SMC 2014 an update

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Perhaps a small update on Scale Model Challenge 2014 would be nice.

We launched the SMC pages on the SMF website in January. Just a week or two before  we have send out the invites to a selection of vendors, and the response has been overwhelming to tell you the truth. At this point we already “sold” 70% of the available vendor space.

This year’s SMC will roughly the same size as last year’s show, but now without the addition of a simultaneous event. It basically means that we will occupy all the available halls with SMC only this year.

We have anticipated a slight increase of the competition area and at the same time more space for clubs as we noticed the increased international interest.

With Claude Joachim’s huge Clervaux as a centre point, we will introduce some new concepts and stunning displays and exhibits in the central show area.

Another addition to the show will be that, besides the demos and presentations by our exciting line up of special guests (Alex “Iguazzu” Varela, Ivan Cocker and Radek Pituch) we will give visitors the possibility to practice various skills on their own models under guidance of some of the best; a program of interactive workshops of 45-60 minutes with Jay Laverty, Kamil Feliks Sztarbala and José Brito. More names will follow, especially for the figure painters.

Behind the scenes we have been working on a revolutionary contest application that will enable us to smooth the whole contest process from pre-registration to the awards and medal presentation. I say revolutionary as this is promising to be something ultra cool. Especially for ourselves as most of the process always happens backstage, so to speak. But visitors will be able to see some of it during the day as well, especially during the registration process, in case you haven’t pre-registered. That part will be pretty revolutionary for sure and will dismiss all the paperwork that contestants always meet during shows.

This application, we baptized it MONARCH, is being tested the hard way now and we are confident about its introduction on SMC 2014….or actually from the moment pre-registration opens.

For those coming from galaxies far away, or from around the corner for that matter, we organize a day trip on Saturday 11th October to Amsterdam with different options. We did this in 2013 for the first time and the ones attending had a great time visiting the Dutch capital.

SMF member Marcel du Long has produced the artwork again, and he did a great job as always. He managed to add a WWI theme, in a subtle way. Although we are not necessarily a military modelling show (anymore), military subjects play a large role in scale modelling and we cannot let this commemorative year pass without paying attention to the fact that WWI broke out 100 years ago. We also dedicate an award to the best model or figure from that period.

I leave you with this years’ poster:

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Aerosan’s got company

Over the past few weeks I spent some hours working on my Snow Crash diorama. My last effort to actually building something diorama-ish dates back roughly two years. And something of this size (32*42 cms surface) I can’t even recall the last time, perhaps 4-5 years ago. Working on the various elements, figures, aircraft, groundwork, planning etc.  reminded me though, that building dioramas requires all the skills you’ve got.

As the title already mentioned, the Aerosan crew is done, with some slight modifications to a set by the company TANK: They still require some weathering, but I’m saving that for when the diorma is nearing final completion.

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There’s no question about it: modellers do need elaborate reference material and an extensive library. Here’s why:

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Several steamy nights including hot carpentry and messing about with styrofoam lead to this translation of the previously shown layout:

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From Balsa wood rods, bark paste, Asparegus fern leaves, 3M Spray Mount and static grass I made two fir trees and some fir tree parts (The Storch had hit into something, remember?). Here’s the green version of one of the trees….they will become white in the end:

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Roughly testing the lay out of the different elements, always an exciting job as the idea comes to life:

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I also started painting the Storch..finally. Pre-shading and base coating the bottom of the fuselage and wings:

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One piece of advice: Masking the canopy with bare metal foils is the best thing you can do….said no modeller ever.

I applied it months ago, left it there for much too long and found last week that it was a helluva job peeling it off, finding glue residue all over the canopy. After removing all the bare metal foil, scraping it off actually, I removed the glue residue with Revel Painta Clean (don’t ask !) and then buffed it as well as I could and decided that I actually had something quite handy available and it may not come to a surprize to aircraft modellers:

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Yes indeed. Alclad’s Aqua Gloss brought back the canopy  to an acceptable state, after I applied several layers with the airbrush, resulting in a look that is feasible for harsh winter conditions.

A hard lesson learned here….  After taking these images I used low tack masking tape te re-mask the canopy for futher painting.

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I am going for a two-tone green camouflage for my little Storch. No white wash as I need some nice contrast to all that friggin’ white stuff, ha!

So that’s all for now folks….to be continued

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