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Your first model?

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  • Member since
    January 2023
Posted by FrankM on Wednesday, January 25, 2023 12:32 PM

I was about ten years old, so around 1964, in Brentwood, MO, and built my first ever model kit one summer afternoon, bought at the local Ben Franklin store.  It was an F-101A Voodoo, much smaller than a 1/72, either Monogram or Revell if I recall.  I made an absolute mess of it, glue all over the model and all over my hands.  I didn't use any paint but did apply all the decals, and I was hooked.  Built a few more warplanes, an airliner or two (including an Aurora Boeing 707 that was huge, took a whole bottle of TesTors silver metallic enamel to paint it in American Airlines livery), and a few cars, mostly the Ed "Big Daddy" Roth series of cartoonish funny cars.  My biggest focus, however, was the Aurora "Famous Monsters" series, every one of which I built, and had the models on display in my bedroom for years.

When HS sports and then going off to college got in the way, I stopped modeling altogether.  Nevertheless, my younger brother seriously hacked me off when he used my monster models for pellet gun practice in our basement while I was away from home.  That still gets me going when I think about it, but whaddaya gonna do?  Confused

So move on up to 2014, after I worked in a corporate legal office for 31 years and then retired to the D/FW area (where we've been since 2008, following long stints in San Antonio and St. Louis), I took up modeling again. I had decorated my office for a few years with prebuilt diecast aircraft models, about a half dozen of them in 1/72 scale.  After retirement I filled out that collection, but about three years ago finally decided to build my own again.  I started small with a "Snap-Tite" 1/72 A-10 Warthog that I picked up at the nearby Michael's hobby and craft store.  I bought some TesTors paint and did some reminiscing as I built the very simple kit, and was hooked again. For old times' sake, my second build was the 1992 Revell-Monogram F-101B in 1/72.  The original decals disintegrated when I put them in water, so I also learned early on the joys of after-market decal shopping!  Another bonus was that while looking for the decals, I discovered FSM, to my great joy.

I'm now in the process of replacing all the diecast aircraft models in my collection with my own builds, and have also bought some armor and ship kits to look forward to building, along with the new Chase Elliot #9 2022 car model from Salvinos JR.  That last one, which I've unboxed but not yet started, is without doubt the most minutely detailed vehicle model I have ever seen. Can't wait to get going on it!

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Friday, January 13, 2023 7:12 PM

Wow that is pleasing. The stand, brings back memories.

Your nose art reminds me of a cute story.

My late F-in-Law was a crew chief in the USAAF who "owned" a P-61 Black Widow towards the end of his war. The nose art was of his girlfriend in a bathing suit (demure) holding a pennant of his High School. Thing was, she, like my wife, had (has) very dark brown hair.

When the Dopey painted her on the black airplane, she became a blonde!

Bill

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    June 2017
  • From: Winter Park, FL
Posted by fotofrank on Friday, January 13, 2023 3:55 PM

fotofrank

This is the very first model I ever built. My dad bought it for me. I think I was 10 years old. We had probably just watched Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo on Channel 4 in St. Louis. Back then, the kit was made by Revell. Now that Atlantis has re-released the kit, I plan to have this kit on the shelf very soon.

 

And it's finished. A new build of my very first model airplane! Let me just say that this build was a bit of a struggle for me, since the kit was re-popped from the original molds from the 1950's. Fit was OK, I guess typical for the time. A lot of sanding and shaping to make sure the wings fit against the fuselage tightly. Filling the fuselage seam was quite a bit of work. Fitting the canopy and nose glass and turrets took some work to make sure they all fit correctly. The framing for is on the inside so the framing didn't get painted. I chose a desert scheme because I was thinking about Catch 22 while building. The topside is a mix of Tamiya Flat Flesh and Flat White. The underside is a mix of Tamiya Flat Blue and Flat White. The deicer boots are Tamiya Rubber Black. The marking are decals I pulled out of the spares box because they fit. No weathering to speak of. Some of the paint is kinda rough appearing in spots. Along the top of the fuselage the gray primer shows through.

All in all, this was a fun trip down memory lane.

OK. In the stash: Way too much to build in one lifetime...

  • Member since
    January 2015
Posted by TheMongoose on Friday, January 6, 2023 10:39 PM

That is absolutely awesome Bill! Great little piece of background info too Beer

In the pattern: Scale Shipyard's 1/48 Balao Class Sub! leaning out the list...NOT! Ha, added to it again - Viper MkVii, 1/32 THUD & F-15J plus a weekend madness build!

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Friday, January 6, 2023 1:18 PM

This has got to be it. 1960, age 3 1/2, unidentified triple tail aircraft. 

In full disclosure my father was an aeronautical engineer and may have provided a little design expertise.

 

Bill

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    December 2022
Posted by Tcoat on Friday, January 6, 2023 11:00 AM

cwalker3

Wow, you guys have some fantastic memories. I'm 68 and started building around the age of 8. I have no idea what my first kit was, but it was probably an Aurora monster kit as they were my go-to in the early days. Of course, when I got back into the hobby 20 years ago, my first kit was The Creature From the Black Lagoon.

 

I am not far behind you in age and although I can not tell you what I had for dinner last night I could probably come up with a 95% accurate list of every kit I built since I was 7.

  • Member since
    August 2004
  • From: Forest Hill, Maryland
Posted by cwalker3 on Friday, January 6, 2023 10:54 AM

Wow, you guys have some fantastic memories. I'm 68 and started building around the age of 8. I have no idea what my first kit was, but it was probably an Aurora monster kit as they were my go-to in the early days. Of course, when I got back into the hobby 20 years ago, my first kit was The Creature From the Black Lagoon.

Cary

 

  • Member since
    August 2015
  • From: the redlands Fl
Posted by crown r n7 on Friday, January 6, 2023 10:33 AM

Hello mutter hello fatha here I am at camp Granada.

 

 

 Nick.

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: New Braunfels, Texas
Posted by Tanker-Builder on Friday, January 6, 2023 9:14 AM

Hi!

           I was at a Summer camp,(parents wanted time away from us kiddos) boys on one side girls on the other with a fence seperating us. One rainy day the counselor brings these little boxes into the mess hall to our two tables, Each counselor had two cabins(Six Boys each) to work with. They were Comet and Some other brand of Wooden airplane kits. They were solids.

          I wound up with a passenger plane. I believe it was a D.C.6B. Nice little plane surprisingly. I had been in shop class so I knew how to sand and trim wood. Turned out pretty fair I thought. Even with the dry powdered casein Glue you mixed with water! I found one about three years ago and built it again. It was by far, way better then the first. Plus I used Modern Decals on it. It became a gift for a retired Flight Attendant( Who's now since passed) who worked for United. That was the livery I used. She said she liked it betterr than flowers I had given her before.

 

  • Member since
    August 2015
  • From: the redlands Fl
Posted by crown r n7 on Friday, January 6, 2023 8:25 AM

I do remember it was an airplane in 1/72 airfix,Aurora or the three plane Revell series kits. I know it wasn't like the ones my dad built in 1/48 0r 1/32 $$$,( you learn with the cheep ones) in1964. What I still have is my very 1st airbrushed plane .

 

 

 Nick.

  • Member since
    February 2005
  • From: Nashotah, WI
Posted by Glamdring on Thursday, January 5, 2023 7:25 PM

When I first started building as a kid, I never painted them.  I think the first one from this phase was the Wright Brothers plane.  Not sure of the manufacturer or scale.  The first one that I actually painted was an AMT Bird of Prey, complete with a garrish silver and primary colored camo scheme.

Robert

"Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm." 

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Thursday, January 5, 2023 5:08 PM

tempestjohnny

 

 
Gamera

 

 
tempestjohnny

Here is my parents kitchen table probably about 1984

 

 

 

Wow, that's quite a fleet TJ! I hope you saved at least one of them? 

And the Pacer looks pretty friggin' cool too! 

 

 

 

Nope none survived. But I have bought most of them again

 

 

Ah ok. Pretty much the same here, all of old stuff ended up 'recycled' to the spare parts bin.

"I dream in fire but work in clay." -Arthur Machen

 

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Thursday, January 5, 2023 5:07 PM

disastermaster

 

 
Gamera
disastermaster

The other day a distant friend came by and looked in at

my model display.

He asked, "how long does it take to build one?"

My cute reply was -

"Well, when I was about eight I could build one in about an hour and

only using a tube of glue ~  but now (64 years later) I've gotten old

and it might take me three months."

DM, next time someone asks me how long I'm swiping that for my own use!

 

You got it! ✅

 

Thanks!

"I dream in fire but work in clay." -Arthur Machen

 

  • Member since
    March 2021
Posted by black widow on Thursday, January 5, 2023 5:06 PM

mitsubishi zero. it turned out very badly

  • Member since
    November 2003
  • From: Naples, FL
Posted by tempestjohnny on Thursday, January 5, 2023 2:32 PM

Gamera

 

 
tempestjohnny

Here is my parents kitchen table probably about 1984

 

 

 

Wow, that's quite a fleet TJ! I hope you saved at least one of them? 

And the Pacer looks pretty friggin' cool too! 

 

Nope none survived. But I have bought most of them again

 

  • Member since
    July 2003
  • From: Building models on my kitchen counter top~somewhere in North Carolina
Posted by disastermaster on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 8:17 PM

Gamera
disastermaster

The other day a distant friend came by and looked in at

my model display.

He asked, "how long does it take to build one?"

My cute reply was -

"Well, when I was about eight I could build one in about an hour and

only using a tube of glue ~  but now (64 years later) I've gotten old

and it might take me three months."

DM, next time someone asks me how long I'm swiping that for my own use!

You got it! ✅

On the kitchen counter somewhere in North Carolina

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 7:55 PM

disastermaster

The other day a distant friend came by and looked in at

my model display.

He asked, "how long does it take to build one?"

My cute reply was -

"Well, when I was about eight I could build one in about an hour and

only using a tube of glue ~  but now (64 years later) I've gotten old

and it might take me three months."

 

DM, next time someone asks me how long I'm swiping that for my own use! 

"I dream in fire but work in clay." -Arthur Machen

 

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 7:54 PM

tempestjohnny

Here is my parents kitchen table probably about 1984

 

Wow, that's quite a fleet TJ! I hope you saved at least one of them? 

And the Pacer looks pretty friggin' cool too! 

"I dream in fire but work in clay." -Arthur Machen

 

  • Member since
    July 2003
  • From: Building models on my kitchen counter top~somewhere in North Carolina
Posted by disastermaster on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 7:51 PM

Tcoat

The WHOLE tube!

Ummmm.... pretty much.

On the kitchen counter somewhere in North Carolina

  • Member since
    December 2022
Posted by Tcoat on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 5:32 PM

GMorrison

LOL! Yep after homework but before dinner.

 

On the floor.

With nothing but a paring knife with a broken tip.

If lucky some paint by numbers paint.

If REALLY lucky with the one bottle of Testers paint you managed to con Mom into on the deal!

Like this one was built.

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 3:19 PM

LOL! Yep after homework but before dinner.

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    December 2022
Posted by Tcoat on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 1:23 PM

disastermaster

The other day a distant friend came by and looked in at

my model display.

He asked, "how long does it take to build one?"

My cute reply was -

"Well, when I was about eight I could build one in about an hour and

only using a tube of glue ~  but now (64 years later) I've gotten old

and it might take me three months."

 

The WHOLE tube!

  • Member since
    November 2003
  • From: Naples, FL
Posted by tempestjohnny on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 1:18 PM

Here is my parents kitchen table probably about 1984

 

  • Member since
    November 2003
  • From: Naples, FL
Posted by tempestjohnny on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 1:16 PM

When I was 7 in 1977 my dad bought me the AMT Pacer Wagon kit. Built it together no paint just tube glue. That started my obsession which quickly morphed into a plane obsession. By the time I was 13 I had over 80 on shelves or hanging from my bedroom ceiling

Oh and I built the Pacer again at the end of 2022

 

  • Member since
    July 2003
  • From: Building models on my kitchen counter top~somewhere in North Carolina
Posted by disastermaster on Saturday, December 31, 2022 4:22 PM

The other day a distant friend came by and looked in at

my model display.

He asked, "how long does it take to build one?"

My cute reply was -

"Well, when I was about eight I could build one in about an hour and

only using a tube of glue ~  but now (64 years later) I've gotten old

and it might take me three months."

On the kitchen counter somewhere in North Carolina

  • Member since
    April 2015
Posted by Mopar Madness on Saturday, December 31, 2022 1:41 PM

I'm not 100% sure but I believe it was the 1/72 Testors Komet back in 81.

Chad

God, Family, Models...

At the plate: 1/48 Airfix Bf109 & 1/35 Tamiya Famo

On deck: Who knows!

  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: Fort Knox
Posted by Rob Gronovius on Saturday, December 31, 2022 11:38 AM

Aggieman

Then as a new college grad, I bought a Toyota Camry and returned to my home town to visit family.  I stopped at my grandparents' house and made the mistake of parking that Camry in his driveway.  He let me know that the Toyota would be moved one way or another.  Once I parked it in the street outside their house, he seemed happy.  It was at that moment that one of the two most cherished conversations I ever had with him happened.  I didn't really dig into his WWII experiences (wish I had), but did ask him point blank if he would have responded the same way had he gone to Europe and I had parked a BMW in his driveway.  He thought he would have.  And we as a family have a very strong German heritage.  This was when I really understood what he experienced, at least from a family point of view.  I don't have the exact details, but am presuming there are some shore leaves involved.  He was returning to his ship when he received a telegram informing him of the birth of his second daughter.  And then to have survived sinking of not one, but two, ships to which he was assigned (a detail that I did not learn of until his funeral in 2002), I can readily understand his hatred of all things Japanese.

I'm just a few years older than you, but my parents (and my one surviving grandparent) had the same feelings as your grandfather.

My parents are from Indonesia, which was a Dutch Colony and were born in 1937 and 1940. They lived under Japanese occupation, hence their disdain for anything Japanese.

In 1955 when Indonesia gained independance from Holland, my familiy had to be evacuated to Holland. They met as teenagers on a boat from Indonesia to the Netherlands. Their family had been Indonesians for generations. They married in 1962 and moved to the US later that year.

When I was stationed in Germany in 1987, that's when I found out my family also had a disdain for the Germans. I guess the Dutch in them didn't like the historic adversarial "Huns".

  • Member since
    January 2015
  • From: Katy, TX
Posted by Aggieman on Saturday, December 31, 2022 9:59 AM

I was 3 in 1970 when my dad took me into a K-Mart.  Went through the toy section when I spied this box:

That was the first model I built.  I remember the glue fingerprints all over it, and I also remember that my dad built the Monogram P-38 at the same time (somewhere I have an old Polaroid photo of both builds sitting atop my parents' stereo cabinet).  I suspect my dad assisted me greatly in building that P-40, but let me actually put the parts together, hence the glue fingerprints.

This was the beginning of a life-long hobby that I only put on hold when I discovered baseball and girls.  Upon returning to the hobby as a professional software engineer in the mid-1990s, I found a bunch of kits in yet another K-Mart (mostly Monogram, but also a Revell 1/32 Beaufighter).  I believe the first one that I actually built out of that impulse purchase was a Monogram Apache helicopter.

And to add to the comments in other posts about WWII vets disavowing anything German or Japanese, I had a couple of similar experiences with my materal grandfather.  He served in the Pacific in the USN.  My parents divorced in the mid-1970s, and maybe a year later or so, my mom moved us in with her parents where we lived for a year or two before my mom was able to get her own house.  I recall watching Baa Baa Black Sheep every week when it aired.  My Papa would sit in his recliner, with the little poodle in his lap, and would say absolutely nothing while this show was airing, but there was something about his appearance that even at my young age I was able to pick up on.  It was a quiet discomfort that I could see in him.  To me, this was akin to Star Wars - old Pappy was taking up his Corsairs and shooting down the bad guys, but I think my Papa was simply going back to that time in his life, where he had been taken away from his young family (my mom was 3 months old at the time of Pearl Harbor).  He never owned anything of Japanese origin.  

Then as a new college grad, I bought a Toyota Camry and returned to my home town to visit family.  I stopped at my grandparents' house and made the mistake of parking that Camry in his driveway.  He let me know that the Toyota would be moved one way or another.  Once I parked it in the street outside their house, he seemed happy.  It was at that moment that one of the two most cherished conversations I ever had with him happened.  I didn't really dig into his WWII experiences (wish I had), but did ask him point blank if he would have responded the same way had he gone to Europe and I had parked a BMW in his driveway.  He thought he would have.  And we as a family have a very strong German heritage.  This was when I really understood what he experienced, at least from a family point of view.  I don't have the exact details, but am presuming there are some shore leaves involved.  He was returning to his ship when he received a telegram informing him of the birth of his second daughter.  And then to have survived sinking of not one, but two, ships to which he was assigned (a detail that I did not learn of until his funeral in 2002), I can readily understand his hatred of all things Japanese.

  • Member since
    December 2022
Posted by Tcoat on Thursday, December 8, 2022 8:47 AM

That old P-38 still builds up nice with just a bit of work.

My first model was an Aurora Centurion tank. I would have built it when I was around 6 or so (back in '65 0r '66)

A few years ago I had to get a bunch of stuff out of may parents attic and in the bottom of a box I found several old models. They would have been packed up when I left for military service in '77 and had been there ever since. Most of what was there were bits and pieces but there were a couple of almost complete survivors. That old Centurion was one of them! Not sure how it survived the Firecracker and BB Gun Wars that took so, so many other kits but it did. 

Even more surprising was the still intact, although very warped stretched sprue antennas on an old Tamyia Sherman I would have built around '70. It had spent around 40 years in the bottom of a box. 
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