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And the winners are...

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I've had the results in from Harpia Publishing, and our winners (in no particular order) are...

Flying Dutchman


Ryan Hothersall



You guys will all receive 'African MiGs vols. 1 & 2 as prizes, courtesy of Harpia Publishing. I'll PM you individually to get your shipping addresses.

But wait! There's more....

As a 'Thank You' to everyone who completed a model but didn't win any of the main prizes, I'll be sending you a decal sheet from my collection (with something African on it, of course!). I'll also PM you guys soon as well to arrange shipping.

Thanks again, and I hope you enjoy your prizes!


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Hi everybody,

just registered on ARC forums, so this I my first post here - and this post will be related to questions like 'what' model won, and 'why'.

Because I was kind of 'instrumental' for the final decision, and some of my choices might appear 'unusual' to few, think I owe some 'explanations'.

The quality of practically all of models in this competition was undisputable: it was simply great to watch them come into being, and as a 'non-mainstream-air-forces-fan', I was very pleased to see what kind of ideas have surfaced (and, in few cases where specific projects were announced, but never completed, also greatly disappointed).

To make it 'clear': my selection was driven by set of different motives, not only including quality, but also enthusiasm, authenticity, and little else but my 'soft spot for underdogs'.

I saw John King's effort with Nigerian L-39 and Ghan's K-8E (both of which are fantastically painted and have amazingly clear cockpits, especially considering the small scale and size of these models); the same with FluffyK's Congolese T-6G (wow!), and VG33's RhAF Vampire (both were amazing, especially Fluffy's attention to cockpit details). Vesthepes did great with Nigerian MiG-21MF (was my '2nd choice' for 'African MiGs' topic), Nicholaas (with 'another', yet really excellent Vampire), Litvyak (actually an excellent build based on a rather poor Airfix Modell). I was very sorry to see MAWZ didn't complete his B-26K, and even more so when JB2013 announced a Zimbabwean Hawk and a Nigerian Jag, but then was obviously not in condition to complete them (I'm kind of 'personally connected' to Zimbabwean Hawks, see here why).

Last - but not least - Vince's Vampire is of equally high quality (I was very sad by the mishap that occurred in the course of his work on SAAF Mirage F.1AZ), and thus I hope none of you (including LHRHKG!) is going to be disappointed.

Anyway, as unfair as it might sound, eventually (and in same order as mentioned by Vince):

- Flying Dutchman got my vote for two wonderful models (ZambeziAir CRJ-200 and RhAF Vampire).

- Johnopfor was a 'must' for his SLAF Mi-24 (lovely- and very detailled work on an extremely exotic topic; I really never saw any models of Sierra Leonean Hinds ever before).

- Ryan Hothersall was a 'must' because of sheer effort he invested in so many different projects; I simply think that his enthusiasm deserves a set of books as inspiration for more (and don't you dare to stop modelling!)

- Spejic did great with his 1/144 (!) Tucano, which was a fantastic build from which I still can't take my eyes off, whenever around.

- SWBailey: I kind of 'had to' select at least one 'African MiG' too, and Baily made the 'most authentic' model in this regards: excellent painting, great weathering, simply the way models of this kind should be done.

So, damn me if it needs to be, but that's how the decision came into being. I can only add my apologies for not being able to sufficiently commend everybody involved. From my standpoint, you all deserved a set of books, and thus I am offering my special thanks to every single participant in this fascinating competition!

Edited by TomCooper
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First off, welcome to the forums! Secondly, I don't think there's any need to apologize for your methodology. You've been gracious enough to provide excellent books as prizes for this group build and I don't think anyone needs to have an issue with how you selected your winners. Now, I can't speak for everyone else, but I participate in these group builds because it provides motivation to research, build, and (hopefully) finish some models that I might not otherwise plan to build. I have to say that this group build opened my eyes to all sorts of air forces and operations. I was a little disappointed in myself for not finishing my 1/144th MiG-17, but I was able to knock out two other builds. In fact, I'm currently working on a Biafra T-6! Had this group build not happened, I probably wouldn't have even thought about building a T-6 Texan from a small, short-lived air force.

Thanks for sponsoring this group build and thanks for putting out such great reference articles like your African MiGs!



Edited by John King
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I want to second John's sentiments and thank you for being a part of the group build, and supporting it with the prizes, which was very, very generous of you. I'm sure that like many others, I can say that I built the model for the pure fun of it, not the incentive of winning prizes. I had had the MiG-15UTI sitting on my to do pile for a long time, and had wanted to do the Somali markings ever since Iliad came out with the decals in 1/48 scale. I always held off, waiting for 1/72 scale, and finally, because of the group build, I was inspired to just go ahead and kit-bash the markings.

To me, the greater fascination was seeing all of these birds come together and highlight a whole bunch of small air forces that often get overlooked. I learned a lot and am personally inspried to want to do a Congolese T-6 and a Rhodesian Vampire! It was good to be "kicked" into action with the group build and I amazed myself at how quickly I was able to build something (and do a decent job) being under the self-imposed "pressure" to post progress reports and participate with the group.

Again, thanks so much for your support and I'd love to see more of these small air force group builds, because I get really tired of going to model contests and seeing tables full of Me-109s, P-51s and F-16s. Not that I don't love those airplanes too, it's just the variety that makes it fun.



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Thanks for your understanding, gentlemen. Much appreciated.

Hope, there will be more similar opportunities in the future (I'm sure that Harpia Publishing would be happy to sponsor also something like 'Arab MiGs GB' or similar ideas).

And of course, should anybody need any kind of help in regards of references about 'small air forces', feel free to let me know. I might not always respond promptly (often I'm simply taken away by various of my obligations), but I'll do my best to come back and reply.


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