Vinnie Branigan wrote:
I've yet to discover one of those sorts of guys that makes models from bits of old wood. If there are any wood modellers out there.......
(I cut the wings from foam with a hot wire, but the remainder is old school balsa and fabric covering.)
We need both
the inexpensive Zvezda, Italeri and Monogram models as well as the "superkits" from Dragon and others. There is a common and reoccurring event throughout the pages of our INTRODUCTIONS forum. It is the modeler who last built something as a teen and has only recently returned to the hobby.
The things we built as kids were awful. The detail was awful. The colors were awful. The fit of the parts was awful. And their legacy was wonderful. Those awful kits planted within each of us the seeds of a future appreciation for how good things are today. They taught us how to rotate an object in 3 dimensions in our head. They taught us how to work with our hands. They taught us that we could do more than many adults thought us capable of doing. We needed those junk kits which could be purchased in exchange for mowing a neighbor's lawn or washing our parent's car so that we could emerge from a chrysalis of inactivity in the form of a modeler anxious to copy the tiniest bit of reality. I am certain that Da Vinci must have painted stick figures on stones before the mona lisa was created on canvas.
Those low cost kits have largely disappeared from our corner stores as limited shelf space can only be allocated to those items which move quickly at the best profit margins. My real fear now is that we will lose all those low cost models from the shelves of our hobby shops as well. But I believe my fear unfounded. So long as there are kids, there will be a need, perhaps a shrinking need- but this is largely up to those of us in some way involved with the lives of children -for badly detailed models which will hang proudly from kite string stuck to bedroom ceilings in all their bare plastic and wrinkled decal glory.
So if you have an old kit, you know, that Revell P-51 which you are never, never, ever going to actually build, plant a seed and pass it on. That young person may not build your Revell kit. Then again, perhaps they will. And perhaps, when we are all too old, and blind, and our hands shake too badly to build anything but memories, we will find ourselves approached by a middle aged man with a spectacular something-or-other and he will say to us, "Hey there, do you remember that P-51 you gave me 30 years ago?"
The world is an ever changing place folks. We can whine about it of we can try to give it a little nudge in a favorable direction.
(My pedantic tirade is now complete. I am available for speaking engagements on most Fridays.)