Sunday, December 15, 2013

Putting It All On The Table

Welcome to my workshop!

In my roughly ten years of serious modeling, I have had several incarnations of a workbench, or work space, or whatever you want to call it. I have certainly been fortunate enough to have the available area in which I can put together my models and shoot my airbrush. Not always the most ideal conditions, but I will take what I can get!

We have all seen the pictures of that guy with a spare bedroom set aside specifically for him and all of his goodies. You know what I'm talking about. There is a broad and spacious table awash in perfect lighting, big enough to hold the vast array of tools, paints, glues, and spare parts bins necessary for the job. Its flanked by cabinets containing references books and magazines, compiles over years of endless obsession. Above it are rows of shelves bearing the weight of the almighty stash that other modelers would drool over. Adorning the walls of this magnificent paradise are works of art, prints depicting "Cripes A'mighty" or the "Memphis Belle" and even some framed box art. How could you forget the luxurious display cases, highlighting all the models he has built in recent years. Envious? Indeed.
But rest assured, you won't feel jealous when you see my meager set up...

And here it is, in all its glory. It looks like a kitchen table, you say? Well, that's because it is.

Yes, the same place we eat our breakfast, lunch and dinner is right where all the magic happens. Its spacious enough to accommodate me but it has its one huge draw back. Considering it is where the family eats, and that its in a part of the house that, you know, the public has full view of means it is necessary for me to clean it up and stow it away after every session, and pull it back out when I am ready to work again.
But as you can see, I have simplified the process with a few items that make moving all my gear a bit easier...

Everything that is essential to a build I carry in those two items. The blue tote holds several things like assorted glues, decal solutions, masking tape, plastic card and copper wires for scratch building. The black set of drawers holds pretty much what it says: top drawer for sharp tools like the Xacto knife, second drawer for tweezers, sprue cutters and scissors, while the third drawer contains my files, sand paper and pin vise.
For paints, its pretty much just as simple...

A little box contains all my bottles of Vallejo acrylic while the paint brush holder does exactly what its suppose to. My Tamiya acrylics used for airbrushing are in a clear plastic tote on a shelf behind the table but I don't use them as often so I didn't feel like a photograph was needed.

Not only do I have to clean up my area after using it, it also gets decorated for Christmas. Its kinda nice modeling in such a festive environment. The shelves behind the glass doors hold all my completed or nearly completed models while the cabinets below and to the left store my meager stash. The drawers in the middle hold my weathering tools, like oil paints and pastels as well as some enamels. The cabinets on the far right contain a lot of different things such as spare parts and diorama making material. It is also where my paints are stored after using them. You can see in the far right bottom cubby hole are the blue tote and black set of drawers that I previously showed you. They sit tucked away nicely there.

Its obvious that my son likes to use my space for his trucks and cars as well. They also use the dining room table for their own arts and crafts. If you thought modeling can get messy, check out what a six year old and a three year old can do with ten minutes and some Play Doh...

Which I'm also left to clean up. But I'm used to that by now.
Thanks for stopping by the workshop. I hope you enjoyed it.
Thanks for reading!


Part of being in the Union means you must include links to fellow contributors' posts within your own response. If you liked this post, then perhaps you'll enjoy what some other modelers have to say about this topic!

Kermit's Bench
Migrant's Wanderings
Digital Sprue
Jay's Scale Model Adventures
Yet Another Plastic Modeller
Greg's Models
Scale Model Soup
Motorsport Modeller
The Eternal Wargamer
Miniature and Model Painting


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  1. Cool post Job, I love the use of the tote bucket etc, great idea. Cool you can all share the same workspace, I bet the kids win out over dad at times on who gets to use the table...

    1. Thanks Shayne, yeah the kids win out over dad on most occasions, whatever the issue might be...

  2. I love how you organised yourself with all the boxes and drawers. You could pick it up and set up shop just about anywhere.

    1. It makes things easy! If I had to leave the house in a hurry, I can be sure my model stuff is easy to move

  3. Had no idea you were a fellow 'dinner table' modeller Jon! Us Brits tend to assume you guys all have massive basements/garages to work in! Nice one.

    1. Yessir Geoff, nothing fancy for me. When I was in college, I had a table next to my bed that I would work on. Sure made late night paint sessions easy...just put everything down and jump into bed. Then after I got married, our first house had an unfinished basement and I would work off of a slab of concrete. So, honestly this is a step up!