Group Build Clarification - needed for the future.

Discussion in 'Group Builds - Official' started by Airframes, Feb 10, 2013.

  1. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    This post stems, mainly, from an e-mail I have received from a member, but also from my own thoughts regarding the organisation, or otherwise, of Group Builds.
    The current GB, 'Transport/Recce/Jet' etc, has already prompted discussion, questions, clarification on types, times and so on and is, quite frankly, a jumbled, confused, cumbersome mess of a combination of at least three separate GBs !!
    The judges, and a number of members, have, in past discussions, agreed that 'Split' builds are tiresome in their construction, organisation and handling. In addition, they should, in theory, be judged as separate GBs, in order to decide winners in each category.
    At present, in these 'split' GBs, there is only one 1st, 2nd and 3rd place per Category, when in reality there should be the same for each section of a 'split' GB - for example, placings for 'Transport', for 'Recce' and for 'Jet'. Unfortunately, this is beyond the realistic scope of the judges, due to everyday commitments, and is akin to running, and judging, three separate GBs all at the same time!
    It must be noted that the published listings for future GBs have been drawn up, originally by Dan, and latterly by the kind and generous help of Vic, from opinions/votes, from members, from suggestions put forward by members.
    Although there is nothing inherently wrong with this system, it can, and at times has, lead to confusion and uncertainty, as the subject matter, time scales, aircraft types/roles and so on have perhaps not been fully thought through, and guide-lines drawn up to clarify exactly what is and what isn't eligible for entry.
    I do understand, and appreciate, that, in most cases, discussion among members and judges has, eventually, clarified the situation, but I have to admit that one section at least of this current GB is rather 'clumsy', for want of a better description, and seems to have been included without too much thought or clarification.
    I mean, of course, the 'Jet' section, which originally started out as 'The Jet Age'.
    Some time ago, I seem to recall discussion on this subject, where it seemed agreed that the 'Jet Age' encompassed a period from the dawn of jet aircraft, to the first steps into supersonic flight - that 'Golden Era' of jets, from the Me262 up to about the late 1950s to early 1960s, where a separate GB could be included to cover the wonderful, broad choice of models, of aircraft which actually existed and flew.

    As the listings have been arranged from suggestions put forward by members, could I please therefore request that, when a particular subject is selected for the listings, that the member, or members, who originally submitted the suggestion, submit their thoughts on the subject parameters, in order that all concerned can understand these, and discuss/argue/clarify/modify as required?
    This will allow a 'formal' set of guide-lines to be drawn up for each GB, well in advance and, whenever possible, given the required information, I am happy to undertake this task.
    This, I hope, will prevent any future confusion, possible ill feeling, and, in some instances, perceived 'manipulation' of subjects, and avoid the extremely cumbersome and irksome possibility of 'split' GBs.
    Many thanks, and I look forward to your comment/suggestions.

    Cheers,

    Terry.
     
  2. Wayne Little

    Wayne Little Well-Known Member

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    Agree with your comments Terry, as i understand it we have let the first round of GB's to run their course, however a set of guidelines should be set up to cover each individual GB as was done in a few of the early GB's, at least the first improvement with regards the new series is that there are no SPLIT Builds and each set out with a basic description of content.
    Probably a real good idea to set up the formal guidelines to fine tune the content, maybe get the ball rolling at 4-6 weeks before the start, so a final draft can be in place say...at least 1-2 weeks before commencement.
     
  3. rochie

    rochie Well-Known Member

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    yup spot on Dogsbody.

    must admit i did not think the group builds would last this long and Vic seems to have sorted out the new listings with a bit more detail than the originals.

    no offence to Dan as i think we take them a bit more seriously than we did when we started !
     
  4. meatloaf109

    meatloaf109 Well-Known Member

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    From what I can see, there are no more split builds on the schedule. That, IMHO, is a good thing. The current build grouping of transport, recon, and observer / jet age did seem a little strange to me, almost as if the jets were thrown in to ensure participation.
    In looking over the list of future builds it seems that they are described well, and should present no problems in understanding the parameters of each build.
     
  5. Rogi

    Rogi Active Member

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    If you look at the current mixed build in 17, most of the participating items are jets :S We would of been totally in the hole if the Korea jets were included and up to 60.

    I think some of us would of found a compromise for the recon/tranport stuff if there was limited to that. :)
     
  6. A4K

    A4K Well-Known Member

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    #6 A4K, Feb 10, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2013
    Agreed Terry - keep it simple I reckon: one subject, clearly defined.

    Trying to fool proof my own build clarification (GB 30: Post War Warbirds: new lease of life). Will sleep on it and post it tomorrow.
     
  7. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Terry for bringing this up. I agree that setting up the boundaries is a worthwhile exercise and am with Wayne on the when and how. The abolition of the Split Builds will help alleviate some of the confusion but, even so, as was the case with the need to define better what the "Nose Art" build should entail, there is a strong case to be made for initiating the discussion early and defining the parameters before the builds start.

    I might add that the recent confusion over the jet age portion of the current GB is a probable result of the contraction of the title of the build. The original title of this portion of the build, initiated by Dan and repeated by Vic, is The Jet Age 1944-45. For some reason, probably to save space in the thread title space, the 1944-45 was dropped, leaving just "Jet Age" and leaving the impression that this covers the period mentioned by Terry. Had the intent been to cover up to 1960, this build would likely never have been split as it would have provided so many more build possibilities than the 1944-45 limitation placed on the scope.
     
  8. Vic Balshaw

    Vic Balshaw Well-Known Member

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    #8 Vic Balshaw, Feb 10, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2013
    Totally agree Terry, I think clarification well before the GB starts would be a good thing. One of the things I did try to do when making up the last list was to try and define the type of build as best as possible not only by the title but also with a brief narrative where possible. Admittedly some of these will need to be clarified and refined.

    As for the current GB, this is the last GB of the old list drawn up by our good friend Dan and it's quite possible that it incorporated much of what was left over from the suggestions of that time. Andy has hit the nail on the head by clarifying that it was Jet Age 1944-1945. It is also mt firm belief that as a split build it should only be judged on the Jet Age as one subject and Recon/Transport/Observer as the second subject.

    Maybe the lesson from all the confusion of this build are an indication that maybe we should open the next GB header thread a couple of months out from start date with the first thread being specific, giving timeframes and a more definitive description of the builds scope, time period and such. It should also give prospective entrants a chance to input thoughts and questions or seek clarification. Thoughts on this would be most welcome.

    Edit:

    Like you Terry, I will be more than happy to lend a hand to get the future GB sorted and rolling.
     
  9. N4521U

    N4521U Well-Known Member

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    Oooooo, that could mean Double the trouble for the judges.............. That in itself would keep the split builds to an absolute minimum!
     
  10. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Thanks for the thoughts and observations so far guys, all good stuff.
    I've since received a further e-mail, which highlights a number of other important points which need addressing, mainly concerning the Rules as they are at the moment, and I'll be contacting the judges during the next few days, via e-mail, to discuss this.
    It has also been pointed out, and I admit that, at times, I have sensed this, that the Group Builds can, at times, seem intimidating to some would be 'competitors', and perhaps give an impression of some sort of exclusive 'club'.
    I must state that this is not, and never has been the intention, and the GBs are open to any member, regardless of levels of skill, knowledge or resources, with the actual intentions being to help improve skills where required or asked for, to foster and develop an interest in scale modelling, particularly, but not exclusively, of WW2 aircraft subjects, to help each other, in whatever form, to this end, and to have fun, and foster relationships world wide.
    In general, in the course of the GBs, and the modelling sections on this forum, these intentions or aims have been achieved.
    However, I can, and do, understand how such an impression can be perceived by some.
    Over the last four years, since the very first GB, there have been vast improvements in skills, techniques and general modelling experience by many, and the content of the GBs, both in the form of models and 'enhancements', as well as the tremendous input of historic and technical information has, perhaps, lead to a more 'serious' perception of the GBs.
    Although there is nothing wrong in this as such, it should be stressed that the GBs are predominantly for fun - they are not world-changing, tremendously important events- and should be regarded as such, by all concerned.
    It is highly possible that this perception, by some, has its roots in the sometimes lack of clarification regarding the Rules and the subject matter, and the occasional 'bending' of these parameters, particularly in the form of trying to make a particular GB fit an available model, rather than the other way around, only exacerbates this problem.

    Once I have conferred with the other judges, and given that any anomalies in the current Rules are correctly addressed, and amended as required, I will post a notification so that all can be thoroughly informed of the outcome, and the amended/modified Rules will be posted accordingly.
    Given that this can be achieved, then it is hoped that further problems, queries and clarification can be minimised, for the good of all concerned. Please note, however, that the current Rules are loosely based on similar rules used in IPMS competitions worlwide, although nowhere near as strict, and were not 'dreamed up' or 'pulled out of a hat'
    Meanwhile, please be assured that the GBs, and the Modelling section in general, is not an exclusive club for unapproachable 'Modelling Gods', but places where you, the members of this grand forum, can take part at your leisure, and enjoy, perhaps learn, without, it is hoped, that 'Look at how good I am' syndrome I've often witnessed during (very) brief visits to other modelling forums and clubs.

    Cheers,

    Terry.
     
  11. meatloaf109

    meatloaf109 Well-Known Member

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    Excellent presentation, Terry. The level of help extended by accomplished modelers to any who asked was the reason I joined this forum. There are a few out there that openly sneer at anyone that is of beginner or even average levels.
    My thanks to those that make these G.B.'s possible and fun.
    While I make no claim to "Modeling god" or even Wizard status, I kind of favor "Ubermodeler". Can I be that?
     
  12. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    Another eloquently presented topic Terry and thanks for taking the time to state your excellent points, all of with which I agree.
     
  13. A4K

    A4K Well-Known Member

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    Yep, echo Andy's and √úbermodeller's posts :)
    The best build starts were the first ones where you wrote the background history of the theme and explained the subject limits.


    My opinion for what it's worth: never liked the fact the builds are judged at all. Being a perfectionist (ie bloody self critical) I find that in itself off-putting, and can well understand if others feel they're outclassed and excluded.
    Flip side of the coin, look at the beautiful professional builds that should but don't get votes because of the current system - quite unjust and pointless. I reckon can the judging altogether, and just have a first, second, third members choice.


    Clarification of my own build suggestion (GB 30: Post War Warbirds: given a new lease of life):

    -WW II aircraft ONLY (1 Sep '39 - 14 Aug '45), in post war use (15 Aug '45 - present). This includes all types in military service at the outbreak of war (from any country, combatant or not), but excludes aircraft under construction at cease of hostilities or post war production of WWII types.

    -Aircraft only to be in original form/ function if exported or sold to the private sector, unless modelling a Museum or airshow circuit aircraft which wears a representative original scheme.

    -Aircraft in same branch of service must be in secondary form or function (eg, Water bombers, Top dressers, Engine test beds, Converted target tugs and trainers, Meteorological, Aerial mapping and Air-Sea rescue configurations etc).

    -To be strict (and avoid grey areas) the individual aircraft portrayed must have previously served in another air arm or role , not just the type generally. If modelling a composite rebuild/ restoration or racing circuit aircraft, the original must be largely built from a serving aircraft.

    -Aircraft type and role is open. Can be a fighter, transport, Liaison, trainer, anything. The more variety the merrier!

    Aims:
    To see what became of the aircraft we love when they were retired from their original duties. (spoons and frying pans in many cases sadly!)

    Hoping for aircraft in other than usual form or function, in different military and civilian schemes and markings.
     
  14. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Thanks for the feed back Ubermodeller, Andy and Evan.
    And thanks again, Evan, for presenting your 'guidelines' for your proposed GB. Regarding the suggestion about the judging being scrapped as such, and left to the members, this has some merit, given that it is arranged for voting for placings (i.e. 1st, 2nd, 3rd etc etc) as well as an overall 'Best of Show', should the latter not be immediately obvious. However, there may be a slight problem in actually getting members to take the (sometimes considerable ) time to review and judge each build, and then cast their votes, although there's almost always a solution to any problem - except perhaps lethargy!
     
  15. Vic Balshaw

    Vic Balshaw Well-Known Member

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    Terry, can I also echo Andy, Paul and Evan's comments and say thanks for your thoughts, comments and time on what is a very involved topic. I will be awaiting your email with trepidation.

    Thanks also Evan for the clarification of your suggested GB, I have taken note and will append them with that GB so that when the time comes we will have the necessary build details.
     
  16. tigerdriver

    tigerdriver Member

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    First of thanks to everyone involved for continually trying to improve the experience here on the site, which i think is great .

    My twopenneth worth as both a relative newbie and an absolute beginner .

    I am trying to enter each group build. Whilst the standards are a little daunting, i dont see this as an issue as for me its a learning process and an inspiration to improve . The fact that my results wont match up to some of the " stars" here is not an issue, and I enjoy watching the skills on show .

    I think opening the build forums up well ahead is very sensible . I would almost like to see two early threads. The first a discussion of the detail and expectations for the build from the " powers that be" and a second where people can chat about their plans and seek both confirmation of suitability and some help or additional ideas

    I think trying to make things too rigorous can suck some of the fun out and has the additional risk of making the judges task ever more onerous.

    It may also be worth making it clear that the standards are different in beginners, intermediate and advanced ... As a total newbie I am just pleased if my kits come out looking abit like the type i have chosen . My skill level is away off getting bogged down in detail errors with individual kits with specific types for example . The advanced guys will be at a whole different level and be working much more closely to their references for example. This doesnt mean that someone like me doesnt care that a certain example carried whatever camo, or different interior or exhaust or whatever. It just means that I am realistic about what I can acheive at my level . I read other peoples corrections mods and scratch built items with great interest and try and store them in the old noggin for future reference.

    As ever its a very hard balance on these things , but its always worth remembering that the builds should be fun for competitors judges and interested onlookers
     
  17. N4521U

    N4521U Well-Known Member

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    Wow, a lot to take in since my little quip about the judges "workload". So my five cents worth.

    First of all, I joined in her because it's been a very long time since I had built anything of any consequence.

    Second of all, I joined because of the kind of support that was willingly given by ANYbody who had input to a question asked. This is something that is quite unusual among people with skills in Any craft. Here answers come from far away places. The old saying "ask and ye shall receive" is no truer than here.

    Thirdly, When I joined in here, at that time, my intention was to build as many Yorktown serving types as I could. 1/72nd scale, canopies painted white from the inside. All I was interested in was the paint scheme. Accuracy was not even a factor. I have a few in the cabinet.

    Fourthly, if this is a word, in here I have added the phrase "historical accuracy" to my model building vocabulary. It sometimes gets in the way of completing GB's on time. I am frantic in my finishing the last few days to be on time. It's because of being a part of this forum I have found another avenue of subjects, mainly Davidson pilots of WWII, WWI, and now Viet Nam. It's added purpose to my searches for subjects and I have found I don;t have enough time to do every one I have found.

    Fifthly, am I discovering new words?, I am doing the kind of detailing because I attended casual workshops in the States with a professional builder. He shared his expertise freely, like them thats in here. It's because of the examples in here that those lessons have been rekindled and inspired me to think outside the box and jump back in to it.

    I am having fun. it's not a business, it's an absorbing pass time that allows me to keep my sanity in my declining years, I will be 70 in 4-1/2 months. I am fortunate my wife wants to see me active in some way, any way.

    I encourage all the beginners to just have a bl00dy go. We learn more by our failures than our successes. Just remember that. We post our progress for input and example! Not to show off.

    And Join In a GB, we all do it for the experience of Doing it.......... JUST DO IT!
     
  18. A4K

    A4K Well-Known Member

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    Cheers Terry and Vic - please tell me if my guidelines are too stringent or narrow on the build!

    You could be right Terry, maybe there does need to be a fixed backbone of judges in the builds, even if just to keep the order. Whatever the majority decides is good for me.
     
  19. Rustybugs

    Rustybugs Banned

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    #19 Rustybugs, Feb 11, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2013
    My two cents..I like the idea of having no judges also or winners or losers. Just do the build, everyone do their best and get help if needed without "judging". Clarification is a must on the rules. I for one, and this will go over like a bull in a china shop, but here goes.. would scrap the current build list after 19. I mean really, everything lined up to 2018???? Half the folks won't be here anymore for what ever the reason. Why tie yourself to a build so far in advance? If the 15 or so folks that actually voted can't come to an agreement in a couple of weeks and they need years to come up with a kit....... Just do 2 builds in advance. At the beginning of the last published build which lasts 3 months do a vote again for the next two builds and so forth. Start a thread for two weeks having everyone state the build they would like to see. After that do a poll for 2 weeks, whatever the vote tally is stick with it. Even if it's only 4 vote for a specific build, if it's the majority so be it. That will give everyone 2 months notice for the next build and five months for the one after that. That should be more than enough time to gather any reference material or kits or aftermarket parts you may need. If it isn't adjust the timing to the start of the first build, that will give them 5 months to get the stuff they need for the build. I mean really, do you need 5 months to gather what you need for a build?

    Something else I would like to know. How many of the folks here actually build a kit for a competition outside of the forum, either local club or IPMS or would if there was one close by them. I know Wayne does. Who else? I know some are not located to where they could enter a contest.
     
  20. Rustybugs

    Rustybugs Banned

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    I keep editing this post as I think about things. I for one would like to see a few monkey wrenches thrown into the builds. Change up stuff to make it FUN. Have a build that only covers 1/72 or only 1/48, do a build that has to have a small diorama around it included, Do a build that has to be OOB, no modifications, no additional upgrade, no scratch building of parts, has to be built and painted as is in the box. Do a build that is for the super detailer's out there. But they have to back up anything they do with photos of the real thing. Do a wild paint job build, you know those garish ones some of the pathfinders and rally aircraft had. Do a build where all the kits have to be hand painted. Yes, it can be done. One I would really like to see, is a battle damaged build. All entries would have to have realistic battle damage and not just a few bullet holes. Something that would challenge the builder to have to show his work as to the internal structure of the aircraft.
     
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