Modeling – blast from the past

My recent dive into a hobby that I always wanted to do, but never had the means to do properly – RC Cars – has rekindled another hobby that I used to do, but stopped in my early teens.

Building model kits. I used to build tanks, airplanes and cars, but I slipped away from it when I got a newspaper route, and then started working more.

Back in those days, there were several local hobby and toy stores that stocked rows and rows of kits, and as a free-range youngster, I would spend hours looking through all the offers.

But while I built them, I was never really good at the finishing, the painting, and decorating that would make them memorable. Not that I didn’t try, but I just wasn’t very good at it.

But, with the newfound love of RC cars, I am tempted to take my body painting to the next level, and that means getting into airbrushing.

I had a brief trial of airbrushing probably 40+ years ago, a rather inexpensive starter brush, and it was terrible. It was an external mixer, and if it cost $20 at the time I would be surprised. I do not recall how it worked, but merely that it sucked, and I quickly dropped it.

As I build more RC cars, I will need to paint more bodies, and it appears that airbrushing is the way to go.

But how to get started?

Enter building model airplanes.

I recently bought a kit, a 1:48 scale Spitfire Mk II made by Revell. It was modestly priced, and ought to be a worthy re-entry into the hobby.

But it reminds me of all the other things I will need.

  • Model cement
  • fine grit wet sand paper
  • Sprue trimmers
  • paint(s)
  • Airbrush, compressor, related tools and chemicals
  • Respirator (to prevent inhaling of paint particles)
  • A mat to work on
  • Seam filler/putty
  • Masking tapes/films

Many of these are one time purchases only, so once they are bought or acquired, they become sunk costs. But to get started is a yowsa price tag.

I did find and subscribe to a <gasp> print magazine, Fine Scale Modeler. It give me ideas and shares techniques that are way out of my skill set, but it will be a good place to start.

I am beginning to miss the local hobby shops. Sure, I can buy from the major online sources (amazon, Amain Hobbies, Horizon Hobbies and others). There are local sources for many of these supplies, but they are at Hobby Lobby. An organization that, like Chick-fil-A, I refuse to patronize.

One day, I will be out of the rattle can painting realm.

Product Manager in Tech. Guitar player. Bicycle Rider. Dog rescuer. Techie.