Date   

Re: Freight car distribution

Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Garth Groff wrote (in small part):
Tanks for the fuel dealer, probably UTLX.
For your 1958 date, Garth, this may not be a bad choice, but prior to roughly 1953, UTLX almost exclusively leased to the Standard family, then gradually branched out. So UTLX is fine, of course, if your fuel dealer is Chevron, but for any other oil company, I'd say UTLX is distinctly less likely.
On the other points, I agree entirely that it's all about the industries you model. Like the prototype, our model railroads serve their customers. There cannot be any prototypical "average" fleet of car types, unless maybe you attempt to model the entire U.S., as Bruce Chubb's previous layout purported to do. Even if you have a layout modeling entirely bridge traffic, it still represents the customers at both ends of the bridge. I wondered in reading Armand's post if we are misunderstanding him.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, thompson@signaturepress.com
Publishers of books on railroad history


Re: Freight car distribution

Bruce Smith
 

On May 28, 2009, at 12:44 PM, armprem1 wrote:

Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car distribution............not in the usual sense.What are some of the things one should consider when building a freight car fleet.........By type, not by road?I have my own opinion,but would like to hear what others think about just what influences car selection.Again,I would like to repeat,by type.Armand Premo
Armand,

This is entirely dependent on the railroad that you model and could vary wildly between different railroads, branches, and even time of day on a specific location. In looking at a specific railroad, it might be helpful to follow a logical approach:

Assuming you have a specific era and prototype location in mind,
1) What were the trains that operated during that era? For example, how many general merchandise, mineral drags, specialized freights (say like reefer blocks) each day. Keep in mind that on some RR's like the PRR, the "arranged freight schedule" only gives an approximation, and does not represent certain types of trains at all. Tower sheets may be the best resource for this (if you can find them).
2) How did train composition affect length? (were all trains the same length, or were there differences based on cargos)?
3) Was there seasonality (ie are you modeling the grain rush on a granger RR or the stock rush, or ...)
4) What types of cars do you need to serve the needs of your online industries?
5) What types of cars do you need to represent "bridge traffic" (if you have it)?
6) Are there special trains or cars that run only on certain days? For example, on the part of the PRR I model, the high and wide train ran on Sunday. So, H&W loads are very rare 6 days a week, but comprise a solid train on day 7 (or, once every 14 ops sessions, based on 12 hour sessions).

So, for example, for my "layout in planning" based on the PRR at Columbia PA, I have the following "rough" parameters that are guiding my acquisitions:
-one "unit" tank car train per 12 hours in each direction (need 2 full trains, 30 cars each) to represent the "pipeline on rails" of 1944.
-additional tank cars for other trains (10 cars)
-one eastbound reefer train per 24 hours (25 cars)
-additional reefers for locals, other through trains, westbound loads, blocks (+10-20 cars)
-one eastbound stock train per 24 hours (25 cars)
-additional stock cars for other trains (+10 cars)
-3 westbound TRS (Tank, reefer, stock) trains (25-30 cars each, made up of cars from the eastbounds)
- six general merchandise trains in each direction per 12 hours (25 cars each, roughly 50% box cars, 40% gons, 10% flats). A small proportion of these cars will appear on locals.
- 2 mineral trains in each direction per 12 hours (25 cars each, solid hoppers)
- 1 local mineral train (10 cars, 50 ton 2 bay)
- one H&W train, used sparingly, 10-15 specialized cars.

Sum it up, and I need:
tank cars - 70
reefers - 35-45
stock cars - 35
boxcars - 150
gondolas - 120
flats - 30
hoppers - 110

And that's my roughly 500 car fleet.

Regards
Bruce

Bruce F. Smith
Auburn, AL
http://www.vetmed.auburn.edu/index.pl/bruce_f._smith2

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."
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Re: erroneous captions/RTR vs. kits

Richard Hendrickson
 

On May 27, 2009, at 11:34 PM, Anthony Thompson wrote:

I've answered David off list, as this is clearly outside the list
scope. But I can assure anyone still reading this thread that I don't
find David's comments remotely convincing. (Incidentally, I'll
forward--off list--my answer to David to anyone who asks.)





I'd like to see it. I may have more to add.

Richard Hendrickson


Re: Freight car distribution

Garth G. Groff <ggg9y@...>
 

Armand,

I'm not sure there is an easy answer to your question. It depends on the what industries you choose to model, era, road, and even what section of the road. On the latter, for example, the C&O was a much different road in Virginia than in Indiana. And in Virginia, the Mountain Division carried somewhat different traffic than the roughly parallel James River Division.

So here's my general plan. My semi-fictional Sacramento Northern Pennington Branch serves six industries, an independent fuel dealer, a gravel pit, an egg packer, a farm supply company, a feed mill/grain elevator, and one yet to be determined (possibly a juice plant). All are industries which were found at one time or another on the Upper Valley end of the SN. My choice of cars is partly regulated by my 1958 date, and what was in use then on the parent Western Pacific. Obviously I can use boxcars (SN, WP and lots of off-line) for most of these industries. The gravel pit uses WP short hoppers. Tanks for the fuel dealer, probably UTLX. PFE reefers will serve the seasonal juice plant, though I might work in some early WP RBLs. I have several times gassed about my four PFE RR-40-6 reefers, which will serve the egg plant. I can work in an occasional flat car. Not much use for gondolas, WP covered hoppers were assigned elsewhere, stock traffic was dead. Thanks to the tight curve in the middle of this L-shaped layout, I can't run cars above 50', and even those will look pretty absurd. Since this is a stub-end branch, I can't use the excuse of through cars. All this means that I have a lot of rolling stock that I love (like redetailed covered hoppers and my PRR 65' gon) than have no logical use on my layout.

The layout is also planned to be operated at times as the Virginia Midland, a purely fictional Virginia shortline with a different mix of industries (change some of the signs). I've been collecting the obvious boxcars, plus pulpwood cars, FGE reefers, some coal hoppers for local delivery, and a few covered hoppers for crushed soapstone. Most of this equipment is Southern or C&O, my line's two connections here in Charlottesville.

Kind regards,


Garth G. Groff

armprem1 wrote:

Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car distribution............not in the usual sense.What are some of the things one should consider when building a freight car fleet.........By type, not by road?I have my own opinion,but would like to hear what others think about just what influences car selection.Again,I would like to repeat,by type.Armand Premo


Re: Freight car distribution

Steve SANDIFER
 

Location, Location, Location.
1950, % of fleet

Type ATSF GN B&O DM&IR SR
Stock 7 5 1 1 1
Refrigerator 15 - - 1 -
Box 47 54 32 2 43
Flat 4 6 1 1 2
Gondola 11 8 15 3 18
Hopper 7 25 48 89 19
Cov. Hopper 5 2 2 1 4
Tank 3 - - - -
Rack 1 - 1 2 13


So your fleet depends on your area and your industry. If you are in coal country, you need a lot of hoppers. If you are in cattle country, you need a lot of stock cars. Of course the above chart is of railroad owned cars only. Most tank cars were privately owned as were many reefers.

----------------------------------------------------------------
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Home: 12027 Mulholland Dr., Meadows Place, TX 77477, 281-568-9918
Office: Southwest Central Church of Christ, 4011 W. Bellfort, Houston, TX
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----- Original Message -----
From: armprem1
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Sent: Thursday, May 28, 2009 12:44 PM
Subject: [STMFC] Freight car distribution





Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car distribution............not in the usual sense.What are some of the things one should consider when building a freight car fleet.........By type, not by road?I have my own opinion,but would like to hear what others think about just what influences car selection.Again,I would like to repeat,by type.Armand Premo


Freight car distribution

Armand Premo
 

Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car distribution............not in the usual sense.What are some of the things one should consider when building a freight car fleet.........By type, not by road?I have my own opinion,but would like to hear what others think about just what influences car selection.Again,I would like to repeat,by type.Armand Premo


Re: DFG gondola kit

jerryglow2
 

I remember them for putting out a hood for a coil steel car IIRC for N&W and perhaps others. Don't know anything else about them.

Jerry Glow

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Charlie Vlk" <cvlk@...> wrote:

Clark-
State Tool & Die speciallizes in stuff for Steel Mills. I don't know what DFG stands for but the car is part of that line.
Charlie Vlk

There's an ad on page 24 in the May Craftsman by a State Tool & Die Co. for a 3 in 1 DFG gondola kit.

What the heck is it?
Thanks,
Clark Propst
Mason City Iowa
.

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Re: DFG gondola kit

Charlie Vlk
 

Clark-
State Tool & Die speciallizes in stuff for Steel Mills. I don't know what DFG stands for but the car is part of that line.
Charlie Vlk

There's an ad on page 24 in the May Craftsman by a State Tool & Die Co. for a 3 in 1 DFG gondola kit.

What the heck is it?
Thanks,
Clark Propst
Mason City Iowa
.


Re: Contests

jerryglow2
 

For better or worst, NMRA contests are inherently tied in with their achievement program which has to reward for something other than a pretty model. I personally don't see anything wrong with that. Sure there are other problems including IMO a bias toward old and even fictitious equipment but that can be overcome by proper documentation in the entry form. It's available online and I even converted it into a fill in form to take with the model to a meet rather than filling it out by hand on site. Popular votes are just that, not necessarily a reward for any accomplishment. A friend of mine was beaten by an inferior model I think because the voters did not want us to sweep ALL categories.

Jerry Glow

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Bruce Smith <smithbf@...> wrote:

In addition, contests are inherently biased. Just look at the
earlier comments about entering a painted brass model and winning...

The NMRA contest, based on categories and points, is supposed to
judge the modeling. But, does the best model always win? No,
definitely not... and one could argue that the NMRA's point system
represents an outdated view of the world. In fact, it appears that
the NMRA is slowly coming to understand that with "kit" category(s)
at Hartford. Of course, this fails to recognize that kits have
ALWAYS been allowed in NMRA contests and have even won 1st at
nationals and instead. Instead the NMRA is now Balkanizing them.
Several other "innovations" at Hartford are actually not new at all
either, like allowing display only models. Of course, when I showed
up at my regional with 42 display models... which outnumbered the
total of contest models, they wanted an entry sheet for each model,
and then were appalled that I would actually want to display them in
the "contest room" rather than on a table out in a hall-way.

Popular vote contests usually reward the best looking or most
accurate model (depending on who is voting), which may or may not
reflect the skill of the modeler. I would of course argue, that
painting that brass model IS modeling, and a really nice paint and
weathering job reflects true artistry (and I DO bring those models to
RPM meets). But of course it does not reflect other aspects of
modeling.

Think of the NMRA contest as a beauty contest, without the swimsuit
competition... the ugliest model could win based on how the questions
get answered. OTOH, the popular vote contest is the swimsuit
competition without the questions... the model may win purely on
looks, rather than effort, skill or otherwise.

Any contest inherently drives people away. Modelers who might
otherwise bring a model don't because they "know" that they can't
compete with that scratch-built steamer, so why bother? Getting rid
of contests enhances participation at all levels. And may I ask, what
precisely is the value of validation from a "judge" who had to be
educated by my own paperwork? I'd much rather engage in the open
exchange of comments with my peers at Cocoa, the PRRT&HS and
Naperville, but then again, my goal is accurately modeling the PRR in
June 1944, not adding another title behind my name. Of course, YMMV.

Regards
Bruce

Bruce F. Smith
Auburn, AL
http://www.vetmed.auburn.edu/index.pl/bruce_f._smith2

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."
__
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DFG gondola kit

Clark Propst <cepropst@...>
 

There's an ad on page 24 in the May Craftsman by a State Tool & Die Co. for a 3 in 1 DFG gondola kit.

What the heck is it?
Thanks,
Clark Propst
Mason City Iowa


Re: Contests

Jack Burgess
 

First, I don't think (nor do I wish) there will ever be contests at RPM
meets just as there will never be a national board of trustees overseeing
us, etc. It is just a different culture and the original RPM movement was
intended to be just that...unstructured and anti-establishment.

I have to disagree with some of Fredrick's and other's conclusions regarding
contests though. While there are modelers who need the ego stroking and
recognition, that is not the motivation for many of the modelers I know.
I've been a contest modeler since the late 1960s when I switched from
freelancing to modeling a specific prototype. I don't enter contests to beat
someone else but to encourage and challenge myself to do better...I'm in
competition with myself not them. Back in the 1970s, there were some
unbelievable scratch builders/contest modelers here in the Bay Area...Bob
Brown, Gordon Cannon, Gary Nash, Mic Greenberg, Jim Tangney, etc. I learned
from them by reading their contest forms and studying their results...that
helped make me a better modeler. Challenging myself is one the things I get
out of our hobby. While kitbashing a plastic kit might be an easy way to get
that steel water tank needed for my layout, I prefer the challenge of
scratchbuilding it and, in the process, maybe learning a new skill or using
some new techniques. Others may see that too much like work when a hobby
should be relaxing and fun but I enjoy the challenge.

I especially enjoy the pre-construction phase of a new project...studying
prototype photos, collecting information, drawing up plans, figuring out how
I might replicate certain aspects of the model, etc. Many times, I might
spend several weeks or even months thinking how I might build a particularly
difficult model before ever starting it. That "pondering" time isn't done in
lieu of building something but is something to think about while standing in
the line at the post office or other idle moments. For example, for years,
I've thought about how I might scratchbuild a model of a small 3000 gallon
tank car using on the logging incline which connected to the YV. I actually
started collecting photos (3 total) of it 30 years ago. I finally drew plans
for it 10 years ago. The recent release of the Archer rivet decals brought
the project to the forefront and now I'm in the "what parts do I need and
how might I build that curved tank end" phase. I'm really looking forward to
the challenge!

Will it be built as a contest model? Yes. Will it be entered in a contest? I
don't know. But I will certainly build it to my normal "contest" standards
of complete brake gear and modeling everything that can be seen on the
prototype. But I will do that not to win a contest but as a challenge to
myself.

So...you can belittle contests and all of their paperwork but, in my case, I
am a much better modeler with a lot more skills because of the contest
modeling I've done in the past. But, remember, that is only my approach to
the hobby...just like prototype modeling vs. freelancing...to each his own.

Jack Burgess
www.yosemitevalleyrr.com


Re: RTR vs. kits

Charlie Vlk
 

I don't think that is the situation at all......
....however, the wonderful profusion of products that we have been favored with over the past decade or so does make a person consider if a project is worh starting now only to be eclipsed by a production model before or just after it is completed.

So many "no way in hell willl that ever be made" prototypes have shown up in plastic that I hesitate to bet against any model showing up on dealers shelves....
Erie Triplexes??? Two productions of UP Gas Turbines!!! UP 4-12-2s..... GTW wood cabooses.....

If your enjoyment of the Hobby is the process of building individual models it really doesn't matter. If, however, you are trying to build an operating layout that has equipment with a degree of prototype accuracy, one might be inclined to select projects that are highly unlikely to be duplicated in readily available RTR or mass production kits or cars that you really, really want.

However, many of us appreciate those that clear the way for desired models by scratchbuilding them or doing extensive kitbashes first...... you know there is a industry-sponsored organization that monitors everyone's progress on such projects and does not allow manufacturers to go into production until it is apparent that someone is going to complete a project, preferably with the same paint scheme and roadnumber and timed to arrive in the local hobby shop the day you complete it an show the model to your friends who just bought one!!!

Charlie Vlk

.... and I wouldn't ignore the RTR effect in other modeling areas.... Armour, Ships, Aircraft, and Automoblies are all enjoying increased sales of quality built-up models, probably much for the same reasons. I would discount the immediate gratification and lack of building skills aspect that may be present in other, less rich hobbies. Other than the few that can afford to have someone come in and build and operate a railroad for them our Hobby still takes a degree of planning, intellectual curiousity, and development of skills to participate in it even at the most basic levels.


.The biggest thing that surprises me now days, though, is the "sit back and
wait for someone else to do it for me" attitude that the vast majority of MR
hobbyists now display. You should have heard some of the things folks said
to me at some of the recent meets! I know numerous folks in other hobbies
that build stuff; LOTS of stuff. What I hear from our own, nowdays, is "why
can't you get XYZ to do a RTR X29B in plastic?" I would say from these
dialogues, that a lot of people in this hobby are becoming simple collectors,
not builders.


Re: Contests

Bruce Smith
 

On May 28, 2009, at 10:18 AM, Mike Brock wrote:
Consider this. Contests require judging. This in turn requires time AND
space free from interruption. It might be one thing to judge, say, 50 models
[ the judges wouldn't be doing much else on that day and, yes, I've been a
judge ] but try judging 500. Where would it take place? Forgetting all that,
however, is the issue of winners and losers. Lets say 300 frt cars are
entered. We have 299 losers. Not good.
In addition, contests are inherently biased. Just look at the earlier comments about entering a painted brass model and winning...

The NMRA contest, based on categories and points, is supposed to judge the modeling. But, does the best model always win? No, definitely not... and one could argue that the NMRA's point system represents an outdated view of the world. In fact, it appears that the NMRA is slowly coming to understand that with "kit" category(s) at Hartford. Of course, this fails to recognize that kits have ALWAYS been allowed in NMRA contests and have even won 1st at nationals and instead. Instead the NMRA is now Balkanizing them. Several other "innovations" at Hartford are actually not new at all either, like allowing display only models. Of course, when I showed up at my regional with 42 display models... which outnumbered the total of contest models, they wanted an entry sheet for each model, and then were appalled that I would actually want to display them in the "contest room" rather than on a table out in a hall-way.

Popular vote contests usually reward the best looking or most accurate model (depending on who is voting), which may or may not reflect the skill of the modeler. I would of course argue, that painting that brass model IS modeling, and a really nice paint and weathering job reflects true artistry (and I DO bring those models to RPM meets). But of course it does not reflect other aspects of modeling.

Think of the NMRA contest as a beauty contest, without the swimsuit competition... the ugliest model could win based on how the questions get answered. OTOH, the popular vote contest is the swimsuit competition without the questions... the model may win purely on looks, rather than effort, skill or otherwise.

Any contest inherently drives people away. Modelers who might otherwise bring a model don't because they "know" that they can't compete with that scratch-built steamer, so why bother? Getting rid of contests enhances participation at all levels. And may I ask, what precisely is the value of validation from a "judge" who had to be educated by my own paperwork? I'd much rather engage in the open exchange of comments with my peers at Cocoa, the PRRT&HS and Naperville, but then again, my goal is accurately modeling the PRR in June 1944, not adding another title behind my name. Of course, YMMV.

Regards
Bruce

Bruce F. Smith
Auburn, AL
http://www.vetmed.auburn.edu/index.pl/bruce_f._smith2

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."
__
/ &#92;
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Re: Freight car distribution

Charles Hladik
 

Garth,
Is that egg packer also the owner of "chicken kits" or are the hens
off line?
Chuck Hladik
Rutland Railroad
Virginia Division

In a message dated 5/28/2009 2:32:04 P.M. Eastern Daylight Time,
ggg9y@virginia.edu writes:





Armand,

I'm not sure there is an easy answer to your question. It depends on the
what industries you choose to model, era, road, and even what section of
the road. On the latter, for example, the C&O was a much different road
in Virginia than in Indiana. And in Virginia, the Mountain Division
carried somewhat different traffic than the roughly parallel James River
Division.

So here's my general plan. My semi-fictional Sacramento Northern
Pennington Branch serves six industries, an independent fuel dealer, a
gravel pit, an egg packer, a farm supply company, a feed mill/grain
elevator, and one yet to be determined (possibly a juice plant). All are
industries which were found at one time or another on the Upper Valley
end of the SN. My choice of cars is partly regulated by my 1958 date,
and what was in use then on the parent Western Pacific. Obviously I can
use boxcars (SN, WP and lots of off-line) for most of these industries.
The gravel pit uses WP short hoppers. Tanks for the fuel dealer,
probably UTLX. PFE reefers will serve the seasonal juice plant, though I
might work in some early WP RBLs. I have several times gassed about my
four PFE RR-40-6 reefers, which will serve the egg plant. I can work in
an occasional flat car. Not much use for gondolas, WP covered hoppers
were assigned elsewhere, stock traffic was dead. Thanks to the tight
curve in the middle of this L-shaped layout, I can't run cars above 50',
and even those will look pretty absurd. Since this is a stub-end branch,
I can't use the excuse of through cars. All this means that I have a lot
of rolling stock that I love (like redetailed covered hoppers and my PRR
65' gon) than have no logical use on my layout.

The layout is also planned to be operated at times as the Virginia
Midland, a purely fictional Virginia shortline with a different mix of
industries (change some of the signs). I've been collecting the obvious
boxcars, plus pulpwood cars, FGE reefers, some coal hoppers for local
delivery, and a few covered hoppers for crushed soapstone. Most of this
equipment is Southern or C&O, my line's two connections here in
Charlottesville.

Kind regards,

Garth G. Groff

armprem1 wrote:
Now here's a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car
distribution. Now here Now here's a topic that should generate a little
discussion.Freight car distribution.<WBR>.........<WBR>..not in the Now here's
a topic that should generate a little discussion.Freight car
distribution.<WBR>.........<WBR>..not in the usual sense.Wha Now here's a topic that
should generate a




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Re: Contests

seaboard_1966
 

Guys

contests are NMRA, we are NOT NMRA. If you want to enter your models in a contest join the NMRA and attend and participate in their contests. Who knows, you could get a patch for your vest. RPM is much more dedicated to modelers than the NMRA has been over the past two or so decades..

Denis Blake
North Hamlet Shops, OH

----- Original Message -----
From: "Frederick Freitas" <prrinvt@yahoo.com>
To: <stmfc@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Thursday, May 28, 2009 11:00 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Contests


Guyz,

Admittedly, there are folks who thrive on the contest circuit, and that is fine for them. I don't like contests in my hobby; I want the enjoyment without the pressure to reach some arbitrary goal in life. That is why I attend RPM meets with regularity. I can come with an open mind, learn new techniques, talk to the modeler about how, what, and whatever. The contest does not offer me this learning curve.

Clinics at the PRM meets is what draws a lot of us to them. We are not experts in every phase of he hobby; so learning is important. The generosity of the presenters can be overwhelming. Some show up with 30 page hand outs you can take home and actually teach yourself a new skill. No contest ever gave me instructions on how to build what the other guy brought to the table. Why should he, he's trying to beat out the competitors.

The ego thing is a part of it too. Some need the pat on the head to feel vindication for their efforts; I don't. Maybe that I'm over 60 it isn't nescessary to my existance. What is nescessary is getting the model done right. Most of us are familiar with the blue box kits, and my age group recalls Laconia, Main Line, Silver Streak, Kadee, Ambroid, etc. as being the best we could get at the time. They were great learning tools. Some of us did very well, others excelled at building them.

Today I like to think of myself as a proto-builder of models. Were I capable of not forgetting anything on a model, then I could just sit home and smile. I'm not, so off to the RPM meets I go, note pad in hand. { we 60 somethings don't remember much without notes}
Guess it's a matter of competiion, or learning. Not knowing it all, I will strive to learn as much as my gray matter will retain.

Contests are for competitors, and are important to them. By all means have your contest.
As for mixing the two at an RPM, I can live without it. Honestly, I think it will be counter productive to the friendly atmosphere of an RPM. We come together to share, not to try to out do the next guy. Yes, it is my opinion. Some will agree; others not. That's what makes open discussion work so well.

Fred Freitas
Bennington, VT






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Contests

Mike Brock <brockm@...>
 

Well, I'll add a few more thoughts before this thread develops diminishing returns.

Each RPM meet develops its own agenda, its own rules and policies. That's one of the advantages of the RPM movement.

Kurt Laughlin writes:

"The fact that contests are rare at RPM meets sounds like a missed opportunity for you guys."

Consider this. Contests require judging. This in turn requires time AND space free from interruption. It might be one thing to judge, say, 50 models [ the judges wouldn't be doing much else on that day and, yes, I've been a judge ] but try judging 500. Where would it take place? Forgetting all that, however, is the issue of winners and losers. Lets say 300 frt cars are entered. We have 299 losers. Not good. Having been a judge and part of a contest committee, I know first hand that the overall results are frequently not positive. In the end, we actually do conduct judging at RPM meets. When we display our little jewels they are silently [ sometimes not so silently ] judged by the attendees. It is not so much of a competition...thank goodness...but anything displayed is going to be evaluated.

Mike Brock













In the tank modeling world our club (military vehicles only) loves the national contest. The models are judged against an objective criteria based on good construction, good painting, good weathering and so forth rather than against each other. This distinguishes us from the larger national plastic model club that uses a traditional 1-2-3-out system. The method of judging is also different. Rather than a small team of judges who judge every model we use peer judging in shifts. Almost uniformly the people who judge say that it was the best lesson they've ever had on building better models. I know there are people who are bothered by judging in principle, but the thing modelers remember is learning how such and such technique was done, not whether they got a bronze or silver.

KL





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Re: Contests at RPM meets

Charlie Vlk
 

Seems to me that the RPM "sharing of neato modeling enthusiasm" is more constructive to the Hobby than the NMRA "merit badge" approach. But each to their own.....

I somehow wasn't expelled when I wandered into the contest room during judging at the Cinncinatti NMRA convention. The judges were looking at a drop dead
gorgeous HO concrete coaling tower and they were arguing if the smudges of soot on the tower were intentional weathering or poor craftsmanship since no mention was made of them on the official entry form. They were not fingerprint-shaped and to my eye looked like typical weathering you'd expect on such a structure. I wonder if the guy continued to model and enter contests if the judges comments were written down.....

I've entered and won in judged contests (both committee and popular vote) and much prefer the RPM approach. I like that the lack of pressure which ecourages more people to share their work, no matter how imperfect or unfinished. It is always instructive to see how others have been inspired to select a particular prototype and see how they decided to approach making a model of it. Being able to talk to the builder face to face about their work is a bonus.

Charlie Vlk


Contests

Frederick Freitas <prrinvt@...>
 

Guyz,
 
         Admittedly, there are folks who thrive on the contest circuit, and that is fine for them. I don't like contests in my hobby; I want the enjoyment without the pressure to reach some arbitrary goal in life. That is why I attend RPM meets with regularity. I can come with an open mind, learn new techniques, talk to the modeler about how, what, and whatever. The contest does not offer me this learning curve.
 
Clinics at the PRM meets is what draws a lot of us to them. We are not experts in every phase of he hobby; so learning is important. The generosity of the presenters can be overwhelming. Some show up with 30 page hand outs you can take home and actually teach yourself a new skill. No contest ever gave me instructions on how to build what the other guy brought to the table. Why should he, he's trying to beat out the competitors.
 
The ego thing is a part of it too. Some need the pat on the head to feel vindication for their efforts; I don't. Maybe that I'm over 60 it isn't nescessary to my existance. What is nescessary is getting the model done right. Most of us are familiar with the blue box kits, and my age group recalls Laconia, Main Line, Silver Streak, Kadee, Ambroid, etc. as being the best we could get at the time. They were great learning tools. Some of us did very well, others excelled at building them.
 
Today I like to think of myself as a proto-builder of models. Were I capable of not forgetting anything on a model, then I could just sit home and smile. I'm not, so off to the RPM meets I go, note pad in hand. { we 60 somethings don't remember much without notes}
Guess it's a matter of competiion, or learning. Not knowing it all, I will strive to learn as much as my gray matter will retain.
 
Contests are for competitors, and are important to them. By all means have your contest.
As for mixing the two at an RPM, I can live without it. Honestly, I think it will be counter productive to the friendly atmosphere of an RPM. We come together to share, not to try to out do the next guy. Yes, it is my opinion. Some will agree; others not. That's what makes open discussion work so well.
 
Fred Freitas
Bennington, VT
        

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Contests

Frederick Freitas <prrinvt@...>
 

Guyz,
 
         Admittedly, there are folks who thrive on the contest circuit, and that is fine for them. I don't like contests in my hobby; I want the enjoyment without the pressure to reach some arbitrary goal in life. That is why I attend RPM meets with regularity. I can come with an open mind, learn new techniques, talk to the modeler about how, what, and whatever. The contest does not offer me this learning curve.
 
Clinics at the PRM meets is what draws a lot of us to them. We are not experts in every phase of he hobby; so learning is important. The generosity of the presenters can be overwhelming. Some show up with 30 page hand outs you can take home and actually teach yourself a new skill. No contest ever gave me instructions on how to build what the other guy brought to the table. Why should he, he's trying to beat out the competitors.
 
The ego thing is a part of it too. Some need the pat on the head to feel vindication for their efforts; I don't. Maybe that I'm over 60 it isn't nescessary to my existance. What is nescessary is getting the model done right. Most of us are familiar with the blue box kits, and my age group recalls Laconia, Main Line, Silver Streak, Kadee, Ambroid, etc. as being the best we could get at the time. They were great learning tools. Some of us did very well, others excelled at building them.
 
Today I like to think of myself as a proto-builder of models. Were I capable of not forgetting anything on a model, then I could just sit home and smile. I'm not, so off to the RPM meets I go, note pad in hand. { we 60 somethings don't remember much without notes}
Guess it's a matter of competiion, or learning. Not knowing it all, I will strive to learn as much as my gray matter will retain.
 
Contests are for competitors, and are important to them. By all means have your contest.
As for mixing the two at an RPM, I can live without it. Honestly, I think it will be counter productive to the friendly atmosphere of an RPM. We come together to share, not to try to out do the next guy. Yes, it is my opinion. Some will agree; others not. That's what makes open discussion work so well.
 
Fred Freitas
Bennington, VT
        

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Re: Contests at RPM meets

Steve Lucas <stevelucas3@...>
 

To be fair to at least one NMRA region, I've found regional judging in the NFR to be tough and instructive, yet very fair, from when Pete Moffett oversaw it, to the last NFR convention that I attended. And I've been on the receiving end of that judging.

Steve Lucas.

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Kurt Laughlin" <fleeta@...> wrote:

The fact that contests are rare at RPM meets sounds like a missed opportunity for you guys. In the tank modeling world our club (military vehicles only) loves the national contest. The models are judged against an objective criteria based on good construction, good painting, good weathering and so forth rather than against each other. This distinguishes us from the larger national plastic model club that uses a traditional 1-2-3-out system. The method of judging is also different. Rather than a small team of judges who judge every model we use peer judging in shifts. Almost uniformly the people who judge say that it was the best lesson they've ever had on building better models. I know there are people who are bothered by judging in principle, but the thing modelers remember is learning how such and such technique was done, not whether they got a bronze or silver.

KL

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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