Sprue Cutters Union #4 – Worst Experiences


The Combat Workshop recently kicked off an interesting idea called “The Sprue Cutters Union”. Basically, the idea is akin to a group build, only with blog posts instead of builds. Every week, a new topic will be tossed out, and participating blogs will each write their own post on that topic.

This week’s topic:

What is the worst experience you’ve had in this hobby?

Easy. Hyperscale’s forum layout.

Okay, but seriously, the worst experience I’ve had in this hobby has nothing to do with kits or carpet monsters or botched work. It’s other modelers. Specifically:

The Absolutists

You know who they are (and you may even be one of them) – the modelers who claim there is ONE TRUE WAY and that everything else is somehow lesser.

If you spend money on aftermarket you’re a failure because you didn’t scratchbuild your own damn cockpit. If you go with kit parts instead of spending $50 on a resin what’s-it you’re a fool who doesn’t care about accuracy.

If you build the Trumpeter P-109 Messerstang instead of the Hasegawa you may as well start just gluing together pieces of garbage because the rudder is too short and the windscreen is 1mm too wide. On the other hand, if you care too much about accuracy you’re suddenly the dreaded rivet-counter.

Do you like Tamiya kits? Congratulations, you’re an assembler who likes shake-and-bake kits, unlike real modelers who scratchbuild entire sections onto 40-year-old Monogram kits.

Do you drybrush? FOOL. You should be using paint modulation and besides drybrushing isn’t realistic. Like paint modulation? Then you’re a shameless slave to trends.

It sickens me. All of it. Modeling, like the rest of life, is filled with gray areas, and for the most part there aren’t really any rights or wrongs. Why do people insist on making it so binary?



Part of being in the Union means we share links to our fellow contributors’ posts. If you liked this post, take a look what some other modellers have to say about this topic:

12 Comments Add yours

  1. weetam says:

    Reblogged this on .

  2. Bruce says:

    Amen! Sing it Brother! So glad there are people who think this way. the hobby is all things to all people. Great post Doogs

  3. Arthur Smith says:

    I agree. For me this is relaxation, not a job. If I want stress I go to work. When it is time to relax and be creative I work on my models.

  4. Chris says:

    Concur. Especially about Hyperscale. Do you feel the same way about the color-absolutests? On the one hand, I like having info about which paint is most “accurate,” but I am not about to mix a 4 part concoction based on some know-it-all’s single “definitive” photo.

    1. Doogs says:

      Yes, I absolutely feel the same way about color absolutists. If you want to geek out about color fidelity, more power to you. If you want to share your findings, brilliant. It’s when it steps over into the “one true way” that it gets bad. As in…”How could you possibly use Tamiya’s dunkelgelb? It’s too green according to the color chip I have that was mixed by Hitler himself!”

      Color is a MASSIVE gray area. Different factories mostly mixed their batches on paint on premises, so you already have origin variability. And with the lack of computer-grade color matching, every single batch was probably slightly different. Then you have the effects of the environment, from salt and humidity in the Pacific to sand scouring in North Africa to intense UV exposure in the skies over Europe. THEN you have field touch-ups, field-mixed and applied colors. Then you have the variability of period photography due to lighting conditions and film used.

      And I haven’t even brought in the scale effect or light modulation!

      Personally, I feel that there’s a “strike zone” if you will, which is good enough. That strike zone is wider or narrower depending on personal preference or even the color in question.

  5. Frank Ford says:

    Well said! I agree completely. This is a very personal hobby and people should appreciate other peoples hard work for what they achieve, not whether it’s they would have done. If your models are all going to be identical to everyone elses, why not just buy them ready made and painted?!

  6. Brian Pedersen says:

    Very well said!! If you’re in San Antonio in February 2014 for Model Fiesta, I’d like to shake your hand for saying this!

    I’m sad to say I’ve let some of these “absolutists” drive me away from the hobby I love. Been in a pretty massive slump since last July. Just got tired of reading thread after thread of why every kit sucks because it’s not 100% correct!

    I’ve been getting the build bug over the last few weeks, so I’ve been catching up and trying to get some inspiration by reading the few forums I still visit and my favorite blogs (your’s is at the top).

    I needed to read this. Thank you! Now I’m off to the hobby shop for some new plastic!


  7. Larry Horyna says:

    This is something that unfortunately has to be reiterated every now and then. This is a “solitary” hobby, not a social one and what each individual gets out of it is entirely up to them and NO ONE else. I worked in a hobby shop for eight wonderful years and was the president of an IPMS chapter as well and I have certainly seen just about every facet of what you are talking about. Color experts, rivet counters, and the occasional overly enthusiastic fan of everything German (hey, I like lots of German equipment but that does not have to lead to envy or remorse that they lost the Second World War!). What these folks “know” or think does not matter any more than what you do. Buy what you want, build what you want and enjoy the result that you like. In the end, enjoy the hobby for yourself!

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