Re: 1995 Scale Masters

Matt Bittner (
Wed, 20 Sep 1995 08:46:37 -0500

On 20 Sep 95 at 9:17, Larry Marshall typed diligently:

> Are the models not judged to some sort of documentation? In flying scale events
> the documentation is, theoretically, the 'rule' and even if the plane is correct and
> the documentation incorrect, points are deducted. This is an attempt to remove
> the need for in depth knowledge of each aircraft from the judge's credentials.

Yes, especially in the "larger" contests, termed "Nationals" (for
obvious reasons), and "Regionals" (for being in a certain section of
the country).

However, when you get into the "gsb" contests, they do go by the
"basics" as set forth by the national committee, but once all models
are judged that way, then the sometimes "good 'ol boy" network kicks
in - as well as the judging based on "what the judges know". I have
a friend who builds impeccable 1/72nd armor, and people in the
"sponsoring" club actually hid one of his models, because it was
"light years" better than anything else around it. It was so good,
that once he "unhid" it, it beat out all 1/35th scale armor for "Best
Armor". This is an example of the "good 'ol boy" network. I've also
been privy to it. One contest I went to this year, all members of
the hosting club won, regardless of talent. This is what I mean when
I say that my WW1 got beat out by a _poorly built_ Fw 190. To take
it to an extreme, the "Best of Show" at this contest went to a
hosting-club member's tank that was the _worst_ of the lot. He took
this same tank to a Regional, and didn't even place! <Shudder>

> > 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
> I've been in contests like this in model railroading. They are a simple
> way to run an event but that's about all you can say for them :-)

As another friend of mine said, "gsb" contests are great for "new",
or "struggling" modelers, because they try to award _everybody_. My
Honorable Mention at the Nationals has more meaning than my "gsb" at
another contest. It's meaningful because they didn't award
Honorables in all categories, as well as it's a National award.

> > ;-)) 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.
> Many times I've looked at a Datafile photo and said to myself,
> wonder how many points you'd lose if you really made that fabric sag like
> that. Guess you've done the experiment :-)

However, if you're lucky to have a contest where the WW1 models are
judged by WW1 builders, than it probably would "make it". But, you
run into another problem. Because WW1 isn't as popular as the other
eras, you won't get many judges, because they have entries in that
category. When I've judged in the past, I usually judge in the WW2
or jet category. I have enough knowledge to know what I'm looking
for, and when it comes down to "scheme a - model a" versus "scheme b
- model b", then I'll ask someone more knowledgable than me. I won't
base my judgement on what I _think_ a model should look like.
Unfortunately, there aren't that many people out there judging
smaller contests that do this.

One _good_ contest for WW1 is the KC-Con, in Kansas City, MO.
Although there were problems in the past, it has gotten better,
primarily because our own Steve Hustad helps with the judging - and
sponsers a "Best WW1" award, that he alone judges. I do believe that
he is asked by other judges, now, when those judges have questions
about WW1. However, with "gsb" contests, you are at another
disadvantage since there will be so much more "other stuff" than WW1.

Ah well. Rant again, I have. I will stop now, and let everybody
ponder away. ("Yea, but where are we going to get chaps our size?")


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

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