It's Friday, it's Texas, it's July, it's hot. And while the weather was on most people's minds, I was preoccupied with something entirely different. The Nats. The IPMS Nationals to be precise. The yearly North American model show that is supposedly the "be all, end all" of our hobby. For me it wasn't. Yes, there were some stellar models being displayed, but most of them were at tables labeled as Aircraft or Military rather than Competition Auto.
We as "car" builders constitute THE majority of the hobby. All other groups combined don't equal our numbers, but you wouldn't know it from the quantity of cars displayed, and to this end I was a little disappointed. Happily the quality of the models displayed, and the obvious work that went into them made me "ooh and ahhh" with envy through the entire display. For me, the standouts were the incredible 1:43rds, which amazed me with their level of detail packed into such petite and expensive packages, and the various Rally cars which rivaled the '43rd's on detail.
At the Tamiya booth I cornered Moto Suzuki and did my best impersonation of Hunter S. Thompson. Between his broken English and my southern drawl, few could understand his confirmation of an upcoming new Ferrari F-1, but I did, and now you do also. The clear-view F-50 looked especially nice. Mr. Suzuki also gave me an exhibition of their new remote controlled tank. $1200.00+ of big kid fun!
The Revell rep explained that the upcoming black and silver C5R Pro-Finish kit will be up to the current standards of their NASCAR P-F line, and then dropped an unexpected surprise. The next C5R for Revell will be the yellow and white Goodwrench from this year. No specific race series, but I'm guessing it's going to be a Daytona 24 hour car. AND this one will be a "standard" kit with water slide decals. No details on whether this will be a decal only conversion or a modified mold release.
Accurate Miniatures' rep was an enigma. To me he relates that the Taurus will be coming out soon, while to Larry he says the kit will never see the light of day even though the molds have been cut. He sounded disappointed in the motorsports modeling community, seemingly blaming us for the supposed failure of the McLaren kits. AM was selling 2 of the 3 McLaren kits (no Kovaleskis that I saw) for $10.00. Elsewhere vendors had the kits priced @ $28.00. I'll have an "interview" with Bill Bosworth of AM for a future GPMA issue, and it will hopefully clear things up.
I mentioned to the AM rep that they should do a 917 or a Viper GTSR as their next kit. He laughed, saying that the 917 had already been done (Huh?), and then said they would do a GTS-R if I could come up with $500,000.00 for the molds. Why manufacturers can't grasp the simple fact that these two kits are badly needed and wanted, I'll never understand. He seemed more interested in selling me a B-25 and went so far as to tell me of the upcoming B-25 versions. Thanks, but no thanks, because while I respect AM's work and their fantastic B-25, I'm a car guy...give me the 917.
Thanks to Mike and Larry for a great evening and thanks to IMPS NTC for a well executed Nationals. Now on to the pics.
A partial group shot 1/43rd, closed competition.
Not possible in real life? Then model it in 1:43rd!
A really great execution on a tough decal job.
Don Panoz's racer in 1:43rd.
A fellow GPMA member, Chris Webb's 1:43rd Honker II.
Don't ever think a modern 1:43rd is short on detail.
A low nose '94 Sauber. 1:43rd
Jordan's answer to the upper cowl winged McLaren "cruiseship". 1:43rd
2 more from fellow GPMA'er Chris Webb. 1:43
Chris' black Cheetah was recently featured on the GPMA's website. 1:43rd
A pitch perfect build of the Panoz. 1:43rd
This Porsche had more engine detail than most 1:24th kits I've seen. 1:43rd
Tamiya's newest motorsport related release, the ClearView F-50, comes with either hardtop or spyder cowl. 1:24th
Filling in the ejector pin marks on the interior of the body will seperate the modelers from the asssemblers. You can just see the optional spyder cowl lying on the table, under the model's front end. 1:24th
Here's a pre-production shot of the upcoming Revell C5R.
The representative said they would be molding this one in-house in hopes of curtailing the warpage problems of the Evo kit.
The body was molded in a hard, almost brittle, yellow plastic. Molded in detail was soft.
The '99 silver and black model will be finished like the current "Pro-Finish" NASCAR kits. The 2nd offering from this mold will be the Y2K car as an unpainted kit.
If you "get" sportsbikes like I do, this group will surely put a smile on your face.
Tamiya's superb Honda NSR500. The growing popularity in sportsbikes has been a boon to us modelers. Not sure WHAT happened with the color in this photo.
Last modified: July 25, 2000