David Knights' Weblog

December 6, 2019

First US licensed female pilot

Filed under: General — dknights @ 10:57 am
Tags: , , , ,

Harriet Quimby, 1911.  Also the first female pilot to fly across the English Channel.

December 5, 2019

77th Hiko Sentai

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 4:12 pm
Tags: , , , ,

It is amazing what you can stumble on when wandering the internet.  The early days of WWII in South East Asia is an area of particular interest.  As such the activities of the 77th Hiko Sentai and their Ki-27 Nates are right in my wheelhouse.  Thus, I was pretty happy when I stumbled on this.

December 3, 2019

Blog thoughts

Filed under: General,Modeling — dknights @ 5:58 pm
Tags: , , , ,

I’ve been emailing with Jeff “Inch High” Groves on the one year anniversary of the start of his blog.  If you don’t go there every day you are missing a lot.  We’ve been discussing what works and doesn’t work, what gets views and reactions and what doesn’t, etc.  That caused me to do a little looking at the numbers, etc for this blog to see if I can discern any pattern regarding engagement.  Sadly, I can report that I’ve gained little insight from looking at the statistics.  This blog has been going for over 11 years.  The stats don’t really reveal any pattern.  It does look like book and movie reviews are fairly popular posts.  Surprisingly, for a blog on modeling, modeling posts, with actual modeling and photos and such,, don’t seem to draw any more engagement than your average post.

I do note that more posts in a day does seem to draw more traffic, which is natural.  Also, if I go a day or two with out a post traffic falls off quickly and seems to take time to recover.  I’ve started to go back through all the old posts, starting at the beginning to see if there is anything I was doing that maybe I should bring back.  THe one positive thing I’ e noted is that very few of the links in old posts are broken.  (As I am reading the old posts, when I find a broken link I am trying to note it and update the post.)

So, let me know what you like and don’t like.  Let me know what you want to see more of and what you want to see less of.

December 2, 2019

Book review: German Guided Missiles of World War II

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 6:26 am
Tags: , , , , ,

German Guided Missiles of World War II
Fritz-X to Wasserfall and X-4
New Vanguard #276
By Steven J. Zaloga
Osprey Publishing (2019)
ISBN 978-1-4728-3179-8

Review by D.M. Knights

                                                                                                    The German “wonder weapons” of WWII are a particular area of interest for me.  I have built several models of some of these weapons. (V-1, V-2, C-2, Me-163)  I have a fair sized library of books on the subjects.  This latest book is by well-known military writer and historian Steven J. Zaloga.  Mr. Zaloga is most well known for his works regarding armored vehicles.

This book covers German guided bombs (Fritz-X and Hs 293) as well as several anti-aircraft missiles that the Germans developed as the war progressed. Given the slimness of the volume, it is only 48 pages; it doesn’t cover any of the subjects in detail.  Rather, it is a general overview of the subject, touching briefly on a particular weapon, giving a brief development history and, if applicable, its combat use.

It isn’t a bad book.  The photos and illustrations are first rate.  While not intended as a comprehensive study of these weapons, it does an adequate job of covering the weapons systems.  My biggest complaint is in regard to value for the money.  A normal

Osprey volume is 96 pages.  This one is 48 pages.  That makes the book rather pricey for something that takes less than an hour to read, even if you aren’t a speed reader.

If you are new to the subject and looking for a basic primer, this is a good volume, as long as you aren’t bothered by the price.  If you are looking for something more in depth, or are a value shopper, then you’ll want to pass on this one, or wait until you can pick this one up on sale at Amazon or your local hobby shop.

December 1, 2019

Movie review: The Winter War (1989)

Filed under: General,Modeling — dknights @ 11:05 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

Welcome to Terry’s movie vault.  Dr. Terry Hill has the most extensive collection of war films and war documentaries (including many foreign films) I’ve ever seen.  From time to time Terry lends me some of the better films.  This film, The Winter War (Talvisota in Finnish) is a Finnish film about the 1939-1940 winter war between Finland and the Soviet Union.  As you would expect, the film is in Finnish, with English subtitles.

The film revolves around two brothers, who are part of a reserve unit called up in anticipation of the coming war.  There are several subplots revolving around members of the unit.  In structure it is very reminiscent of US war films of the 50s and 60s. As far as the acting goes, it is hard to judge the quality of acting in many foreign films. It is amazing how cultural acting is and how it varies from country to country.

Now, for us modelers, the main area of interest in any war film is the combat sequences.  The ones in this movie are pretty good.  It is amazing how much the Winter War resembled WWI with massed hordes of Russians charging entrenched Finnish positions.  There are several T-26 style tanks that appear in the film and hordes of Soviet troops in full battle dress. (I’d love to hear Mike Baskette’s commentary on this)

The film is 2 hours and 5 minutes in length.  It drags a bit in spots, but overall it is a very good film.  Well worth watching. 3.5 out of 5 stars.

November 19, 2019

Pilot defections

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

Thanks to late night texting with Jim Bates, I came across this Wikipedia list of pilot defections.  Way cool.

November 14, 2019

I want to see this movie

Filed under: General — dknights @ 9:25 am
Tags: , ,

The previews look great.  It is an amazing story.

November 11, 2019

A amazing story

Filed under: General — dknights @ 4:04 pm
Tags: , , ,

This is one of those stories that will bring a tear to your eye.  Glad that this heirloom finally made it back to where it belongs.

November 7, 2019

Movie review: The Maltese Falcon (1941)

Filed under: General — dknights @ 2:35 am
Tags: , ,

Reviewing this movie is ridiculous.  It is acknowledged to be one of the greatest films ever made.  And it is.  This is just one of the best films ever made.  Every shot, every piece of dialogue is just amazing.  It was John Huston’s first film as director and he obsessed over it.  It shows.  Perfect cast, perfect script, perfect direction and cinematography.  I have watched it 5 or 6 times and it is just amazing each and every time.  There isn’t anything that isn’t flat out amazing.  If you have never seen it, you should. One of the many things of note is that thought the film was shot in 1940, there is no hint that there is a war going on in Europe.

And I want this for my desk.

November 5, 2019

WW II history

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 5:51 pm
Tags: , , , ,

A nice articleabout a son learning about his father’s WWII experience.

Next Page »

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: