David Knights' Weblog

April 30, 2009

Book Review: The Polish Campaign, 1939

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 6:00 am
Tags: , ,

The Polish Campaign, 1939

By Steven Zaloga and Victor Madej

ISBN 0-88254-994-4

195pp

 

 

One of the reasons I have always enjoyed going to the AMPS national show when it is held in Harve de Grace, Maryland is that there is a really nice used bookstore there.  They have a larger than average selection of military related books.  This year I picked up this book.  I had never seen it before.  You don’t see much written on the brief Polish campaign and so I picked this book up for the bargain price of $8.50.

 

The first half of the book describes the Polish armed forces from the reformation of Poland after WWI up to the outbreak of WWII.  The book describes in detail the difficulties faced by the armed forces, mainly the army, in establishing and maintaining a viable armed force in the face of two potential enemies, Germany and the Soviet Union.  Poland was a poor country in the 1920s and 1930s, and had little GDP to devote to the equipping of her army.

 

The second half of the book examines the actual September campaign itself.  It points out that due to pressure from her allies, Poland had not fully mobilized her armed forces when the Germans attacked.  This meant that the Polish army was more outnumbered than even the raw imbalance in the number of divisions suggests.  Additionally, as has been noted in many places, the failure of Britain and France to begin active operations against Germany after they declared war allowed the Germans to devote nearly her entire army and air force to the destruction of Poland.  The book takes pains to point out that even thought they were outnumbered and seriously outgunned, the Poles gave a good account of themselves in the actual fighting, though the high command comes in for serious criticism regarding many of its decisions.  Finally, the book seeks to dispel such myths as the Polish cavalry charging tanks on horseback and the allegation that much of the Polish air force was caught and destroyed on the ground on the first day of the war.

 

This is a good book about a little discussed part of WWII history.  While it doesn’t really have much in it for the modeler, aside from some good photographs of Polish troops and equipment, it is an excellent read and fascinating for the history buff in all of us.

April 29, 2009

Book Review:Gladiators over Malta

Filed under: IPMS,Modeling — dknights @ 6:00 am
Tags: , ,

Gladiators over Malta

The story of Faith, Hope and Charity

By Brian Cull and Fredrick Galea

Review by D. M. Knights IPMS/USA 17656

Cover

Cover

 

I’ve always had an interest in the story of the siege of Malta during WWII.  I’ve had a special interest in the three Gloster Gladiators that provided the air defense for the island in the early months.  That interest alone would be enough to get me to read this book.  Combine this subject matter with the fact that one of the authors, Brian Cull, is one of my favorites, and this book was a must buy.  In fact, when I read about it in a recent SAMI or MAM, I had to get it.  I ordered it directly from Ian Allan Publishing in the UK. 

 

I received the book in fairly short order and was surprised upon opening it to find that it was autographed by the authors.  I’ve got many of Mr. Cull’s books, but this one is the first autographed copy in my collection.  The slim volume, only 118 pages, contains the story of the three Sea Gladiators, later named Faith, Hope and Charity, that defended the island during the early months of WWII.  This story is somewhat familiar to those who have read Malta:The Hurricane Years by Shores, Cull and Galea.  However, this book contains an expanded account of the information in that tome.  In addition to the very readable text, the book contains numerous photos, including several that I had not seen before.  Also included are six color side views as well as two top view illustrations.

 

I cannot recommend this book highly enough.  It will be of use to both the modeler and the history buff.  It is my understanding that the book is a limited edition.  If so, find yours now!  You won’t regret it.

April 28, 2009

Movie Review: Saving Grace (2000)

Filed under: Family,General — dknights @ 3:02 pm
Tags:

Thanks to the Modelwife’s Netflix account and the modeldaughter going to bed at a reasonable hour, we have another movie review.  Saving Grace is a film done in the year 2000 about an upperclass British woman whose husband commits suicide and then she discovers that he has left her with a large home, an estate really, but no money and deeply in debt.  My wife is a big fan of  Craig Ferguson from his late night show and got this movie because he both wrote it and stars in it.  He plays the hapless gardener who helps the heroine of the story start a massive pot growing operation in her greenhouse to raise the funds to save the house. 

The film has some classic bits of slapstick British humor and Ferguson is good in his supporting role.  It isn’t a bad film, but it isn’t really a good one either.  I’m glad I didn’t pay to see it in the theatre because it isn’t worth that kind of money, but it wasn’t a bad way to pass an evening in front of the Tv with the Modelwife.

April 26, 2009

Magazine review: IPMS Journal Vol.21 #2

Filed under: IPMS,Modeling — dknights @ 10:24 pm
Tags: , ,
IPMS Journal

IPMS Journal

The latest IPMS Journal is out and, as usual, it is filled with great articles.  I’ve said that the recent issues of the Journal remind me of what FineScale Modeler use to be.  They are filled with great articles, demonstrating everything from straight-up builds to scratchbuilds.  Like the early FineScales, I find that with the Journal, I read all the articles, even ones that aren’t particularly in my “area” since there always seems to be a hidden gem in each article.

This issue features a really nice build of a 1940 Ford and an almost scratchbuilt 17th century Spanish cannon.  The patina on the cannon is really a nice effect and the wrtier does a great job explaining how he achieves the finish.  Another great effort by the entire IPMS Journal and staff.

Bonus: The modeldaughter reading the latest issue to me.

Me and a future modeling superstar

Me and a future modeling superstar

April 24, 2009

Aviation of Japan

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 4:14 pm
Tags: , , ,

By following a link off of Jim Bates website I found a really nice website on Japanese aviation.  It is here.  I am finding more and more of these aviation and modeling blogs every day.

April 20, 2009

AMPS wrap up

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 11:12 pm
Tags: , , ,

I had so many good pictures from the AMPS show I had to do a wrap up post and show a few more of them.

The first is a nice PT-76.  I’ve always liked this vehicle.

PT-76

PT-76

A diorama of late war German troops and a self propelled vehicle.

German dio

German dio

One of my favorite folks, Rob Ervin of Formations was vending as usual.

Rob Ervin

Rob Ervin

Would you believe this T-34/85 is in 72nd scale?

72nd T-34/85

72nd T-34/85

One of the seminars I attended was given by Taesung the man behind Alpine Minatures.  It was fantastic.  This guy has more talent in his little finger than I have in my whole body.

Alpine's owner

Alpine's owner

Part of a really nice bridge diorama by the president of AMPS, Danny Egan.

Bridge dio

Bridge dio

Even though I am an aircraft guy, I can’t wait for AMPS next year in Auburn, IN.

April 18, 2009

AMPS Day Two

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 9:41 pm
Tags: , , ,

Well, AMPS 2009 is done.  It was great.  I am going to miss coming up to HdG, but I am looking forward to 2010 in Auburn, IN and rumor has it that 2011 AMPS national will be in Richmond, VA.

Well without further ado here is your day two report.

New World Designs (Chris Morosko’s outfit) was here.  They are coming out with a full resin kit.  Here is a photo of the box art and part of the kit.

NWD box top

NWD box top

and here is part of the kit.

Part of the kit

Part of the kit

A Romanian self propelled gun.

Romanian SPG

Romanian SPG

I nice Grant, or is it a Lee.

Grant tank

Grant tank

Here is a very niced burned out Egyptian tank.  I really liked the burned out technique.

Egyptian tank, burned out.

Egyptian tank, burned out.

AMPS Day One

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 12:23 am
Tags: , , ,

Well, I made it to the National AMPS show in Harve de Grace, MD.  Even though I am not mainly an armor builder, I enjoy this show and I wanted to come up here since this may be the last time the show is held in Harve de Grace.  On the non-modeling front, I managed to get some raw oysters at Coakley’s and visited the used bookstore in “downtown” HdG.  So far, a good time and a good show.  Here are some highlights.

An Israeli APC by Tony Zadro.

Israeli APC

Israeli APC

A neat little Japanese tank.

Japanese tank

Japanese tank

A very odd Bulgarian hybrid tank.  Has anone seen this before?

Odd tank

Odd tank

Mr and Ms. Tiger Model Designs.

Tiger Models crew

Tiger Models crew

Tiger Models latest, a Bergpanther interior.

Bergpanther interior

Bergpanther interior

A stunning 1/144th scale Tiger tank.

Tiny Tiger

Tiny Tiger

Here is the view of the vendor room.  Looks the same as every year.  There were two airbrush vendors this year.

Vendors

Vendors

April 12, 2009

Magazine Review: Scale Aircraft Modelling Vol.30 #12

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 10:40 pm
Tags: , ,
SAM Vol. 30 #12

SAM Vol. 30 #12

While I haven’t gotten much actual modeling, I have managed to get caught up on some of my stash of back modeling magazines.  This is a brief summary of the above-referenced issue, with attention to items of interest to the 72nd scale modeler.

This issue has a nice article on air combat over Europe on March 2nd, 1945.  These are some very interesting stories with side view illustrations of some of the aircraft involved.

There is also a nice build of the Fujimi 72nd Val, including some detailing.

Finally there is a build of two F-16s, one C and one D, in Israeli service.

All in all a good issue.

April 11, 2009

Lousy job for an attorney

Filed under: Legal — dknights @ 4:00 am
Tags: ,

This poor attorney found himself in the unenviable position of having to argue over dog semen.

Next Page »

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: