Slowly but surely, Bench Mk.II is coming together.
More shelves are up and the stash is being, er, stashed…
Nearer the bench proper, the paint racks have gone up. These racks, like the shelving, are built from Elfa’s hanging shelf system, and some spice rack baskets. Overall, they’re fantastic, but the thinner paints (Vallejo, Alclad) could certainly benefit from some sort of solid surface to sit on, as they tend to sit a big precariously on the wire.
Then, yesterday, these arrived…
These workbenches are the Gladiator Cadet 6624 – available on Amazon for a fair amount less than many other workbenches out there. Better yet, they’re eligible for Amazon Prime, which means free shipping!
Seriously, if you don’t have Amazon Prime, look into it. We’ve transitioned a ton of purchases – diapers, K-cups, etc – over to Amazon because the savings from lower prices + free 2-day shipping are just ridiculous. It even applies to the occasional kit!
Got the first bench and the drawer cart squared away last night…first impression…this sucker is BIG. At 24″ deep, it’s the same as the old Costco tables, but that’s where any similarity ends. These benches are 66″ wide to those tables’ 48″, and a whopping 39″ high. They’re tall enough that I could probably work comfortably standing up.
Up next – the second bench, a new, taller seating platform, and getting things squared away. I’m still not entirely sure what I’m doing to do for hanging the fluorescent shop light over the paint bench, so I think I may stick with Bench Mk.I’s “there I fixed it” solution until I get a better sense of what I want to do back there.
When I came back to modeling in July 2010, I put my bench together with two folding tables bought on the cheap and whatever spare bits I could scrounge together. I mean…I made a paint rack out of unused shelves, PVC tees and Diet Dr. Pepper cans! And a light mount out of an unused desk hutch, a few lengths of wood, a bungee cord and some chains jacked from some hanging plant baskets.
With the move, it’s been my intention to rethink some things and put together a better, more functional bench. Bench Mk.II. Read more…
12:12 PM – Placed order with Sprue Brothers.
12:33PM – Received a shipping notification via e-mail.
21 minutes from order to ship. Talk about fast!
The 1st Annual Doogs’ Models Fall Giveaway has come and gone…and it’s time to announce the winners!
Before I do, though, I have to say that this giveaway couldn’t have come at a better time for me, personally. Life, since the last days of October, has been one stress after another…moving, getting a house ready to sell, vomiting children, a daughter in the hospital, a sinus infection…and in the middle of it all, these great stories of your favorite builds. Reading the accounts – even though I haven’t found time to respond to each of them yet – they absolutely made my week.
I will definitely be doing this giveaway again next year…and who knows…maybe I’ll toss in a few smaller ones, here and there.
Okay…on to the winners.
Taking first, and claiming the Hasegawa P-47, is ANDY, whose favorite kit is the Tamiya Fw 190A-8 he polished off just before bringing twin girls home from the hospital!
And…taking second and by default the armor category winner, the Bronco Bishop, is TIM WILDING, whose favorite build is a Tamiya Cromwell that marked a lot of materials and technique firsts and, “most importantly, it was fun to build”…
Tim and Andy, congrats! And if either of you want to send along updates or even build logs of the kits, I’d be happy to toss them up as guest posts!
And thank you to everyone who participated…truly awesome accounts, and I hope you’ll be back for the next giveaway!
And with that, the Fall Giveaway is wrapping up! I’m in the process of tabulating the winners, but in the meantime, here are the top vote-getters among the giveaway kits…
Aircraft – 1/32 Hasegawa P-47D Thunderbolt
This one was close all the way, neck-and-neck between the big Jug and Wingnut Wings’ excellent Albatros D.Va. Ultimately, it came down to a single vote!
While I don’t have this exact kit in the stash, I do have two of the big Hasegawa Jugs, and I can state with confidence that whoever wins this bad boy is in for a treat!
Armor – 1/35 Bronco Bishop 25-pdr SPG
Talk about a last-minute surge! After trailing the Panzer IV Ausf.J for most of the week, the Bishop came from behind to win! While it’s not the type of kit that can be tossed together in a week, the level of detail on display is nothing short of breathtaking!
A lot has changed since I kicked off this blog a little over a year ago. There’s been a lot of pain, and a lot of bumpy roads, but when I step back…most everything has eventually come out for the best. And so to mark that, and to mark this blog’s first anniversary, and to thank you, my readers, for your comments, for your support through some of the rough patches I shared here…I’ve decided to host a giveaway.
When I was setting this thing up, I decided right out of the gate that I wanted it to be two things first and foremost:
- Fun for all involved
- Absolutely worthwhile for the winners
I hope I’ve succeded!
So here’s how the giveaway’s going to work:
1 – Two winners
When the giveaway wraps up on November 8th, I’ll be giving away two kits to two lucky winners. And not repops of ancient molds bought on clearance at Hobby Lobby. I’m talking some genuinely awesome (at least to me) kits.
The first winner will get their choice – aircraft or armor. And the second winner will get whichever one is left. So if the first winner chooses the plane, the second will get the tank. Or SPG or whatnot.
2 – Prizes determined by you!
This is where the fun comes in. Instead of just saying “here are the two kits”, I’m going to let you, the readers, vote for which kits the winners will receive!
Over the past few weeks I’ve been revealing the kits two at a time. It’s been a lot of fun, actually, kind of like putting together a mix tape, only of styrene.
Voting will run through the week, and I’ll shut the polls down on November 8th, at which point I’ll also be determining the giveaway winners.
You’re going to be limited to one vote per category, so…choose wisely!
3 – Tell your story
To enter yourself into the giveaway, post a comment below that discusses your single, absolute favorite build, and why. What makes it stand above the others?
To provide some inspiration…
My favorite build was Tamiya’s 1/350 CVN-65 USS Enterprise.
I built this monster of a kit when I was 12 or 13. Looking back now, I find I can’t really remember most of my childhood builds. Maybe a flash here or there, no more. But the Enterprise is different. I won’t say I remember it in exacting detail, but I do remember it vividly. I think probably because it terrified me! This was the kit, I think, that marked my transition from slapping plastic together to actually building models. I remember masking, and remasking, and remasking the waterline. Dotting the tie downs on the flight deck with a white paint pen. Building all those friggin’ planes. It was one of the first kits I built where I came away with a real sense of pride and accomplishment…and I guess that shows in how well I remember it.
See…it’s that easy.
NOTE – You MUST tell your favorite build story in the comments in order to be entered into the giveaway. And if you don’t plan on sticking around, I will need some way to contact you, so make sure the e-mail you use to comment with is valid and checked!
Now…on to the voting!
The polls are below…go ahead and vote, and then comment to enter.
If you need a refresher on the different kits, you can read all about them by following the links:
- Aircraft: 1/32 Cyber-Hobby Messerschmitt Bf 109E-4 | Armor: 1/35 Dragon Panzer IV Ausf.J Last Production
- Aircraft: 1/32 Hasegawa P-47D-30 Thunderbolt | Armor: 1/35 Tasca M4A3E2 Sherman “Jumbo”
- Aircraft: 1/32 Hobby Boss Spitfire Mk.Vb | Armor: 1/35 AFV Club T-34/85
- Aircraft: 1/32 Wingnut Wings Albatros D.Va | Armor: 1/35 Dragon RSO/03 w/ 5cm PaK 38
- Aircraft: 1/32 Pacific Coast Models Spitfire Mk.XIV | Armor: 1/35 Bronco Bishop 25-pdr SPG
I look very forward to reading the comments and watching the kit “horse race” over the next week. And thank you to all who participate!
On November 1st, Doogs’ Models kicks off its first ever kit giveaway. Two lucky winners will receive two fantastic kits, voted on by you, the readers!
In the lead up to the giveaway, I’m going to be announcing the kits every few days. Two at a time. One aircraft, and one armor.
Today, we’re down to the final two.
Aircraft #5 – 1/32 Pacific Coast Models Spitfire Mk.XIV
There’s probably no greater aircraft/engine association than the Spitfire and the Rolls-Royce Merlin. Even seventy years later, the two are practically synonymous. It may come as a surprise, then, to learn that the Merlin was already being replaced as early as October 1942 by the Rolls-Royce Griffon. The first Griffon-powered Spitfires, the Mk.XII series, suffered at higher altitudes from the single-stage supercharger. By January 1944, however, a double-stage supercharged Griffon entered service in the Spitfire Mk.XIV.
My personal favorite Spitfire variant, the Mk.XIV featured an enlarged cowl with bulges to accomodate the larger Griffon, numerous internal changes, and a mean-looking five-blade Rotol propeller. The new engine gave the Spitfire renewed vigor and speed and performance that not only stunned German opponents, but gave the Mk.XIV the juice to chase down the V1 flying bombs that tormented Britain throughout 1944.
I have to admit – while I like Spitfires well enough – I’m far from a Spitfire fanatic. I actually think they’re rather awkward looking, with the massive wing and thin-stick bodies. But building Tamiya’s wonderful Mk.VIII fired my interest, and got me itching to build a Mk.XIV. For a time it looked like I would be shunted into Academy’s flawed 1/48 kit – which I actually built growing up – and then out of nowhere Pacific Coast Models introduced this number. Lacking in all willpower, I ordered one immediately.
The kit itself is a limited production run, and makes heavy use of mixed media. The main airframe is styrene. Not as sublime or ambitious as Tamiya’s late Merlin Spits, but still rather good. The cockpit, 5-blade Rotol prop, exhausts stacks, Hispano cannons and other bits are rather well-executed resin, and the kit includes an Eduard PE set with an instrument panel that looks suspiciously similar to the one I used in the Tamiya Mk.VIII. I’ve been chomping at the bit to build this kit since I got it, and am impressed enough with its execution that I feel it deserves a place in the voting*. I honestly don’t know if it will pull out, but if it does, whoever wins it will be in for a treat.
*To avoid any confusion. I own a copy of this kit. If it pulls out in the voting, the winner will receive a brand new, unopened, not-mine example.
Armor #5 – 1/35 Bronco Bishop 25-pdr Self-Propelled Gun
The years between World War I and World War II saw a massive leap forward in tank doctrine, but strangely, not in the area of mobile artillery. In the early war years, every major army found itself faced with a similar problem – its artillery could not keep up with its tanks. Necessity led to the development of the self-propelled gun. The “Bishop” was Britain’s early answer, a 25-pound gun mounted atop a Valentine chassis. It was slow and cumbersome, and it’s tall profile made it a juicy target, but it served ably in North Africa and Italy before being replaced by the M7 Priest.
Honestly, the subject itself doesn’t thrill me so much as the manufacturer. I picked up Bronco’s 17-pounder Archer around Easter, and on opening the box was overwhelmed by the amount of detail thrown into the kit. The parts count was staggering, but the detail work on the parts themselves was moreso.
So when Bronco released another Valentine-based SPG, I was sold from the get-go. To my mind, this one is a journey kit versus a destination kit. It’s one you tackle for the awesomeness of the kit itself, and the experience of building it.
Well…that wraps up the kit reveals! What do you think about the choices? Got a favorite? Got one you despise?
Don’t forget to drop back by on November 1 for the official giveaway kickoff!