I hope you’ll forgive me, but I took a little extra time off this year.  But I’m back in the shop now and I am ready to get to work on 2019.  I also have some new plans for this year.  Come on and I’ll tell you about them.



Last year was sort of tough for me — in many ways.  Aside from the hurricane, I was badly tempted by the Dark Side (i.e. 1/48 aircraft).  I had gotten bored with things and my routine and was looking for something new, something different.  For a while, I was actually thinking about starting a line of 1/48 resin aircraft products.  But I did some serious thinking over my break, both about myself and TMD, and I can happily report that I have found balance and returned to my true calling — 1/35 armor.  In fact, I am actually excited about it again.  I have a lot of new ideas, and a new plan of how I will ‘try’ to do things this year.  I’ll explain as things go along, but, for now, the good news is I have my head on straight again.


We had to fire our first crew.  They simply took too long and expected too much money for what was sub-standard work.  The good news is, our contractor put a new crew on our house yesterday and, in 2/3 of a day with only 3 men, they did more work than our first crew of 5 men did in 2 months!  If this continues, we expect to be back in our house in 4-6 weeks.  Folks, when you consider that most the people in our area are being told it could be 4-6 months before anyone can even look at their homes, we are doing good.  God has blessed us far more than we deserve.


This is one of the areas that will change this year.  I have to general goals I hope I can keep to.

1st — I hope to start paying more attention to the new products as they come out.  I won’t look at everything.  I can’t; I’m only one guy now (Karl is pretty much in retirement from the master bench).  But, when something new comes out that interests me, or generates enough demand from you guys, I will look at it — hard.  And, I hope to work closer with Terry Ashley this year.  I like the idea of my ‘Because Terry said So’ line, now I just need to make it happen.

2nd — I have decided that I will either start building again — as in painting and finishing a model — or I will start selling off EVERYTHING I own that is not directly related to making new products in the next 6-12 months.  So, I will find something that interests me and build it.  As I do so, I will post updates of the build and — naturally — I will generate new products for whatever kit I’m building.  At the moment, this is the Tamiya Valentine.  I’ll get the first pics up this week, but I can tell you I already have the first new British/Commonwealth product from this build in the mold box waiting to be put under rubber!  🙂

Otherwise, I am going to try to stop saying what I plan to do.  I’ll just tell you what I am currently building and let you hope and guess.


OK, I have tried this before, but I did it in a hap-hazard way.  I am looking for new pattern makers.  Unfortunately, I have two problems here:

1 — a pattern is very different from scratch building.  It takes a little time to teach an outstanding scratch builder how to make patterns for casting.  Some of them never get there.  These guys are artists, and — like all artists — they tend to not take direction all that well.  I got lucky with Karl, he welcomed it and the result is now legend in our hobby.  So I need to find a guy with the skills, but who will also take advice on how to do things so they can be produced.

2 — For whatever reason, guys done seem to want to work with me.  I don’t know why.  I know that I set high standards, and this might turn some guys away.  But I suspect it may just be me.  If so, I can understand that.  I have not always been anyone worth knowing, let alone a person with whom anyone would want to work.  I have a little bit too much Sheldon Cooper in me for that.  But I am aware of this and I have been working to do better, and be better, but I may have a bad reputation that has been causing people to stay away from me.  Honestly, if this is the case, please, send me a private email and let me know.  I can’t fix it if I do not know what is broken.

Anyway, I am looking for your help here.  IF you know anyone who YOU think might be or become a good pattern maker for TMD, send me a private email and tell me about them.  Or better yet, tell them to email me.  I promise, if we can form a working relationship and the product is good, I’ll make sure the whole modeling world knows who you are — just ask Karl 😉


I actually have good news on this front.  I finally figured out how to make some of the changes I have been wanting and needing to make.  Now I need to make the time to start building the new web site.  It will take time, there are a LOT of items to be entered.  I can’t just load the new format over the old data base, and I am not knowledgeable enough to know how to use any shortcuts there may be to help me do that.  That said, I want this done fast, and intend to spend a bit of time on it every night.  When I am done, finding what you want or need and didn’t know it will be much, MUCH easier.  The only down side is going to be that the new web page will not be phone-friendly.  You’ll be able to use it from your phone, but there could be a lot more scrolling than you might like.  I can’t help this one.  I had to decide on making it phone or computer friendly, and since I am not a big phone guy, myself, I chose the computer format.


With 1 exception, I shipped everything that came in before Christmas.  I have 14 orders left as of today.  I’ll start shipping them on Monday.  Watch for an email notification of the shipping and tracking info.


I will be slowed down just a bit this coming week.  It’s tax time again.  I already have most the documents I need to do this, so I expect to have it all done by the middle of the week.  Still, that will slow me down a bit the first few days I am back in the shop.


My world: what can I tell you about my world?  I tell you what: I’ll just share my New Year’s resolution.  I normally try to stay away from them, but — this year — I made one for my own benefit.  This year, I am going to dedicate and re-dedicate myself to working on personal discipline.  And by personal discipline, I mean in all areas: family, friends, work, personal — all of it.  I simply need to start focusing on what others need or want me to do for them and less on what I want to do.  I know I have bitten off a large chunk to chew, but I intend to chew on this one the whole year — whether I ever get it swallowed, or not!  So, that’s how my personal world is going and — so far — it’s going OK.


Well, that’s all I have for now.  So, until next week, stay safe and try to build something (preferably something using TMD resin).

— Joe

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