The holidays are over and it is time once again to get back in the groove of things: modeling (no, not that kind… the plastic kit kind;) blogging; and whatever else got tossed to the wind due to the hecticness of the holidays.
This week over at The Combat Workshop: Scale Modeling website a pretty interesting and hopefully not too heat producing topic has cropped up…Pet Peeves. Specifically, pet peeves having to do with fellow modelers.
This could get interesting…
Well, I guess I could come up with a few, but I will stick with two. Keep in mind that I generally lean towards WWII armor subjects and my pet peeves are pretty much going to deal with these kits and modelers.
First, let’s talk tracks. Many kits come with vinyl tracks. They are flexy, and stretchy, and can be difficult to paint. Then there are the kit supplied styrene tracks that must be put together link by link. And don’t forget the metal tracks that also are assembled link by link, but are kept together with little metal pins, so they are flexy as well.
Personally, I have never assembled a tank with anything but vinyl tracks. The primary reason for this is that when I quit building models 20 something years ago, that was pretty much all that was available. Now that I have got back into the hobby, I haven’t actually bought a new tracked vehicle kit yet, so the opportunity of trying out other types of tracks hasn’t cropped up.
Don’t get me wrong… I see nothing wrong with using the other types of tracks. They definitely have advantages: proper track sag can be achieved; less clean up (some of the time;) they take paint better. Who knows, the next kit I buy may have indy link tracks.
But, here is where the pet peeve comes in. It gets tiresome when some modelers act like somebody is sub-human for even considering using vinyl tracks. Things like “Wow, nice build fella, but too bad you had to go and ruin it with those janky vinyl tracks.” Come on! Some of us build purely for the fun of it and at most the only people that will see the finished product are our esteemed colleagues on our favorite forum, or possibly our significant other (“Oh that’s cute. What is it? Some kind of tractor? What is that long hollow pole sticking out of the front for?”) And not all of us want to spend as much money on a set of tracks as we do on the kit itself.
The second pet peeve that I have is weathering. More specifically, chipping. I have seen some armored vehicles and even aircraft that are just beat to death with the chipping methods. I realize that vehicles in combat get pummeled pretty hard, but for crying out loud! Some of the kits I see are just a blistered up mess. Chips the size of serving platters all over the place.
And let’s not forget rust! Tanks that look like they actually took place in Operation Sea Lion. Driven across the English Chanel, underwater, and then left on the beach with all that salty water left on it for about seven years, and then thrown right back into service, as is.
I think that the techniques used to get these effects are great and can be used to great effectiveness, but too many times they simply get overused.
As an honorable mention I will throw in that just because a technique is old it doesn’t mean that it isn’t still useful and effective. Think Sheperd Paine and his epic use of… the horror.. DRYBRUSHING! He did a ripping job using that method and the stuff he did can hold it’s own against anything current in my opinion.
With all of that being said, does this mean these people are dorks? Nope. Not in the slightest. Just don’t hack someone that doesn’t see it your way. The way I see it, even though you chipped your tank into oblivion (IMHO) you still get props for mastering the technique. Hey, maybe you were modeling a tank that happened to get in the way of one of those crazy mine-flail tanks with those spinning, slashing chains…