Storage Shelf Archaeological Dig

That is exactly the guy mentioned in this scenario; but first apologies as I’ve posted this a couple of times over the years, so please forgive me for doing so again (you’ll probably think me a one-trick pony regarding anecdotes, but this is just to prove that the “experts” don’t always triumph):

Several years ago when I was exhibiting with a club, a fellow club member was a serving Army Air Corps Warrant Officer; he produced a series of exquisite helicopter models. A Lynx of his came under especial scrutiny from, how shall I say, a somewhat earnest member of the modelling public. Eventually, after looking this way and that, he opined, “I think you’ll find that this particular helicopter was not fitted with the dooberry-ferkin.” (forgive me but I cannot remember what component or piece of kit he actually mentioned).

Came the reply, from my oppo Tony, “Well, it was there yesterday when I flew it”. Boom!



Well, actually, Ackchyually and all it’s variations are what I use to counter those Panzer Polizei types. As in: “well actually, it looked like that when I took this picture!”

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Someone NEEDS to sculpt that composite Polizei investigator portrait and make a little diorama of him examining a model. Could use those tiny wargames tanks for the Grievous Error Panzer Model. Like a Panther in that Humbrol Afrika Korps orange color.

Make sure the T-shirt is wrinkled with some grease spots and the figure has socks with sandals.

Put a little engraved badge on it with something like: “Go ahead. Make my day. Try telling me THIS is ‘inaccurate!’”

Something like that.

@BootsDMS Brian, that’s pure gold! I won’t ever get tired of seeing that story recounted!

I had a similar encounter with the Panzer Police. Had taken a model of an M1A1HA Abrams to a club meeting and got nailed for the weathering of the rear exhaust. Was told by the Experten my model was all wrong the exhaust would NEVER look like that etc. I promptly produced a reference pictures of a Desert Storm Abrams that showed the rear of the tank that looked like this…


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He spent the next five minutes trying to argue the actual tank was wrong and shouldn’t look like it looked!



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Rule 4: There is no Rule 4.

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…and so many folks thought that was a LOVE song :musical_note: :flushed: back in the day!

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The nice thing is,that the exhaust on both vehicles show the same pattern of weathering. Albeit one sooth the other rusty… :face_in_clouds:

Seems appropriate with all the Panzer Police discussion to share this encounter…this is too long so don’t read it.


In 2002, Dragon released #6164 Kursk Panther D. Despite being an adult, I was bouncing off the walls with excitement when this kit was announced. There’s no words to describe how big of a deal this kit was to me in 2002! The only kits that I’ve ever been as excited to see in my life were Tamiya’s Late Tiger I and Panther G. This proved to be the last kit I have ever truly gotten excited with anticipation for counting the days until it released!

So I purchased three copies at the local hobby shop instead of the standard two copies. I had very serious intentions of building two for AMPS & IPMS model contests. One kit of the three was for spare parts to ensure no delays occurred if a part was damaged or I made a mistake. That extra kit also allowed “cherry picking” the best molded part for the build on the bench. Having that extra security allowed building at warp speed and taking chances pushing the kit.

Back in the day getting a new release built FIRST with good basic construction in Region 3 tended to help the models perform better at contests. This kit was new and the judges weren’t as familiar it’s kits flaws as say the mostly 20 year old 1970’s Tamiya kits I’d typically built and competed with very successfully. This would be my own personal modeling breakthrough much like Kursk was supposed to have been from the German point of view. Like 1/35 scale wanna be Gen Erich von Manstein, I too was about to get my tail feathers blistered by “Kursk”.

According all the aftermarket junk I could find at the time was also purchsed. After much arm twisting, I’d built a detailed JS3 instead primarily out of the box for contests. That model had scored several Best Armor awards including one at the R3 Regional. I had No Doubt armed with passion for the subject and spare parts this Panther D build would turn out at least as good!

Competition was a very big deal in those days to my core group of model building friends and myself.

In a matter of days, the Panther progressed to this point…

While drilling out both guide teeth per link and filing to shape…one of the accuracy detectives of the Panzer Police caught wind of what was going on at our clubs second monthly meeting.

This was directly reported to Der Modellieren Furher!

Der Modelling Furher immediately confronted me about those hollowed out guide teeth.

He was visiblely upset :rage: :disappointed: :rage:

He explained what a fool I was for engaging in such folly. I should just slap a set of Fruilmodel tracks on the kit and move on. He said I’d never power though all the links, they wouldn’t be consistent and even if I did some how managed to complete the task it wouldn’t look as good as a set of Fruilmodel’s.

Being an arrogant jacka$$/$marta$$/a$$ at heart I replied something like “…but you yourself explicitly explained to me a why a well executed detailed model normally stomps an out of the box built model into the dust on the contest table…shouldn’t a well excuted set of modified drilled out guide teeth kit tracks display superior skill set compared to slapping a set of Fruilmodel’s on this beoytch and help stomp the competition?”

The look and the silence was deafening…he walked away. The Panzer Police called an emergency meeting. Something needed to be done.

After the meeting over the next week I got a barrage of phone calls and visits from 'concerned citizens." Lots well you will run out of track links cause you’re bound to screw up a lot of them doing that. Me being an a$$hat pointed out I sure didn’t have that issue with the Nashorn that I did the same drill out procedure with that won an out of the box award at the 97 IPMS Nationals.

When they learned of the back up kits…for just in case…pandemonium ensued. One guy tried to buy the back up Panther D kits from me for more than what I’d paid for them. The kit was popular and had quickly sold out in our area etc.

Then the barrage of nitpicks and this needs corrected that needs corrected started.

At the time, I couldn’t see it but in hindsight I realized i should have kept the kit home and my big mouth closed. I’d just added fuel to a firestorm :fire:

The fire didn’t stop until until my mojo was gone. That happened one night after a hours long phone call explaining in depth why the Kursk Panther couldn’t actually be a Kursk Panther. Dragon had screwed the kit up mixing A & D features together. I was given an extensive list of Dragon’s goof’s that required fixing if the model was to be a Kursk Panther. Naturally, my model had progressed beyond the stage it was possible to fix those issues. That’s why I was being told in detail what was fundamentally wrong with the kit. My good friend had even contacted some of his friends in the aftermarket business with their own research to ensure he had his facts right.

He was absolutely :100: correct :clap: :+1:

…and so after the phone call, I boxed up the Kursk Panther D from the work bench and headed own the stairs from the gameroom/hobby room. My wife followed asking what was going on. She’d watched TV in the gameroom a lot of the time when I’d worked on the Panther D and was familiar with it. I didn’t say a word, other than taking some trash out. I went outside and tossed the kit into the trash and ended the debacle with final closure.

At the next club meeting the whole Panzer Police squad was in my face wanting to know the latest on the Kursk Panther D. The looks on their faces was priceless when I explained due to my model being hopeless as a Kursk Panther D the model had been disposed of in the trash.

Shock. No Really what’s up with the Panther?

It’s in a landfill somewhere.


Then someone wanted to know if they could have the tracks.

Sure if you can find them in the landfill you can have them.

…and to be honest The Model Furher wanted to have a side conversation. He was upset at what had happened and sworn that sabotage had NEVER been his intention. He literally became as upset as I had been when the kit got tossed out. At the time that mostly fell on deaf ears ad my attitude was if it can’t be what it supposed to be it should destroyed. I thanked him for doing me a favor since I wouldn’t be wasting anymore time on the stupid project. In hindsight, I’m sure he wasn’t trying to wreck my build.

Little did I realize at the time this event ensured I wouldn’t touch a Panther or Tiger kit for 21 years and counting. To this day touching a Panther or Tiger kit causes an uneasy feeling and stress…stupid but true.

I’m sharing that because now I think exposing this personal demon to sunlight may help banish it.

…anyway after we’d talked and I’d cooled off unknown to me, my wife dug the Kursk Panther D box out of trash can and put it back in my stash. Later told me she just couldn’t leave it as clearly that model was a very big deal to me…

The finished tracks.

They’ve broken apart over the last 20 years during several moves bouncing around.

So what’s the moral of the story?

Looking back through time the moral is: I like many modelers was way too thin skinned, too volatile

and too serious. I also didn’t understand you can only be friends with the competition up to a certain point. Most embarrassing of all is I think now it’s possible to a fair degree they were actually (yes I said it :sweat_smile:) trying to help but my OCD and Asperger’s colored my perspective and perceptions.


Somehow I can’t help thinking that some of those other modelers had OCD and a touch of Aspergers as well. Not being able to feel when enough is enough and apply the old ‘Live and let live’ concept.
When someone can’t take the hint that comments are not welcome anymore.

There are plenty of kits with various issues in my stash but I’ll build and enjoy them anyway.
Some issues may get fixed, others will be ignored.


Robin, I think you’re probably in the ballpark to right on the money.

Anyway, I’m pretty sure there’s several valid yet unflattering reasons one of my nicknames was Darth Wader



Sounds to me like it’s high time to get that Panther back on the bench!

I found out early that contests were anything but a fair event. As a teenager I frequented a model shop in the newly-opened mall on the edge of town, where they started an annual contest that offered prizes. The tank entries were all displayed in the glass shop-counter cabinet, lit by harsh fluorescent lights, and stayed on show for a couple weeks before judging. (Planes hung from the ceiling, but I wasn’t interested in those…) The first year I built the ancient Tamiya Panther complete with missing inner road wheels and garish Tamiya-inspired camo and weathering in the form of Earth-colour dry brushing. I decorated it with the entire squad of Tamiya’s then-new tank riders, and won a prize! I was so happy I didn’t care that the heat of the lights warped the barrel. The following year I pushed the bounds of late-seventies kitbashing by turning Tamiya’s 8-Rad into the earlier 6-Rad, my first foray into sheet plastic. It was very comprehensive and as well-researched as my local library could support. But it was in Panzer Grey, without a dozen riders, and I couldn’t bring myself to weather it heavily lest it hide all the surgery. It didn’t even place. The winner was a sloppy piece of junk, but it had bright colours and figures, all badly painted. I was so upset, and after the sobbing stopped I decided I’d show ‘em! I took the roughest kit I could find - Monogram’s 1:32 Sherman Calliope "Screamin’ Mimi" - and went to town on it, adding a crew kitbashed from the Tamiya squad that came with their halftrack doing all sorts of maintenance tasks. I even made the hatches operational by melting-in some brass dollhouse hinges! Sadly I never found out if it would succeed because I started university and the kit sat 95% completed for another two decades. I eventually finished it and it sits on my shelf, long after that shop and its biased contests had faded away…

When I got back into modelling I decided not to bother with contests, and while I wrestle my inner Experten with each build, I happily tune out any external criticism. I’ve judged at a number of shows, often having to clash with others who might otherwise offer bias towards certain types of model, or certain paint schemes, while perhaps overlooking “minor” issues like build quality or sheer effort to convert one model into another. I like to think I’ve brought a small amount of fairness to every contest I’ve judged!

I build for my own fun, not for anyone else’s praise.


Tom, converting the old Tamiya 8 rad into a 6 rad isn’t surgery or rocket science, its the most demanding and difficult of all excerises…Pure Rocket Surgery!

I applaud :clap:

Hmmm…after the current Pz III N wraps maybe that old dog should get its day and go back on the bench. I should have some time to finish assembly before spring.


Wade, I’d certainly enjoy seeing it!

As for the 6-Rad, looking back I’m just glad I didn’t realise at the start how big a project it would be! I wonder if it still lives in the attic of the old family home?..


Darth Wader, Strikes Back aka closure for #6164 from above.

Added to the new storage shelf a few days ago.


Fun stories. Been to a lot of those places. Still have my Panzer Leader and Star Fleet Battles. Kid models are long gone. Set 'em on fire.


Some of mine survive, and I think I know where they are: I am SO not going to unearth them…
Around last Christmas I had a search which turned up some real antiquities; I seemed to recall I had some vintage Xtracolour at the back of the bottom level of an old austerity-era metal kitchen storage unit. I didn’t find them but I did come across a couple of tinlets from manufacturer called “Gloy”. Underneath them was a box containing a bit of Roman tile, a chunk of Amphora handle, and a plastic bag full of tiny flakes of shale which when stored away would have been large chunks depicting Plant fossils (taken from a local creek now in a culvert under a huge embankment for a “new” road about three decades old).




I would still love to build the Monogram Naval Aircraft. The had folding wings, retractable landing gear, turrets rotated and doors opened on the Avenger and you could drop a torpedo opening the bay doors. They had pilot and crew figures, sliding canopies, and reasonable detail. You could build them finescale and I’m sure now with AM stuff make a nice static model, but you could play with them. I still think that sort of thing is still needed and they only cost a couple weeks allowance ie less than $5 then, maybe less than $15 now. Those were good times. Their army vehicles were the same way. Just no Shermans, only M-48’s, but the halftracks, deuce and a half, jeep with 37mm, and the weasel were fun to build, later to paint and still play with. Not to mention the US GI’s set with 18 figures for less than two bucks. Oh Lah!