Re: 1995 Scale Masters

Matt Bittner (
Tue, 19 Sep 1995 14:21:39 -0500

On 19 Sep 95 at 14:44, Larry Marshall typed diligently:

> How are IPMS contests judged? In RC static judging falls into 'outline',
> 'color and markings', and 'craftsmanship' and using the point systems, I don't
> think there's much in the way of type bias. In fact, if anything I think
> here any subjective bias would go to the 'odd' model rather than a common
> one.

The first - and most important criteria - is one that's termed "basic
modeling skills". This includes: are all seams filled (which CAN be
a problem with some WW1 - try to explain to a judge who doesn't know
any better that the horizontal tail is supposed to have a "seam"
where it meets the fuselage); are all parts aligned (e.g. wing
alignment); is the paint job a good one, e.g. no runs, no blemishes,
no fingerprints, etc. Then you get into the "meat" of things. How
is model 'a' compared to model 'b'? How "detailed" is the model?
How representative is the model of the "real bird"?

However, when you get into "gold, silver, bronze" contests, all
things change. The "goal" for "gsb" contests is to award as many
awards as you have. The judges tend to break things down into
knowledge areas. I have seen "WW2 Fw 190" judges try and judge
Fokker D.VII's. They have no clue, so they give the awards to that
which they know. In the past I have seen them make decisions that -
if they asked a "knowledgable" person - were inane. For example -
from personal experience - I have a 1/72nd Fokker D.VII that has
received many compliments, has won "other" awards, and asking
National judges, just a good 'plane. (No, it didn't win Nationals,
because I didn't spend enough time on the engine as Steve Hustad did.
;-)) It failed to win anything at a "gsb" contest because the
"judge" thought the lozenge decal I put on - which represents a
"fabric problem" - was wrinkled, so they didn't award me anything.
Yes, it was wrinkled, because that's what it's supposed to represent.

Am I bitter? Not any more, even though there were models that won
that - IMHO - weren't as deserving. Yes, they were from that "other"
war. ;-)

So, in a way, I've come to grips that in a "popularity" contest -
which most "gsb" contest's turn out to be - WW1 won't favor as well
as WW2 or jets. At least not until we get a stronger contingent of
WW1 modelers judging. You can have an impecable Dr.I sitting next to
a not-built-well P-51, and the majority of the time the P-51 will win
out. Again, that's mostly due to familiarity. If familiarity is the
case, then either don't have the people judge that "don't know any
better", or educate them, or recruit from the WW1 model building

Hmm... Some of the above comments I might want to retract, but for
now, I'll let them stand.


Matthew Bittner WW1 Modeler, ecto subscriber, new dad, PowerBuilder developer; Omaha, Nebraska

"It must be inordinately taxing to be such a boob." - Brain