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Is traditional building a disappearing art?

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Jonathan M15/04/2017 13:39:43
387 forum posts
127 photos

PS: My Mick Reeves Gangster kit has just arrived in the post! Yay!!

James Green215/04/2017 14:17:33
27 forum posts
14 photos

Not for me now I have a laser cnc to make my own kits. Free plans on Outerzone have made this hobby affordable again.

Tony Bennett15/04/2017 14:24:24
4784 forum posts
117 photos

i design and build all my own models using Depron foam.

so i am an outcast as it is not balsa. laugh

i feel that people who dont build are missing something but fully understand if they cant for some reason.

times change and we must adapt to the changes.

Tony B

ken anderson.15/04/2017 17:35:10
7928 forum posts
723 photos

i take my hat off to some of the model aircraft that the LMA members create..... lot of skill involved often starting with just an idea and bit of paper....

ken hats off to the LMA lads dept.

Pete Willbourn21/04/2017 11:48:13
536 forum posts
280 photos

rathound 011.jpgJust an update on a project I have posted before .Its not mine , Chris B has commented before on this builders skill, but just enjoy !!rathound 010.jpg

Jon - Laser Engines21/04/2017 11:58:20
3466 forum posts
142 photos

That looks lovely, what is it?

Andy4821/04/2017 13:05:14
1257 forum posts
65 photos
Posted by Jonathan M on 15/04/2017 13:37:10:

Another angle is this:

Just how many schools have aero-modelling clubs? I'd bet the answer is a big fat round zero!

Also, the pride of place in most school DT workshops is the laser-cutter or even a CNC machine, combined with an array of screens and keyboards. Any bench-planes or chisels still in existence won't be properly honed or tuned (because the teacher doesn't know how), so the practice - and joy -of making things properly will never really be experienced.

If we wish to future-proof 'traditional' skills, then this is where it would have to start...

... or where its been neglected for a whole generation already!


Start writing to the government then, because it is they that designed and implemented the National Curriculum.

Nightflyer21/04/2017 13:05:18
102 forum posts

In this day and age the use of CNC should make kit production a lot more affordable than it used to be. That said though we aeromodellers all have different desires for our next project which makes it a challenge to manufacturers. You only have to look at the range of plans against the range of kits and also ARTF's to understand. While one can argue that the range of kits available should be good to encourage kit building, it would be interesting to see what the most popular designs are and understand how interests change over the years.

There is a good possible survey or opportunity to see 'what sells' there me thinks.

The range of plans should be more than adequate to nurture people's desires for building models that interest them or others, or are unique etc.

I owe my interest in building to many designs from RCM&E, RCMW and Radio Modeller with some of the oldies that stick in mind being Unicorn, Antares, Stringalong, Gordon Whitehead's Tiger Moth, Gypsy Moth and Hawker Demon, Short Skyvan, Sierra Sportster, Thunderbolt, Tucano, Plus, and Hawker Sea Fury that either inspired me or I ended up building.

alan p21/04/2017 13:15:18
159 forum posts

High cockpit position + cockpit entrance door + wing planform could be a Piper Pawnee??dont know

Pete Willbourn21/04/2017 13:32:57
536 forum posts
280 photos

The airframe featured is a home design , Like a vast majority of his aircraft , They all go under the designer 's name of Jack Russell, , I think thats his dog ! , but he will tell you JR was a well known designer from Doncaster , The tale goes on and on untill you actually believe there was a JR, This one is a Rathound , see the dog connection ??

As I have said before its takes this builder years to complete an aircraft ,but if you are interested , I shall continue to post the photos ,

Can you tell his actual job was a jeweller ? I say was cos now he is well retired ,

So long live the scratch builders !!!

and I will dig out a photo of his wot 4 which he modified by keeping the engine position low but adding twin banks of rocker gear and an open cockpit just rear of the wings giving a 20s to 30s sportster look , the only recognisable Wot4 bit left was the classic Wot4 rudder shape !


Peter Miller21/04/2017 13:40:52
8824 forum posts
1009 photos
10 articles

I would guess at a Spitfire The cockpit side door, the shape of the fuselage just in front of the seat and the head rest. A Pawnee is is NOT

Don Fry21/04/2017 13:42:05
2085 forum posts
26 photos

In all fairness to old fashioned systems, I will use technology every time if I can. Do I fancy starting the steam engine before I get the lathe going, no thanks. Or even a boy turning the lead screw to make a bit of threaded rod. And a cnc cutter takes to my mind just as much skill to maintain and operate. Just a different set of skills.

onetenor21/04/2017 13:42:06
1471 forum posts

Hoq can I send new tupic?

David Mellor21/04/2017 13:57:28
331 forum posts
80 photos

I also wonder if trad building is dying out.

I build planes, including own designs. But I have recently developed an allergy to balsa and an allergy to superglues.

So for for me, trad building has become - practically overnight - all but impossible now.

Fortunately, as Donald Fry and Tony Bennett have pointed out, we now have new, higher tech alternatives like Depron and carbon fibre. So I use those these days.

I take Donald's point about using modern tech. However, I like to think it is more important to use appropriate tech sometimes. So if you like the look of a vintage design, then the appropriate tech for that job will be the old fashioned, traditional one... unless you're allergic!


Edited By David Mellor on 21/04/2017 13:59:39

Percy Verance21/04/2017 14:42:21
6003 forum posts
109 photos

It can't be a Spitfire Peter, the wing shape is wrong, and so is the tail group.

Peter Miller21/04/2017 14:51:10
8824 forum posts
1009 photos
10 articles

Sorry I was only looking at the cockpit picture.

OH EASY!!! Martin Baker MB 3

Jonathan M21/04/2017 15:03:02
387 forum posts
127 photos
I'm not against CAD design or CNC/laser cut parts, nor do I draw a distinction between natural materials and man-made. I'm currently making a rubber-powered scale Spitfire with superbly accurate lasered balsa parts - although its probably taken more time to sand off the burn marks than if I'd built from a plan, which for free flight I've also done.

The distinction for me is between the workmanship of 'risk' and the workmanship of 'certainty', whatever the material. ARTFs are the extreme point of one, scratch builds the other, kits of any description fall between the two.

Jonathan M21/04/2017 15:07:15
387 forum posts
127 photos
PS A scratch-built depron model is, for me, a more interesting object and achievement than a mass-manufactured foam warbird.

dave parnham21/04/2017 17:00:47
134 forum posts
11 photos

albert inspects!!.jpg

dave parnham21/04/2017 17:02:02
134 forum posts
11 photos

Trad building still going on here! Albert has arrived early to inspect his new Pup blush

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