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Where have all the builders gone

Old 11-28-2022, 10:54 PM
  #1526  
sensei
 
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There are some of us still around, here are a few of mine over the years.

Bob











Old 11-29-2022, 03:50 PM
  #1527  
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Thanks for the comments TelemasterUK. Building has been an important part of my modeling life - much nore than flying. I have recently taken to trying to build vintage warbird kits and frequently ru=n across broken kits that don't include all information, or ver ylittle information. Older kits such as the original SIG Craftsman kits don't have uch informaation anyway. When I foind oneI like to chase down as much information as is available, but have no intentioin of stepping on anyones's toes. If I did so I'm sorry.

From the 80 year old, recently repaired, heart of Airjockey42
Old 11-29-2022, 04:52 PM
  #1528  
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Default Wondering the same.

Newbie to the forum, but flying he's since the wee 80s.
I pulled some old bones out of storage, and started looking around to see what was new. I'm my case, I flew some 1:7 scale helis, but guys, it's seems like the days of sharing good ideas on building are getting fewer. I totally loved the challenge, and loved sharing what we all did. I wonder if we'd all start posting pics of what we used to build would spark new interest? You guys are most likely levels beyond what i did, but it'd be great to see some 50 and 60 + scale machines again! And the planes? It was always a real treat to see what those guys built! I suppose if enough interest was shown, perhaps someone would fire up those old dies👍👍
Old 11-29-2022, 08:22 PM
  #1529  
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I was looking over my statsh of kits and couldn't help wondering how many times they changed hands since they were new. One kit I have I am fairly certain i must be at least the fourth owner.
Old 11-30-2022, 09:20 AM
  #1530  
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Originally Posted by FlyerInOKC View Post
I was looking over my statsh of kits and couldn't help wondering how many times they changed hands since they were new. One kit I have I am fairly certain i must be at least the fourth owner.
I have a couple of kits that might fit that description. I try not to take on kits that I don't really intend to build but I've owned a kit or two that was probably older than me.
Old 11-30-2022, 09:23 AM
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I like to think I will get all my kits built when I retire but who knows?
Old 11-30-2022, 09:36 AM
  #1532  
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Originally Posted by FlyerInOKC View Post
I like to think I will get all my kits built when I retire but who knows?
That's my hope as well. I try very hard not to buy anymore...
But last month I splurged and picked up a new one from BUSA that ultimately has landed on the pile of someday..

But, the way stuff is going, can't help but wonder how much of this hobby will be left by the time I retire?
Oh well, I will have stuff to build if all I do is hang it from the ceiling...
Old 11-30-2022, 12:50 PM
  #1533  
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I have been saving to buy one more kit a Gold Edition Top Flite Bonanza or Arrow II kit. I may not buy an original kit. The owner of Planes Gone By has already stated he is already working on a reproduction kits of both aircraft and their cockpit kits. He already has the the FW-190, P-40E, P-47D, and P47 Razorback for $489. He offers the F4U and the AT-6 kits for the same price but they aren't in stock at the moment. He has 10 different TF cockpits available at this time.
Old 12-01-2022, 05:51 AM
  #1534  
scale only 4 me
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RE: Planes gone by,,,, Wow,, the cut parts look great, but those are pretty steep kit prices for not including fiberglass parts or any hardware,,

These current market prices make me wonder if Skyshark was still around could they make a go of it,, they had great warbird kits,, but their elevated prices competing against the cheap ARF craze was there demise I guess
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Old 12-01-2022, 07:04 AM
  #1535  
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I see the problem is not many people have the self-discipline for building, instant gratification at the cheapest price is what they all want. It use to be ARFs had some resemblance to kit built airplanes, now more and more they are just molded Styrofoam. They fly them until the first hard landing and throw what's left away and buy another. Spare ARF parts are few and far between with ARF designs constantly changing. Now you take the time to build the plane yourself you get a better built model and you gain the knowledge of how it is built and can apply that to repairs when the Dumb Thumbs incidents occur. ARF fliers get this shocked look when they see a crashed airplane flying again, they haven't a clue on how to do the simplest of repairs. In my younger days, when I was learning to fly, on more than one occasion I would lose the front third of the aircraft and have it rebuilt and flying again several weeks later. It might not be quite as pretty or a little heavier but it flew.
Old 12-01-2022, 08:39 AM
  #1536  
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Originally Posted by scale only 4 me View Post
RE: Planes gone by,,,, Wow,, the cut parts look great, but those are pretty steep kit prices for not including fiberglass parts or any hardware,,

These current market prices make me wonder if Skyshark was still around could they make a go of it,, they had great warbird kits,, but their elevated prices competing against the cheap ARF craze was there demise I guess
I've seem some gossip that Skyshark is supposed to get resurrected. I suppose it comes down to who owns the cut files and plan copyrights.
Old 12-01-2022, 07:10 PM
  #1537  
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Originally Posted by FlyerInOKC View Post
I see the problem is not many people have the self-discipline for building, instant gratification at the cheapest price is what they all want. It use to be ARFs had some resemblance to kit built airplanes, now more and more they are just molded Styrofoam. They fly them until the first hard landing and throw what's left away and buy another. Spare ARF parts are few and far between with ARF designs constantly changing. Now you take the time to build the plane yourself you get a better built model and you gain the knowledge of how it is built and can apply that to repairs when the Dumb Thumbs incidents occur. ARF fliers get this shocked look when they see a crashed airplane flying again, they haven't a clue on how to do the simplest of repairs. In my younger days, when I was learning to fly, on more than one occasion I would lose the front third of the aircraft and have it rebuilt and flying again several weeks later. It might not be quite as pretty or a little heavier but it flew.
Fixing a crashed airplane is so much more exciting for me than starting / completing a kit build.
People today clearly no longer think like we do.
Once in a blue moon it seems an opportunity to buddy cord with someone new does come along, but I've yet to see any student stick with it in recent years. Just a half hearted interest that fades in a matter of a few weeks.

​​​​​​A quote from Dave Platt;
"Better to give up on a lost cause, which is what it is,
and concentrate our effort on making things better for those who are already involved."

Last edited by J330; 12-02-2022 at 10:32 AM. Reason: corrected singular grammar
Old 12-02-2022, 09:02 AM
  #1538  
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We are all products of our time. Most of us builders are retired. When we were young if you wanted a model aeroplane you had to build it. I built my first model, a rubber powered free flight model called a Keil Kraft Ajax, when I was eleven years old. My uncle taught me how to build. This was followed by a small free flight glider Neither was very successful. It was only after I'd saved up my paper round money and bought that Mills 75 that I built a successful model, a Veron Cardinal, free flight of course, radio was the province of the rich in 1960s Britain, but at least I was learning something about aerodynamics which was to come in useful later.

Nowadays you pay your money and buy something which may or may not be suitable for a beginner, you may stay with the hobby but that's increasingly less likely. In these days of buying ARTFs. There is not the same emotional attachment to the model as was the case in the past..

One day, several years ago I was talking to a young member of my club and he asked why I built models rather than buy ARTFs ready built. I mentioned pride of workmanship and sense of achievement, the fact that you could choose your own colour scheme if it was a sports model or modify a scale model to suit your own preferences. We both came from the same town as Eric Lock, the leading British fighter pilot of the Battle of Britain. I said that if I built a Spitfire I could finish it as a replica of Lock's aircraft. With an ARTF you're stuck with what the manufacturer is willing to provide. He looked at me as if I was daft!

Having retired to rural France I joined the local club. Soon after, a father and son team joined the club; both novices. I think that the father was about 45 years old and his son about 20. I had an old car I didn't want so I sold it to the boy. When he picked up the car he noticed that there was a plan of a 1/6th scale Nieuport Bébé on my table. I said that I could build it in three or four months because there's nothing complicated about it. The swept back wings were a bit of a novelty but otherwise it's a very simple aircraft. He looked at me in amazement!

But then, no-one had taught him how to build had they? With the arrival of Covid 19 they both absented themselves from the club and neither has subsequently returned.

Lifelong modellers are also a dying species, if you'll excuse the pun. Last year I bought a Laser V twin fourstroke. I picked it up direct from the factory. The agent told me that many of his customers learn to fly, then buy very expensive model aircraft and engines, then give up the hobby after a couple of years and go on to something else. His brother runs a business selling scuba diving equipment. He has noticed the same trend.

It's been said before, but this is a dying hobby, it appeals to older men. There are thirty-three members of my club. Only four of them are of working age and we also have a thirteen year-old boy who can outfly everyone except his father! In the fullness of time when the older modellers shuffle off this mortal coil, a membership of thirty-three will be reduced down to five unless things change and there's no evidence of that happening. Even amongst the retired, there are some who only buy ARTFs.

And when we die, as we all must, what will become of all of those models which we have built and upon which we have lavished such care? They'll be sold for next to nothing or simply be used as firewood because fewer and fewer people are interested in building model aircraft. You don't believe me? Check out the Plane Olde Bargain site: https://www.radiocontrolledmodels.co...and-valuations. I don't want to lumber anybody with the task of shifting my stuff when I pop off so I'm starting to de-clutter. Anyone fancy an as new Enya 15,19 or 35? Anybody? Yours for the cost of the shipping.

I'm not bothered if fewer and fewer people are interested in the hobby. I enjoy building and will continue to do so for as long as I can but I can't agree with J330's point. I have four models awaiting repair, one an ARTF(!), but I'm getting on with building my latest project!

Happy Landings

David

Last edited by Telemaster Sales UK; 12-02-2022 at 09:10 AM.
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Old 12-02-2022, 10:26 AM
  #1539  
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Originally Posted by Telemaster Sales UK View Post
Anyone fancy an as new Enya 15,19 or 35? Anybody? Yours for the cost of the shipping.
Happy Landings
David
DON'T TEMPT ME!

David, you are making me feel old. Then again so is my recent knee replacement!
Old 12-02-2022, 12:00 PM
  #1540  
David John Davis
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Originally Posted by FlyerInOKC View Post
DON'T TEMPT ME!

David, you are making me feel old. Then again so is my recent knee replacement!
I'm ten years older than you too Mike! Mind you both my knees and my left hip are nothing like as good as they once were.
Old 12-02-2022, 01:01 PM
  #1541  
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Originally Posted by David John Davis View Post
I'm ten years older than you too Mike! Mind you both my knees and my left hip are nothing like as good as they once were.
Both of my knees are now Titanium. And thank you are not mentioning you're more hansome.
Old 12-02-2022, 11:45 PM
  #1542  
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Originally Posted by FlyerInOKC View Post
Both of my knees are now Titanium. And thank you are not mentioning you're more hansome.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.






Old 12-03-2022, 11:58 AM
  #1543  
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Originally Posted by FlyerInOKC View Post
I see the problem is not many people have the self-discipline for building, instant gratification at the cheapest price is what they all want. It use to be ARFs had some resemblance to kit built airplanes, now more and more they are just molded Styrofoam. They fly them until the first hard landing and throw what's left away and buy another. Spare ARF parts are few and far between with ARF designs constantly changing. Now you take the time to build the plane yourself you get a better built model and you gain the knowledge of how it is built and can apply that to repairs when the Dumb Thumbs incidents occur. ARF fliers get this shocked look when they see a crashed airplane flying again, they haven't a clue on how to do the simplest of repairs. In my younger days, when I was learning to fly, on more than one occasion I would lose the front third of the aircraft and have it rebuilt and flying again several weeks later. It might not be quite as pretty or a little heavier but it flew.
Actually foam takes a beating much better than balsa does, but I still would rather build my airplanes from balsa, ply and balsa sheeted foam at times or restore old airplanes over any ARFs simply because nobody else has one like mine, and of course the satisfaction I get when finished.

Bob
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Old 12-04-2022, 06:24 AM
  #1544  
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I am currently building a vintage model called a Guidato as an ab initio trainer for elderly novices, mainly because it has a tricycle undercarriage and because I've never seen one before!

Plan here: https://outerzone.co.uk/plan_details.asp?ID=7378. Build blog here: https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...ichi-s-Guidato
Old 12-05-2022, 03:07 AM
  #1545  
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I stumbled across this video of a Fokker Dr1 on YouTube. In the comments section someone asked, "Where did you buy this model?" Shouldn't be surprised really!


Last edited by David John Davis; 12-05-2022 at 03:12 AM.
Old 12-05-2022, 05:35 AM
  #1546  
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Nice airplane!
Old 12-05-2022, 08:37 AM
  #1547  
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Originally Posted by FlyerInOKC View Post
Nice airplane!
Absolutely but he built it, he didn't buy it.
Old 12-05-2022, 08:54 AM
  #1548  
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Originally Posted by David John Davis View Post
Absolutely but he built it, he didn't buy it.
That's why it's a nice airplane!
Old 12-05-2022, 05:54 PM
  #1549  
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Originally Posted by J330 View Post
Fixing a crashed airplane is so much more exciting for me than starting / completing a kit build.
Not for me. Certainly, repairing a crash victim is a challenge, to repair it without it gaining a lot of weight, keeping its lines nice and smooth and the alignment of the airframe as it should be, redoing the cover in such a way it's difficult or impossible to tell it was even crashed. It definitely takes as much skill or even more, than building a new plane.

What I hated about repairing a crashed plane was, I'd rather be spending the time building ANOTHER plane, rather than building the same one twice. I was always a much better builder than I was a pilot, so I had lots of practice repairing them; replacing wingtips, cracked or broken firewalls, etc. I got so frustrated having to repair planes I'd spent a lot of time building to begin with, I quit the hobby altogether. After 16 years, I decided to build another one, but no way am I going to fly it. It will be built to be airworthy, it'll have an engine, servos and all the flight surfaces will work, but it will be up to someone else to add the radio and fly it, after I'm gone. I have two more to build after this one, and the same will go for them. I'm retired now, and at 68 I hope to have enough years left to get those planes built and enjoy looking at them. I love scale models and love to detail them. The challenge for me is in those details.
Old 12-05-2022, 06:42 PM
  #1550  
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I do enjoy designing and building, but I believe I get more enjoyment out of resurrecting an old beat up sows ear and turning it into a silk purse.
It defiantly takes more time, patience and talent to modify, repair, correct, lighten and recover an airframe than building new, at least in my book.
On occasions I go to swap meets or find stuff in the classifieds just for purpose of bringing life back into them, and there are endless supplies of them out there.
Last year I picked up an old Goldberg Ultimate that was never completely finished and very poorly built, it took some time but I wound up un assembling down to two fuselage halves and now ready for lightening of all components and reassembling.

Bob


Last edited by sensei; 12-06-2022 at 12:29 AM.

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