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Is traditional building a disappearing art?

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bouncebounce crunch23/04/2017 13:07:55
1739 forum posts
212 photos
Another angle could be the cause of decline.
O,H and S
the glues, the balsa dust, the tools used for the build, the engines and motors, the fuels and oils, the plastic packaging, the forgotten spousal partners.
all dangers to our survival, all could kill us at any minute.
Glad i am a risk taker and will mosey on regardless.
Stuart Z23/04/2017 16:26:52
378 forum posts

ey mPosted by Daren Graham - Cambria Funfighters on 22/04/2017 08:41:58:

Hi all, Ive just come across this thread. From what I've seen actually I feel that kit and plan building is on the increase. Availability of kits an issue. Mainly because at present demand will not support a full time wage for the manufacturer. The information Im getting is saying that many would like to build but just need a nudge to get going. Building is a hobby in its self and should be treated as such. That way you dont fall into the trap of saying "I don't have the time or the patients" etc. As a modeller, how many times have you stared out of the window looking at the weather and complained. That's my best workshop time. I can lose myself for hours in the workshop, radio on with a mug of dusty tea.

Brexit has had a noticeable effect on me as a kit producer or so it seems. With the increasing cost of buying from europe and the effective demise of Horizon in the UK since their move to Germany. Also HobbyKings well discussed website issues. More people are looking to buy from the UK, and that does include moving over to kits thankfully. So much so that my production time has increased significantly.

Long may it continue.

Dare I suggest that on this forum, we compile a thread of UK manufacturers that we can refer to when looking for a next kit? Could possibly go as far as what models they put together.

As said before, it is tedious wading through page after page of ARTFs.

Just a thought.

Percy Verance23/04/2017 17:41:29
8108 forum posts
155 photos

Well here's my two-penneth for what it's worth.

D B Sport & Scale. Offering a growing selection of sport and sport scale kits, almost all originally designed by David Boddington, with some redesign work by the former owner Eddie. Highly recommended good quality kits, and all fly very well indeed. Or at least those I've built have.... They also have many designs offered as Plan-Packs, which (obviously) offer a plan plus other parts (wing ribs etc) for the model. This is a slightly cheaper way to arrive at a model you've built yourself. 

Phoenix Model Products.  A good choice of kits for silent flight enthusiasts with some well known designs penned by Stan Yeo, the owner/proprietor. Stan also produces several kits for electric powered models. And with all his kits being lazer cut, the quality is excellent. Stan also has a *normal* model shop and can supply all the items you'd usually associate with this side of the hobby. His selection of servos takes some beating, with very competitive pricing. Again, highly recommended.



Edited By Percy Verance on 23/04/2017 17:54:10

Daren Graham - Cambria Funfighters23/04/2017 17:49:10
480 forum posts
83 photos

Good idea. You can sign me up for that but where will you put the list? I know that there are possible issues on here with regard to paying advertisers and these should be respected. I would recommend a conversation with a moderator on this point or even higher up the chain of command perhaps to offer suggestions that are fair to all. Maybe a basic free directory or small annual fee of £35 for contact details and very breif discription of the products. I'm sure if it was an all encompassing directory with sub headings then all the model trade would do it, which would make the excercise worthwhile.

Stuart Z23/04/2017 19:13:25
378 forum posts

Sorry, if this idea is going to cause issues the please, Moderators, delete these few postings. I want this forum to stay healthy and without issues.

Daren Graham - Cambria Funfighters23/04/2017 20:30:02
480 forum posts
83 photos

No issues from me. Don't worry. Just if we could do this I would be happy to pay a small fee. I'm just concious thatsome businesses pay to advertise and we should be respectful of this. I'm not a paying advertiser but I would be happy to subscribe to such a directory. Sorry if there was any confusion it was not intentional.

Stuphedd20/12/2017 14:48:25
656 forum posts
351 photos

Ratty 018A good while I showed you some photos of what my mate is building "

well here is an update ! Just enjoy !Ratty 017

Stuphedd24/12/2017 09:38:25
656 forum posts
351 photos

The heading of this Thread " trad building a disappearing Art " more or less?

As the previous post showing unique design and build ability had no comment or critique , I would presume the answer is YES !


But id anyone is out there

Have a Happy Festive Holiday !


Peter Miller24/12/2017 09:53:17
10193 forum posts
1192 photos
10 articles

Some of us (quite a lot of us judjing by the forum) build because we like building, the act of creating something with our own hands.

If we couldn't fly we would be building something else from basic materials or kits (NOT Plastic)

Man has always made things. Sometimes from necessity but also for pleasure.

Those who do not have the desire to make something are to be pitied

Cuban824/12/2017 11:03:09
2727 forum posts
13 photos

I think the title of this thread might be a tad misleading. Don't forget, that before mass produced, cheap far eastern ARTFs, if you wanted to fly then you had to build whether you liked it or not (you could buy ready built second hand, of course). Building was viewed as an integral part of the modelling and learning to fly process.

ARTFs swept all that away and got many people in the air for the first time with a model that was more or less guaranteed to fly - whether they continued in the hobby/sport depended on their on-going interest developing, and did not neccessarily depend on whether they'd built or assembled their model. Naturally, not crashing too often is a big help!

With the exception of trainers, I notice that some ARTFs that might be considered as good second or third models and the more scale looking types, have become very much more expensive and therefore are encouraging people to build again, and look to having a model that is more individual in appearance. In the two clubs that I belong to, this seems to be the way things are going and hopefully, how the hobby will recover, although probably to nowhere near how things were in the past.

Bring a kit or plan built model to the field and people want to know all the ins and outs of it, most ARTFs don't warrant a second glance unless they are really exceptional and expensive. There are many builders out there, both old hands and newcomers, who are producing fine models that are never seen by anyone other than their club mates (several my flying buddies build to a standard that is equal to anything that you'd see in scale comps, but do it simply for their own enjoyment).

I'm glad that RCM&E still produces free plans (fewer odd-ball designs please wink) and often covers building matters in quite some depth; the photography of many superb scale models taken from around the UK show circuit is inspiring and certainly pushes a not particularly gifted balsa basher like me, on to better things.

Merry Christmas everyone, time to clear the building bench for next year.



Edited By Cuban8 on 24/12/2017 11:08:25

ChrisB24/12/2017 15:54:06
1220 forum posts
34 photos
Posted by Pete Willbourn on 20/12/2017 14:48:25:

Ratty 018A good while I showed you some photos of what my mate is building "

well here is an update ! Just enjoy !Ratty 017

Hi Pete, TP certainly knows how to build a model! Do you ever hear from him these days?

Happy Christmas


Stuphedd24/12/2017 16:34:39
656 forum posts
351 photos

Hi Chris , ( and dad) Happy Seasonal Greetings

These photos were attached to his Christmas Card , so the answer is YES !!

Pete W

onetenor24/12/2017 19:21:36
1900 forum posts

I would love to build from kits but find most of them out of my price range. Even scratch building is very hard for me to do as even raw materials are expensive these days. I could buy more with just pocket money than I can these days on my pension. I have to buy just a little at a time.until I have enough to at least make a start on a model.

Martin McIntosh24/12/2017 21:27:27
2933 forum posts
1073 photos

Well said Cuban8, I agree entirely. If you do not build your own models you will not take much care of them, just go out and buy another when you crash them, have nothing to do over the winter and probably lose interest and take up fishing or golf etc. I really enjoy the building side of the hobby even more than the flying now.

Glyn4424/12/2017 21:27:45
701 forum posts
92 photos

around 100 members at my club. I think a max of 10 guys build. The rest buy and fly.

Cliff 195924/12/2017 21:54:07
261 forum posts
58 photos

Those who do not have the desire to make something are to be pitied

That's so true Peter, I pity people all the time lol

Simon Chaddock24/12/2017 23:06:32
5443 forum posts
2855 photos

I appreciate I might be in a minority but I see no difference between a sheet of balsa and a sheet of Depron or similar sheet plastic foam. They both have to be cut up and glued together to create a structure.

Conventional building but with a different material just like when balsa first appeared in competition in 1931!

Geoff Sleath25/12/2017 00:13:51
3374 forum posts
272 photos

I agree, Simon. I much prefer balsa/ply as building materials but the magic you do with Depron is a sight to behold and well beyond my meagre talents.


Peter Miller25/12/2017 08:08:53
10193 forum posts
1192 photos
10 articles


The point is that you are building, cutting parts out and assembling them. The material doesn't matter, it is the creative act that does.

I have even designed and built a model in Correx, the stuff that estate agents make For Sale notices out of. It works and is totally indestructible. Cheap too!!

I have done quite a lot of solid modelling in balsa and lime woods.

Percy Verance25/12/2017 08:39:06
8108 forum posts
155 photos

Winter was always the traditional time to build/repair models. Artf's have their place in the market of course, and have introduced many people to the sport/hobby whom perhaps wouldn't have otherwise considered taking part. I always think it's a great shame to see bent artf's being written off as a result of what (to me) seems easily repairable damage though.

Sadly, some newer folk to the sport/hobby I've met just don't seem at all interested in getting creative and attempting repairs. One chap ventured to ask me about the model I happened to be flying earlier this year (a Balsa Cabin Duet powered glider). He asked how long it took to build it, and I replied "about a Month or so". He seemed a bit taken aback at that, as he thought it might have been just a few hours. I explained that various sub-structures had to be built, with these being constructed on a large flat surface ie: a building board, and that they couldn't be lifted off the board until the glue had dried and the structure was stable. The look on his face was a picture. He almost looked stunned, and had no idea models were built in this way.......

Edited By Percy Verance on 25/12/2017 08:41:18

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