GeekDad Unwired: Scale Model Building

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“Mom, can I have a car for my birthday?”




At the age of 12, a kid usually begins to learn the art of sarcasm. But for some kids (like me), the concept is initially difficult to grasp. So, it was no surprise that I did a double take when my Mom walked in with a model car kit all those years ago. Although, it was not what I expected, it did spark a new hobby for me that lasted up until I left home for college. Now that I have kids of my own, I have been thinking that scale model building would be a great thing for me to pick back up.

For today’s modeler, there are a plethora of specialties to take part in. Of course, you have the two most popular arenas, cars and airplanes. But, with a quick search of the internet, you can also find kits for boats, spaceships, military vehicles, miniatures (think DnD or Warhammer), and one of my favorites, Japanese manga vehicles and robots. There are literally too many to mention here. So if you have a jones for a particular field, then go for it!

Image: CollectionDXImage: CollectionDX

Image: CollectionDX

The cool thing about scale model building is that anyone with any level of skill can get into it. The rating scales for most kits usually start with Level 1, which represents snap-together projects. No glue, no X-Acto knives, no balsa wood trimming. Just snap together, apply the decals and go. The Level 1 kits are great for beginners and young kids.

If you want something more challenging, then just level up. However, be warned. Stepping into the arena of glue and paint (brush and airbrush) can be very daunting at first. As with any hobby, the models you build will reflect the time and effort you put into them. Search for other builders in your area by looking for flyers in your local hobby store. So turn off the 3d modeling programs, put down the flight and car simulators, and dive into some hands on model building.

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