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'A gaping silken dragon,/Puffed by the wind, suffices us for God./We, not the City, are the Empire's soul:/A rotten tree lives only in its rind.'

Monday, 13 July 2015

Tanks (model)...

... garden...aircraft models...

I've loved gardens since I was at least six years old, and used to have a small corner of my father's garden, behind a slowly collapsing shed, where my favourite plants were London Pride and forget-me-not. I've enjoyed kit bashing aircraft since I was seven or eight, when my father took me to the local Woolworth's and bought me the old Airfix Hurricane IV. The model tanks followed a bit later, with a Tiger tank from a school mate (which still exists, somewhere). So, plus ca change...

The Vickers Light is coming along. Is it just me, or did Humbrol matt enamel dry more quickly in the past? It definitely needs 24hrs to dry now, yet matt used to be ok in six hours - or am I imagining that?

The above photo was taken on Saturday morning, when I was sitting outside in my back garden, having one of my 'do this in remembrance of me' moments, but not for Christ (although the quotation makes one think of Him), but for my father and grandfather. I've returned to my pipe occasionally in recent weeks, so I was puffing away in the sunshine, sitting in one of my late father's garden chairs, remembering, and watching a bee carefully ascending then descending the hosta flowers. Both hostas and geraniums remind me of my grandfather, born 135 years ago.

And model aeroplanes. The next one could well be the much applauded:

Or, one that I've had in the stash for over a decade....


  1. Re Humbrol matt enamel. You are right, it used to dry in no time. These days it can take days to cure thoroughly. Seems worst on vinyl tracks - I've had it still feel tacky after a week. I think it was Mike Starmer who told me that this problem started when something called white extender (iirc) was added to the recipe around the time production shifted to China. Last I heard it was moving back to the UK but I don't know if the situation has improved at all.

    Cheers, Dave

    1. Dave, many thanks for this! I wasn't sure if my memory was playing up, or if I was doing something that I hadn't done in the past. But I'm glad it's all a result of global capitalism and those cunning Chinese chaps! It's a damn nuisance, though, as I can buy Humbrol easily and locally and I still prefer enamels for tanks. Oh well.

  2. I changed to acrylic paint a few years back now but I understand the new Humbrol enamels are a little better now they have moved away from China, but not as good as they were back in the day.

    Love the garden-looks almost tropical.

    1. Yes, it's annoying when things get worse rather than improve. I'm old enough to remember the old 'Authentic' range, the passing of which I still lament. (Like too much!). Thanks - I rather like my shaggy garden. Good for hiding in!

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