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About Nev

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    Whining Brit
  • Birthday 09/27/1972

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  1. That's a lot of heavy metal. Looks terrific.
  2. Incredibly this is my 8th finished model this year. This has been part finished for a good 15 years, but very happy with how it turned out. Only problem was the decals which were very fragile and cracked and shattered very easily. The yellow leading edge markings were especially bad and pretty much unusable. The date on the sheet was 2003, and they've been in the loft for most of the past 17 years so perhaps I shouldn't be surprised...…I ended up raiding the decals folder for some yellow markings from an old Tamiya F-84 Thunderjet Not perfect but pulled me out of a hole. The aircraft is from a training squadron based in Japan so I kept the weathering to a minimum. As she was when pulled out of the loft a couple of months ago And the finished article
  3. Very nice. I'm put off doing this scheme because of the masking, but yours turned out a treat.
  4. Number 7 complete for the year. This model sat, like so many of my stalled builds, partially assembled and covered in primer, probably for at least 5 years. The HobbyBoss kit is something of a throwback. I know there have been complaints about it's accuracy, which I won't comment on (as I don't care enough), but it reminds me of the classic Monogram and Hasegawa kits of the 80s. It's a big, chunky model, well detailed in some places, a bit simplistic in others. It goes together quickly and easily, but not necessarily well I chose to build mine as an in-service USAF "what might have been" of the 1st TFW, USAF. The decals were cobbled together from TwoBobs, the Academy Raptor, and a Japanese decal sheet (NBM). I painted this as something of a test bed. I'm starting on a USAF F-16 in the Have Glass V paint scheme, and wanted to try Hataka lacquers version of this paint. It's maybe a touch too light out of the bottle, but after a coat with clear and then a dark dirt Flory wash, it darkened up a little bit and looks closer to the real thing. Because it's a big ole kit in one colour - especially the wings - I tried to break it up a little bit with the wash, some oils, and also by painting a few panels in silver and grey. I probably painted the radome and leading edges in too pale a shade of grey, but that's a minor thing. They match the grey of the markings well enough. I was also aiming to get the distinctive Have Glass V "is it gloss or is it matt?" look and I think I just about pulled it off. I gave it a single light coat of Hataka matt varnish, over a Klear gloss coar. When it catches the light it's glossy and metallic. When it doesn't catch the light it's dull and matt. Due to it's enourmous size, long profile, and low down stance it's a very hard model to photograph. For the intake covers I used pieces of cardboard, coated in tissue paper soaked in thinned black paint, then some decals from the NBM sheet. You know how I said it's a big model? Here she is alongside a 1/32 F-16 fuselage for scale...... Overall, very happy with this one. There's some things I'd do slightly differently with the paint scheme, but like I said, she was something of a test bed. Now she's another completed model, and a big, eye catching one at that.
  5. Wow, what a lovely paint job! And that's a hell of a masking job in 1/72.
  6. Very, very happy with how this kit has turned out considering its been sat in the garage swathed in dust and masking tape and at the mercy of the cats the last 5 years, whilst I've been in a modelling funk. The Tamiya kit is absolutely superb, one of the best kits I've ever built, the quality is really obvious when you place it next to the Kinetic and Hasegawa kits. There's 4 or 5 little bits on there I'm not happy with, but I'm happy to move on and call it done. Onto the pics. F-16C Block 30, 527th Aggressor Squadron, RAF Bentwaters, 1989. I used just a little lights weathering with MiG dark wash. These birds weren't around long enough to get that dirty. I made the intake cover using a piece of cardboard, covered it tissue paper soaked in white glue and painted yellow. Red Star came from the decal sheet. It's also a rare bird in that although it was one of the first Block 30 F-16s, which came equipped with the new GE engine, but the early ones still had the "small mouth" intake, later Block 30s coming equipped with the "big mouth" intake due to their requirement for a larger airflow. The decals are from the now defunct Afterburner Decals. I used the Tamiya metal detailing set for the pitot probes and ejection seat belts. Inspiration for the real thing to finish up with. Alas the 527th was very short lived with F-16s, lasting less than 2 years before the end of the Cold War brought about their disbandment. My collection of F-16s now stands at 5/16.....
  7. Sad news, a legendary figure and an inspiration to countless modellers. The world of miniatures loses a towering giant Howard Sheperd Paine, who for six decades tirelessly worked to spread the popularity of the art miniatures worldwide, died on Saturday, August 1. An extraordinary artist, prolific author, widely respected military historian, and renowned collector of military artifacts, he was 69 years old. Universally known to his many friends simply as “Shep,” the artist suffered a stroke at his home on Chicago’s Northwest Side on July 27. Though he never regained consciousness, he spent his final days in the company of loved ones—a small group representing the countless others who came to consider him a friend and mentor through his four books for hobbyists, how-to tip sheets, classes and seminars, co-founding of the tri-annual World Model Expo, and championing of the Open System of Judging for his beloved Military Miniature Society of Illinois and other organizations devoted to the art of miniatures around the world. In addition to the MMSI, Shep was a driving force in the Company of Military Historians and several Napoleonic historical organizations. He served as president of all of those groups at different times, and was a dedicated recruiter to their ranks. Immediate services will be private, but the MMSI is planning a “Celebration of Shep Paine’s Life” where all will be welcome following the group’s annual Chicago Show on Sunday, October 25. Details will be announced soon. The son of Dr. Richmond and Mary Paine, Shep was the first child born to American parents in free Berlin after the end of World War II. His family, which was completed by younger sisters Emily, Martha, and Diana, all of whom survive their brother, settled near Boston after their father’s service in the Army Medical Corps. After a year spent in London, where he attended Eaton House, Shep completed his early schooling at Saint Paul’s Boarding School in Concord, New Hampshire. He then bucked his father’s wishes to follow in his footsteps as a doctor by delaying college to enlist in the Army himself. He served with the 3rd Armored Division in Germany from 1965 to 1967, rising to the rank of sergeant and for a time overseeing the company arsenal. “That cured me of any desire to ever have a gun collection,” he said. Following his military service, Shep benefited from the G.I. Bill to enroll at the University of Chicago. There he earned a B.A. in General Studies in the Humanities—“a classic liberal arts degree,” as he said, reflecting interests in art, history, and culture that were many, varied, and wide-ranging. That plus his encyclopedic reading—in English as well as French, which he could speak fluently—fueled his abilities as a great raconteur and orator. Shep’s interest in scale modeling began as a pre-teen, shifting from a fondness for model railroading to converting and painting Marx and other plastic toy soldiers and building miniature tanks. He continued to pursue the hobby throughout his time at boarding school, in the Army, and into his college years, when the friends he made in the MMSI introduced him to a community of likeminded historical enthusiasts and scale modelers, and convinced him to stay in Chicago. “I had no idea of what I wanted to do in life, so I started painting figures in my spare time between classes,” Shep said of his time at the University of Chicago. “When I graduated in 1971, with nothing of greater interest on the horizon, I thought I’d try doing that for a living, at least for a while.” “Shep and I have a thirteen-year age difference, and I don’t think I really got hip to what he was doing until I was in college,” said his sister, Diana. “I was like, ‘Oh, Shep does this weird miniature thing, isn’t it cute?’ I had no idea about the level of artistry until he sent me a copy of one of his books, and then I went, ‘Whoa, there’s a lot more going on here than I thought!’ But, frankly, I think Shep’s greatest achievement was avoiding a nine-to-five job; that’s where he really escalated in my eyes. Yes, he had to work for a living, but he was doing something he loved.” Indeed, Shep proudly boasted that he never held a “real” job. From his earliest finished plastic figures through the end of his active period as a scale modeler in the mid-1990s, Shep sold every piece he completed: expertly painted stock metal castings; ambitious conversions of plastic figures; original sculptures of his own scale historical or fantasy subjects; impressive armor, aircraft, and ship dioramas built on commission for the Monogram and Tamiya model companies and various museums, and the 100-percent scratchbuilt box dioramas that he considered the pinnacle of his artwork. Though he spent several years sculpting 1/32nd scale soldiers for Valiant Miniatures, Shep said he disliked being part of the hobby industry, preferring to follow his muse by working on one-of-a-kind pieces that sprung from his unique imagination and vision. Among his best-known collectors were painter Andrew Wyeth; financier Malcolm Forbes, and industrialist Ralph Koebbeman. The Wyeth pieces remain on display at the Brandywine River Museum dedicated to that painter in Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania, while other works can be seen at Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry and the Pamplin Historical Park and National Museum of the Civil War Soldier in Petersburg, Virginia. Though his attentions eventually shifted toward researching and collecting military artifacts, from medals to Napoleonic and Victorian uniforms, Shep remained active in the global community of miniaturists long after he stopped producing work of his own. He often presided as head judge at the most respected modeling shows around the world, and the honor for any artist claiming a gold medal was all the more significant for hearing Shep Paine read his or her name. Since Shep set the bar for the realism and artistic ambition of sculpted and painted figures through the ’90s, other artists have raised the standards for excellence ever higher, as he was proud to note. But his ability to tell dramatic and imaginative stories with miniature figures was a skill few others have matched. “Dioramas are so interesting because they combine so many elements in different forms,” he said. “You are basically telling a story without words. It’s like silent movies, except you don’t have anybody moving.” Never hesitant to share his techniques or inspire others with his ideas for stories to tell in miniature, Shep wrote dozens of articles for scale-modeling publications and published four invaluable how-to books with Wisconsin-based Kalmbach Publishing: How to Build Dioramas (first published in 1980 and released in an updated and expanded edition in 2000); Modeling Tanks and Military Vehicles (1983); How to Photograph Scale Models (written with former Sports Illustrated photographer and hobbyist Lane Stewart in 1984), and Building and Painting Scale Figures (1993). The most successful of these titles, How to Build Dioramas, has sold more than a hundred thousand copies worldwide, and it has been translated into Italian, Japanese, Spanish, and Chinese. Shep believed that teaching others forced him to focus even more on what he was doing in his own work—and why. “He said that if you have to teach something, it forces you to learn what it really is,” said his friend, MMSI President Mike Cobb. “Shep always had his own ways about things, and he was going to do it his way. But the annoying thing was, he was almost always right!” “Shep and I used to drive out to the Miniature Figures Collectors of America show near Philadelphia every year, and Shep would have his latest masterpiece,” said his friend, retired Oak Park art teacher Joe Berton. “He’d be uncrating it out of the box, and there would just be a buzz in the crowd, waiting to see what Shep put out there. People were just so enthused, waiting to see whatever the latest creation of his would be, and they would be standing in line. There was that excitement, because he was always on the edge, always the most innovative, always the most creative—I mean, he was the best. But I think Shep’s real strength for the rest of us has been his complete willingness to share his knowledge, his techniques, and his skills. He’s always willing to share what he knows: There are no secrets. So many of us took painting classes with Shep, and he’d always encourage us: ‘This is how I do it, but eventually, you’ll find your own style.’” As a painter, Shep worked in oils over a base coat of acrylics, bringing a much greater level of artistry to painting figures than the previous method of using enamel hobby paints. His books and the classes he taught around the world prompted many to call this technique “the Chicago school,” though as several MMSI members have said, “The Shep school really would be more accurate.” In the late 2000s, Shep spent dozens of hours in interviews with music critic and hobbyist Jim DeRogatis, working with him to document in photographs and words all of his miniature creations and the stories of his life’s work. Their extensive hardcover book Sheperd Paine: The Life and Work of a Master Modeler and Military Historian was issued by Schiffer Publishing in 2008. Having survived several health scares in recent years, Shep was as always deep into several new projects, including a revised armor modeling book with contributions from several of the best scale modelers in that field and new editions of some of his other older titles. He also was cheerfully contributing to the planning for the next World Model Expo, to be held in Chicago in July 2017, just as he’d pitched in for previous events in in Scotland, France, Italy, Spain, and Switzerland. In the final days, Berton, Cobb, and DeRogatis joined Shep’s sister Diana in placing two items at his bedside to represent his extensive and treasured collection of art and historical artifacts: a replica Napoleonic marshal’s baton, the symbol of having achieved the highest rank in the French Army, awarded by the Emperor to “the bravest of the brave,” and a small stuffed cow. Shep’s fondness for what he called “bovine beauties” was a running joke and a celebration of his eccentricities among friends throughout his life. But there was a serious side to the dozens of cow collectibles that filled his kitchen and spilled over into the rest of his house, as he told DeRogatis in their book. “I never buy cows for myself; these are all things that my friends have given me over the years,” Shep said. “When I’m feeling low and want to go out in the garden and eat worms, I come into the kitchen, look around at all of these things, and realize that I’ve been a very lucky man to have had so many friends and people who care about me.” In the end, those many friends and his ability to forge countless other lifelong bonds among people he brought together from far-flung corners of the globe via a shared passion for an esoteric hobby and myriad historical obsessions was the legacy of which he was most proud, and which will live forever in the hearts of those whose lives he touched. In that spirit and per his wishes, the MMSI has established the Shep Paine Education Fund, which is accepting tax-deductible donations in his honor to continue his invaluable work as an educator and proselytizer for the art of miniatures via classes, seminars, and other projects. Contributions to this dedicated fund can be made via PayPal at MMSIChicagoShow@gmail.com or by mail to The Shep Paine Education Fund care of MMSI Treasurer Tom Surlak, 3136 Secretariat Dr., Aurora, IL 60602. — with Sheperd Paine
  8. Great job Gary, happy for you that you finally got the light (and all the specials)
  9. Quick Reaction Alert. Don't know why its called Zulu by the Americans though
  10. Great stuff Gary, unfortunately I won't be able to get down, I'm completely stacked out for the next week at work, then am on holiday from Friday. I'm off to the Lake District, so if I'm very lucky I may catch a glimpse of them if they do any low level stuff. I do remember the last time they were here, landing and taking off in the torrential rain at Waddington. Then caught a lucky glimpse of an Su-30 in low level formation with an F.3 (also in the rain!)
  11. Doesn't sound that unreasonable. Its only 1.5 aircraft per year, for a large fleet of aging aircraft that were maintenance heavy and unreliable when they were brand new. The RAF lost something like 1 in 3 Lightnings it had over the course of its 30 year career.
  12. Beautiful model - makes me want to go and build me a Tomcat, that's how nice it is! Couple of points 1) Whats up with the LGB? Nose looks bent 2) Never seen those VF-102 tail markings before, whats it meant to be? Looks like a mis-shapen lobster.
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