Monday, 23 September 2013

Sprue Cutters Union #10: Spending Habits

The Sprue Cutters Union is steamrolling forward, steadily gathering momentum and new members. This week we want to know how we spend our hard-earned money on our hobby.

- What are your spending habits? -

It's actually quite easy for me to answer this, as I'm a bit OCD on my hobby-spendings. Well, it's only been a year, so it's easy to know what I've bought so far. Of course, the initial amount spent is heavily offset by having to buy paint and tools from scratch.

For my very first model, I needed to buy EVERYTHING, 6 bottles of paint, several paintbrushes, an airbrush, thinner, cleaner, scraping tools, sanding sticks, clamps, a desk lamp, ... and whatnot. The model (M60A3 tank with bulldozer) set me back a whopping €6, but I spend almost €100 on tools. I also bought a cheap Revell airbrush (with compressor) for €110.
From there on, it gets cheaper. The next model may only require 2 new colours, if you're lucky. After you've done a few, your paint collection starts to grow, but some of these bottles should last years and soon you can buy models without needing to buy extra paint.

The most expensive model I've bought (not counting one exception) is €29.95 for the M1A1 Abrams. I (normally) just browse the LHS and pick whatever jumps out, keeping a limit of around €25. I'd say the average amount spent on all my kits is around €15. I tend to spend a LOT of time contemplating before spending larger amounts. Say, 1 month per €50. (2 months for an airbrush, half a year for a new computer, ...)
I'm not (yet) into aftermarket stuff like decals, resin replacements or superdetailed photo-etch, but that may change as I grow more skilled and start to demand more accuracy. Not likely though, I'm not a perfectionist.

I made one HUGE exception after seeing the M1070. I fell in love with it and ordered it online for €139.95. It's indended to be a loooong project, but I wanna finish a few other models first.

I recently bought a 2nd hand (but unused) compressor and airbrush for €125. In the foreseeable future, I see myself buying a Badger Renegade Velocity as well, which should be around €110.


  1. Nice post! You seem pretty simple and content, like myself. I generally buy whatever catches my eye, within a reasonable price range, and I rarely ever buy aftermarket goodies.

  2. Interesting post and nice to see you keep yourself more or less to a budget when buying kits - apart from that tractor unit of course! However, it's bloody awesome!!!

  3. I like it and keeping it simple always works. Like everything new it takes time to build up supplies and materials, unless someone is bankrolling

  4. yeah it's a real bunch of money in the beginning but then when you have all the tools you needed/wanted it's only about plastic :) good approach. I still have and use tools which are older than 30 years.