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  • Member since
    October 2020
Subscription
Posted by AU Tiger on Thursday, February 24, 2022 4:05 PM

I'm one of the Scale Auto Enthusiast subscribers that was moved over to Fine Scale Modeler for the balance of my subscription when SAE was discontinued. I decided to give FSM a chance, hoping much of the SAE content might show up here. I am disappointed to say it hasn't.

My subscription expires with the May/June issue of FSM, and I won't be renewing. There's simply not enough car model content for me to continue subscribing to this magazine.

  • Member since
    March 2003
  • From: Western North Carolina
Posted by Tojo72 on Thursday, February 24, 2022 5:28 PM

Welcome to the forum,there are some good car builders on board.

fox
  • Member since
    January 2007
  • From: Narvon, Pa.
Posted by fox on Thursday, February 24, 2022 10:59 PM

Welcome to the Forums! Glad to have you with us. 

There are many great car builders in the "Auto" section. Some of them build planes, ships, armor and other types too.

Jim Captain

Stay Safe 

 Main WIP: 

   On the Bench:  1/48 Tamiya - Vought F4U-1A Corsair for Group Build 'Absent Friends' 50%                                                                   1/48 Encore Models - A-37B/OA-37B Dragonfly 50%

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

  • Member since
    September 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Friday, February 25, 2022 1:15 PM

Welcome to the forum!  I look forward to seeing your builds. 

Best regards,

Brad

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

 

  • Member since
    April 2003
  • From: USA
Posted by keavdog on Friday, February 25, 2022 2:02 PM

Some of us build cars.  I do about 40% cars/bikes, 60% aircraft.  Here's a few of my favorites:

Hope you stick around - we can always use more auto subjects

 

Thanks,

John

Moderator
  • Member since
    September 2011
Posted by Tim Kidwell on Monday, February 28, 2022 11:46 AM

AU Tiger

I'm one of the Scale Auto Enthusiast subscribers that was moved over to Fine Scale Modeler for the balance of my subscription when SAE was discontinued. I decided to give FSM a chance, hoping much of the SAE content might show up here. I am disappointed to say it hasn't.

My subscription expires with the May/June issue of FSM, and I won't be renewing. There's simply not enough car model content for me to continue subscribing to this magazine.

 

Hi AU Tiger, 

As I have posted elsewhere and said in numerous conversations with former Scale Auto subscribers, closing Scale Auto (SCA) was a painful experience for us all. It was my pleasure to serve as editor of Scale Auto magazine, and I could not have ever dreamed of having a more ardently loyal readership. However, publishing is a business, and Scale Auto's numbers could not sustain the cost of producing it.

I fought hard to make sure that content that appeared in SCA would be part of the mix in FineScale Modeler (FSM). We continue to work with scale model journalists familiar to SCA readers like Tim Boyd, Jeff Bloomhuff, Tom Valenta, Mike Klessig, and more. We continue to support NNL model shows as well as model car shows in general and publish Contest Cars (the pandemic made CC 2022 a challenge, but we did it and CC 2023 is shaping up nicely). 

There seemed to be a sense that we were going to make half of every FSM issue a car story. Publishing is a business, and that was not ever a possibility. Cars are included as part of the mix, no more or less important than any of the other topics we cover, whether it be tanks, planes, or sci-fi and fantasy. Scale modeling is a continuum: Skills and techniques can be used across multiple topics. In fact, I used a painting and finishing technique I learned from car modelers on an R2-D2 model over the weekend.

All of this is to offer some context and to say that I'm sorry to see you (and anyone else with similar feelings) go, and I'm sorry that FSM isn't able to meet your interests or needs as a scale modeling resource. We can't meet everyone's expectations all the time, though we do try. However, we will continue to work with our contributors to present a broad range of topics that interest a wide audience and champion scale modeling, as we always have. 

I'll leave you with words written by FSM founding editor Bob Hayden in his November/December 1985 Editor's Note: "[FSM] is, first and foremost, about modeling techniques, but sometimes this isn't as obvious as I'd like it to be. We ask FSM authors ... to orient their articles toward modeling methods, and to explain those methods in paintstaking, step-by-step detail. We edit with the same thing in mind, often eliminating pages of background on the real thing in favor of keeping every scrap of how-to modeling information.

"Many readers have told me that they notice this, and they often learn as much from an article on a subject they have no interest in as they do from something right up their alley. One reader reported finding over a dozen useful hints and tips in a single feature!

"[Read] one of the articles that falls outside your main areas of interest. See if the author has a trick you can put to work in your modeling."

Editorially, we think Bob had it right.

Stay well and keep building models,

TK



PS. On a related topic, before someone jumps in here to say cars were never part of FSM's portfolio before SCA closed and don't belong, that is simply untrue. A tour of past FSM issues, particularly before Kalmbach purchased SCA, will demonstrate the inaccuracy of the claim. It was an editorial choice to minimize the presence of car models in FSM once SCA went from compeitor to sister brand in order not to cannibalize the audiences. Obviously, painfully for many like AU Tiger, SCA is no longer a going concern. However, cars (bikes, trucks, etc.) are here to stay, as are sci-fi and fantasy, along with military and commercial subjects.

--

Timothy Kidwell
Editor
Scale Model Brands
Kalmbach Media

 

  • Member since
    March 2007
  • From: Northeast WA State
Posted by armornut on Monday, February 28, 2022 12:40 PM

   As a long time member here and occasional rebel, I think that this publication is doing an amazing job at covering the entire modeling genre.

    With the advent and popularity of 3D printing the mag has kept up with the times however still recognizing the fine skills of incredible scratch builders.

     There are members here who bring paper models into the mix.....CRAZY the detail is outstanding. These are shown on the forums and in paper pub.

     Taking the content to the electrionic medium was, is, an incredible leap in keeping our hobby relevant and attract younger audiance who may not appreciate the good old fashion out house,( humor interjection), periodical....nothing beats a good read with..... 

        I want to also thank Tim in his timely and relevant replies to these forums, for someone in " the upper echelons"  to actually take the time to participate is rare indeed. Kudos to the entire staff, and it holds true to FSMs motto " For modelers by modelers".

    So if you still wish to leave so be it, I for one do not want to miss a chance to learn a new technique from you and your cars OR maybe teach you something useful from my planes, trains, tanks...and yes cars.

we're modelers it's what we do

  • Member since
    August 2021
Posted by goldhammer88 on Monday, February 28, 2022 3:11 PM

I can sympathize with the OP, but for a different reason.

They went from 10 issues to 6, and with no increase in content.  We're still getting 58 pages and the cover.  Now they try to be everything to everyone, and really don't do justice to any subject, be it cars, ships, figures, armor, sci-fi, or aircraft.

When my current subscription runs out early next year, I probably won't renew.  If I happen to last that long.

Moderator
  • Member since
    September 2011
Posted by Tim Kidwell on Monday, February 28, 2022 4:16 PM

goldhammer88

I can sympathize with the OP, but for a different reason.

They went from 10 issues to 6, and with no increase in content.  We're still getting 58 pages and the cover.  Now they try to be everything to everyone, and really don't do justice to any subject, be it cars, ships, figures, armor, sci-fi, or aircraft.

When my current subscription runs out early next year, I probably won't renew.  If I happen to last that long.

 

Hi Goldhammer88,

That's not quite the case. Yes, we reduced the print issues to 6, but the editorial team pivoted immediately and made sure that we would produce four downloadable issues to replace those four print issues. We still create 10 issues a year, just not all of them show up in your mailbox. The FSM DLCs are all meat, no fluff, with the same number of feature stories that appear in a print issue of FSM. 

As I have said before, FSM is a business and the magazine has to make a certain contribution margin to the company's bottom line. FSM has to work within that reality, and the staff has to come up with creative ways to continue to provide the content that the brand always has. True, not everyone is going to be pleased with the changes. But we either make changes and try new ways to deliver the information or ... what? Yeah, I suppose we could have said, screw that, we're not going down to 6 issues, and tell the company CEO that it ain't happening. Then we're out of a job, FSM goes to 6 issues anyway, and the DLC idea is never broached because no one was here to champion it. But we didn't do that. We heard the hard news, knew that it was not going to sit well with some readers, and began to think of ways to mitigate that unhappiness and keep moving forward. Because there was no other option for us. We love scale modeling, and FSM is our livelihood. We wouldn't work so hard for it if we didn't want to see it succeed.

The good news for FSM and its readers is that it looks like the work we've been doing is paying off, and we are pushing back against the prevailing trends in traditional publishing. Our traffic is up and our sub numbers are headed in the right direction. 

I know none of this changes your mind or point of view, Goldhammer88, but things like frequency changes aren't within the province of editorial. Business decisions of that nature are affected by numerous factors of which we are but one. 

Regardless of what you decide, thanks for being a subscriber for as long as you have been.

TK 

 

--

Timothy Kidwell
Editor
Scale Model Brands
Kalmbach Media

 

  • Member since
    August 2021
Posted by goldhammer88 on Monday, February 28, 2022 4:34 PM

I can appreciate that, but pushing 70, I'm lucky to access zoom for a Federal meeting.  Even that takes me multiple trys.  The computer age pretty much passed me by while I was beating tin as an auto body tech for 45 years.  At my age and health condition, I'll be really surprised to see any of 2023.

Still don't know what all this stupid phone is capable of, and never will.

  • Member since
    August 2015
Posted by Modeltruckbuilder on Tuesday, March 1, 2022 3:19 PM

I know this is an apples to oranges comparison, so bear with me for a moment. On many other forums I read members saying that the FSM forum is a turnoff for them due to the lack of automotive categories on the forum. Many of them avoid FSM because of that. The Auto forum gets a fair amount of traffic in most cases and can get quite crowded at times. Someone will start a new thread about a street car and it bumps an active thread about a motorcycle down a notch and off the top of the list. It seems like there is always a tug of war for that top spot. I still believe that the forum is an extension of the magazine, perhaps expanding the Auto section on the forum will help show potential subscribers that FSM has more Auto coverage than they realize.

  • Member since
    November 2008
  • From: Hatboro, PA
Posted by Justinryan215 on Tuesday, March 1, 2022 8:55 PM

Tim, I appreciate your candor, and waving the flag of FSM, and completely understand that publishing is a business, but, I can't understand how a publisher can drop an entire magazine, and Still have to drop four issues of another that was supposed to pick up the slack....and yet the pages still seem to be dwindling!

 

I get that there are "digital issues" available to subscribers...but many of us didn't pay for digital.  We wanted physical.  Which, I suspect, is the reason behind the loss of subscribers...that is the reason why I will not be renewing.  I may, however, buy the digital copy IF something piques my interest...

 

As for the forums, I find them clunky to use, sharing/posting photos is a pain in the asp, especially on mobile, so I tend to only just comment.  But, I also find that not much goes on in the forums here...I can check on a Sunday before bed, read and reply to a thread, and there won't be any other activity until Thursday....

 

so most of the time, I don't bother.

"...failure to do anything because someone else can do better makes us rather dull and lazy..."

Mortal as I am,I know that I am born for a day.  But when I follow at my pleasure the serried multitude of the stars in their circular course, my feet no longer touch the Earth...

 

Moderator
  • Member since
    September 2011
Posted by Tim Kidwell on Wednesday, March 2, 2022 10:18 AM

Justinryan215

Tim, I appreciate your candor, and waving the flag of FSM, and completely understand that publishing is a business, but, I can't understand how a publisher can drop an entire magazine, and Still have to drop four issues of another that was supposed to pick up the slack....and yet the pages still seem to be dwindling!

 

 

Thanks. I make a point of speaking as cadidly as possible. SCA was a sister brand to FSM. It had its own budgets and responsibilities. Its budgets, margins, and the rest went to SCA, not FSM. They are not intertwined accept for being owned by the same company.

Similarly, decisions for FSM are based on FSM's performance and how to best maximize results for the company. Decisions for one magazine or brand does not directly impact the others.   

 

Justinryan215

Which, I suspect, is the reason behind the loss of subscribers...that is the reason why I will not be renewing. 

 

As I said in a previous post, our numbers are up, actually. That's good news! The nature of periodicals has always been that subscribers come and go. Also, some subscribers "graduate" from FSM. And congratulations to them! If someone finds themselves at that point, then I suggest they submit an article or two to the magazine and help pass on their knowledge to the subscribers who haven't graduated.

 

Justinryan215

As for the forums, I find them clunky to use, sharing/posting photos is a pain in the asp, especially on mobile, so I tend to only just comment.  But, I also find that not much goes on in the forums here...I can check on a Sunday before bed, read and reply to a thread, and there won't be any other activity until Thursday....

so most of the time, I don't bother. 

 

The Forums are not a subscriber benefit, but offered, free, as a place to hang out and talk about modeling. If they aren't a fit for you, that's fine.  

Ultimately, publishing is changing and continues to change. FSM, and Kalmbach in general, has been a bulwark for traditional, legacy publishing. But refusing to change to meet that challenges of 21st century publishing has led to the demise of publications, from behemoths like Conde Nast and Meredith to small mom and pop operations, and, yes, even some Kalmbach brands. That is not something anyone on staff here wishes to see happen to FSM. So we will continue to work on quality content, look for ways to grow the brand, and build on our momentum.

(Please forgive any typos; they happne.)

--

Timothy Kidwell
Editor
Scale Model Brands
Kalmbach Media

 

Moderator
  • Member since
    September 2011
Posted by Tim Kidwell on Wednesday, March 2, 2022 10:34 AM

Modeltruckbuilder

I know this is an apples to oranges comparison, so bear with me for a moment. On many other forums I read members saying that the FSM forum is a turnoff for them due to the lack of automotive categories on the forum. Many of them avoid FSM because of that. The Auto forum gets a fair amount of traffic in most cases and can get quite crowded at times. Someone will start a new thread about a street car and it bumps an active thread about a motorcycle down a notch and off the top of the list. It seems like there is always a tug of war for that top spot. I still believe that the forum is an extension of the magazine, perhaps expanding the Auto section on the forum will help show potential subscribers that FSM has more Auto coverage than they realize.

Hi Modeltruckbuilder,

Thank you for your thoughtful comment.

The Auto forum is treated like any of the other modeling topics on the FSM Forum. Expanding that forum would then precipitate expanding all of the other categories within the FSM Forum. And, for better or worse, it won't change the content mix in the magazine. Automotive models will continue to be part of the mix, but they will never be 50%. It's not practical. 

With that said, last year, we reviewed more car models than we ever had in Scale Auto magazine. We're on track to do the same or more this year. Further, there will be much more scale model car how-to content hitting finescale.com over the course of 2022, with more planned for 2023 and onward, all of it produced by well-known names in scale model car circles. 

In many cases, this is a game of inches. We have to provide the content. With the content, the eyeballs will come. And we're always on the look out for new contributors. So, if you think you have modeling story you'd like to contribute, HERE YOU GO!

TK

--

Timothy Kidwell
Editor
Scale Model Brands
Kalmbach Media

 

  • Member since
    August 2015
Posted by Modeltruckbuilder on Sunday, March 6, 2022 7:41 PM

Tim,

I'm not trying to be critical or confrontational, I truly enjoy this forum. Aside from a few dis-tractors, I find this forum to be informative, well managed and well moderated. However, when I see 2 forums dedicated to aircraft, one for military and one for civilian/airliners, I wonder why the same can't be done for the Automotive forum directly below it. Even helicopters have their own forum independent of the aircraft forums, why can't Autos have a sub-section or sub-forum within the Auto forum to separate cars from trucks? I understand your point and reasoning for not wanting to re-organize the entire forum, but SA had 9 boards for various Auto subjects. Here we have all Auto subjects shoehorned into one forum, it needs a little more space to grow and stretch it's legs.

Moderator
  • Member since
    September 2011
Posted by Tim Kidwell on Monday, March 7, 2022 8:13 AM

Modeltruckbuilder

Tim,

I'm not trying to be critical or confrontational, I truly enjoy this forum. Aside from a few dis-tractors, I find this forum to be informative, well managed and well moderated. However, when I see 2 forums dedicated to aircraft, one for military and one for civilian/airliners, I wonder why the same can't be done for the Automotive forum directly below it. Even helicopters have their own forum independent of the aircraft forums, why can't Autos have a sub-section or sub-forum within the Auto forum to separate cars from trucks? I understand your point and reasoning for not wanting to re-organize the entire forum, but SA had 9 boards for various Auto subjects. Here we have all Auto subjects shoehorned into one forum, it needs a little more space to grow and stretch it's legs.

Nothing confrontational about asking. Because the SCA forum was dedicated to automotive only, it was able to be more granular in its coverage. Similarly, if the FSM forum was only about military aircraft, we could easily have nine categories or more devoted to that, or helis, or commercial aircraft. Or any of the categories on the forum.

I'm not saying that the way the categories are delineated is a forever and ever scenario. We may revisit it down the road. However, there's a strategy for the FSM website and FSM Forum, and we have to take those in order. Right now, for the Forum, debugging it has to be top priority. Once that's done to my satisfaction, then we'll turn to the next task.  

Thanks for staying engaged.

   

--

Timothy Kidwell
Editor
Scale Model Brands
Kalmbach Media

 

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