New Nanoblocks Now (Please)

 

It has been several months since a new nanoblocks kit has come my way.  Come on world, what are you waiting for?  I want new kits and I want them now.  NOW!  I don’t want to have to wait until some holiday (Christmas is 9 months away), or special occasion.

I can see by using the magical internet that Japan has a whole bunch of new and interesting nanoblock kits, but I have none.  There is really no way for me to categorize that as fair.  No way at all.

Too much in life requires my patience.  I have to wait in lines.  I have to wait for the next movie from Marvel.  I have to wait for my coffee to brew.  I have to wait for the defrost in the car to win the battle against the Great White North’s great white winters.  I have done enough waiting.  Give me nanoblocks or give me……some other hobby to occupy my time (if you thought I was going to say death, you were wrong)

I am waiting world.  Don’t expect me to have much patience.

What’s Next?

As a hobbyist with too many hobbies, I am most often juggling several at one time. Nothing wrong with that as it keeps me from getting bored.  I realize that I have not posted an update on my hobbies lately–mostly because I am not particularly satisfied with the results, partly because I am preoccupied with Christmas (and memories of Christmas’ past) and partly because having so many hobbies, work, obligations and a rather long commute, I haven’t completed that much.

lots of kits to build
I have managed to actually finish some things, and that means I have to look ahead.  That’s the topic of this blog: What lies ahead?  I am sure most hobbyists confront this question.  Mostly, they are confined within one hobby, but I am sure they ask it.  Train layout builders ponder if they should expand their layouts, or redo some part of it.  Video gamers wonder which game they want to beat next.  Puzzle makers consider which kit has the least amount of sky.  Music makers are looking for the next beat.  All of us are wondering what’s next.

What makes this question so difficult for me is that it has so many meanings.  Which kit should I build next?  Which Nanoblock kit should I buy and build next?  Which train building needs to get done next?  Which set of freight cars should I buy?  What layout project should I tackle next?  Which blog should I update next?  Should I start a new blog?  Which books should I get from the library?  Should I start a new hobby like remote control helicopters?  Should I get a pool table for my house? (The Hustler was on TV this weekend…. just so you understand how my mind works)  Should I get my motorcycle or pilot’s licence?  Should I join the gym?  Wouldn’t it be cool to make my own beer?  Baking seems like a good way to feed myself.



lots of model railroad buildings to make
Yes, not only do I wonder what is next in the hobby queue based on what I am doing (I finished one kit, what’s the next one?) but also on what new hobby I would like to take up.  Is this wise?  I can’t really say that it is, but that is just how things go.  That’s what makes the question, what’s next? so difficult.



The other wrinkle in all this is preparation.  I might want to do something, but that doesn’t mean I am ready to do it.  I might pick a model kit, or building kit and find I don’t have the paint or that my glue has dried into a rock solid mass that will never dislodge itself from the bottle.  There is nothing more of momentum killer than having to go out and get something.



and a nanoblock project awaiting
Sometimes a trip to the hobby store is good for getting oneself going again, but for someone like me, it just opens up too many avenues of exploration.  Going to the hobby store for glue might mean the beginning of an entirely new hobby.



So, what’s next?


Ghosts of Christmas Past (part two)

 
One of the coolest kits (which was also quite educational) that I received for Christmas many, many, years ago was Capsela.  This toy was so cool that I have never been able to part with it, and the photos from this blog contain the actual kit I received on that cold (and possibly snowy) Christmas morning of my youth.

After checking Wikipedia, I found out that Capsela was created by the Mitsubishi Pencil Company.  So, surprise, surprise, another cool toy came from Japan, though this one came from an era when Japanese toys were more pedestrian.  It beat out Tamagochi by at least 2 decades.  Apparently, these days, Bandai from Japan has re-released these toys and they go for staggering amounts on EBay, or ship from far away places in Asia.  I had seen them at a science store–but that store is now closed.

Capsela was a rather unusual toy.  It was a motorized toy that didn’t come in traditional shapes and forms.  I think its science fiction look also was part of it’s appeal.  In addition to that, there were things you could build for the bathtub–and nothing could be cooler than that (add some superfoam, a few boats, and you had the making of a fantastic sea battle–probably better than that Battleship movie.)
the back of the box–detailing the parts included

The toughest part of the toy was understanding gear ratios.  Trying to build beyond the instruction booklet was rather difficult.  You couldn’t put things in any order you wanted, because it just wouldn’t power everything correctly.  Having only one set, and no internet bulletin boards for help, I really couldn’t stray from the instructions (though I tried many times).  These days, things would most likely be different.  Looking back on it, I had probably been too young when I got the present to really understand that, and could have saved myself some frustration.

There must be cool things like this today, but they are probably more geared toward use with an iPad, rather than a stand alone construction toy.  At least, I hope there are toys these days which are about building and operating.  I know there are still RC helicopters and cars, so besides Lego, there must be stuff like this–let me know what is out there.  I’d love to know.

It was definitely a cool toy.  Someday I will check out the new version, and that will probably be pretty cool too.

Finally!!!

Finally.

6 months of saving up the money

One tense night of deciding

One moment of courage to make the decision

Relief when one package arrived

Anticipation for the final package

Disappointment when the package failed to arrive

Numerous emails to correct the problem

Frantic checking of the UPS number

7 weeks waiting in total

Finally it has all arrived

 

My N scale Scenic Ridge Layout kit is now in my possession.  I picked up the last overdue piece from the post office today.  It was quite the struggle to wait, but it is finally here.

I have already chronicled why I cam to buy this kit, and I have not wavered in that decision since I bravely completed the order form.  I am sad that what was supposed to be my vacation project has now become a weekend project, but that is just the way it has to be.

I will take time to write about my progress and include my pictures.  Hopefully you will enjoy it.

Decals…..My Nemesis

I am not going to boast about my modeling skills–mostly because I can’t.  I am stuck in the intermediate phase and seemed destined to stay there forever.  On one of my current projects–Jacques Villeneuve’s Formula One car I had been making good progress until I met my nemesis.
My nemesis at car modeling that is…. my sink nemesis is this guy named Martin, and my bus seat nemesis doesn’t have a name, but he has sharp elbows that seem to stick me whenever he is texting someone…. whish is ALL THE TIME!  I seem to be digressing.
My nemesis in car modeling must be decals.  I have lots of good equipment. I have a good set of knives.  I have a steel ruler.  I have a really cool self healing cutting mat (not entirely sure what that is, but it sounds cool).  I’ve even got a full range of tweezers and some setting solution for the decals.  What I don’t have is patience for getting them on strait, judgement to know when to remove them from the water, and delicate fingers to stop them from ripping, folding or disintegrating.
I have, in the past, managed to get the decals on license plates, dashboards, air cleaner covers and manifolds.  As for this car, I have ruined a few, and now feel dejected.  I am not sure I want to finish this model, even though it started out with such good progress.
I wish I could blame the decals.  They seem very thin and fragile.  Maybe they are defective.  If I could comfort myself with that lie, I could probably tell myself the dozens of others that politicians and pseudo academics try to foist on me on a weekly basis.  Sadly, I cannot do that.  It is probably less about principles than practical honesty.
I had such high hopes for this car, but sadly, it may go back in the box to rest for a while.  A long while, if I can’t shake this funk and feeling of frustration.
I used to hate painting car bodies, but the airbrush has made that somewhat easier.  Of course, choosing the right colours and thinning the paint appropriately has also helped that, but I would rather thank the airbrush.  It is just simpler that way.
I used to hate taping walls and baseboards for painting, but the new tape (frog tape I think it is called–they must be competing with duct/duck tape.) has made that easier.
wiring up train tracks and lights used to be a pain, but that has been solved.
So basically, why can’t they make better decals for car models.
 
On a side note, as an ESL teacher, I am amused by the word decal.  Do you pronounce it /dee-kal/ or /deckle/ ?
these turned out relatively good

Stress, thy name is anticipation

Hobby stress–yes, you heard me, hobby stress (and yes, I know hobbies are supposed to alleviate stress) comes from many places.  If you don’t believe me, through several of these blogs (because explaining more than one kind of hobby stress would be….. stressful) I will educate you.

For today, stress, thy name is anticipation.  For a hobbyist anytime you are waiting on something, whether to be released to the market, or to appear at your hobby shop, or to arrive at your home because you ordered it online, it feels like Christmas to a five year old.  Maybe that is why some of us hobbyists have been accused of never having grown up.

I took the plunge about one month ago and ordered a train kit.  Having been frustrated with my lack of progress on the train front I decided to basically start again, albeit with greater restraint.  Most people who like trains envision a grand plan that takes up a lot of space in the home, perhaps more than one room.  This is wonderful, and though costly, certainly will occupy a large amount of time (and money).  Unfortunately, this kind of ambitious planning can be a drawback if you lack the skill or determination to realize this dream.  Looking at myself, I have to admit both of these are true,  I was getting nowhere with my train layout, so it is back to square one.  So, to compliment my skill level, I bought a complete kit, layout, buildings, the whole thing in a box–actually three boxes, three kits.  Actually, ordered would be a better word.

That was a month ago.  I received two of the kits (buildings and track) but have yet to receive the layout part.  That’s right, the part that starts the whole thing off is missing.  I have contacted the seller, and apparently a replacement for my lost products is on the way.

Since my contact with the seller, I have waited patiently, or at least as patiently as a man child like myself can wait.  I don’t wake up every morning hoping my package mysteriously, wondrously appeared under my tree (it’s still only the end of August), but I have eagerly come home from work hoping to find the box or at the very least a note from the post office.

That was a month ago.

Can you understand the torture a hobbyist goes through now.  What can I do?

Okay, actually, like many hobbyists, I have a whack load of projects I could do.  There are models to build, house walls to paint, grass to cut, yo-yo tricks to practice, Dexter to watch, YouTube to watch and many others,  The problem is these are things I  could do, but not necessarily things I want to do.

So, here I sit, hoping against hope that the courier will arrive tomorrow with my much wanted box.  Only then will the waiting be over.