Saturday, 20 July 2013

My very first attempt at making a model car.

My inspiration for this project was a tutorial in a leaflet by Deluxe Materials - a specialist British manufacturer of modelling adhesives and scenic products. I recreated the tutorial here on the Hobbies blog in the hope that other people might come up with new ways to use the Scenic Rust product, or even to try building a model car kit for the first time as I am doing.

I couldn't get hold of the 1949 Ford used in the original tutorial, and similarly you may struggle to obtain the '66 Shelby car that I've used here, but the beauty of the tutorial is that you can use any car, truck, tractor or World War 2 tank that you think would look great as an end display or in a  diorama. Try the racing car version of the Shelby Cobra, which would look excellent.
A good place to find a bargain model is the Hobbies Special Offer page where there are lots of genuine 'cut-price' plastic model kits for sale.

 The first thing I noticed upon picking up the instructions is that they are still painfully basic and you still have to scan through the text to find the necessary English parts.

Next I noticed that the 'Paints used' page listed a lot more different colours than are mentioned on the outside of the box. Some of the paints have to be mixed together to produce the required colour. In fact the main Blue colour of the Shelby is a mixture of 3 different colour paints: 30% Ultramarine Blue; 20% Metallic Steel, and 50% White Gloss. I must admit doing this gave me more of a feeling that I was producing a Masterpiece, rather than just a Paint-by-numbers.


I started locating the numbered pieces, taking them from the frame and trimming any surplus plastic. Then I started painting a couple of the pieces as per the instructions.

I am a little embarassed to admit that I didn't quite 'get' how the recommended Revell Contacta Glue works. I cut the end off the long blue nozzle not realizing that part is actually a cap that protects and seals the thin glue dispensing tube inside. I had to mend the cap to stop the glue from drying out, but no harm done.
Some parts are glued together, while others, such as the wheels, snap together. I found it necessary to paint some parts leaving them to dry for a couple of hours before painting or gluing to the adjacent parts.

I don't have the steadiest hand, and for painting small, fiddly parts I would have found it invaluable to use a Light Craft daylight magnifying lamp which is on my shopping list for my next project. 

It was confusing seeing only one seat mentioned in the instructions . I discovered later that the parts 'shaded out' in the instruction leaflet are not used. Seems likely that the same frame is used for a different version or model of the car.

It was surprising how adding the painted drivers seat and steering wheel breathed some life into the model. Around this point I started to feel hope for the end result. 
Unfortunately disaster was about to strike !!!

Nowhere is it mentioned that if you get either paint cleaner or glue on your model car's windscreen is it going to 'fog up' so you can't see through, totally destroying the model.
Fortunately, with a bit of lateral thinking, I realised that this effect is perfect for the end result I was going for, which is a rusty old banger with dents, scratches. So I kept going in the knowledge this would make the model look as if it had condensation inside the windows

Using decals for the first time was nerve wracking but surprisingly easy. A quick soak in water and the transfers simply slide off the paper and onto the model, and give you a few seconds to make adjustments. The decal trim on the outside of the car tyres was particularly pleasing, giving a realistic look to the wheels.


I only had a couple of instances where I glued parts onto the wrong sections because I hadn't understood where the arrows in the instruction leaflet were pointing. A couple of hours of head scratching and a solution presents itself eventually, often with the accompanying Homeresque cry of 'Doh!!!' 
There really is no better alternative than to read and reread the instructions until you understand them, even though my male brain always says otherwise.

After applying the final decals on the car body, the model is finished and would normally be ready for display.

Now to apply the rust and ageing effects . . .

Friday, 19 July 2013

Rock Hard Aussie Truckers in Massive Trucks hauling Mega loads across Dangerous Terrain !


Dave's latest gripping reality program involves huge Australian trucks hauling their enormous cargo across the dangerous Australian outback, covering enormous distances on rugged and unsealed roads.
Megatruckers follows Jon Kelly and his frighteningly tough crew of drivers as they negotiate a fleet of shiny, chrome monsters across the treacherous Aussie Outback in a race to meet super-tight deadlines. 

Australian truckers need to equip their rigs with special modifications which includes a huge bull-bar or roo-bar, a sheet of wire mesh for windscreen protection, special dust filters, additional long range fuel tanks, heavy duty wheels, air conditioning and an array of different driving lights.

Australia is big and hot and dangerous! Only Jon Kelly would think transporting huge lorry loads of freight across such a challenging country was a good idea. In fact, the blue collar hero has made millions from Heavy Haulage Australia, the family business he built up from scratch. However, with ever-increasing competition, Jon’s not the type of guy to rest on his laurels.

 It’s turn-your-brain-off TV reality nonsense of the highest order. But for all the thrills and laughs, the super enormous trucks steal the show hands down!

New. We like trucking! Join Jon Kelly and his haulage company down under in this new Aussie reality series. In this first episode a busy Jon is forced to re-hire driver Chris, who he previously sacked.

Megatruckers starts at 11:00 am on Saturday, 20th July on Dave.

Italeri have introduced an excellent 1:24 scale model of an Australian 'Western Star' Truck which will produce an exact replica of one of these beasts. It makes a great present, or could introduce you to a fun, and fascinating new hobby.

Friday, 12 July 2013

The Trumpeter 1:16 Scale King Tiger Tank

This Trumpeter King Tiger model kit is remarkable and will entertain the maker with hours of building pleasure. To mistake this kit as a toy instead of a paragon of modelling would be enormously misguided. It will provide even the most accomplished modeller with hours of pleasure due to the kit containing over 1850 high detail pieces. 

Hobbies have just released an unboxing video of this magnificent kit:

An example showing the sheer size of this kit compared to a Hobbies member! at the Hobbies Shop at Raveningham Norfolk.

To view more unboxing videos visit our YouTube page.

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Build an Occre Albatros Schooner Model Ship - Start a Challenging new Hobby!

Occre 1:100 Scale Albatros Schooner Model Ship Display Kit

Schooners were ships used for different purposes, including coastguard work and the control of smuggling along the coast, as well as carrying out the functions of a small warship. 

This is an excellent model for introducing yourself to the art of ship modelling.

Lets take a look at some of the components, and the basic construction process:

Some main features of this impressive kit include: 

  • Double plank-on-frame, features laser-cut wooden parts. 
  • Accurately detailed fittings include boxwood blocks and deadeyes, brass eyebolts, rings and belaying pins, white metal winch and lifeboat, three diameters of rigging line and more. 
  • Eight antiqued metal cannon on serve as armament. Full complement of sails that are pre-sewn and ready to rig. 
  • Wooden display cradle and a metal nameplate.

The finished model in all its glory ! 

A magnificent display showpiece which will delight and impress friends and family alike

Monday, 8 July 2013

Great Yarmouth Landmarks Recreated in Colourful Miniature

The exceptional Time & Tide Museum in Great Yarmouth is set an old Victorian Herring curing works and recreates the history of Great Yarmouth for visitors to experience. 
The latest attraction of the museum to captivate and enthrall is a quirky, automated miniature model of mechanical wizardry and saucy seaside tongue-in-cheek fun created by Suffolk toymaker Ron Fuller.

The exhibit was commissioned by the museum in response to visitor feedback requesting more interactive items, and it more than fits the bill with its bawdy, buxom Britannia swivelling her hips and spinning, a Greek Orthadox priest swinging his incense, and a couple of fishing wives riding the Joyland Snails (a great favourite of tourists and locals of Great Yarmouth, as well as some Hobbies staff ). 

Two clowns tumble a ball, a Spitfire circles a colourful revolving tower; Nelson walks the plank, an excitable dog barks, and a cheeky seagull swoops to steal a tasty treat - all fun scenes depicting Great Yarmouth's history and humourous holiday heyday. The mechanical exhibit will be the centrepiece of a  newly modelled Seaside Gallery which includes a 1950s themed seaside display showing fashions of the day, and even a replica bathing hut. Admission to the exhibit is 20p

Mr Fuller, 77, said he had great fun making the exhibit which has "as many working pieces as a Boeing 747". It took him 11 weeks and over 500 hours to complete the exhibit which meticulously recreates details of tattoo studios and seafront toilets featuring alongside a Circus Spectacular, and even a figure, representing the growing Portugese community, waving to the crowd. The exhibit also features two of Great Yarmouth's unique attractions which are no longer there, namely the Revolving Tower and the Hotchkiss Railway. The tower was removed for the war effort with the metal used to build Spitfires. The Hotchkiss Railway was a bizarre commuter track for cyclists and was sold to Blackpool.

Mr Fuller studied art & theatre design at the Royal College of Art. He had a career in teaching before going on to make wooden toys for a living in 1972. His work is highly prized and sold in specialist shops world-wide.