Sunday, April 28, 2019

Risky business

My husband flies model airplanes.
He is member of the Denver RC Eagles, which maintains a couple runways at nearby Cherry Creek State Park. If the weather is cooperative, that's where he and his friends spend their weekends. 
It's a little bit like going to a model horse show. They load up their toys, take them to the designated meeting spot and fly together.
Except - unlike a model horse show - no one is horrified when things get broken. This is because things get broken all the time.
Sometimes it's just a little broken, but other times it's falling-out-of-the-sky, no-parts-salvageable broken. The latter happened to Seth yesterday. RIP Piper Cherokee. You were a great plane.
These planes can cost as much as our horses, and some of these men - not so much Seth - build their planes from scratch. No one likes it when their plane hits the ground, but they all want to fly so they accept the risk.
Model horse showers could learn something from these men. No matter how careful you may be, there are risks involved every single time you pack up your models and bring them to a show. Some of these involve children, although in all my years of showing, I have yet to experience kid damage first hand.
Well behaved kids at the 2018 Little Tree Youth Show
I have, however, seen a lot of models broken by adults. 
This guy's finishwork was damaged when a judge reached across my table and domino-ed several of my artist resins. 
Fixed! Thank you, Jennifer Scott
This one's ear broke in transport to a show.
Also fixed! Thank you, Jennifer Buxton!
And this one, bless his heart, has broken on the way to every single show he's ever attended. 
Do you ever fill the trunk of your car with totes of models and imagine what it would be like if you were rear ended on the way to the show? I do every single time.
Despite that, I'll keep packing up my models and heading down the road. I love model horse showing. I love being in a room filled with lots of people and lots of models. I realize that some of these people may not be as careful or coordinated as I'd like, and it's possible that one or more of models may be damaged. Of course, I'll try my best to avoid that, but like Seth and his flying friends, I've decided the rewards are worth the risk. 


  1. Really good post! I've had one model knocked off my table at a show, and it was an adult that knocked it over (after repeatedly telling her kids to be careful, lol). I also just had a tail break on the way to a show, and I most frequently break horses in my own home, while rearranging them in their cabinets. I used to worry a lot more about my models, but I've learned damage can be repaired and I've gotten good at restoring them, so good in fact that I do restoration work for other people! I love showing my models, the hobby wouldn't be the same for me if all I did was admire them in their cabinets and never take them anywhere.

  2. 9/10 of my badly broken models were done by my cat trying to use my top shelf as a spring board into my closet if I leave the door open. But I am super clumsy and drop models all the time, but luckily for me, minis can withstand a lot of abuse before they show their 'war scars' lol.

  3. When we went to a Delft store/sculpting place while living overseas, the guy at the register said that he’s never seen a kid break anything, but he’s seen plenty of adults do it haha

  4. Seth has a very cool hobby! I think there are model plane things at the railroad store near me. I have also found a lot of stuff that can be used in model horse showing...and model horses!

  5. A friend of mine was late to a model show back in 1980. It turns out she was rear ended driving to the show. All of her models were remakes, and some were damaged. We got to gether and repaired them as we could. The next day her palo QH gelding went Grand. The show must go on!

  6. I guess I'm the exception- I've seen kids break things at shows twice. Once was a china that was donated to the show's silent auction. Knocked off the table and smashed to pieces by kids running and jumping. Second was a domino, also caused by kids running around- the last horse in the chain fell off the shower's table and broke both ears. The common factor was that the kids doing the breaking were NOT there to show- they were just people's random kids who got brought along and left to their own devices. I've never seen a Child or Youth Shower break anything.

  7. Why has your Welsh pony (I think) broken every time? What is it about him? Usually his gorgeous tail? I guess there's no such thing as foolproof packing...

    1. Braided tails are notorious for this. They're just so skinny and fragile.

      P.S. He's actually a portrait of Rev, so Arab not Welsh!