Pete J.

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About Pete J.

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    MCM Ohana
  • Birthday 11/05/1949

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  • Location San Marcos, Ca
  • Full Name Pete Johnson

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Pete J.'s Activity

  1. Pete J. added a post in a topic Why no kit plating chrome?   

    I have to reiterate what Pete W. said.  The chrome will not cover anything.  In fact it makes it worse.  You need an absolute clean, polished, scratch free part to get great chrome results, it doesn't matter if you are sending it out or using one of the chrome paints.  Chrome is the worst for highlighting defects!
  2. Pete J. added a post in a topic What makes a model "show quality"?   

    The later posts made me go back to the beginning as look at the question being asked.  "but what are some of the things that make a car great and will be able to hold up at a model show?" This modeler is not looking at other modelers and their motivation but looking for what makes a model stand out at a show.  I think we have covered that rather well, but the main thing in my mind is to do the best you can do, on every part of the model and realize that no one has yet to build the "perfect" model.  Everyone has skills that can be improved, techniques unused and creativity yet to be tapped. 
    Every time I go to a show, I try to walk away with at least one or two things I didn't know before and then apply them to the next model.  Like most I started with some paint brushes and little bottles of paint, and hobby knife, a tube of glue and a cheap kit.  Over time that has evolved into a garage full of parts, tools, compressors, mills, lathes, airbrushes and boxes of very expensive models.  The point is, I have evolved in the hobby and every new skill brings me happiness.  I love building and creating.  I love the challenge of building a model better than the last one.  Going to competitions and looking at what others are doing facilitates that.  Yea, I have my share of trophies, but they are in a box in the corner.  What is out front is the next model along with it's challenges and unfulfilled promise of fun and creativity.  That is were the fun happens.  Contests are the school room that lets you know what you need to learn.
  3. Pete J. added a post in a topic What makes a model "show quality"?   

    This subject brings to mind and old joke. When asked for directions, "How do you get to Carnegie Hall?"  an old musician replied, "practice!"  Well this is true, but only to an extent.  You don't have to have a perfect model, only one that is better than anything else on the table. 
    Bob is quite right.  You start with the basics.  You get rid of everything that doesn't belong on the real deal.  Mold lines, ejector pin marks, miss sharpened pieces, flash and anything else that doesn't belong.  You take care of all the gaps, creases and panel lines. 
    Then you get to the paint.  No boogers, hairs or dust in the finish.  No fish eyes or orange peel.  An even color throughout(unless you are doing an intentional fade).  Highly polished with no irregularities or scratches. 
    All the bright work the same as the paint.  Foil or chrome paint even and without flaws.  Any black trim smooth, even and no jagged edges. 
    Then make sure that you have all four wheels on the ground and the tires aligned.  If the wheels are posed in a turn, the steering wheel should be turned in that direction. 
    The engine should look like the real deal.  Wires drooping as they should and in scale.  No tarantellas sitting on top of the distributor.  No magically floating generators or A/C compressors.  
    An on and on.......... I short, make everything as good as you can, period.  No short cuts, no "it's ok" and nothing less than your personal best.
    Then when you put it on the table, listen up!  There will be critiques.  Some polite, others not so much, but any time someone has something to say, they have seen something you haven't.  You may disagree with them, but look at your model again and see if it could be improved and try to do so on the next model.
    Last, find a mentor or two or three.  Modelers are generally a group of sharing, well meaning people who love to help you improve or just share technique.  Don't be afraid to ask questions.  At contests do two things.  Judge the category you compete in.  Critically look at all the models on the table and decide what is good and what isn't.  When you find the best model on the table, go talk to the builder and ask questions.  Chances are the builder is quite proud of his model and would love to talk about it.  When the contest is over, find the judge and ask them to evaluate your model for you.  Don't ask them "Why didn't I win!"  That is rude and will get you no were.  Ask them what they saw on your model and hear what they say.  Don't argue!  The contest is over!  Let is go and try to learn something!
    Oh an last, don't listen to all the accolades on this or any other board.  People have learned to keep quiet on the board and only complement you no matter what your build looks like.  Not their fault!  To many flame jobs and raving diatribes no matter how well intentioned your build.  Take the complements with a grain of salt!
    This last part is the hardest.  My best and worst experience was doing that.  One of the great model builders, Drew Hierwater, judged my model early in my career and he did me the favor of critiquing it for me.  Hardest thing I ever did was to sit down at the bench and tear, what I though was a great model, apart and redo it.  After doing that, I learned so much and the redone model won me an all expense paid trip to Japan, all thanks to a session with a great judge and person. 
  4. Pete J. added a post in a topic Container for Soaking in Super Clean   

    You made me think about it and so I checked and both Super Klean and the brake fluid are the same type of container, code 5 HDPP.  The container does not have a code on it but it causes me to wonder what the heck was going on because Super Klean was fine for several years  but brake fluid was not even over night.  I don't get it.  
  5. Pete J. added a post in a topic Container for Soaking in Super Clean   

    I had some good OXOX plastic containers that I use for quite a while for alcohol and Super Klean without problem.  Then one day I use one for brake fluid and came out the next morning to a puddle of brake fluid on the bench.  No big fractures, just a series of tiny and I do mean tiny hairline cracks that the fluid seeped through.  That is when I went to glass.
  6. Pete J. added a post in a topic Container for Soaking in Super Clean   

    Interesting that they talk about not using glass.  I wonder if anyone has any info on that.  I have been using wide mouth Mason jars for years without an issue.  If I were to guess, I can only think of two issues.  The first would be a safety issue if you were to drop the jar.  The shattering and splashing would be quite dangerous.  The other may be braking from heat generated from the process if non-ferrous metals were involved.  I have never seen an interaction with glass and super klean before.  Any comments?
  7. Pete J. added a post in a topic What is your Favorite Auto or Truck Program??   

    If I were to classify the auto shows, I like the ones that make me feel like I am learning something.  Watching guys do a half  $$$ed job of slapping something together really doesn't appeal to me.  I am the same way with home improvement shows.  I like to see people applying their craft at a very high level and telling us, without arrogance, how they do it.  To that end Gas Monkey, House Crashers and others don't fall into that classification.  Phantom Works, Wheeler Deals and Holmes on Homes fall into that group. 
  8. Pete J. added a post in a topic What is your Favorite Auto or Truck Program??   

    I liked it well enough to by the DVD's many years ago but always felt the de Cadenet is going to #3ll  because nobody and I mean nobody deserves to drive this many great historical autos in one life time.  Oh, and this is my favorite clip of de Cadenet!
    Caution- There is course language at the end of this video by Mr. de Cadenet.  If you are offended by that sort of thing, please do not click on the link!  I am sorry, I couldn't find an edited version.
  9. Pete J. added a post in a topic What is your Favorite Auto or Truck Program??   

    I like to watch Phantom works, Wheeler Dealer(Brit version), Chasing classic cars, and Auto week.  The real issue with a lot of the others is their success.  They start out as humble real guy car chasers and when they get a name and some success the morph into stupid rich guys.  I think Richard Rawlings is a good example.  When he tackled restoring a Ferrari, that was just plain scary! His show is now "Look at me!  I'm stupid rich!" 
  10. Pete J. added a post in a topic Inside of a Tamiya rattle can(photo)   

    I agree with the basic use of the rattle cans.  I use them frequently, but there are times when only an airbrush will do or there is another reason to decant the paint.  This was such a case.  I generally just spray primer from the can and then dump the little remaining at the end of the can into a bottle to save it.  However, this time I needed to tint the primer blue.  I won't go into the reasons here as that is another thread but as far as I know there isn't any way to tint paint still in the can.  I don't suggest that there is a "right" way and a "wrong" way.  I do the things I do because it works for me.  I always like to hear other options because I have discarded a lot of the ways I use to do it, because someone had a better idea.  In the battle of rattle can v airbrush I would say this.  An airbrush can do anything a rattle can is able to do, but a rattle can can't do everything a airbrush can.
  11. Pete J. added a post in a topic Models at the Office?   

    Ok, not this is a little different, but not so much.  In 1972 I and 66 other second Lieutenants became class 74-02 at Laughlin AFB.  We were in two different squadrons, one for T-37 training and then a second one for advanced training in the T-38.  At some point in the training in each squadron we held a model building contest and put all of the models on the ceiling of the ready room.  Needless to say the ceiling was covered in them, so yes, I have taken a model to the office for display. 
  12. Pete J. added a post in a topic Inside of a Tamiya rattle can(photo)   

    Russ, decanting can be spraying the paint through a straw or other device.  There are other ways to get it out and I am sure someone will gladly explain them. 
    My way is a little different and I think much safer but you need someone who can do some machine work.  I made a tool that works like a saddle valve.  With that tool I can safely punch a small hole near the top of the can and slowly release the propellant.    After depressurizing the can in this fashion, I let the can sit over night to let the paint off gas all the propellant.  When that is done,  I move the tool down to the bottom and punch another hole as close to the bottom seam as possible.  I then use that hole to pour all the contents into the paint bottle I am going to store it in. After that I use a plastic pipette to add some thinner to the can and hold my fingers over the holes and shake it to get the last of the paint out. 
    The large square hole you see in the can was done after I had completed the process.  I open the can this way so I can save the glass balls and add them to the decanted paint to aid in mixing
  13. Pete J. added a topic in Tips, Tricks, and Tutorials   

    Inside of a Tamiya rattle can(photo)
    I was decanting Tamiya primer yesterday and thought this would be of interest to some of you.  This is what you see if you open up a rattle can of paint and it makes it easier to explain a couple  of tips I give out from time to time.  In this picture you see two main items, the dip tube and the glass mixing marbles.  You can also clearly see the domed bottom.  First thing you may notice is that the dip tube does not go all the way to the bottom.  There fore you will never get all the paint out of the can by spraying it.  You are always going to leave some wasted paint behind.  This is one of the main reasons I decant the paint to begin with.  I am thrifty and want to use all the product I paid for. 
    Second tip is to store the can upside down.  As most of you know, if paint sits for a while, it separates into components  and settles out, with the solids going to the bottom and the solvents and binders going to the top.  If the can sits upright a couple of things happen.  First is that the dip tube opening is down in the thicker solids and some of them will migrate into the tube. No matter how much you shake the can they will still be in there.  Then with the first bit of spraying you will get a thick blob out.  By storing the cans upside down the dip tube in not sitting in the solids and you avoid that.  It is also possible that the solids may block the tube and you will have an unusable can.  The second thing to notice is that the dip tube location interferes with the circulation of the mixing marbles.  By storing it upside down all the paint, solids and marbles will be in the rounder top part of the can and mixing by swirling the can will be much smoother and you are less likely to get more propellant mixed into the paint. I hope this helps some of you.

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  14. Pete J. added a post in a topic Why no kit plating chrome?   

    The kit claims 25 square feet, so yea, that might cover some of us old guys!
  15. Pete J. added a post in a topic Why no kit plating chrome?   

    Yup, you can do it yourself.  Here is all you need. Which explains why the average hobbyist isn't doing it.