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MPC Model Kits: Space:1999 Nuclear Waste Area 2 preview

posted by JamieH 8:30 AM
Thursday, November 2, 2017

Remember this…?

http://www.collectormodel.com/round2-models/3236-mpc-models-and-now-for-something-completely-different/#sthash.72oBoEt4.dpbs

Ah those were the days… Boy, I wish I could come up with time to write more blog posts like that one… Wow, it was written just over a year ago at the time we were only considering what to do next. No sooner than we brought out our 22” Space:1999 Eagle Transporter kit, modelers took the opportunity to remind us how much they would LOVE additional environmental pieces to go along with it. Believe me, we knew it was coming and that we had some ideas to pursue when the time was right. Between the standard Passenger Pod version and our new Cargo Pod version, we ciphered through the list of ideas and landed on an environment set that could be used with either kit.

Here is a “blink-and-you’ll-miss-it” look at the back side of the lamp stands along with a photoshop-enhanced look at it.

To say the least the opening scenes of the premiere episode “Breakaway” inspired the release of our new Nuclear Waste Area 2 Diorama Set. Considering the constructions in that area we found plenty of items to include. Probably because it is vehicle, the moon buggy was the obvious choice to include. Of course, it would need driver and passenger. And if we did those figures, it would be great to include more. But what do Alphan explorers do on the surface of the moon. Why, they have to inspect the radiation monitors atop each storage silo of course. A few of the boxes laying around the area would be simple enough, but we decided to make them hexagonal as such storage containers would evolve into later in the series. But all that stuff really didn’t amount to much at 1/48 scale. We needed something really substantial to fill the box and give the kit some amount of heft. Jim Small has always championed a 1/24 scale moon buggy. If we were doing the small one, it would be simple enough to make a larger one too. Since the rest of the kit was in scale with the Eagle, we decided to reason its inclusion to be a BONUS to the rest of the kit. But we still needed more… It dawned on me that the lamp stands literally defined the waste area. We could include some of those, but they wouldn’t be much fun… WITHOUT LIGHTS! So we decided to include the LEDs needed to light every one of the lamp stands from top to bottom. Add all THAT up and it started to look like the great value it was.

The buggy was going to be the biggest element to create. We had two choices. Send diagrams with measurements to the factory and let them try to cypher them out and then need to give tons of feedback to iron out all the details… OR we could have our pal, Daniel Prud’homme create the CAD work for them. Guess which route we took… One ace up our sleeve was the fact that Jim had real Amphicat 6-wheeler in his garage that he had always hoped to restore. We drew up a ton of diagrams and applied measurements taken from Jim’s ‘cat and sent them on to Daniel. He did an excellent job of getting the buggies spot on. Even Jim was satisfied. (a feat in itself!)

As we can expect, even the best Chinese vendors get a few things wrong in their first draft…

Soon to be corrected though.

The kit will come injected in two colors. The 1/24 buggy will come in yellow for the fun of it. The rest of the kit will come in un-pigmented plastic. I’m not sure if any kit has ever been release this way. The plastic isn’t white, or gray or even clear. (test shot photos show “Eagle” white plastic) It is a dense translucent plastic that must be seen to be understood. This was chosen to allow the light to pass through the sides of the lamp stands that emanate a dull red light. LEDs are supplied for each point of light in the stand. We backed off the brilliance of the top three exposed bulbs to protect the viewers’ eyes. They are still plenty bright, but they won’t leave you seeing spots after looking at them. Here are some photos of our buildup under construction and even a peek at the mockups we had built for the Cargo Eagle packaging we showed at Wonderfest 2017.

You get plenty of product in this set. Eight lamp stands are included with sets of four installing into two-part vacuformed bases. The bases have moon surface texture and are engineered with enough height to allow the battery box for each set to be hidden underneath. We are including two of the smaller moon buggies and a total of 10 1/48 scale figures come in the set. 2 pairs of seated guys for the buggies, then six others that share two styles of bodies and arms. The arms can be mixed and matched among the bodies and posed at the discretion of the modeler. Two nuke waste cones are also included. The whole set was designed for anyone that has the space to buy additional sets to make as big of a representation of the area as they want. As with all our kits, we’ll see how this set is received. If it does well, we’ll dive deeper into other accessories to add to the lineup.

I changed up the packaging approach on this one I wanted to homage the look of vintage packaging like the old Moonbase Alpha kit. I also had to find a way to show exactly what was included in the kit while also establishing its size next to an Eagle. Part of the charm of the MBA package was its use of white along with very colorful photos of the structure. I also wanted to vary the features shown on the lid and make a point about the 1/24 BONUS Buggy. I ended up with a box that really flips my usual approach. The back of the box, shows one larger image with the rest of the box taken up by feature shots, kit info and photos of the real miniatures. I’m very satisfied with where it all ended up. It is very eye-catching and colorful with just the right amount of the throwback look I intended.

Here is a look at some of the process photography from the packaging. Just like the best special effects shots, we used compositing tricks to achieve the ideal look.

Look for the kits to hit retailers at the beginning of December.

Thanks to Jim Small for lending us some of his photos for this post. For more form him visit:

https://www.smallartworks.ca/

 

AMT Model Kits: Star Trek kit reissues

posted by JamieH 2:55 PM
Thursday, October 26, 2017

Hi… It’s been awhile… Whatchyabeenupto?…

Really? That sounds cool! I can’t wait to see that…

Me, you ask? I am writing a series of postings to fill you in on just that. I’m sure you’ve heard about or seen some of it, but by the time this series is done (probably around Christmas time… which is never as far away as it seems) I’ll be filling you in on the new exciting kits we’ve started, but have not yet officially announced. So keep your eye on this space.

First, I’ll touch on the AMT Star Trek kit reissues we have coming out late this year and early next year. The first two were some of the latter releases by Round 2’s predecessor.

The Cardassian Galor-class has been out for just a little while now, and we haven’t really said much about it. The primary change to the kit is the installation of a metal rod to support the ship atop its existing Cardassian logo base. However, this wasn’t the only change we made on this kit. As it turned out the clear tooling for the kit turned up missing. As we retooled the clear part we decided to make a change to small pyramidal parts. We added pegs to them and punched holes in the hull to accept them. This provides a slightly easier path towards lighting the kit.

In addition to the kit itself, we also offer a full set of paneling/weathering decals as we do for some of our other kits. The decals are compatible with the original issue for anyone holding onto old copies.

Next, we have the Klingon Vor’cha Battle Cruiser. Like the Galor, the clear parts tool was lost and retooled though they are made to seamlessly replace the originals. And again, we added a metal support rod to be used with the original Klingon base. Both kits build great representations of these spacecraft. Proportions are accurate and each provides a great level of detail. Look for the Vor’cha in December.

The new year brings a re-issue of the AMT Enterprise Refit. It has been popular with modelers that like a medium-scale model that want something more substantial than our 1:1000 snap kit, but may not have the room for our big 1:350 scale kit. At 22” it is a great size. The kit will still feature the surface paneling detail. We priced out fixing that some time ago and found that we would essentially need to start tooling from scratch and opted to tool up the 1:1000 kit instead. We are adjusting the base to use the metal support tube with our larger dome base. The decal sheet will be upgraded from previous releases, but won’t include full Aztec decals since applying large decals over the paneled surface might prove to be problematic for some modelers. We have included strongback decals in soft blue that mimic the onscreen look of the ship.

Coming off the Shelf – The Petty Race Team

posted by ChuckZ 9:28 AM
Monday, October 9, 2017

AMT is excited to announce that we’re bringing back another classic kit for all the stock car fans out there—the Richard Petty Race Team! Featuring two full kits packed into one box, this kit includes: a slant-bed transporter truck with loading ramps AND the Dodge Dart “Kit Car” Late Model Sportsman, offering everything a Petty fan could ask for in a model kit. Not to mention, we’ve also thrown in complete decal sets for each vehicle, and two extra stock car tires, which can be stored on the hauler.

So grab your glue and Petty Blue paint, cause this kit is racing into hobby stores near you, and online, in just a few short weeks!

KAT CHAT: Introducing the KAT’S KOLLECTION from AUTO WORLD STORE!

posted by JohnG 10:23 AM
Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Hello Modelers!

We’ve got some exciting news. As most of you know by now, we’ve been reissuing select kits as low-production exclusives, available only through AutoWorldStore.com. Well, the team at Round 2 has decided to step it up another notch and give this series of exclusives a new name. Introducing… the KAT’S KOLLECTION from AUTO WORLD!

Conjured by the creatives who bring you AMT, MPC, Polar Lights and Lindberg kits, the series won’t just be restricted to the AMT brand. But we thought it’d be cool to make the KAT from AMT the “official” Kurator! But better than that, these kits will be even more exciting than Round 2’s Retro Deluxe™ releases! Without the parameters of mass retail, we can bring you even closer to the memories of your youth and do things like produce the kits in the exact size “specialty” box they came in when they were first released. We can include MORE GOODIES inside the box, too!

The first release under the Kat’s Kollection series will be a dynamite dragster that you may remember…

The Hippie/Rampaging Reptile was one of the first kits Round 2 reintroduced when we became the caretakers of AMT and MPC tooling – nearly TEN years ago! It’s time for another rip down the strip and for this exclusive release, there are several differences from the ’08 version. Now, ALL the original decal art is present, including the Rampaging Reptile graphics which were not in the ’08 issue. In other words, you get the full original decal sheet, but it’s still expanded to include many additional decorating graphics!

The parts for this release are molded in “Rampaging Reptile Yellow Pearl!” We’re not molding them in red like the original, for two reasons. First, we know how much “fun” it is to try and paint over red plastic if you want to change the color. AND, we still want to give a point of differentiation between this recreation and the original kit, to help maintain collector value of the original.

The optional tinted window colors are new and different for this release as well: Outta’ Sight Orange and Barnstormin’ Blue! You still get the original clear ones, of course. Slicks will be “pie crust” M&H with pad-printed Racemaster lettering.

We think one of the coolest aspects of this exclusive will be the box – it’s been painstakingly recreated to look exactly like the original, with the same small size that many AMT kits came in, back in the ’60s. There are a few differences for legal reasons of course, and the tray has all the parts info you’ve come to expect from Round 2, but this will be one radically retro, value-packed parcel of plastic!

Additional bonuses include a full fold-together, custom drag strip cardboard display base with backdrop, a mini-box of the cool vintage packaging, and even a die cut mini “easel” of the original kit’s sell sheet that can be displayed with the mini box and built model! Just for kicks, we’re including a Kat’s Kollection sticker too, to denote this first release in the series. You can stick it on your tool box or somewhere in your workshop!

Look for this kit in late November or early December at AutoWorldStore.com and be sure to send us photos of your builds!

Grab the glue, it’s all for you!

KAT Chat: Original Art ’59 El Camino

posted by JohnG 11:04 AM
Tuesday, August 15, 2017

I’m a lucky guy. I happen to own the original vintage AMT painting for one of my all-time favorite kits. Specifically, the 1970s “Street Rods” issue of the 1959 Chevrolet El Camino. Now, I can hear some of you commenting about this issue of the kit, having changes and fewer parts than prior issues. But, if you’re like me, specific kits from certain times in your childhood created special memories, and this is one of those kits for me!

Gather ’round the workbench for a cool story: I remember walking home after school with a buddy in the late 1970s. We were going over to his place to build model cars. He had an older brother who happened to have a body shop in town. He did amazing work and had access to some really cool paints! When we walked into the kitchen at my friend’s place, sitting on the table, there just happened to be an in-progress build of, you guessed it, the Street Rods ’59 El Camino! However, what I saw made my eyes bug out and stuck a memory in my mind that I’ll never forget. The body was painted with amazing rainbow metal flake and glittered like no model I’d never seen! It didn’t matter that the flake was a wee bit too big for a scale model car body. It inspired me to no end and is probably what started my love of “flaked” paint, whether on model cars or real cars!

The kit was barely started and was in the box. I just gawked at the beautiful illustration of the white car with the chrome scoop sticking out from the hood. The colorful orange and purple background really set the car off and I wished that kit with its wild flaked body was mine!

Now fast forward, oh, about 30 or 35 years. During my mad collecting years, I had found a very nice factory sealed example of the kit, but when the opportunity arose to acquire the actual original painting, the world stopped spinning for a moment. Needless to say, the day I saw it in person for the first time was quite a thrill! Here is a scan of the full painting, for your enjoyment!

I would have loved to have been sitting by the artist’s desk when this gorgeous rendering was created! But, I can tell you it was a total blast to be the one who laid out all the artwork for the Original Art Series reissue!

For the decal sheet, I honored my friend and his brother with some special decals related to the types of work they do today. It’s much different and much more fun than the one which came in the Street Rods series kit all those years ago. Check it out for yourself! And of course, inside the Original Art Series reissue, you’ll find a sweet bonus print of the original painting.

Grab the glue, it’s all for YOU!

Happy modeling!

JG

 

Coming off the Shelf – Honoring Camaro’s 50th

posted by ChuckZ 3:00 PM
Tuesday, August 8, 2017

 

 

In honor of Chevrolet celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Camaro, the kats at AMT are bringing back the 1983 Z28 in an all new 80’s style package—complete with 4 fresh illustrations from master model kit box artist, Don Greer. Features include 5-spoke Z28 wheels, custom Goodyear Polysteel radial tires, detailed V-8 engine with crossfire air filter system, and a brand spanking new decal sheet to detail your kit in authentic 80’s style.

So to all the builders out there—get your glue, hobby knives, paint and what not ready. And join Chevrolet in celebrating the 50th anniversary since the release of a true American icon. The Camaro. Coming this month in 1/25 scale to a hobby dealer near you.

AMT Model kits: 3in1 Customizing Boat!

posted by ChrisP 5:13 PM
Friday, July 28, 2017

Summer vacation is not over yet!  Cool yourself off with this hot item!

AMT is bringing back the 3in1! Customizing Boat.  This summer have endless fun by building this kit 3 different ways – an Inboard Runabout, a Sea Going Dragster or a Custom Speedboat.  Features include two detailed motor options, parts injected in white, chrome parts, hinged engine doors and custom fins.  The included trailer features metal axles, rubber tires, hubcaps and optional fender skirts.  The decals are remastered for better fit and realism, and include new decals to match the vintage box art that were unavailable in previous releases.  The packaging includes vibrant, vintage graphics and a full color tray displaying photos of the 3 completed versions.
So keep a lookout this summer for the AMT 1/25 3in1 Customizing Boat.

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Coming off the Shelf – A Hot Classic

posted by ChuckZ 10:01 AM
Thursday, June 29, 2017

A few weeks back the kats here at AMT told you, “something hot is coming your way”. For those who picked up on the subtle hints/clues of that message, here it is. Another great kit for all the fire truck fans out there! The American LaFrance Custom Pumper. With well over 300 parts, including more than 100 chromed parts, the Custom Pumper is guaranteed to test your building skills—offering potentially great results you’ll surely be proud to display. Originally scaled from American LaFrance official factory blueprints, the assembled Pumper measures out at over a foot long! This latest release packs in all the familiar details you’ve come to know and love from years past: authentic siren, bell, horns and flasher lights, two suction hoses, a two-stage “twinflow” pump, hollow vinyl hoses, three ladders, a supercharged Detroit Diesel V-8 engine, authentically detailed decals, vintage packaging art, and more!

So get your glue and paint ready. The Custom Pumper is headed your way. Available for purchase at your local hobby dealers, or online, later this summer!

KAT CHAT: Beautiful Box Art!

posted by JohnG 12:40 PM
Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Yes, yes, we know: “It’s what is INSIDE the model kit box that counts.” But how many of you can say (when you were a young modeler back in the day) you never bought a model kit based on the box illustrations? That fantastic commercial art of yesteryear drew us in and inspired us to build a kit “just like the box art.” Or, to take it any number of steps further and create our own unique interpretation by kit-bashing, restyling and outlandishly customizing those plastic parts!

Here’s one very memorable AMT box, and despite it being beat up, creased and yellowed, it still inspires fun and creativity in modeling. What are some of YOUR most memorable and favorite kit boxes?

Coming off the Shelf – “Worth” the Wait

posted by ChuckZ 11:36 AM
Friday, May 19, 2017

OK truck fans, get your glue, knives and other essential tools ready! After waiting for over 30 years, it’s finally on the way. The Kenworth Conventional W-925 is on the boat and will be available in about a month for your building pleasure. She’s fully loaded, with over 300 parts —including retooled sleeper and battery box parts. Also included are 3 large chrome trees with plated wheels, exhaust, lights, rear fenders, bumper, grille, air horns and so much more! To top it off, the kats at AMT have also thrown in an expanded decal sheet with new and improved graphics, so you can take your build to a higher level.

To all our truck folks out there… thank you, once again, for your support.

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