Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The hubub over the Kinetic F-16XL

Earlier this week Kinetic announced its next release, a 1/48 F-16XL. Like most of my reactions to life these days, I had mixed emotions. First I said to myself, "Cool!" Then I was all like, "Whatever." It seems that the modeling community shares my feelings.

Some modelers are not impressed. On Britmodeller, many readers expressed their disappointment.

"Leaves me stone-cold."

"Why waste research and plastic on this when there are so many other classic and contemporary subjects begging for a decent kit?"

"Not really looking forward to this release."

Others in the discussion were more positive. One pointed out that Kinetic, Hobby Boss, and Kitty Hawk are making greater contributions to the hobby than the older, more established companies such as Hasegawa and Tamiya. I think he's right. Although quality has been hit-or-miss, these newer manufacturers are giving us some very interesting models.

As insightful as these conversations have been, to this announcement as well as other releases as they've been announced, one important point is often missed. In the case of the F-16XL, let's remember that this is not Kinetic's final release! Even if you, like me, think there could've been better choices, we're going to see many more releases from Kinetic and the other manufacturers before they go the way of the dodo. For example, I'd really like to see a new-tool Su-22, and if I were at the helm at Kinetic or Kitty Hawk you'd all have one on your bench (or more likely, in your stash) by now. But I have to believe that an Su-22 is on someone's radar and we'll see one sooner or later.

As modelers we know the value of patience when building a model. Let's remember to apply it to the release of new models as well.

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