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About maxwell48098

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    Troy, MI
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    A.J. Ramming

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  1. Mailman has come and gone today, and still no magazine. A.J,
  2. Ed, I had a job with Chrysler Corp back in the early '80's where I went to five C/P/D dealers in the Detroit area that accounted for 1% of vehicle sales, and 1% of warranty volume nationally to monitor the quality and durability of products at the dealership level. Colonial Dodge was one of those five dealerships. The picture above is the original dealership, but by the time I called on them, the showroom had moved across the street to a modern facility built around 1972 when the RV business was going gang busters. Behind the new showroom and business offices, they'd built a huge 26 stall RV and truck service center that had been converted into their body shop in 1979. The dealer principal, and the service and parts folks were great people to work with. A.J.
  3. As a little background, I was a Scale Auto (Enthusiast) subscriber from Issue #2 until its end, and was a Fine Scale subscriber starting with issue #1, but dropped my subscription in 1990 went it went all military, naval, and aerospace modelling for which I had no interest. I get several construction and engineering trade journals. There were 9 magazine produced by 3 publishing companies. One of the things two of the trade publishers did about 4 or 5 years ago was to combine several of their magazines into one, but they then changed the title of the remaining publication into one that included both of the prior separate publications. Then inside the publication that had separate inside covers and specific sections for each of the two combined publications. While each publication on its own had between 50-70 pages, the combined new publication now runs 60-70 pages, or roughly a 50% reduction in the former combined total. They kept most of the normal columnists and split editorial direction between the two halves. So each of their subscribers was able to receive and read the material that they enjoyed, but on a smaller scale, while also being exposed to related business and trade news. It is interesting that Scale Auto was older than Fine Scale, but SA was sacrificed. FSM now limits automotive content, much less trucks, to one article, usually in the back. The Fine Scale editors have no interest in automotive subjects as their columns about the models and kits that they own and build are military or aircraft based. The result is that automotive content no longer justifies the price of the magazine or a subscription, and Kalmbach seems to have accepted their decline in readership and subscriptions. Interesting my LHS usually got 25 copies of SA and FSM to sell off the rack. The SA always sold out, but FSM issues languished for 6 months or more. Interestingly, Kalmbach's lead publication today is Model Railroader which was started by Al Kalmbach in the summer of 1933 with the January ,1934 issue. It has been published monthly ever since. Every editor, and columnist at Model Railroader has been a greatly devoted, dyed in the wool model railroader. They demonstrated a psssion for the hobby first, and publishing second, and it showed. And despite having published other train related magazines, Kalmbach never sullied Model Railroader by combining it with any of their other railroad titles. I guess there must be more model train enthusiasts that modelers, but the passion of the editorial staff is just as critical. Thanks for reading my rant. A.J.
  4. My K&S tubing cutter is 35 tears old and still going strong. It's never let me down. A.J.
  5. Interesting that the turbine engine in the original Astro 95 kit that I built was molded in white just like the rest of the kit, and not green as they are doing here. Back at a toy show in Warren MI a few years back, I asked a Round2 rep about the turbine engine tooling from the original Astro 95 kit. I mentioned to the guy I was speaking to that the entire engine and trans were on their own tree and could be released as a stand alone accessory kit or added back into the Astro 95. The rep said he wasn't aware that the turbine engine had been molded in it's own tree, but he said that they'd definitely look into it and thanked me for the info. When I asked, he also mentioned that Round2 had the International S-series truck tooling in their inventory, but not a licensing agreement from Navistar So talking to these guys at hobby shows is always a good thing. A.J.
  6. I bought two. My local hobby shop sold out of his initial order of 24 in five days. He's ordered another dozen right away and is waiting for it to still be filled. A.J.
  7. Hobby Lobby has all boxed model kits on sale at 40% through Saturday, March 13.
  8. Unlike the previous 35 year DVD, the recent 5 year update IS NOT searchable. You have to scroll through each issue. A.J.
  9. I also took the ladder from the Delahaye kit and mounted it on a 1959 Mack B71 chassis to replicate an aerial ladder truck from the Chicago fire department. A.J.
  10. Here is one that I did back in '90's and still have today. A.J.
  11. In the 1:1 automotive world they use a "system" when painting where all of the products are from the same manufacturer that are coordinated in their chemical composition to work together as a syste. All lacquers, or enamels are not the same despite them being lacquer or enamel. I always test my paints for comparability using spoons or scrap parts first. Rather to have a paint job go bad of a plastic spoon, or old/spare plastic part then on the actual model. A.J.
  12. I have a feeling that Hobby Lobby has lowered the price on the Alumilite products that they sell because they are changing the name of the retailers versions of their products to the "Amazing" brand. Looking at Alumilite's web pages shows that the smaller quantity molding and casting products, and kits, now have the "Amazing" brand name and new packaging. My local Hobby lobby has already started selling Amazing casting resin in the model section. They sold Amazing Clear resin in the jewelery for years. Some of the silicone casting kits, like those sold at Hobby Lobby have already changed their branding and packaging. The larger size resin and silicone products seem to still have the Alumilite brand, but with updated labeling. A.J.
  13. I took one of those same exact kits and turned it into this:
  14. One benefit for me was that when a Hobby Lobby opened five years ago near a hobby shop that I frequent, within two weeks every automotive kit was marked down by 20%, some more, along with most military kits. I asked the owner Thursday last year how his sales of kits went in the years since cutting his prices, and he said that kits sales actually doubled over the previous five years when he opened. His prices on most paint and supplies are now down 15-20% below "retail" as well. Needless to say, about the only thing I've bought from Hobby Lobby were Alumilite products with 40% off coupons. FYI - The local hobby shop moved to a larger 10,000 square foot store four years ago now, about double the size of his old location. A.J.
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