Jump to content
ARC Discussion Forums

Sign in to follow this  
Hoosfoos

How often do you abandon a model building project?

Recommended Posts

It's six in a row for me now. Too many things go wrong to the point where I don't want to bother continuing. Perhaps this hobby is not for me. I don't settle for results less than satisfactory.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shoot, only six in a row? Man, I haven't finished a model in over a year, and I can't begin to count the number of projects I've started and trashed since I finished my last kit. The reason? Exactly the same as yours...I'm a perfectionist. I'm trying my hardest to get past that, because I would never give up this hobby. It's difficult (as I'm learning now), but sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and say "eh...it's not perfect, but it's good enough." Keep plugging away, my friend. You'll find your model-building mojo.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shoot, only six in a row? Man, I haven't finished a model in over a year, and I can't begin to count the number of projects I've started and trashed since I finished my last kit. The reason? Exactly the same as yours...I'm a perfectionist. I'm trying my hardest to get past that, because I would never give up this hobby. It's difficult (as I'm learning now), but sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and say "eh...it's not perfect, but it's good enough." Keep plugging away, my friend. You'll find your model-building mojo.

I've had a couple of successful projects the last decade, and after them, I upped my standards. But still that's 2 for 8 over the span of 10 years. Not a good track record.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In 35+ years of modelling, I have only completely abandoned a project once: It was a Hasegawa F4U-5N full of resin bits. As the project neared completion, the cleaning lady accidentally bumped it off the table and in shock, stepped backwards and stepped on it. It was literally in hundreds of pieces - I kept it for a couple of weeks and considered the work required to repair it. However, due to severe deformation of the plastic, I eventually decided that fixing it was just not feasible.

It started when I was about 6 or 7 years old: I was building my first balsa stick-and-tissue free-flight model, got frustrated and smashed it in with my fist. My father came home that evening and explained that the only way he would ever buy me a model aeroplane kit of any type again, was if I managed to rebuild and complete my smashed up model. This I did, and learned one of those life lessons that always stayed with me.

That being said, I do sometimes get bored with a project and put it aside temporarily. But I always come back and finish them - in one particular case, I finished a model more than 20 years after I started it. Completing it felt like a major weight lifted off my shoulders... I guess we all have our little psychological problems :blush:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It has happened to me more often than it should and I find it difficult to explain. I would not call myself a perfectionist, building mostly OOB, with the occasional home made conversion thrown in. My aim is to achieve a descent finish and decal job, admire the finished model for a few minutes and consign it to the display cabinet, although lately since joining the local model club a few make it to the monthly "Show and Tell" nights. My problem centres around the final finishing stage, often no matter how careful I try to be the Tamiya Ultra Thin manages to ruin the once crystal clear canopy or items like under wing stores, landing gear and wheel bay doors etc. that you have left to the last minute to install end up covered in cement / superglue and look like the first kit I assembled 60 odd years ago. I hope not but the answer may be just there, old age may have arrived and like that other pastime, I may still know how to do it but don't seem able to actually do it. It would be a pity to let failing eyesight and stiff fingers win out, after all I still have a thousand or so kits in the stash.

Trev.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Since i live in an apartment and have very little shelf space to display them, I get to the decal phase and box the kit back up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Never, I have had lots I was not happy with, but no model has completely beat me yet. The hobby craft dash 8 has come close. Just suffer through it and do better next time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shoot, only six in a row? Man, I haven't finished a model in over a year, and I can't begin to count the number of projects I've started and trashed since I finished my last kit. The reason? Exactly the same as yours...I'm a perfectionist. I'm trying my hardest to get past that, because I would never give up this hobby. It's difficult (as I'm learning now), but sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and say "eh...it's not perfect, but it's good enough." Keep plugging away, my friend. You'll find your model-building mojo.

Well said.

I've got around 20 started kits in my hobby room. I've not completed a kit in around 6 years. I try not to start new kits, so I keep going back to the ones I started. I hope to finish something one of these days.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I never abandoned a model growing up (ages 12-18). Since coming back to the hobby in 2006, the only two I abandoned were an Italeri Alpha jet (very bad seam lines) and a WP T-38 (could not deal with the extremely dense yet shallow rivets). Other than that, I've had a few botched builds (2 F-18s and an F-15). But in those cases, I bought the exact same model and build it up to completion.

I think I've never shelved a model to come back to it. And I've never been able to do parallel builds. Always one kit at a time. But I am thinking about giving parallel builds a try. At the risk of sounding too full of myself, three things I've noticed:

- I tend to have a long incubation period before starting a model to collect photos, bookmarks, other builds etc. That prep is key I think. I'd imagine if I just randomly picked out a model from the stash, I would not have the "build up" to last me through the grind (cleaning, assembly, sanding, scribing etc.)

- Speaking of a stash, I don't have a stash :) I try to keep the number of unstarted builds to four or less. Right now, I have only one unstarted model, and I am trying to part ways with it as we speak. With the Tamiya and AMK Tomcats, that might change though.

- When I feel like I am losing my mojo with a build, going through my references and browsing the net for the subject help a lot. It reminds me of the reason I'd decided to start the model and gets me pumped up enough to plow through.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've had a couple of successful projects the last decade, and after them, I upped my standards. But still that's 2 for 8 over the span of 10 years. Not a good track record.

That doesn't sound like a hobby....

I don't have abandoned kits but I do have many perpetually unfinished kits, all due to a lack of time for this hobby. There have been several that were so bad or frustrating (sometimes a crappy kit, others my crappy skills) that the project is then deemed a "paint target" to practice on. Unfortunately some those are also perpetual paint targets too....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This year I finished at least a dozen models. Just as many or more last year. I must

have thrown away twice that many. Then a year later I kick myself in the butt and try

to buy the kit I tossed, AGAIN! Why? I am too fussy and now if I get a little drip or

scratch I just do it, whose going to see it but me. I have finished that many kits

because I can, I AM FULLY RETIRED at 62. Before that it took at least 15 years to do

a dozen kits.I didn't lower my standards I just learned I was NOT a museum quality

modeller, deal with it! But to this day I cannot finish nor will I ever start another

Hasegawa 1/72 F-4 Phantom II. I have thrown countless kits away, just can't get the forward

fuselage to fit right. The funny part is I did finish 2 Hasegawa 1/72 F-4 Phantom IIs

but they were the ancient 1960s mold!!!! It's all in what you are willing to accept

and there is one little trick I learned, always display the finished model so the GOOD

side shows.---John

Edited by john53

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really try to persevere through and finish each kit. However, I tried to build a Classic Airframe F4B-4 that was at the time above my pay grade. It went into the trash. I then tried to build a Hasegawa 1/350 USS Gambier Bay built as my Dad's ship. That has been sitting on the shelf for 3 or 4 years about 75% complete. The really small stuff just bogged me down. Those are the only instances that I haven't finished a kit that I can recall.

GM

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That doesn't sound like a hobby....

I don't have abandoned kits but I do have many perpetually unfinished kits, all due to a lack of time for this hobby. There have been several that were so bad or frustrating (sometimes a crappy kit, others my crappy skills) that the project is then deemed a "paint target" to practice on. Unfortunately some those are also perpetual paint targets too....

Im kind of the same... Ive never actually said "well thats it then" I just tend to put thing on the back burner for years, but much like my stash I have the full intention of building it.

I am a What ifer, so I have gone back to projects and "Appropriated" them as necessary though. Sometimes that means cannibalizing them, which would not be finishing them...

Can't give an exact number, but I would say I start many many projects compared to finishing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I guess I usually stick it out, and don't abandon too many. Since 2003, when I got back into the hobby, I've built 291 kits and have only trashed 3.

One was a 1/72 Polikarpov I.153 where I screwed up the rigging so badly that I damaged the whole thing trying to undo it.

Another was a 1/48 Hasegawa Hurricane. I picked it up second hand and the front half of the fuselage parts were badly warped. I thought I could get them straightened out, but just couldn't get the "twisted" look corrected.

The most recent was a 1/48 Monogram F-84 Thunderstreak. I messed up the decals and wrecked the BMF paint job getting them off. When we moved last year I just tossed it instead of packing it up.

Usually, I just slowly plug along on a tough kit while I build other things. My 1/72 B-36 took almost 8 years!

:cheers:

Mike

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is a topic I have been thinking about much lately. I have had discussions with fellow local club modelers and there is a lot of agreement. I feel the issue is larger than 'abandoned' builds. I feel this leads into a question about the future of our hobby. A few basic observations must be noted; the amount of time to build is being compressed/reduced, even if you are retired, by other commitments and interests. The kits are getting much more expensive. The kits are much more complex due to the 'part-count' in each box which contributes to both the cost and amount of time to build. CAD/CAM designed kits are better but some of poor the engineering contributes to very poor fitment that takes a lot of time to correct, if it is correctable. The engineers should be model builders or at least build the models they engineer. My most immediate example of poor engineering is the Revell-Germany EC145 kits and the fitment of canopy vs. Trumpeter CH-47 canopy. Trumpeter engineered the front fuse, including the canopy, as one part that fits properly versus the RG Ec145 canopy that is separate from the forward fuse and fits very poorly and requires much work to get it to fit OK. I am sure you have or are experiencing these issues on other kits. For some, this is an issue that would cause them to abandon the kit. A friend recently built a Gundam Type T61 tank. Well engineered and good fitment. It had high quality molded details, not individual fiddly-bit details that contribute to both the cost of the kit but increased build time. Revell Germany and their 1/72 scale U-Boat is a good example of both poorly engineered and very poorly researched model. Anchors that would drop on dive planes, flooding ports that are not even correct and molded closed requiring much tedious work to open them up. Keep in mind that this is Revell Germany, the country that brought us 1:1 scale U Boats, you think they could have gotten their 1:72 scale model a lot closer. In the IPMS-USA July/August2016 issue, Eric Christianson reviews the Academy's M1A2 Abrams TuskII and touches on the subject of price and parts count by saying "They (Academy) can do this because they make a real effort to keep the parts count down while providing stunning detail and engineering. ...all this for $10, $20 or even $30 less than their competitors. " I know there are numerous other examples of kit manufacturers that have problems. I know you think I should "modeler-up" and fix the short comings. Which I do like the rest of us. I have just been pushed to my limit after seeing new kit prices.

The kit manufacturers have to look at their demographics. Most of us are mature in age. There are not, proportionally, younger people picking-up our hobby. The younger generation have many other avenues of recreation/hobbies that meet a driving feeling among them, instant gratification. A lot of the young people loose interest or never even consider model building because of the time required to build a model. The manufacturers should understand this and produce kits that build quicker with less problems. The advent of painted photo etch is a good example that speeds up the build and produces an acceptable cockpit. Once again why should we have to go out and get expensive aftermarket parts to make a poorly engineered, poorly manufactured, poorly researched expensive kit corrected? The manufacturers should also realize the faster we can build a satisfactory, accurate model, the more models we purchase and build. They need to diversify. How many ME109, FW190 or Tiger tanks do we need? Tacom, Wingnuts and others are bringing us a unique subjects. Others have not listened to we modelers as to what we would like to see.

This is my hobby and I only want to see it grow. Not complaining, just don't want to see any of us abandon a model build after we research, select and purchase a model. "Maybe I chose the wrong hobby." Not me. I want the manufactures to change their present approach. Thank you for the bandwidth and for reading my comments.

Jager

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I move a lot so often times a project I'm in the middle of usually gets tossed. I had a 1/48 Monogram F-4J that took me several years and it was the one kit I did manage to hold onto and finish in between moves. Still tossed it when I moved again though. I just threw away a 1/48 Monogram A-6E and a Revell PV-1 is about to get the can too. I do have a 1/48 Hase F-16C and A-7E that I saved from the depths of hell and will hang from my boy's ceiling.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't say I've ever abandoned a project, but I have set some aside for extended periods of time. My attitude is always that the finished model will tell the story I am building it to tell regardless of whether it is perfect. There are definitely some that I've built and been less happy with the finished product than others. Heck, I've got a quarter scale F-82 Twin Mustang that ended up with enough of a twist that one of the tail wheels sits an eighth inch off the ground. So that one goes on a bottom shelf. But it still tells the story of the first air battles of the Korean War.

I know that some models are just going to have to be 3 footers. Sometimes that is the nature of the kit, and sometimes that's my own fault. Either way, I just don't look as closely at them now.

I find that setting projects aside for a while is usually what it takes to get through some of them. All of the accumulated frustrations will fade away, I'll come up with new ways to tackle problems, and I'll start to remember why I really wanted to build it in the first place.

But that's just me. I would think that a lot depends on why you build models and why you're building a particular one. Since I build for the story they tell, it isn't a dealbreaker when one comes out less than perfect. Disappointing, but not devastating.

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I never abandon it unless I mess it up beyond a reasonable effort to fix whatever problems emerge. For example, I have been working on Revell's nice looking when built, but awful to build 747-400, for a little over a year. mixed in with the shuttle and some other projects. Last night, I went to put the wheels on and discovered, that despite putting weight in the nose, the aircraft was still a tail sitter. Scratching my head, I finally figured out that because of this model's thin plastic and my decision to shore up and rebuild the wing box area, it had thrown the CG too far aft. Searching for a solution, I thought about just gluing it down to a base, but decided to take a razor saw and lop off the radome. I epoxied another fishing weight in there, carefully glued the radome on, and used water based Perfect Plastic Putty on the hairline joint. It was easy and took me about and hour.

I want to make a couple of points...

About expectations. If you are one of those, "It has to be perfect or else I throw it in the trash," and you find yourself doing that repeatedly, or, when you screw something up your answer is to just put it back on the shelf, then perhaps your expectations don't meet your skill set. It is kind of like wanting to drink champagne, but only having a deep enough wallet for beer. Although acquiring master level skills is easier than ever in the age of the internet, in most cases it still takes years of dedicated building.... practicing basics, learning techniques, experimenting, solving problems creatively, and making mistakes, to really get good at building and finishing models. But with time and experience, the results come.

The high parts count and complexity of some modern kits is a direct result of two things...demographics and advances in technology. The marketing of the hobby is being driven by middle age and older men who have time and disposable income. This means more costly and complex kits, because that is what we have asked for. There has been some effort to lure younger folks in with pre-painted snap together kits (also now possible due to better technology), but in my view, these efforts will yield marginal results. The simple fact is that kids have far more appealing, entertaining, and socially interactive entertainment options than building models. Just the way it is. Be thankful that there is such high quality stuff out there. Most kits today are light years ahead of previous generations of kits. So for example, instead of complaining about an inaccuracy on what otherwise is an excellent Revell U-Boat, be thankful it and its companion piece Gato fleet boat were produced in the first place.

Also, I don't buy the conventional excuse that the its "too expensive for kids." Kids have more disposable income from their (guilt ridden) parents, part time jobs, etc, than ever. They just choose to spend it on video games, cell phones, and sneakers. Most parents would be overjoyed to get their kids off of the video game couch and into building models. If Johnny said he wanted to build an F-14 with dad, dad's debit card would appear before Johnny even finished his sentence.

Now all of you "quit when the going gets tough" builders....suck it up, get off your duffs, go back to your work bench, and do what you set out to do in the first place. Don't be a "maybe this hobby is not for me" quitter if you haven't paid your dues developing a good skill set. You are no better than the current generation of whiney kids of you do that. If your model does not turn out "perfect," so what? Ask yourself, "Is this better than the last kit I built? What did I learn in terms of what or what not to do for my next build?" You should take pride in developing your skills and improving results, but don't expect to turn out stuff like Ken Belisle, John Vojtech, or Paul Budzik, without putting in at least a decade of DEDICATED building, or more.

Edited by DutyCat

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have only abandoned one.

It was the 1:72 RV MiG-21R.

Had great difficulty in fitting the canopy and got flue on it etc, so I thought I could fix it by getting the pack of viarious MiG-21 canopies from Pavla. Had a terrible time trying to cut them out of their moulding sheet, ruined most of them that were suitable for theMiG-21 MF/R series. After that, I decided it was the best thing to give up on it and strip it for spare parts.

At least, tanks, recce pod and decals will be useful elsewhere and the rest of the kit parts went in the spares box.

The above experience has put me off vacu form canopies for life I think.

However, I have had a few close calls with paint.

Edited by Ryan Hothersall

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think it's bad to abandon a project BTW. I finished one that I was wrestling for years, and it was really cool to be done, I liked it. But man how many others I could have built in that time!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Take a look at the group builds and how many entries, actually get finished. Pretty solid measurement.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Take a look at the group builds and how many entries, actually get finished. Pretty solid measurement.

That is a very interesting observation. However, I don't want to be the one to do the math. :rofl:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very interesting replies. It's not that I am a perfectionist, I just want satisfactory results, not putting something on the shelf that looks like a 10 year old built.

With all my screw-ups, I have learned, and will do things differently the next time around. I will probably be posting questions in the forums regarding issues I have had in the past.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...