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Why the animosity towards WIFFs (What If builds)?


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Reading through all five pages of this thread, I found myself pretty much in agreement with the statements (and arguements) by GeeDub. I think his attempting to explain the feeling of 'wasted time' is perfectly valid: It isn't a lack of desire to help a fellow modeller; it is, however, determining what is important to you in terms of how you expend your limited number of hours in a day. Especially modelling time.

Perhaps I missed it; but several times GeeDub suggested the poster of a question note up-front if he was posing a question in support of a Whiff build. It was not because he has animosity toward Wiffers; he's just trying to set his priorities...Much like posting the scale involved in a question. I've seen well-researched answers (that took much time & effort to supply), but were totally invalidated when it was later revealed they were responding with the details of a kit of another scale. Wasted time & effort. Back to GeeDub's example: If I knew I had *somewhere* the correct color of Joker purple, but was answering a disassociated Whiff question, I might decide after 10-15 minutes I wasn't ready to commit another hour of research to the effort. Is that selfish of me? Hey, it's MY modeling time, right? If someone wants that Viggen green for their Whiff B-17, then I *might* suggest it is 'close-to' "ivy-drab 123" instead of spending 3 hours digging out a 'perfect match'. Then, the Whiff builder can make their Mark-1, Mod-0 eyeball determination if it looks right to them. (Since pleasing yourself is the goal as stated earlier). That Whiff question on Late-model F-14s & AMRAAM launchers? As a NavAir guy, I'd say use common sense. In the case of the F/A-18, the AMRAAM basically replaced the Sparrow, using the same launcher. Since the AMRAAM is smaller in diameter & lighter, there should be no restrictions for similar swap-out on a Whiff F-14D(+). You (Mr. Whif builder) decide if that statement works for your build. Everything accurate except the BuNo because it is a composite due to lack of refs for a single airframe? Sure; but as has been stated what is accurate on May 9 1972 may not be so on May 10 1972 for the same airframe. Build it as accurate as makes you happy; but remember some guys want a higher level of accuracy than others. (Anyone who has read through GeeDub's build threads KNOWS he's not content with things 'just because that's how it came in the box')...he is passionate about accuracy to stuff I'd never touch; so I see why some of this may confuse his sensibilites.

Bottom line, as Whiffers don't want to be judged by others for their choices on levels/degrees/points of accuracy (or lack thereof); neither do some willing to consider provide researched answers want to be judged for their level of time commitment to providing that answer. Or moving on. It isn't condemnation of the project- it is simply a request to allow a determination on whether to spend the time needed for a researched answer.

For the record, I don't typically build Whiffs; but a appreciate the creativity and artistic effort that goes into them. Interesting discussion.

In the time I took to type this, the Phantom in WWII scheme & German Lozenge Tomcat have been posted. Cool. Regarding the person claiming the Phantom load-out is unrealistic, I have an observation & response: Observation- there are jerks in all walks of life, and all aspects of our hobby. Response: "Please provide photo proof of the 'correct' load-out, or STFU!"

Edited by Harv
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I don't feel any animosity toward Whiffs. I find them pretty amusing and creative, especially when the story behind them makes sense and is plausible. I've seen some very clever ideas, like the RCAF MiG-21s, USN Sea Furies, and the TSR-2 foreign sales.

I just don't see myself ever doing one. My building time is so limited, and there are so many aircraft in schemes that actually existed that I'd like to do, that I don't have the time to devote to something like that. I'm more interested in the history of the aircraft and the pilots that flew them. But that's only one approach to the hobby. I admire those that come up with Whiff ideas, and are able to carry out sometimes difficult conversions.

Like Jennings said, build to make yourself happy and for your own reasons.

Cheers,

Richard

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Well I have finally sat down and read this ENTIRE thread (with the exception of HOLMES' self-deleted posts). I had made my off the wall response earlier on my smart phone in response to what I remember being a comment by HOLMES that I agreed with. But could never make the time at work to make the long post I wouldve liked to. Much of what has been posted here I agree with and share the same opinion with. The vast majority of my builds over the many years I have been doing this, have fallen into the What-if category. It is actually my creative release. When I began posting on modeling sites late last year I was falling all over myself apologizing for my builds that werent "main stream" and had several people call me on it, saying "why apologize?" Well I was afraid (at the time) of offending the "purists" with my builds. I am a car-guy at heart, and have lived with ALL MY LIFE with the never ending argument over "restored original" vs. "hot rodded" and I guess that I transferred those same type of factions to modeling sites and their membership...for that I feel bad.

I too like a few others here struggle with wanting to build aircraft that represent a look or feel of a certain squadron or time frame, but dont necessarily want to make a duplicate of a "real" subject. And I guess, at least in my case, I just dont want to read "hey that tail number belonged to so and so, and it never looked that way". I guess that is as much of a character flaw in myself as Geedubs' self admitted feeling of wasted time when helping out with a what-if (if I read all that right). To each his own. While reading this I noted statements like, "What-if being plausible" "accurate to the backstory" "believable", I know that these are things that I have always strived for in my What-ifs or fictional builds. And am glad other folks posted up those thoughts that only reinforced what I was already thinking. It certainly helps my own confidence in posting up MY builds and grow a bit of thick skin for any negative comments that may come from my what-ifs.....AND I MIGHT ADD, I HAVE NEVER HAD THAT HAPPEN....so there is a big clue as to peoples either acceptance or restraint...either of which I am grateful.

*slithering back into my cave*

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The only thing that irks me sometimes is when I can't participate in a GB with a What If model when I feel I have something fun, or even a little plausible to add to the myriad of models in the gallery. :crying2: Having said that, I still respect their decision.

I have a few someday what if builds planned, but I don't really build them myself. I do appreciate well done ones though.

Group builds are the place I most see some stigma attached to what ifs. Sometimes I can see why they are singled out as they don't fit into every theme, but sometimes it just seems like a knee jerk reaction to a "lesser" type of modeling.

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For those that don't get it and think helping someone with details on a WIFF is a waste of time, let me put it another way:

Have any of you ever watched a movie where the producers used P-51s in place of ME-109s? Or Hellcats instead of Wildcats?

It's fiction right? What does it matter?

Wouldn't it have been more interesting to watch if the details were just a little more accurate?

Edited by dmk0210
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It should be remembered though, that just because the painstakingly researched info that you are sharing is being used on a what if this time, it doesn't invalidate a response that could easily be used by someone who is building the worlds most accurate model and using the "search" function months from now.

"He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me."

-Thomas Jefferson

Or just to help the nightmares, the info you used for a real model could be being used to research a Whif right now!!! :jaw-dropping:

And vicey-versey.

We shouldn't worry about the accuracy of the model, we should worry about the accuracy of the information. ;) Boy I will tell you, Japanese Zeros look really different now than they did ten years ago... What was "accurate" then is not even close now.

Edited by TaiidanTomcat
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I don't have a problem with What-Ifs. It just depends on your goal and how far you want to go. Some posters above, when saying things like "why bother with FS numbers if it is a WHIF are, I think missing the point. Sometimes you just want a little creative license. For example, this little guy here that I did a few years ago:

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The project was simply a speculation of how an F-107 might have looked in Vietnam service had the aircraft been selected over the F-105. I even wrote a fun little backdrop story with it and submitted on ARC. In this case, given the alternative reality the model was supposed to represent, it was important to have authentic camo and F-105 squadron markings. The sharks mouth was a creative embellishment.

Edited by DutyCat
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Harv, thank you.

Dave, I'd like to take this opportunity to also thank you for beginning this debate. I hope the responses and ideas that are being shared have helped you toward finding an answer to your question. I think I have just about outstayed my welcome in this thread so with nothing further to add without repeating myself at this stage I'll bow out quietly.

Before I go, I'd also like to thank everyone else for making this a very rewarding experience. This has been perhaps the most involved discussion that I've ever taken part in here on ARC. I feel that I've gained enormously from it and hope the ideas that I've heard allow me to be more receptive and tolerant towards alternative modelling styles in the future. Indeed, I've learnt a few very valuable life lessons over the last few days so cheers guys.

I hope everyone continues to enjoy the conversation and I'll be sure to follow along just in case I gleen any more snippets of wisdom.

Cheers,

:cheers:

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Dave, I'd like to take this opportunity to also thank you for beginning this debate. I hope the responses and ideas that are being shared have helped you toward finding an answer to your question. I think I have just about outstayed my welcome in this thread so with nothing further to add without repeating myself at this stage I'll bow out quietly.

Thank you and everyone else who posted, both for the interesting comments and for everyone sharing their opinions in a friendly and mature manner.

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:jaw-dropping: :jaw-dropping: That's just........incredible!!!! And your Tomcat is just as awesome. Is your wife a painter? My wife is and I think I might have to get her to paint something like that. Great work! :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

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I think the big issue is just how far people take their what-if builds. I've seen many where the builders just start throwing on whatever weapons they like on whatever part of the airframe they like. But, if there are no limits than it seems to me no different than grade school kids who draw things however they want them to be (this applies to a lot of aviation video game designers as well).

I think we are all here on ARC because we want a certain amount of precision. We want to know real details about real aircraft and about the kits. I like the ideas of some of the what-ifs, and I'm planning on doing my first one, a USAF F-2A. I think its important to consider first how would something technically be done and second, how would it operationally be done. I guess I like to see the builder give a reasoned argument for what they built that goes beyond just "I want it that way."

Brian

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I think the big issue is just how far people take their what-if builds. I've seen many where the builders just start throwing on whatever weapons they like on whatever part of the airframe they like. But, if there are no limits than it seems to me no different than grade school kids who draw things however they want them to be (this applies to a lot of aviation video game designers as well).

I think we are all here on ARC because we want a certain amount of precision. We want to know real details about real aircraft and about the kits. I like the ideas of some of the what-ifs, and I'm planning on doing my first one, a USAF F-2A. I think its important to consider first how would something technically be done and second, how would it operationally be done. I guess I like to see the builder give a reasoned argument for what they built that goes beyond just "I want it that way."

Brian

Part of the stuff I have read in here, goes about with, what I would I write is "speculation" of ones writing words, even tho, ones mind should understand/comprehend words as writing.

Another words.

If one writes a Question.

"How do I make Green Eggs?" Do not speculate the person is making Green Eggs and Ham, then help them only for the reason you like green eggs and Ham.

Another words, If one answers the question, and notices the person came back and showed a picture of green scrambled eggs in a bowl. Do not get P,OD and think the person wasted your time since they did not make Green Eggs and Ham on a plate.

They asked a specific question, it was answered, and they actually did something productive with the answer, That in its-self is doing something productive, with the answer , No?

Now what is wasting ones time? It is when a person ask you specifically to do something, then the person you are doing something for, already did/found the thing they asked you to do or find, yet have not told you they have.

Instance: A Wife who calls from a store thinking she lost her bank card, has you looking all over the house for it "for an hour", yet when you call her back, she found it "45 minutes ago".

Edited by Wayne S
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The King if not he's high in the Royal pecking order one Eddie M., whom is a member of these forums should get in on this and be heard. Ya wanna talk about some way, way out designs that could be very real...check out a WHIF build named "Hogzilla". Wings with a dihedral, quad engines, :woot.gif: :wacko: .

HOGZILLA!!!!!

Thank you very much Clif! That certaintly was a fun build looking back at it. ;)

I apologise if I seem dense but if the builder is building a WhatTF WhatIF, why does it matter whether the details are correct? The actual aircraft did n't exist in that form/markings/weapon load/insert any other variable here so why does it matter?

I like that. A What TF. I've actually had people at a show say "why the F*#^ did you do that to a Phantom?"

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Because it was fun, that's why.

When I ask for details, and someone is kind enough to offer up, sometimes it's because I'm trying to do a "could have been"

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I do most of my whifs for me, of course, but after having taken my work to a couple of shows, and see the 99% positive reaction, that helps too. Oh, and the kids. The Kids really like what if's The smiles are worth it. Every time.

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And sometimes it's because I like to see the "experts" that roam the shows ague with me about what type of aircraft I've built and it has happened. Also, the guys who walk up and say, "Oh yea, I remember when those where in service" It's all fun to me and that's all I can say about. Build what you want and building how you what to. Wise words from a wise man! :salute: Not everyone is into Whiffery, that's why there are oasis' out there for whifferes if you can't find the help you're looking for at some sites. Remember, bash'em if you got 'em!! :woot.gif:

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Edited by Eddie M.
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Always loved this one. When the NAvy was doing all those retro schemes last year I was hoping we would get one like this! Oh well

Another good reason for whifs and I know it may sound odd but, when I was first getting back into modeling and purchased an airbrush I needed a lot of practice (still do!! Lulz!) but It was much cheaper to use old toys for practice. When I ran out of those I used cheap Revellogram kits that average around 10 dollars rather than a super high tech -109. Luftwaffe schemes are tough! I also needed the practice so throwing the easy kits together quickly to get more practice helped more than one kit that I would spend waaaayyy too many hours on to ruin and get let down. In that case I did want it to be as accurate as I could get it so I could apply it well to other models.

So it may sound like an odd reason- but before I really started blowing money in modeling, making mistakes on 3 Tomcats was still cheaper than making mistakes on a nice 109 kit. So I would add "financial/time" as a bizarre entry into my whiffing carreer

YMMV

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Eddie M.....you have mad skills!!!! Those are awesome!!!!

CONGRATS on a great lesson and display where fantasy and accuracy live harmoniously...

:worship::worship:

Eddie M

WOW ..JUST WOW !!WOW !! Those are EXTRAORDINARY builds...! :whistle: } :yahoo::yahoo:

Edited by HOLMES
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