• tetsujin posted an update in the group Group logo of What just arrived from HLJ??What just arrived from HLJ?? 9 years, 3 months ago

    There’s a bit of a story behind my most recent HLJ purchase…
    I’m a member of a local modeling club. If you’re seriously interested in model-building I highly recommend finding your local IPMS club and joining up. But anyway…
    It should be noted that when sci-fi or mecha modelers start interacting with historical scale modelers, there’s varying levels of respect there for what we do. My club is great, most of the guys are pretty open to what I do, they know I do good work… But that only goes so far. Most of them would never even consider building a mecha kit themselves.
    Every year the club has a little Christmas party, and we do a gift swap. This year will be my third year participating in the gift swap. It’s a little awkward because I’m not interested in most of the kits I’m likely to get from the swap (to the point I don’t even want to take it home), and most of them aren’t interested in building the kits I’m likely to bring to the gift swap. I don’t want to bring something that just reflects their interests, I want it to reflect my tastes as well. But the past two years I’ve tried to strike a balance – bring something that interests me, but which perhaps they might find fun, or at least amusing. The first year I brought the old 1:144 Magella attack tank from Gundam. If you take it seriously it’s a pretty ridiculous machine, but it’s at least a tank so I thought they might like to build it for a laugh. The second year I brought something much nicer – a Hasegawa Valkyrie. There were a few modelers who were pretty psyched about that one – and a few who avoided it like the plague, and were shocked that Hasegawa (maker of many fine historical scale models) ever stooped to make a model of a transforming anime robot plane.
    Then a couple weeks back I was putting an HLJ order together and I found that there’s a pretty sweet deal on the Hasegawa Fei-Yen from Virtual On Marz… I don’t expect many of the club members will be too interested in it really, but I think it could be really good for a laugh. Getting my hands on the kit, I’m kind of tempted to get one for myself.

    • Them kits are nice but lots of finky bits and crap loads of decals.they are very geekish and I think its one thing modellers have a little bit off running in their blood.they been off and in offer here for s while, I snapped up a lot of the virtual on kits from here the first time I saw them on offer.i am sure someone will take a fancey to it, who knows they might start crossing over to a new model subject.

      • Well I’m not out to convert anybody (I’d be pretty pissed if somebody in the club tried to get me to start building WWII tanks) – it’s more like, if the present I bring is gonna be kind of undesirable, then it’s more fun to go over-the-top ridiculous. If people though it was crazy that Hasegawa made cartoon robot-jets, what will they think when they see this? 🙂

    • A great choice for those who may not be keen on Sci-fi modeling. Honestly if I was given a model kit as a gift I would prefer something wild. Curious to see what reactions the kit would generate. Still the kit may be nice for someone wanting a change of pace, or you could also say variety is the spice of life :P.

    • I know exactly what you mean. I’m in a local modeling club and there is only 1 other person that does sci fi kits. And those are well known series like Star Wars. I actually don’t like going to meetings very much any more. All the elderly members comment how they don’t get Gundam continually, even though they’ve had it explained to them at least 10 times by now. C’mon, it’s just a suit like Iron Man, right? The Zoids kits just blow their minds, they can’t even begin to understand them.
      Anyhow, I don’t like it because I feel like they think the military kits are more legitimate since they are historical. I think they look at what I do as toys when really they are making toys as well, they just think that since they are military history they are more legitimate . I think older people should be open to younger modelers no matter what they build. They’re not going to attract any younger people to the hobby with this attitude.

      • Well I wouldn’t say I get that kind of reaction so much. I used to be part of the Granite State Modelers Club in New Hampshire and a friend of mine (also a Gundam and sci-fi modeler) used to be president of that club, I think that probably had a positive influence on them. My current club is the Patriots club in Massachusetts, and the experience is similar. Really they’re supportive of what I do, just most of them don’t want to do it themselves, and a few will split no hairs on that point. 🙂 I’m really looking forward to seeing their reactions to this kit.
        The only time I can actually remember getting the “you’re not doing real modeling” reaction was from the proprietor of a hobby shop in Maine. He’d do things like point out that my HG Tallgeese couldn’t be “1:100 scale” since there was no real Tallgeese existing as a reference for scale. But of course there’s official specs that say how big it is, and points of reference like the cockpit hatch, and so on… He actually got a bit irritated, I think, one time when I bought a sheet of photo-etch details, tried to explain that they were for a particular car kit and you’re supposed to use them for specific things… I just wanted to use ’em as random, incidental mechanical details somewhere… Kind of freestyle-detail.
        It’s not always nice when someone tries to marginalize our area of the hobby, but honestly I think there’s some merit to their objections. The subjects we build are usually a bit ill-defined, appearing mostly in animation. Even sci-fi subjects like Star Trek or Star Wars are usually based on a high-detail studio model or CG model. There’s plenty of leeway there (like the detail on the different Millennium Falcon studio models was completely different from each other, etc.) but there’s still a clear point of reference. Historical modelers research their subjects and sometimes customize kits to match a particular aircraft or a particular battle or something. In Gundam, accuracy is widely rejected as a priority. Bandai redesigns their subjects to suit the manufacturing process or put a novel spin on something, and most modelers don’t care about “accuracy” even to the point that that is possible when working with anime designs. Most of us are more interested in things like poseability. And mecha kits tend to be a bit simplistic – inner frames aren’t really good enough to represent the complex inner workings of such a machine, but it’s very rare that a modeler will devise something good enough to depict the robot as if it were a real working machine. Mecha Modeling is my thing and I love it and I do respect it, but when people say “it’s not scale modeling”, there is truth to that.
        It’s common in contests for mecha to be grouped in with both sci-fi ships and real space ships – which I’m starting to think may be unfair due to the simplicity of the subjects we tend to build and the many design shortcuts that make our builds even easier.