Laws of Modeling

The 3 basic laws of modeling.

1st Law - no matter how big your modeling area is, every modeler ultimately works in a 12"x12" square in front of them.

2nd Law - the information you need will only come after you finished your project.

3rd Law - any major conversion or scratch built model is likely to become a standard manufactured kit once you have completed your project.


12"x12"? well, I’m breaking that law. I measured my “workable space”…9"x4". Of course the desk I designed and built is actually 45"x21" open space.

I should probably pull out the work space more often that is another 13"x16". I actually forgot i had that until just now.


I recon I’ll see ya in the pokey too, I’ve done broken the Law! Only 78 sq ft, oops!


I would like this twice if I could. Mostly for the 1/9 BMW and Steib military.


Well that portends to Law 86 - Your stuff will always expand to overfill your workspace, no matter what size it is.


Ok, you do have a point, since the computer is in the other room and I do my editing there. But that only adds another 16 sq ft, still shy the 144.


Is it a law if 9 times out of ten when I drop a piece it lands upside down from how I want to pick it up again?


Law 429 - If you can fit a WIP back into the kit box and close it, and slip it back into the stash, then you may pull another kit out of the stash and it does not count toward the shelf of shame.


I dunno. I can’t abide an unfinished project. I’ve got two stalled kits that are bugging the hell out of me.

The view of my basement bunker from the paint booth thing. I like tidy work spaces because I’m compulsive….

Law 267. A bottle cap dropped on the floor will roll to the furthest reaches and most dusty corner of your shop.

After spending forty five minutes on your hands and knees with a flashlight looking for it, you give up and search for a cap that will fit.

A half an hour later, you reseal the bottle and discover the missing cap was in the R/H pocket of the hoodie you’ve been wearing the entire time.


Law 34, Anything that launches, flings or drops below the level of the work surface is lost to the void.


That is a solid top three.

Law One is not an issue for me. My workspace is tiny and will remain so.

Law Two bites me hard on every project. I am unwilling to invest in the many requisite books and research time to make a better go if it.

Law Three is also not an issue for me. I don’t play in that league.


One “law” I found out is that if it’s on sale or you see it, buy it.

There are modelers who say that kits will be reissued or recast. Nope! Not for resin. They think that it’s “law” that if you miss it, it will reappear again. Nope! The “law” is that if you missed it, you missed it.

I just missed an ETSY kit sale for 30% off because I hesitated to purchase. 30% off and FREE shipping from overseas is huge good deal! I contacted the seller asking him when his next sale will be, so I might see 30% off again as the kit is 3D printed and not OOTB. But it is “law” that if one missed the sale, one missed the sale.

So if you see it, and can afford it, bite. (So I took advantage of another ETSY 30% off seller’s sale with FREE shipping because these ETSY sales are on countdown timers. Caveat…ETSY sells some really awesome 3D printed kits that you won’t find on Shapeways, plastic, or in resin).

Another “law” is that with model kits, it’s similar to Moore’s Law regarding CPUs in that with CPU, technology is exponential in CPU speed and processing power as technology gets better and advances. New CPUs and chips can cram more microprocessors and gates into CPUs, increasing functionality, speed, power, and computations.

The same is true with model kits. Kits of 2023 are way more detailed and accurate than kits from 1980s and 1990s, obviously. The technology, skills, engineering, casting, and machinery and molds are way better now than years and decades past. eBay is populated with vintage pre-1990s plastic and resin kits that are long OOP and don’t sell because no one wants them due to their lower quality and casting no matter how rare they are.

So when shopping with “kit technology law,” a keen eye to detail and accuracy grows with age and experience, just like the computer processing power of Moore’s Law…new kit releases and newer CPUs get better in the future, not worse.


This one bites me regularly. For example, I missed a window of opportunity on many World War I tank models. As stock declined, prices spiked. Another example is Takom’s M102A1 and M102A2. It seems like many companies now produce short runs to encourage quick sales.

This one brutalized me for about 6 months before I learned my lesson. My last 5 model acquisitions were manufactured in 2010, 2017, 2022, 2023, and 2023. They are all beautiful, all-in-the-box models. However, I have also discovered that some modern models over shoot my needs with regards complication. I would rather over shoot than under shoot, though.


I don’t know about the Law but is that Osama?




Humm, just “hanging” around I see.


Should put a snorkel on him. Add a Saddam plushie, just “hanging around”. :rofl:


At this very moment I am trolling eBay for old ESCI and Italeri LAVs because I want cheap with plastic tires. So much for learning the “newer is better” and “you get what you pay for” lessons.

Buying 'em is a whole lot easier than building 'em. Oh, hey! That may be a modeling law!

Step away from the PayPal button!


I invest a silly amount of time and money in books and research: doesn’t make a whit of difference. Go figure.



I would submit a re-phrasing of law one that the required volume of shop space is inversely proportional to the area of desk space available for actual work. Further, the shop volume required is always equal to or greater than 1.25 times the existing volume.

Another rule is that no matter how extensive the search, sacrifices to the carpet monster will only ever turn up after you have either 1) painstakingly scratched a replacement, 2) ordered and paid for a replacement (typically immediately after check-out, but always prior to delivery of the replacement), or 3) said “F* it” and completed the model without the missing part.



You forgot the part about asking forum members if they have a spare…