Wednesday, 30 September 2015

The Oldest Model?

Introduction

Everyone who has been making models for a while has at least one kit that they've had forever without finishing it, right?  Maybe it's a subject that you're less interested in now than previously, or maybe there were technical difficulties which have paused the build.  But you'll go back and finish the piece any day now, won't you?  Just to show that you're not a quitter...


In my case, there's a further story to be told about this long-dormant kit.  My uncle (my father's twin brother) was a bachelor and devoted his leisure time mostly to building and flying model aircraft.  However, at one time he also owned a red Daimler SP250, known to my immediate family as "Grunty" due to the noises it made.

Sadly, my uncle died of brain cancer in 1984, whilst in early middle age.  While we were clearing up his effects, we found this Wills Finecast kit of an SP250.  Obviously my uncle had planned to build a model of his vehicle - but he never got round to it.  Amongst the relatives, I was the model-maker and so this kit passed to me; I promised myself faithfully that I would build it in tribute to him.  So, that was in 1984...

The Daimler SP250

Over the years since then, I've occasionally opened the box and even more occasionally I've had a burst of enthusiasm and built some of the kit.  I think that I probably glued it together in the 1980s, undercoated it sometime in the next decade and have all but ignored the model since then.  A few years ago, I painted the red basecoat and that was that for a long time.  Indeed, the partly painted model can be seen in quite a few of my workbench updates over the years, if you care to look.

At one point, I even considered getting rid of it, thinking that I would never finish the car.  However, that didn't happen and it sat around, silently accusing me of being incomplete and unloved.

Finally, after a summer with a workbench too cluttered to build anything, I tidied up [The Big Tidy].  As part of this task, I collected all the part-built models that were out, excluding those which are packed away in boxes.  Having everything in one place like this makes it very obvious what is taking the most space, which models can be completed easily and so on.

I'm currently trying to work my way through and finish at least some of these collected "works in progress" before I get too distracted with something new; the Daimler was one of the earlier models to receive this treatment.  Get this: I finished it last night!  It's no longer a millstone around my neck!

OK, now the bit you've all been waiting for: the pictures:

Fred has a look over the SP250.  I wonder if he's thinking of buying one?

I did consider putting a clear plastic windscreen on the model, but decided that this could go badly wrong.  It's better without.

The kit has optional parts for the soft top, but I wanted to be able to see the interior.  So, I used the "folded down" parts instead.

Conclusion

At 1:43, this model is really a bit too large to go with 28mm figures.  Still, plenty of other people do use this scale of vehicles to go with wargaming figures.  After all, if the person is on a base then it makes them look taller than they really are.

So, I could use this model for gaming.  The obvious setting would be spy-fi, such as 7TV, though at a pinch it could be a classic car in a more modern zombie game.  Alternatively, I could stick it on a mantlepiece and let it gather dust.  Hmm, what to do?

26 comments:

  1. You can't not use this car ( I think that's the correct double negative!) what a great looking model. Good work ­čśÇ

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    1. You're right, of course, GG! The whole reason that I got into gaming in the first place was because I didn't like seeing my models just sitting around, doing nothing.

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  2. It would be a crying shame to stick this on a mantlepiece just to collect dust. You HAVE to use it after all the time and effort it has taken you to finish it. It looks excellent.

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    1. Thanks, Bryan. Another vote for playing with the toys - and that's what they're for after all, isn't it?

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  3. Lovely model, definitely deserves a starring role in 7TV!

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    1. Thanks, Lee. I'll need to think how to do this now. Hmm, I'll have to get some figures, perhaps some more terrain and...

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  4. That's quite a beautiful model and thankfully finished. I too endorse the view that you should use it in some capacity Classic Car showroom model maybe ? I do think it puts to shame some of the current models on offer from manufacturers.
    My own must/will finish sometime midel is a 54mm Napoleonic 12pdr (hinchcliffe I think) from the 1970s.

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    1. That's a good idea, Joe! A classic car showroom, or perhaps an enthusiasts' rally, could be the backdrop for a modern zombie game!

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  5. You have to use that C6! Far too nice to be gathering dust on the mantelpiece.
    I've got 2 Land Raider Crusaders sat partially made and painted.

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    1. Ah, we all have old models - I was right :-) ! I found it very refreshing to revisit this one and decide whether to part with it or to complete the kit; you might get the same satisfaction by dealing with your own "albatrosses".

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  6. Well worth the wait, says I - what a fabulous piece of kit.

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    1. Thanks, Michael. I don't normally make vehicle models (well, other than card kits), so this was a change of pace for me.

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  7. Yes we all have models like that lying dormant. I have some I dare not start as they are so much of my childhood. It is really good to a fellow start and finish a truly great model car.

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    1. I suppose that I could argue that I've been waiting for my technique to improve sufficiently to tackle a piece like this which has so many associated memories. But the truth is that I just didn't get round to it.

      There's nothing sadder in the hobby, I think, than a kit which is too precious to be attempted.

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  8. It looks very good. I was bought a few car kits during my childhood, and was always disappointed since model paint rarely has the correct sheen to look like car paint.

    A vehicle like that is calling out for a secret agent driver, one who plays by his own rules, and isn't averse to using a gadget or two to win the day.

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    1. Um, I daren't really think about what my childhood models were really like. Not quite the same standards as I'm used to now, I imagine!

      Actually, there is a problem here in encouraging the younger generation. One of my sons is showing some interest in painting, but he is painfully aware that his beginner efforts are way short of the quality of my own models. All I can do is try to guide and advise...

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    2. This is a good point, both my daughter and son have shown interest and I believe are put off by the prospect of poor paint jobs! My painting is pedestrian at best but newbies like my kids are worried that they may not be able to reach a decent standard. I wish I'd kept some of my earlier efforts, which were frankly dreadful and say see it does get better!

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  9. It looks very good. I was bought a few car kits during my childhood, and was always disappointed since model paint rarely has the correct sheen to look like car paint.

    A vehicle like that is calling out for a secret agent driver, one who plays by his own rules, and isn't averse to using a gadget or two to win the day.

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  10. Well done mate! I have a fair few bits like these myself it does certainly feel good to get some off the paint table. A fitting car for a Rural detective as well as a secret agent I reckon.

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    1. Thanks, Simon. But would a rural detective see much action, I wonder :-) ? I suppose that the countryside could be filled with crazy cultists or something like that - but maybe that's a step too far! No, I think it's more likely to be a secret agent's vehicle, or maybe the car of a dilettante with a secret, crime-fighting alter ego.

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  11. It has turned out very well after the long wait. :)

    Well done for finishing. :)

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    1. It's been 31 years, but I'm glad I've completed this model. Doesn't look too shabby either, does it :-) ?

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  12. Great work Colgar. Your Uncle would have been proud. :)

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    1. I hope he would have been pleased with my efforts, F.E.M. Thanks.

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  13. Kudos to you for getting it done. It doesn't look horribly out of scale, so why not use it?

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