the hobby that I would'nt normally persue.






 I'm finally retired. Now time I got, money I don't.


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