* What: Chattanooga ModelCon 2014.
* When: 2-7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 10; 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 11.
* Where: Chattanooga Convention Center, 1100 Carter St.
* Admission: $5 (observers).
* Phone: 423-756-0001.
* Website: www.chattanoogascale modelers.com.
The parts on your model didn't fit together perfectly, the outsides had dried glue showing and the paint job looked about like one you'd see on a '71 Torino.
And then there are the folks showing their wares at the Chattanooga Convention Center this weekend at ModelCon 2014. They're the pros.
The fourth annual Chattanooga Scale Modelers Association show - set for Friday and Saturday, Jan. 10-11 - will offer 300 to 400 scale models of aircraft, armored vehicles, automobiles, ships, planes and more.
"It's an opportunity to come and see the best of what scale modeling has to offer," says Mike Moore, show chairman and club member.
Entrants will vie for gold, silver, bronze and Best of Show awards in nearly a dozen categories as well as an overall Best of Show award, but the general public is also welcome to observe the precise handiwork of the hobbyists.
"They're some of the best models makers [and] builders in the country," Moore says. Several have won multiple national contests. Their work, he says, is "museum-quality and better."
The categories with the most entries are aircraft, cars and armored vehicles.
Of the aircraft, Moore says, the majority are from the World War II era, but they run the gamut from World War I through spacecraft.
"Most of the guys who participate in IPMS (International Plastic Modelers Society) are historically minded," he says. "They keep in touch with history."
In addition to checking out the primed, painted and perfected models spread over 18,000 square feet of convention space, the public can observe free demonstrations by Grex Airbrushes representative Bryant Dunbar, take free tours of the nearby Coker Tire Museum at 10 a.m. or 2 p.m. Friday, work on simple make-and-take models ($4) or purchase a show pin ($5).
They also can check out the approximately 90 vendor tables where, Moore says, "about anything you'd want to try and build in all price ranges" will be available.
The model kits and supplies will be offered by vendors ranging from individual modelers wanting to unload their stock to hobby shops and online businesses.
For the first time this year, the show also doubles as the IPMS Region III convention. The region is composed of modelers from Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi and Tennessee.
Contact Clint Cooper at ccooper@timesfree press.com or 423-757-6497. Subscribe to his posts online at Facebook.com/ClintCooperCTFP.