Why I Build Plastic Model Airplanes
by Mike Lepek


Here I sit trying to think of a subject that hasn’t been written yet, I haven’t thought of one all day.  I could write about how to pick the next kit to build, or maybe how my model room has expanded from a small corner of the kitchen table with a shoe box, glue, some paints and a couple of clothes pins.  None of these sound too appealing to me.  So, I decided to write about why I build plastic model aircraft.

I build model aircraft because from the first time my Dad took me to an air show, or when we used to watch “Twelve O’clock High “ on Saturday evenings in our living room I have always loved aircraft.  I can remember going to the local airport and watching the planes land and takeoff, the smell of jet exhaust, and the sound of some big radial engines pulling a cargo plane down the runaway.  When we moved to Dallas near the Naval Air Station in the mid seventies we would go to watch planes there.  At that time the Navy and Marine Corps reserves were flying F-8 Crusaders. What a plane! The Texas Air National Guard was flying KC-97’s. What a sight to see one of those old tankers start up. One would think the engines would burn up all the oil in the engine before it even left the ramp.

Also, once a month we would go to Carswell Air Force base in Fort Worth. What a place that was.  That was when it was a major Strategic Air Command (SAC) base, with B-52’s and F-105’s all over the place.  The B-52’s were painted with either the South East Asia camouflage paint scheme or the white and silver SAC scheme.

So you can see why I love to build model aircraft, as I have spent my life around them and they still fascinate me.  Even when I joined the Marine Corps and went to boot camp in San Diego, I was right next to the airport and even if it was for a millisecond I could still get a glimpse of some airliner taking off.  Aircraft are a modern wonder…. just think about that when you see a C-5 Galaxy fly by.