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Building models again - an old passion revisited

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  • Member since
    July, 2017
  • From: Lake Tahoe, NV (USA)
Building models again - an old passion revisited
Posted by bsowles on Saturday, July 01, 2017 3:46 AM

Hello All~

 

New forum poster here looking for some information. After a 40 year hiatus from model airplane building, I have taken up my old hobby of building plastic model airplanes. My first build was/is a Revell P-51D Mustang (1/48 scale). I chose Revell because that was a name that was around way back when that I recalled. That being said, I was somewhat disappointed when my kit arrived. I found the instructions to be confusing, and not all of the parts fit together as detailed in the instructions. I ran into missing tabs, tabs with missing holes/slots for them go go into, holes with no corresponding pegs, etc. So, I thought I would inquire from some of you veteran builders who may be able to recommend  a good kit builder other than the aforementioned Revell as I pursue more kits to build. Thanks in advance for any feedback anyone can share.

  • Member since
    May, 2017
Posted by Roald on Monday, July 03, 2017 12:27 PM

Hi, I am in a somewhat similar situation. I recently returned to building models following a long hiatus. 

When I started back, I bought a couple of older Revell/Monogram kits (P-47, Dauntless) simply because that's what I was familiar with. I ran into the same problems that you describe. 

I then purchased a couple of Tamiya kits after being told they were very good, and it was like a revelation. The pieces fit very, very well. They almost clicked into place, like Legos. The detail is far more intricate, and yet they don't come with a million tiny pieces. They are fairly simple to construct, but look like scale models rather than toys. 

I would highly recommend that you try couple of Tamiya kits.

That said, I have discovered that there is a big difference between older Tamiya kits and newer Tamiya kits. 

A few Tamiya kits that I found to be very user friendly are the P-51 (several different models), Bf-109, Wildcat and Spitfire. You will be amazed at how well they fit compared to older designs.

Older, cheaper Tamiya kits such as the Rafe, Zero "Hamp" and Brewster Buffalo are good, but not as good.  

  • Member since
    March, 2007
  • From: Northeast WA State
Posted by armornut on Monday, July 03, 2017 1:24 PM

Howdy and welcome back, you should also post something in the Welcome Forum. 40 yrs is a long time, my how times have changed. If ya don't mind the suggestion don't look at your new first kit as a bad experience. It may be a good idea to attemp to build the kit knowing it will be a shelf queen, but it will let you build some confidence and dexterity, try some new products and techniques, and help ya figure out if the scale is right for your ability( at this particular moment anyway). I also recommend the afore mentioned Tamyia kits, they are really good. Have fun, enjoy the process, ask questions if ya don't know something. Lots of folks around here are typing encyclopedias. See ya on the forums.

we're modelers it's what we do

  • Member since
    July, 2010
Posted by roony on Monday, July 03, 2017 1:28 PM

I would also recommend the new Airfix.  good fit, easy to read instructions, and less pricey than Tamiya.

  • Member since
    March, 2003
  • From: Northern New Jersey
Posted by Tojo72 on Monday, July 03, 2017 2:19 PM

Welcome back to the hobby,and to our hell,yes some kits could be trouble.I have heard good things about Revell and Monogram,so I don't know what was up with your kit.

I lile Tamiya A/C,the newer kits are more pricey,but the older kits can be had on ebay for good prices,and they are all excellent fitting kits.For the most part Hasegawa are good kits,look for reviews of what you are interested in.

  • Member since
    August, 2014
  • From: Willamette Valley, Oregon
Posted by goldhammer on Monday, July 03, 2017 2:53 PM

I'll go with Tamiya as well.  Might also look at Trumpter's A/C kits.  So far on the 1/32 Wildcats I'm doing fit has been very good and very little to no flash and mold seams.

Kits of modern vintage can be a little pricey, but I generally find, like most everything else, you get what you pay for.

fox
  • Member since
    January, 2007
  • From: Coatesville, Pa.
Posted by fox on Monday, July 03, 2017 5:39 PM

Welcome to the Forums and bac to the hobby! Glad to have you aboard!

I've been building models for 70 of my 76 years and, in my opinion, youll find some flawed kits and some good kits from all the manufacturers. There are some that are a lot better than others. Just try them out and you'll find those that suit your abilities. The more you build, the better you will get, and you will gradually disreguard the flaws in some of the kits and build them as if there was none there. You'll automatically correct the flaws. Don't be afraid to ask questions or ask for help. That's what we're here for.

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
    July, 2017
  • From: Lake Tahoe, NV (USA)
Posted by bsowles on Tuesday, July 04, 2017 3:09 AM

Thank you, Armor - and to all of you kind folks who replied to my initial post. And to your point Armor, I did not have any expectations that my first build in all these years was going to be "museum quality", so to speak. That is why I chose to forgo any painting on my first one. I just wanted to "get back in the groove" with my first one and see how I liked it, knowing going in that it would be a bit clumsy for me. Pluse, after 40 years, the old hands aren't quite as steady as when I was 12 years old! Big Smile So, I will plow through this one, and then hopefully "graduate" to something a little more complex. Thanks again for your input.

  • Member since
    July, 2017
  • From: Lake Tahoe, NV (USA)
Posted by bsowles on Tuesday, July 04, 2017 3:10 AM

Thank you, Roald. I will definitely look into some other kit makers per your suggestion.

  • Member since
    July, 2017
  • From: Lake Tahoe, NV (USA)
Posted by bsowles on Tuesday, July 04, 2017 3:11 AM

Thank you for your reply, Roony.

  • Member since
    July, 2017
  • From: Lake Tahoe, NV (USA)
Posted by bsowles on Tuesday, July 04, 2017 3:11 AM

Thank you, Tojo.

  • Member since
    July, 2017
  • From: Lake Tahoe, NV (USA)
Posted by bsowles on Tuesday, July 04, 2017 3:12 AM

I'll check those out, Gold, and thank you for your reply.

  • Member since
    July, 2017
  • From: Lake Tahoe, NV (USA)
Posted by bsowles on Tuesday, July 04, 2017 3:15 AM

Thank you Fox (Jim). I guess I was just a bit disappointed in the quality of the Revell kit that I got. Things like holes with no tabs to fit into them...things like that, are some of the things I ran into...almost like they weren't cut properly at the factory. Anyway, there's good and bad with anything, so I'll keep on checking different kit makers.

  • Member since
    December, 2002
  • From: Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, England
Posted by Bish on Tuesday, July 04, 2017 3:51 AM

It sounds like your Revell may be a very older kit. It can be a bit of a minefiled figuring out old and new kits. The Revell of Germany kits are generally very well done, and as mentioned the new Airfix kits, along with tamiya all get very good reviews.

Its often a good idea to do a search before buying a kit, theres a good chance there will be some reviews on it which may give an idea as to what you would be letting yourself in for.

 ''I am a Norfolk man, and I glory in being so''

On the bench: Dragon 1/35th Pz II Ausf F

  • Member since
    January, 2013
Posted by BlackSheepTwoOneFour on Tuesday, July 04, 2017 8:19 AM

This ^^^

  • Member since
    May, 2017
Posted by Roald on Tuesday, July 04, 2017 7:07 PM

To the OP:

A few people have mentioned the new Airfix kits. My experience with these (and this is only my personal experience, nothing more) has been hit and miss.

I built the new Airfix Boulton Paul Defiant, Hurricane Tropical, Spitfire Mk 1, P-40 and Stuka, all in 1/48. The Defiant and Hurricane were top notch in terms of fit, easily as good as Tamiya. The others were less so, and required quite a bit of work to fit properly. Fantastic detail, but tons of tiny, fiddly pieces and so-so fit.

If you are just getting started after a long hiatus and want something that will present minimal problems, I really think the newer Tamiya kits are what you're looking for.  

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