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Why is it so hard for young people to get into modelling?


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"They" complain that the kids spend too much time indoors playing silly video games or on their phones posting in social media sites about their latest gaming gear hauls. "They" want their kids to be just like dear old, Pillsbury Doughboy-like Dad and spend too much time indoors building silly models and on their phones posting in social media sites about their latest model-related hauls. Same c_rap, different generation. Rinse. Repeat.

A lot of guys seem to have forgotten the eternal mantra of teens from the first time they stood upright, courtesy of Joey Ramone:

I just wanna have some kicks
I just wanna get some chicks

When I was a kid, we used to goof on the nerds by positing this scenario:

You're put in a room with a naked and really foxy chick and a big rock on the floor. Would you:

A. try to get laid or:

B. pick up the rock and throw it at the naked and really foxy chick

I'm getting the vibe that Choice B wins.

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11 minutes ago, SfanGoch said:

...When I was a kid, we used to goof on the nerds by positing this scenario:

 

You're put in a room with a naked and really foxy chick and a big rock on the floor. Would you:

A. try to get laid or:

B. pick up the rock and throw it at the naked and really foxy chick

I'm getting the vibe that Choice B wins.

Yeah, but today throwing the rock is probably the wise choice...

The Stereotypical SJW Liberal by DixonandGrimes on DeviantArt

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10 minutes ago, SfanGoch said:

Yup!  Folks will complain that the model companies do nothing to attract kids, but when Revell came out with the snap kits, same folks will complain that the money was wasted and could've been used to tool up some 1948 Kaiser or something...

I started to type something earlier about how the fossils in this hobby chase away anyone younger who dares to enter... especially if they want to build more modern subjects, but I started to talk about experience and that would involve naming names and I don't wanna go there!

But it's not exclusive to model building.  I'm a stamp collector and belong to a local stamp club.  We've been meeting via Zoom and we had a meeting this past Tuesday. Stamp community is approx ten years older overall than our clan.  In fact, at 63 I'm the youngest person at the meetings.

The topic went to things we could do to increase membership... one goober pushed to move our meetings (in person meetings have always been 7pm on a Tuesday, once a month) to afternoon hours... because there "might" be an old guy or two who doesn't drive after dark who "may" attend meetings.  He had nobody in mind.  He completely discounted that two of us on the call still work full time and would quit the club.

I explained this to the meeting, and stated that limiting membership to retired people would be the kiss of death for the club.  It would eliminate any chance of the next generations joining and keeping it alive.   Kinda fell on deaf ears!    

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You got it, Tom. It's funny how some people who pursue esoteric hobbies or leisure activities think that everybody and his brother should to be interested in the same; and, if they aren't, there's something wrong with them. I'm sure there are people who consider collecting vintage toilet paper wrappers a very exciting activity. Good for them. It ain't my church, though.

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My opinion on whether or not kids become interested in our hobby is, who gives a rat’s ass.

it’s not my place to try to convince anyone to become interested, nor is it my job to “save the hobby”.

I’m gonna do what I’m gonna do, and so are they.

I tried my hand one time many years ago to instill some interest in the hobby into my son by getting him his first simple kit and helping him assemble it, but he not only has no interest in model cars, but also very little in the real ones.

We live in different times from when we were kids and couldn’t wait to get our first car that we could baby and show off, but people in my son’s generation only seemed to be interested in something that would get them from point A to point B, and who can blame them with the soulless appliances that they build today.

 

 

 

Steve

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3 hours ago, StevenGuthmiller said:

My opinion on whether or not kids become interested in our hobby is, who gives a rat’s ass.

it’s not my place to try to convince anyone to become interested, nor is it my job to “save the hobby”.

I’m gonna do what I’m gonna do, and so are they.

Yup.

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Well, you older guys grew up in a time when you could easily find kits of new subjects (at the time, mostly annual kits). Being able to see a brand new car on the road and knowing there’s a pretty good chance of it being kitted is exciting.

Compare that to today. New toolings are far and few between compared to back then. And modern toolings are usually kits of older subjects, usually of vehicles is younger guys never grew up with. The amount of kits that are of modern cars and trucks are staggeringly low, and most of those are snap kits. 

Although a big reason annuals are a thing of the past is because dealerships aren’t buying promos anymore.

I agree that we live in a fast-paced and instant-gratification expecting world. I’ve had a couple friends come over to my place and see my kit stash and WIPs, you could see them quickly become interested, but they became uninterested just as fast once they realized that the kits take time and patience to actually look good. 

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I would like to add some observations from a slightly different angle.

I was a high school industrial arts teacher for just over 31 years.  I mainly taught technical drawing ( drafting) but being the model building guy on a staff of about ten guys in the department, I designed the modelmaking course and took most of the classes.  One semester was devoted to plastic model building and I would have taught these courses for roughly fifteen years.

The kids could build whatever they wanted and a local hobby shop gave us generous discounts.  I would be lying if I said I didn't influence them towards automotive subjects just a little bit but we had tanks, planes etc.  Probably about 60-70 per cent automotive topics.

This was in the late eighties to around 2000 or so. The kids usually chose older hot rods and classics or Lambos and Ferraris or monster trucks..  I don't think we missed a semester when someone didn't build at least 1 Monogram 29 A pickup or a 57 Chevy. I don't recall a lot of demand for modern subjects but then again, in Australia, they have little choice when it comes to locally produced cars.  I'm sure we would have built a hundred XY Falcon GTs or Holden Commodores if they were available!

Now we got some pretty good models out of these courses and we usually had 15-20 kids in a class.  A few girls but certainly not one per semester. But here's the thing, of all those kids doing all those classes, I can only recall TWO who kept building after the course was finished, that is to say, they came up to me and told me what they were working on at home. We even entered a local IPMS style show one year, but that ended badly when a judge failed to read our detailed entry forms and dismissed a model because it was diecast, completely overlooking that it was a kit, was painted by the kid, and was displayed on an awesome diorama, also designed and built by the girl who entered it.   Grrrrrr! 

Another time we arranged a really impressive display in the library and the school librarian was overjoyed to see kids in the library at lunchtime that she had never seen before. We left it there for about a month because the response was so good.

So yeah, we might just be flogging a dead horse.  The kids enjoyed what they did, produced results that were way beyond what they expected, had almost totally free choice of subjects (subject to availability), had hands on support from an experienced and passionate model builder (yep, me!) and yet model building still didn't light their fire. It was something do rather than sports or cooking, I suppose.

I also ran the Perth NNL for 20 years and entry to juniors was always free and they always got free kits for attending.  We had a handful of regulars, sometimes family members of fellow modellers, but some years we barely scratched up 2 or 3.

On the other hand, I have a young friend who has just turned 15, builds amazing hot rods that have features you would never expect from a lot of adults, let alone kids and is as dedicated as most of us here are. Yes, he is a third generation member of a 1:1 hot rodding family with their own hot rod shop, but their have been oodles of hot rodder's kids in the past with little interest in cars, whether they be full size or scale. He also does 3D printing , again on topics you would never expect a teenager to even know existed, and his quality is improving in leaps and bounds.

I guess we have to accept that:

a) model building is not for MOST young kids any more but

b) there will be always a few that sneak up and scare the pants of us with their knowledge, interest and passion.  As the keepers of the flame, it is our job to make sure that we nurture any of these amazing young people that pop up and make sure we don't scare them away.

Oh, before I go, if any of you are involved in conducting model building classes, at school, PCYC, YMCA, Boy Scouts, whatever, if I could pass on a technique that worked for me.  For the first few sessions, concentrate on getting the bodies prepared for paint, and then have the kid paint the model, usually with spray cans, with close personal supervision. Then, put them away in a cupboard somewhere, lock the doors to the cupboard and don't let them get their bodies back until every single part in their box has been glued and painted as far as they can go without the body.

Yeah, tough love for sure but it guarantees that they don't handle the model while the paint is fresh, don't spill glue on it, don't have their friends drop it while picking it up to look at etc etc etc. Then when you do give back their body, weeks down the track, , they will be able to complete a model that they can be truly proud of and show their friends and relatives with confidence.  It worked for me!.

Cheers

Alan

 

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I had and interesting thought. we complain that all kids do is play video games and use rheir phonrs. However I'm sure that when we built models that someone was complaining that all we were doing was b6ilding models and should be doing something more useful. Same could be for all of the comics books that I read.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Jesus, I regret opening this discussion. Had I known there would be so much animosity around it, I would have kept my mouth shut. Forgive me for being a stupid and curious youngster with an interest in learning about your opinions. I don't see how some of you could have gotten so riled up (myself included) about a simple question.

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You wanted to learn about "our opinions".  I believe that you succeeded in that, beyond your wildest expectations.  The 7 pages of this thread contain *LOTS* of opinions sprinkled in between other stuff.  To me this seems like a typical mix of comments seen in any online forum.  Also, a lot of going in circles.

To be honest, I expected this thread to be locked some time ago (when no more useful posts were being added), but that didn't' happen, and we are still keeping the thread going. :blink:

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32 minutes ago, peteski said:

You wanted to learn about "our opinions".  I believe that you succeeded in that, beyond your wildest expectations.  The 7 pages of this thread contain *LOTS* of opinions sprinkled in between other stuff.  To me this seems like a typical mix of comments seen in any online forum.  Also, a lot of going in circles.

To be honest, I expected this thread to be locked some time ago (when no more useful posts were being added), but that didn't' happen, and we are still keeping the thread going. :blink:

I agree with that. However, I don't see this much oddly placed anger in some of my other forums... Perhaps this place is just so full that every imaginable opinion will surface. I am also surprised about the longevity of this threads life.

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This wasn't bad overall.  We older guys get more blunt, especially where opinions are concerned.  Disagreement isnt a bad thing.  You had a valid question.  You got answers all over the place.  Don't worry about the disagreement.  Just think what a boring world we would live in if everybody always agreed on everything.

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1 hour ago, Beans said:

This wasn't bad overall.  We older guys get more blunt, especially where opinions are concerned.  Disagreement isnt a bad thing.  You had a valid question.  You got answers all over the place.  Don't worry about the disagreement.  Just think what a boring world we would live in if everybody always agreed on everything.

Haha! I know what its like to live where everybody agrees... West Vancouver High schools... yeesh.

That being said, I just thought the amount of emotion behind some answers were a little out of the blue. I like discourse, but I don't like derailment.

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Unfortunately it's not always difficult to find derailment here at times. In some cases it results in a topic being locked. Don't let it discourage you from asking questions , topics seek to be non controversial can become a mess.

We've had this discussion several times in the past. It is a topic that some are very passionate about. 

 

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Hmmmm...   Maybe it's not the lazy and unmotivated part....   Maybe not the cost...

Lego just announced a 9,000 piece kit of the Titanic.  Available for pre-order from November 1 and general sale from November 8, the ship will retail at $629.99.

https://www.cnn.com/style/article/titanic-lego-model-intl-scli/index.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, Tom Geiger said:

Hmmmm...   Maybe it's not the lazy and unmotivated part....   Maybe not the cost...

Lego just announced a 9,000 piece kit of the Titanic.  Available for pre-order from November 1 and general sale from November 8, the ship will retail at $629.99.

https://www.cnn.com/style/article/titanic-lego-model-intl-scli/index.html

Meh, that is a snap kit.  Doesn't count, plus it is likely targeting adult Lego addicts. ;)  Did you see the $45,000 scratch-built USS Arizona model discussed in the Crew Lounge?

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2 hours ago, Tom Geiger said:

Hmmmm...   Maybe it's not the lazy and unmotivated part....   Maybe not the cost...

Lego just announced a 9,000 piece kit of the Titanic.  Available for pre-order from November 1 and general sale from November 8, the ship will retail at $629.99.

https://www.cnn.com/style/article/titanic-lego-model-intl-scli/index.html

Trumpeter's 1/200 Titanic is also 53" long; but, it's a lot cooler. It comes with LED lighting. It'll only set you back five bills. Plus, you can get the sooper-dooper detail-up set for an additional $270.

TU03719_1_grande.webp.b3419854a5e731b78668d03b8dc55d6b.webp

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On 8/11/2021 at 10:23 AM, Venom said:

Also, I think that a profound mentality shift has occurred with much of the younger generation. Cars used to carry the allure of being fast, cool, picking up chicks, etc. Cruising up and down the strip every Friday and Saturday night to find parties and get stupid was the social life for many. Now days why waste time driving up and down a road when when you can get even more social interaction via the digital “super highway”? There’s also a movement of younger people who are concerned with the environment who are demanding serious change because they feel their future is in imminent danger. That mentality likely does’nt jive well with noisy, gas guzzling cars. The new trend in cars that they are more likely to be interested in is fuel economy, cuteness, reliability, electric, and a dashboard that has a lot of tech features built in that are compatable with their devices.

Honestly, I have no interest in horse drawn stage coaches because they got replaced with something better, but now that “something better” has been replaced by something better yet .... but as for me, im still stuck in my old school mentality, at least when it comes to scale model interests.

I agree, Venom. I’m struck in the 60’s, for cars. Some 50’s some 70’s. Or just a cool car in time. I believe the social order is different today. I was at hobby lobby the other day and this kid wanted to build a model. He asked his mom and she said yes. He picked out a 60’ s muscle car. He wanted to paint it and the mom said “ honey I cannot afford the paint” . He was ready to put it back but I paid for his paint and he hopefully built the model. This is also a problem. Affordability but we can go on for days about that. Socially cars are not a cool thing today for most people. Life just changes. My 18 year old daughter has no interest in even driving. She has to now , to go to college. My son has other interests also. He is 32.  I was talking to a Honda motorcycle owner. His bike sales were down but was replaced by side by sides. So he is wondering what the next thing is going to sell or be invented for sales. Things change, we may not like it , but times and interests change. I’m still stuck in the 60’s and 70’s. I still go to school to learn about cars. Just learned that Mercedes has over 137 computers on board. Holy BLAH_BLAH_BLAH_BLAH! I’m glad I’m retiring soon. Back to subject, I see kids building ban dai figures. Game board figures not too many cars anymore. 

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35 minutes ago, Brudda said:

I agree, Venom. I’m struck in the 60’s, for cars. Some 50’s some 70’s. Or just a cool car in time. I believe the social order is different today. I was at hobby lobby the other day and this kid wanted to build a model. He asked his mom and she said yes. He picked out a 60’ s muscle car. He wanted to paint it and the mom said “ honey I cannot afford the paint” . He was ready to put it back but I paid for his paint and he hopefully built the model. This is also a problem. Affordability but we can go on for days about that. Socially cars are not a cool thing today for most people. Life just changes. My 18 year old daughter has no interest in even driving. She has to now , to go to college. My son has other interests also. He is 32.  I was talking to a Honda motorcycle owner. His bike sales were down but was replaced by side by sides. So he is wondering what the next thing is going to sell or be invented for sales. Things change, we may not like it , but times and interests change. I’m still stuck in the 60’s and 70’s. I still go to school to learn about cars. Just learned that Mercedes has over 137 computers on board. Holy BLAH_BLAH_BLAH_BLAH! I’m glad I’m retiring soon. Back to subject, I see kids building ban dai figures. Game board figures not too many cars anymore. 

Thanks Bruce... I guess it boils down to a sense of nostalgia for many of us, and when it comes to the need of building detailed miniature things... well, there are other things available now besides cars just as you had mentioned.

......Which gets me wondering... when we’re all dead and gone and these younger ones come across our model cars, will they find them fascinating and cherish them, or simply throw them in the trash?

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13 hours ago, Venom said:

Thanks Bruce... I guess it boils down to a sense of nostalgia for many of us, and when it comes to the need of building detailed miniature things... well, there are other things available now besides cars just as you had mentioned.

......Which gets me wondering... when we’re all dead and gone and these younger ones come across our model cars, will they find them fascinating and cherish them, or simply throw them in the trash?

WOW great question. I have kids and now I will ask them. 

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13 hours ago, Venom said:

......Which gets me wondering... when we’re all dead and gone and these younger ones come across our model cars, will they find them fascinating and cherish them, or simply throw them in the trash?

I won't lose any sleep pondering this. In the grand scheme of things, it boils down to "who cares?"

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