A glimpse into my scale modeling hobby

Previous Kits

The model that started it all again for me.

You can blame the resurgence of modeling as a hobby on my wife. For our anniversary two years ago, she bought me a Roman warship model kit after I had been eyeing it for quite a while at the local Hobby Lobby. I am a Latin teacher and enjoy all things Roman, so when I saw this kit, it rekindled the joys (and frustrations!) of building scale models as a kid. Something inexplicable, however, was drawing me back into the hobby after at least 15 years of absence. This Roman warship model kit catapulted me back into the hobby.

After I finished the Roman ship, I had caught the bug and started scouring eBay for some old Star Wars model kits. The two I found in my price range were an AT-ST Scout Walker and Boba Fett’s ship Slave I. My biggest hurdle with these kits was figuring out how to add weathering effects. Star Wars kits aren’t complete without a dirty and worn look, and I wanted to do them right so I did some research about how to add weathering effects. My first effort was the AT-ST, and it turned out fairly well. It helped that the kit was really easy to put together.

I then moved on to the Slave I kit, which was considerably more challenging, especially considering the complicated paint job and ultra-weathered look from the films. The AT-ST was my first real foray into weathering, but I had to expand the weathering effects retinue considerably more with Slave I. I was fairly pleased with the results and quickly gained confidence that I could continue this as a hobby pretty succesfully.

Weathering effects on a larger scale

First attempt at weathering effects

In between finishing these Star Wars kits and my next kit, I made a big move for a new job in St. Louis, and with this new place came a much bigger and better space for working on models: a basement! It did not take long after moving in before I began working on this B-17G model kit. I think I probably got the kit out even before unpacking some of the essential items! The B-17 kit was fun for me because it was a similar bomber plane to one my Grandpa had copiloted in World War II. I felt an extra strong connection to him while working on the model, and I was able to share some pictures of the final product with him, which he greatly enjoyed. On the technical side, this kit had more small parts and decals than I had ever done, which posed the biggest challenge yet. The hard work paid off, however, because I was really pleased with the final result and rank the kit as my favorite of all that I have completed so far.

The school year (and work year for me) started shortly after I finished the B-17, but I was still able to work in some time between lesson planning and grading to work on this Viking ship kit. Fortunately, the kit was pretty easy and not too time-consuming and turned out well for a simple kit.

Easy, school year kit

Next in my queue was a much more challenging, but highly detailed Star Wars kit from the Japanese company FineMolds. This Jedi Starfighter, at 1/72 scale, is the smallest kit I have yet to build and ranks with the B-17 as my two hardest kits. The painting on the Jedi Starfighter was not difficult, but the lack of difficulty there was made up for by the difficulty of decaling. Almost everything on this ship was a decal, and I learned the hard way many times what you should and should not do when applying decals. The final result looks okay, but I found this scale incredibly difficult and the results most lacking out of all my other kits. Most importantly, however, this kit was the first time I used my recently acquired airbrush, and the display stands look great with the black airbrush treatment!

Really difficult scale to work with

Finally, my most recent kit was the Battlestar Galactica from Moebius Models. I am really impressed with Moebius Models after this kit, and I look forward to many more of their kits in the future. The kit was really easy to put together, and the paint job was not difficult, but it was a good chance to practice some weathering techniques on a broad space. I was really pleased with the final results of this kit, even though it was fairly basic.

Fun, cool-looking kit

Thanks for staying through a little taste of my modeling history up to this point. I am looking forward to delving into the details of my upcoming kits and sharing my thoughts, decisions, and pics. Enjoy!

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