The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by J.Ukrop, Nov 30, 2018.
J.Ukrop submitted a new blog post:
Moving On, In A Small Way
Continue reading the Original Blog Post
At 64 years old, I STILL have my old model cars sitting on a shelf in my parents basement, 422 miles from where I live. There are even a couple kits still in the boxes. I've tried a few times to clear them out, but have always managed to put it off for some reason or another.
I'm going to run an ad to see if I can find a kid that will appreciate them. Thanks for the encouragement.
Good for you Joey...that vintage styrene will still work to bring an imaginative kid a thrill, I still build these things...I've got a basement full. They never quit making me happy.
I'm 53 and just turned the den into a dedicated modeling room since the kids are gone. I'm on the other end of the launch it/keep it spectrum. I've been building models since I was about 8 and I don't see any end in sight as long as my sight is still good.
That's a nice thing you did for that young man because with new models at the store going for $25-30, I don't see any incentive for a kid to go out and waste that kind of money to get into the hobby.
Wow, your story of models as a gateway to the motoring hobby hits close to home. Especially the pile of models at the folks house. I'm 57 and guilty of not purging. I guess that makes me a styrene hoarder.
Great story. I'm 61, started building when I was about 6. Drifted away around 16. Came back in my mid-20's. Got into it really heavy. Competed in contests, ran a club, even wrote a couple articles for Scale Auto. Made some great friends. But got burned out. Haven't built in several years now. But still have the good friends. I have a few snap kits in stock if/when the grandsons want to do it.
I started building AMT kits in the late 50s and that must be why I've been "hardcore-into" traditional styled full size cars since. We had none of the modern distractions back then....and I'm so grateful of that childhood.
Almost 20 years ago, a female relative gave my son a AMT 39 Ford coupe kit for Christmas...it's still in the plastic, in the basement...he never even opened it.
He likes car stuff, but he is an outdoorsman by choice, just like my late Dad was...and neither of them were a builder of anything.
I watch a lot of vids about "life"...many of these say that creative people are quite rare. We simply don't realize that by staying focused in our hobby of building real cars.
Wow, Joey...I sure relate to all of that.
It was the smell that got ya. I miss that smell.
I was the oldest of 10 children. I didn't have much privacy or stuff just for myself. But I had my models. I built them in the basement...the only place that nobody went much. It was warm in the winter and more importantly, cool in the summer. My boy-cave.
I don't have any models from when I was a kid, but I still have a box with 2-3 models from before I lost my wife. I'd been building a model of our first old car we enjoyed together...a green 1952 Chevy 2-door sedan. I couldn't find a model of a 2-door...only a hardtop. So I bought a '53 sedan for the roof. Got the roof on, but never finished it.
Sandy's gone now. But I'm gonna finish that Chevy. Looking forward to it...and the smell.
Good for you for screwing up another ki...I mean, helping to make some dreams for another kid. Lol.
3 unbuilt models on the closet shelf...
fantastic story.....it's something that I think a lot of us older guys can relate to, but have never looked at from your point of view.
My mom boxed up my models and gave them to me years ago. The spare parts all disappeared. The models have been falling apart over the decades, and I've threatened to put them back together again several times, but still haven't. I've also bought a lot of kits to build over the past few decades, but I've never gotten around to them.
The big cars keep me too busy, I guess?
Maybe I should let them all move on to a new home.
A couple from my teenage years, photos taken a few minutes ago:
Squirrel, those Revell '55-6-7 Chevy kits were a bitch to build. Lots of detail, but poor execution/molding. I don't think I ever finished one.
I'm 41, so I'm not young, but I'm not old either. It really is a miracle that I'm into the hobby now. My hot rodder dad and I did not have a good relationship, so I went the academic/college route, even after building models for years. After turning my life to Jesus my dad and I repaired our relationship, then he passed away suddenly from cancer. That ignited my desire to keep this thing going in my family. I started building models again, joined the HAMB, and built a real 40 Ford Sedan. (Search "the varmit" to find the build thread)
I have a 5 year old son, and the plan is to not yell at him when he's in the garage and always keep being there with me a happy experience. I think that will help when he get's older. AND, I'm getting him a snap-together kit for Christmas
I'm 48 years old. Cars were my life when I was a kid. My parents were VERY active in the hobby, so all our family time was spent with cars as the focus. I didn't play sports, or really do anything that wasn't car focused! I did the whole model building thing growing up. I purged a huge part of my collection about 10 years ago. I kept my built-ups, projects and parts, and a few special vintage kits. I still will pick up a vintage kit now and then.
As far as the youth involvement goes, My son is now 16. I promised myself that I would not make cars a priority in his life like they were in mine. He didn't show much interest in car stuff other than playing with hot wheels until a couple of years ago. Suddenly he became obsessed with real cars! He now drives a lowered 98 GMC Sonoma that he plans to bag and LS swap. He says this is his coupe, and plans to keep it forever (I've had mine 36 years now). He has a bunch guys that are into cars at school that he hangs out with. Instead of Hot Rods and Muscle cars, they are into tuner cars. The point is, they are into CARS! It may not be traditional cars, but it's hot rodding, because they are modifying them with lowering, and other suspension mods, turbos, building cold air intakes, and custom tuning. There's even a couple of miata's with engine swaps! Most of these kids don't even come from a car oriented bckground. My son would like an older car, but at this point, it's not a reality due to cost and skill level. He hopes to have something when he's older.
Great story and it really illustrates how we connect to the past vicariously through what ever means we can, model cars, sting ray bicycles, go karts, and finally full scale old cars of our choosing. Made me want to go poke around in my closet and dig out my 2 large scale 32 Ford roadster kits and do something with them!
That “kid stuff in the parents’ basement” issue is sure difficult to manage especially when they have passed on.
Loved models as a kid. Sadly they’re gone.
Great feature @J.Ukrop! It would be great to see someone (@squirrel perhaps?) build a full-scale version of the Cameo pickup.
My brother (who is now 66 years old) used to build models when he was a kid. I thought it was cool how he used black thread for plug wires, coduroy for seat covers and bent pins with round plastic heads for gear shifters. He would putty up the bodies to customize them and even won some contests. He threwe them all away when he got into high school and I always wish I has saved a few of them. We don't even have any photos.
I should've posted some pics in my other post... some of my adult builds.
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Building model kits was the gateway drug that led to the addiction of the real thing for me. Here at age 10.
Now at age 68, I still build one now and then.
Still like to play with the 1:1 scale stuff.
Hi Joey,Great subject matter.Brings back a lot of great memories.Mom and Dad used to squake about the smell of the Testors productsrolleyes:).But I never paid any attention to them.
Those were the fun times.
Good luck.Have fun.Be safe.
I was one of the few who was never into models. Just not into them.
Suppose it’s a genetic defect.
Hope I don’t lose my ‘old car guy’ card after posting this.
Man, this post is just great!
My whole childhood was all about models. From about 5-12 years old every swap meet we went to, I had to buy a model kit. Most of them got chopped and cut up. My brother and I were pretty hardcore into them. I don't want to know how many 33 willys kits we built. Everyone of them got a blown/injected hemi or cammer
Still got a few plastic totes full of carcasses and parts.
It taught me a lot about the construction of cars, parts names and what you can do with some imagination.
Joey...even if you don't have a 1:1 hot rod, you still take a great photo....thanks again.
BTW, I have 2 or 3 model kits left over from the old days. I'll build them when I can't work on y 34 anymore.
First model in second grade was a curved dash Olds milk truck. The second was a 190? Renault limo. By fourth grade the both had been turned into sports car/hot rods. Last one was a 32 roadster I built while home from Germany for Christmas leave in '64. I channeled it, heated the chassis in boiling water to 'Z' it and cut the grill to fit. Painted it turquoise and silver. Been years since I've seen it. The build style has stayed with me. I sliced 3/4 of an inch off the oil pan of my 'A' coupster to get 5" of ground clearance. A hood will barely clear the 3 deuces and the top of the windshield is touch over 4'tall .
I built models from age 7 to 15, i'm 60 now , it was a blast ! It definitely was a gateway to real cars , every once and a while I run across an old unbuilt kit and think about putting it together, maybe someday.....
I too built models, and on into adult life, full size real Hot Rods of my child hood dreams.
I have not thought of those times for many years.
Thanks for the trip back in time.
I built a lot of them when I was a kid, but when I got my first real car, lost interest in them. When I moved out to get married, Mom gave them to one of my younger cousins. When my kids were around 10, I bought a few for them, ended up doing the building myself mostly. The oldest wasn't much interested but the youngest one built several with my help. I still have some of them, like Jim said parts have fell off and are missing, but I won't get rid of them. Like his dad, when the youngest got his first car, models went by the wayside. He went on to be as car crazy as I was at that age, but 20 is too young to die. I guess that's why I'll never get rid of them, they are a part of him.
Wow great story, my brother won a local model car contest at the local Ford dealership (54 Ford Convert), got me interested at young age and here I am still playing with the real ones and don't ever want to not be associated with this car fascination.
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