Link to MY ENITRE COLLECTION blog
Some pictures of what's new in my collection:
Herpa Continental Airlines Viscount
Inflight 200 Continental Airlines 707 "Golden Jet"
JC Wings Air Canada DC-9-15
Gemini 200 American Airlines 737-823 "Second release"
Many of you have followed my photography since the begining of this site. Last year I constructed a runway diarama that I was pretty happy with, but over time its pretty much worn out! For a new diarama I chose the end of 24L at LAX and a couple of it's surrounding taxiways. Here's the main photo I'm using as inspiration:
I was pretty sucessful in painting the lines on my current diarama, so I thought I just needed a more durable surface than thicker concrete colored card stock. I decided on plaster of paris - I've read it's durable, can be dyed, and I can sand it and paint it, too! Best of all it won't warp in the sun the way my last version did!
I had to start by making forms to hold the plaster where I want it! As you can see from the picture, the runway and the taxiways are all concrete so I made froms to allow the light colored plaster to show that.
Next, plaster doesn't stick too well to anything, but especially a smooth MDF board. So I stapled plaster wire to the bottom of the runway and taxiway areas. This will not only strengthen the plaster but hold it to the board too.
Then, it was time to pour the plaster. I mixed in some tan paint, to try and get more of a concrete color than white. So we'll see how that turns out....…Continue
My wife and I flew down to Atlanta (from Chicago) for the day on 10/6/12. As I often like to do when departing early from O'hare, we stayed the night before at the O'hare Hilton, which is great for 6am-8am departures. You can just wake up, get ready, and walk across the tunnel to the terminal. It beats waking up even earlier and fighting traffic! If you have the chance request the highest floor possible and will get amazing airport veiws all stay. I've stayed on the 4th floor before and you can't really see much, try to get 6th floor on up.
Our view from the 10th floor could see part of United's Terminal 1, runway 14/32 departures, Terminal 2, and the American Eagle portion of American's Terminal 3, as well as two of the three ATC towers, and part of Terminal 3. Here you can see the United 737 at B2, a United Express ERJ behind it, as well as the last Delta departure of the day from the E concourse.
Here is all the way to the left, you can see both towers, as well as part of terminal 3. I like this shot, how it shows the curvature of the hotel, as you can see it's famous red neon stripe near the…Continue
Pretty neat video of how American takes delivery of a new 737, I like how they do the paper work for it like buying a car. These 737s could be some of the last arcraft to be delivered new in that livery if you believe some of the reports out there that they are changing the livery for the 777-323ER, 787, and Airbus deliveries.
Many of you are familiar with the evolution of my photography since this site was created. I originally started taking close-up high focus pictures on a white shelf with as many bright lights as I could get to help improve the shutter speed with a large aperture. Looking for a more life like display I made a taxiway display on a 2' x 3' board with a turnoff and grass on both sides. Taxiway display I would position the display near a sunny window to get the most life like light and shoot from there.
What I've been working lately is a new display to shoot pictures on, and while I'm not quite done with it, it's complete enough for me to snap a couple of shots to post what I'm working on and what I hope to be shooting my future purchases on along with about a dozen I haven't shot yet! It's a 3' x 4' board displaying the end of a runway, two taxiways, and a holding area. There is quite a bit of striping I need to finish in the green shoulder areas, as well as quite a few other details, like signs, threshold markings, runway white outlined in black, and hopefully some end of the runway light posts.
Here are some pictures so far:
I've seen a lot of neat pictures on a.net of American jets crossing the piano keys and that was really the inspiration for this display. I wanted the ability to capture that on bare metal airliners.Continue
I have been interested in World War II history, specificly the European Theater, and even more specificly, the air war, since viewing the movie "Memphis Belle" in 1990. Over the years I have read a lot of great stories about the air war in Europe, including that of the Memphis Belle, but of that I thought was most interesting was that of the B-17G "Thunderbird".
First of all, if you have not seen the movie "Memphis Belle" find it, see it, it is great. The movie follows the first B-17 crew attempting to survive 25 missions and return home. The movie seems to try to summarize everything that had happened to the crew over 25 missions all in one mission! However, there is much to be learned and appreciated from the movie, including exactly what it took to carry out day-light strategic bombing in 1943. I found it fascinating to learn that the film makers were actually able to aquire 5 of the 8 flyable B-17s at the time to make the movie! In my opinion, the realism certainly shows. Amazingly, most of the currently flyable B-17s are end-of-the-war slightly used "G" models, but in 1943 most B-17s were F models (no chin turret being the most obvious difference). Since the original Memphis Belle was a B-17F model, almost all of the B-17s used in the film were heavily modified to look like the F models, having chin turrets replaced and the planes painted olive green. All in all, a great movie, sure its got A LOT of Hollywood dramatic liscense, BUT a detailed and mostly accurate account of strategic bombing in 1943 Europe.
The Thunderbird, a B-17G,…Continue
The recently announced release by Herpa of an American Airlines DC-10-30, has sparked a basic topic for me - the American Airlines livery as it relates to modeling.
I have a basic and simple message to model makers everywhere:
If you can't make bare metal liveries BARE METAL, polished, or even chrome, then don't even bother. Please stop screwing around with silver paint or for Heaven's sake, gray. "Inflights DC-10 mold doesn't allow for bare metal" - then don't make those liveries! They look rediculous! If you want to release American or Eastern, then you better go back to the drawing board and get it right, before you waste our time with this half hearted effort at one of the jet ages best and most unique looking wide bodies(the DC-10)!
I mean listen, IMO the 777 or the 757 sport the AA livery best, BUT the 707, 727 and DC-10 had something even better that none of the other aircraft did- a polished, bare metal tail. Makes those aircraft really stand out in AA colors. To pass the chance to illustrate that up is wrong. ANY/EVERY American Airlines model needs to START with the baremetal finish, master that and the other details are secondary. Gemini jets fully understands this concept. Their baremetal is impeccable.
The only thing a release like the Herpa or Inflight AA DC10 is good for is a donor for a custom. Inflight should've waited to release an AA DC-10 until they figured out how to make it shiny, same thing with their original AA 707 release. They now know how to polish the 707 (see recent Air Force One release), so we should see one heck of a re-do coming. Aviation 200 is releasing an American 707 polished, so I am anxious to see the result. Inflight also delayed the 747SP for a long time even before this recent delay because they were figuring out how to make it allow for bare metal. So why didn't they wait on the American DC-10?
One might say "what about all of the DC10s that are…Continue
If you get the chance, go to airliners.net and check out the historic past of the Fry Electronics 747SP based out of San Jose. She was with Braniff, Pan Am, and United! And still flies today! Click the link I've provided to see the pics:
Updated as of 12/18/12
As a collector, I maintain a list of models that I want to buy. I call it my "Top 50." I have a group that are top priority and I'm actively trying to find, and there are others, near the bottom that I would love to have, but there are so many ahead of them they don't garner much attention. The ultra-rare models supersede this list but have to be separate, because its not like I can just decide to get a rare model, it has to appear. I do this because there are so many models out there, and so many companies, that I don't want to forget about something I wanted. It also helps me keep from spending too much each month, I just pick a few of the top, and that's that. Needless to say I've had a good winter, made quite a few purchases, and the list is thinning out. I'm also sort of sick of hunting for the ultra rare models (Pan Am Billboard 747, Northwest DC-10 bowling shoe, etc). I don't know about you, but in the decision process as far as what to buy each month, I look at the pictures so many times, sometimes it takes away from the fun of opening and displaying it when it actually arrives! My top 5 currently sits as
1. Northwest DC-10-30 "Bowling Shoe" Inflight 200
2. Air Canada DC-8-63 Inflight 200
3. American Airlines 757-223 Flagship freedom Gemini 200
4. PSA BAe 146-100 Ornage livery Jet-X
5. Ozark DC-9-41 Inflight 200
I am a ridiculously loyal customer of Nick's at jetwaymodels.com, been shopping with him for about 12 years now. But he is in Oregon, and I am in Illinois, so I'm limited to shopping a website. I'd say I buy about 85% of my models from him, but occasionally, we'll take a shopping trip into Chicago and I'll dig through what the local model shops have. On the Northwest side of Chicago is Grayland Station. I drop my wife and daughter at the mall, and head over there with the boys. He doesn't really put much on a website, so his…Continue