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Update on Issue #206

Itʻs September already (2018), and yes, still no new issue of Model Cars Magazine. Still doing the best I can at getting everything together, hopefully another couple of weeks and all the troubles are over.

Thanks for staying with us!

Gregg

Atlantis Model Co. buys Revell-Monogram USA Toolings

435 BROOK AVENUE UNIT -16 DEER PARK, NY 11729

** PRESS RELEASE **

Contact: President: Peter Vetri FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Tel. (631) 499-6733
Email: sales@atlantis-models.com

Atlantis Models
“Preserving the Past while Building the Future”

LONG ISLAND, NY, August 29th 2018 – Atlantis Model Co., manufacturer of plastic models and toys has purchased the tooling for many plastic model kits from the new owners of Revell, Revell Inc. USA-Blitz Partners. These molds were from the tooling banks of Monogram, Revell, Aurora and Renwal, some dating back to the early 1950s. They were stored in Revell’s Elk Grove facility in the great state of Illinois and represent Automotive, Aircraft, Ships, Military, Figures, Space and many other interesting subjects.

Peter Vetri, President of Atlantis, states, “It’s a lifelong dream to own this historic tooling and archive material related to these molds; to be able to preserve the tooling is a real honor. We look forward to reissuing many classics that have not been available in quite some time. All of the model kits will be made here in the USA and all the tooling and the Archive have been moved from Elk Grove to our facilities in Deer Park, NY. I would personally like to thank Julie Dombrowski, Edward Sexton, Lou Aguilera, Chris Borris and the legendary Ken Funk for the hard work they did at Revell over the years and especially the last few months which were a difficult closure for them.”

The deal was worked out shortly after the Hobbico bankruptcy was settled out. It was a very smooth transaction. It took about 2 months to complete from start to finish. Rick DelFavero, VP of operations, states, “I think model enthusiasts around the world will be pleasantly surprised in the coming years to see what the tooling bank and Historical Archive contains. We believe our releases will appeal not only to people that saw the original issues of these kits, but also to a new generation that can help expand and grow the hobby!”

Look for kits to hit store shelves 1stqtr 2019, our 10 Year Anniversary!

About Atlantis Models

Atlantis Toy and Hobby was founded in 2009 by Peter Vetri and Rick DelFavero with some guidance from former Aurora Project Manager Andrew P. Yanchus. With a combined 60 years of hobby experience, not only are we lifelong hobbyists, we know what it takes to run a successful hobby manufacturing business. Atlantis Toy and Hobby has sold thousands of products all over the world since 2009. Atlantis is an MDR company, Manufacturer-Distributor-Retailer, offering World Class Knowledge and Service in the Hobby Industry.

2018 Update

Yes, the magazine is still late. It’s the end of January, 2018, and I had hoped to have #205 at the printer by now. I’m about three days away from that goal, so that’s a good thing! If I keep up this blazing schedule, I’ll be able to do the six issues this year, and start on the Annual Contest Issue, which will be a stand-alone issue. Remember, I’m doing everything myself, from the mag, the bookkeeping, data, subscribers/circulation, ad sales, dealer sales, web site, everything but the forum. So, please, have some patience. I have been getting a lot of requests for refunds, and if you paid me, or rather Model Cars Magazine, LLC, and not Golden Bell, I will honor your request, delete all your info, data, and sadly, access, and send you back your pro-rated subscription monies. I can’t refund any Golden Bell Press subs, I never received those monies.

Thank you, everyone, who has sent emails of support. I will make this work, even with back surgery #8 now being scheduled. I will have to go through one more round of injections in March, then probably set up surgery for May or June.

So, Mahalo Nui Loa.

Thank you for your support and patience.

Issue #205 will be one of the last issues with Harry’s work in it, and it’s been real sad working on this issue. Every time I open up one of his layouts, I see him. Miss you my friend!

Changes

Model Cars Magazine
Restructuring/Publication Schedule

First off, no, we are not shutting down Model Cars Magazine. Yes, it probably would be a lot easier, less headaches, and the smarter thing to do, but we don’t quit. What we have decided is to restructure and overhaul the printing/publication schedule for Model Cars.

Since 2001, we have printed nine issues a year. We had started off the first two years doing only six issues, but the magazine took off, and we went up to nine issues a year. With Golden Bell Press in Denver shutting down in December 2015, the magazine was dumped in our laps, lock, stock, and barrel. There were over 2,400 subscribers, about 1,900 dealers/hobby shop copies, and at that time, around 500 copies sent for distribution through major newsstands/bookstores with a distributor (Ingram). So with a print run of 5,000 copies, it looked like it would be something we could do. About a week after the turnover, Ingram increased their order from 500 copies, to 1,800 copies, literally overnight. This would be great for the circulation/numbers for the magazine, but there was of course increased costs involved. So from a normal print run of 5,000 copies, we were now at 6,500 copies.

We were under an obligation to fulfill all the existing subscriptions, with no cash flow coming in. Dealer/hobby shops are billed with an invoice after the magazines are sent out, and they pay their invoices after the magazines are sold.

We were spending about $10,000 per issue to print, polybag, and mail each issue, and we have done four issues since the closing of Golden Bell. Model Cars was on a nine issue a year subscription base. So, after a year, we have made a decision. In hindsight, always 20/20 mind you, we should have done this at the beginning, but that is just the way things have worked out.

Change In Frequency/Printing Per Year
We will be going from nine issues a year down to six issues a year, and the Annual Contest Issue will now be a separate stand-alone issue, NOT included with the annual subscriptions. We are raising the cover price of the magazine, from $5.50 to $6.50 (it has been the same price for over 17 years), and annual six issues a year subscriptions will be $23 per year. DON’T SCREAM AND YELL. You will not be ripped off, lose any issues, etc. When the change happened, Golden Bell was using a proprietary system for the subscriptions. We didn’t have $6,000-7,000 to pay for a dedicated subscription software system, so we are using simple Excel spreadsheets to do the database/subscriber information. When the data came over, the expirations were in months, and since we knew we were behind already, we changed the months over to the corresponding issue number. So, if you have eight issues left on your subscription, you will still get eight issues. It may take longer (please, no sarcastic comments/jokes inserted here), but you will get ALL of your eight issues, irregardless of the date/month of the issue. The new rate will be $23 per year, for six issues. At the old rate, nine issues were $34.65, which breaks down to $3.85 per copy/issue. At the new rate, $23 for six issues, that comes out to $3.83 per copy/issue. So basically, your subscription base rate is staying the same, albeit with a two cents difference.

We are also putting the distribution through Ingram (Barnes & Noble and other newsstands) on hold for now, until we get back up to speed. We had thought about just carrying on with just printing and mailing to the paid subscribers, but that would be like shooting ourselves in the foot.

So, yes, we should have done this before/sooner, but that is what it is, as they say. Yes, there are a lot of things we could have done different/better, it has been a learning curve, for sure. It would be a lot less headaches if we just walked away from the $50,000 that we have invested so far in this, and try and live “normal” lives, but then, we are not normal, right?

We are not doing this for the money. We are doing this because we love the hobby, plain and simple. This hobby has done so much for us, and this is our way of giving back to it.

Thank you so much, everyone, who has stood behind us, and next to us, along this journey. Model Cars has been published for over 17 years, and we hope to see it published, and printed, for another 20 years at least!

 

Mahalo nui loa

Gregg & Darryl

 

The GSL Championship Experience

By Mark S. Gustavson

The GSL International Scale Vehicle Championship and Convention didn’t start at the level of competition and service that it enjoys today.  “GSL” – as the event is known so often – grew out of a failed competition that I tried to organize in the Midwest from Salt Lake City.  My inexperience and arrogance caused some hard feelings on the part of a few builders, and led to the creation of now-famed NNL Nationals in Toledo, Ohio.  That experience taught me a lot and, in 1979, I started the GSL Championship, which has now grown to an international presence in our great hobby thanks to the help of a first-rate bunch of guys and gals who, for the last thirty-four years, have worked tirelessly to develop, improve, and present this great event.  Please go here to learn more about the formation of GSL:  http://www.customclinic.com/News/NNL/nnl.html   Let’s talk about the GSL Championship:

The Concept Behind the Event:

GSL exists because of a desire to provide a professional setting for serious scale automotive builders to compete in a hospitable format where their efforts would be rewarded, where no one building style would be favored over another, and where the highest levels of the competitive spirit could co-exist with friendship, shared techniques and know-how, and where a respect for everyone’s work would prevail.  Since 1979, GSL has hosted almost 620 different builders, all of whom come to GSL to compete in good spirts, and have shared their modeling techniques and learned from others, and enjoyed the life-long friends we’ve all made at the Championship.  Newcomers are warmly welcomed, and often do exceptionally well in the competition – a small handful of first-time competitors in 2011 took home nearly a quarter of the total awards!

GSL is an attitude – a mind set – about building that seeks and celebrates convivial and high-end building, shared ideas and techniques, a willingness to learn, and to commitment to constantly improving levels of craftsmanship, while competing for the prestige of winning.

The Competition: 

I hear it too often: “I don’t think I am ready to compete at GSL.”  This remark comes from all sorts of builders who believe, mistakenly, that successfully competing at the Championship is reserved only for those who spend many hundreds of hours and dollars on their entry.  While Best of Show winners do typically invest considerable time into their entries, placing in a Class isn’t an ancient art practiced by wizards, but merely requires a good “theme” for your entry, matched with thoughtful planning and meticulous construction, and attention to detail.

We offer nineteen Classes that cover every possible automotive interest, from the typical Street Rod and Custom models through the more esoteric “If I Had Styled It” Class where the builder assumes the role of a design chief for a manufacturer and presents a styling study of what that specific manufacturer might/could have marketed in a specific year.  We also offer other Classes such as this year’s Group 13 Class, where a designated model (this time, the AMT 1949 Ford Coupe) can be built in any style but using parts and materials that were available in 1978 or earlier, and the Common Kit Class (this time, the Monogram 1958 Thunderbird) where every competitor starts with the same kit, then builds it in whatever style he or she wishes.

GSL Judging is an interesting process which is based on an evaluation of two key elements – balancing the effort undertaken by the builder mixed with an evaluation of how well the model was built – its craftsmanship.  As you might expect, surgically-clean building is a requirement for successful competition.  But, that isn’t all there is to it:  GSL is also all about taking risks in the design and construction of a winning model:  an exquisitely well-done model that takes no risk in detail or construction (for instance, just a model built straight from the box with only details added) won’t beat another model – equally well done – where the builder opened the doors and trunk, added full wiring, operational suspension and other “risky” construction elements.  By similar analysis, a model that takes a lot of risks but isn’t built to high craftsmanship levels won’t prevail against a really well-rendered, detailed kit-based model.  Wise builders take risks and then render their work to a very high craftsmanship standard.

Judging starts on late Saturday afternoon and takes typically all night to complete. Bob Wick and I head up a three-person the Judging Team with a third individual – this year, Don Strong – being the third judge.  We also have Mike Smith (who’s restored cars for decades) available as a consultant to check on technical aspects of entries where questions come up. Seventy-Six Class Awards, Seven Master Awards and eight privately-sponsored awards are presented at the Awards Breakfast on Sunday morning

The Convention: 

While the competition is the reason for the Championship, we also offer a lot of other activities for those in attendance. We open the event with a plenary session on Thursday morning followed by instructional seminars (on a wide array of topics) that run for the next two days, culminating with a presentation by the International Model Car Builders’ Museum on Friday night.  A Trade Show is presented early Saturday morning, and tours of the Museum start Saturday at Noon and run through 4:00 p.m.  The Contest Room is closed for Judging, and everyone reconvenes for breakfast on Sunday morning.

We have a staff of 11 people that administer the event, handle registration, assist with the photography of models, administer the Trade Show and Seminars and the hundreds of other tasks required to run an event of this size and reputation.  We’ll all wear “GSL Staff” badges – come up and talk with any of us about any questions, ideas, or concerns you have, or just to talk.

GSL is nearly four days of intense competition, but it’s also about friendships – both renewed and new – attending seminars, learning more about the Museum, and participating in a Tradition that goes back to 1979.  Typically, entrants from three foreign counties, and from 14 or so States are present.  GSL is the longest-standing competitive event serving just the model car hobby, and there’s a convivial atmosphere where newcomers are welcomed as if they’d been competing here since the earliest years.

If you’d like to learn more about the Championship, please visit our website at: http://www.gslchampionship.org/ If you’d like to view videos of historic seminars, or download one or all of the books and pamphlets were offer, without charge, visit the GSL Library Page found at http://www.gslchampionship.org/Library/library.html   Of course, past attendees,  and newcomers should all read the “Late Breaking News” page found at:  www.gslchampionship.org/News/news.html as well as the entire site.

Please join us May 2-5, 2013 for the Twenty-Fourth GSL International Scale Vehicle Championship and Convention!  We look forward to seeing you there!

August 1, 2012

Well, it’s August already. School is back in session. The web site is purring along. Can you believe that in only a week, there has been over 4,000 visitors to the site already? I installed new tracking software, that includes an app for the iPad, that lets me see in real time how the site is doing. It is amazing! You may have also noticed the new banner ad on the top of the page for our friends over at Hobby Link Japan. I hope to have a lot more advertisers, links, and resources on the site over the next few weeks. I do have to appologize to anyone who may have visited the site during one of my theme changes. I am still trying to get the final look of the site down, and once in a while I’ll have to try a change while the site is live, which will make your eyeballs go all crazy, just a warning, that’s all. It’s not something wrong with the site, or your eyes, I’m just still trying out new themes and ideas. It seems to be working pretty good, but I still have a lot more clean up to do to the site, and I have to thank Richard To my web site guy for putting up with all my questions, problems, and never-ending HELP ME!!! emails.

 

 

July 28, 2012

Well, the new web site is up and it’s live.

Well, live, is that the right word for this? I feel like I’ve been killing myself working on this for the past week.

Not bad for a week’s worth of work though.

I think the main parts of it are there, and it works okay, so far. There will be some glitches of course, but I have a lot better handle on this system then I did the other one. Now, back to building models!

July 24, 2012

Well, the new web site is coming along. I have added some more new pages, sections, and links, and it seems to be working great. There is still a lot more work to be done, and I have to update the old Club Directory that was on the old web site. If you have updates to it, addresses, names, links, websites, emails, etc., please let me know.
Mahalo!