Seeing this month’s SCU topic actually gave me a burst of optimism: Jon over at The Combat Workshop is wondering at what point during the build do we tend to stall? Given that I’m knocking out 3-4 builds per year (when I could probably double that), for a moment I thought this was directed at me. That responses are already coming in, though, is proof that I am definitely not alone.
When it comes to kit-building time management, I have two main flaws that rise up almost every time. First – when I’m at 95%, a pack of coyotes aren’t able to stop me from finishing the build that day – proper drying times be damned. Second, and more relevant to this post, is the tendency of my builds to stall when I get into the fiddly bit weeds. Once major assemblies are complete and the ship/aircraft/armor has its primary form, my builds slow to a crawl.
Part of this is necessity: building and painting an army of tiny armament is by default time consuming. The other part, however, is all about willpower. Looking at a box of 1:700 Oerlikons, knowing that each is going to involve at least one photo etch extra and a custom painting setup, is enough to make me want to go back into the stash and dig out a fresh, still boxed kit. I know what you’re saying: I do it to myself. I know! My insistence that each of my builds have as many accurizing aftermarket details as possible is both the highlight and downfall of each build experience for me. Of course, once I get over the hump things are easy as pie, but the hump itself…its a killer, friend.
One way I get around this is to have a steady supply of relaxing, simple builds that I start off knowing that I’ll build OOB. These are my reserve and my refuge, my place to recharge batteries while summoning strength for the big push. They let me keep the hobby interesting while serving the dual purpose of grounding me and filling out my display cabinets. A recent example of this is the 1:72 Academy F-22A that I knocked out during for December 2015. Yes, my other, more intricate and detailed builds suffered for lack of attention during this time, but it allowed me to come back and complete more on those ships in the past three weeks than I did in the past three months. These details are a necessary evil, but the key word is “necessary,” at least to me. They can hurt, but they always win me over again. They pull me out of the stall.
Related Dispatches from The Union