Tag Archives: OF

NAN 2016: Day 3

Day three of NAN was the quietest day of showing for me, and thus allowed the greatest amount of time for oogling (and some relaxing, since I was pretty dang tired from two big days of showing!)

Since the third day of NAN is for OF Collectibility and China, I wasn’t showing any of my horses. But I was proxy showing a very nice string of OF Breyers for Erin while she judged.

Erin judging a lovely class of China Arabians

Erin judging a lovely class of China Arabians

Although I only have customized models, there is a weird little part of me that loves Original Finish models, particularly vintage ones. I don’t want to collect them, but I love to look at them and marvel at the hobby history. So day three of NAN was full of eye candy for me- the OF Collectibility rings showcased some of the rarest, most amazing models in existence.

Kristen Wellman's incredibly rare blue Fury

Kirsten Wellman’s incredibly rare blue Fury. Only a few of these are known to exist.

A pristine example of Breyer's ill-fated "Touchability" box (owned by Kirsten Wellman).

A pristine example of Breyer’s ill-fated “Touchability” box (owned by Kirsten Wellman).

A stunning class of vintage Breyer decorators.

A stunning table of vintage Breyer decorators.

Pinto Family Arabian Foal on a base made for the Ford Motor Company. Owned by Kristen Wellman.

Pinto Family Arabian Foal on a base made for the Ford Motor Company. Owned by Kirsten Wellman.

I enjoyed showing Erin’s lovely collection, which includes some cool vintage pieces as well as more modern models.

Erin's "ES Thanks, Baby!" is a rare Proud Arabian Foal made for only a short time in 1959.

Erin’s “ES Thanks, Baby!” is a rare Proud Arabian Foal made for only a short time in 1959.

ES Sir Chalkington III, Esq. is a beautiful chalky Adios made during the 1970's oil crisis.

ES Sir Chalkington III, Esq. is a beautiful chalky Adios made during the 1970’s oil crisis.

These were the first two of these Premier Club models made, and the only ones mounted on a base. They were given away randomly to a luck Premier Club member.

These were the first two of these Premier Club models made, and the only ones mounted on a base. They were given away randomly to a luck Premier Club member.

The only bummer about day three was that the hall was FREEZING. It had been cold the other two days, but this was a whole other level. I’m often the person wearing a sweater when other people are in t-shirts, but in this case I was definitely not the only one!


Those of us who happened to have brought blankets (I had one in the van for napping on the road!) wore them around the show hall all day. In my desperation, I’m also sporting a fleece cape that is usually used to wrap models.

Luckily day three showing wrapped up a little sooner than the other days, so I was able to escape back into the wonderful warmth of the Kentucky sun.

Erin's show string with the day's winnings.

Erin’s show string with the day’s winnings.

We packed up and headed back to the hotel. NAN was over, but Breyerfest was about to begin and there was no time to slow down…

Repairin’ for Erin: Straightening a Bent Leg

My friend Erin is a dedicated and accomplished hobbyist. Among other things, she is a committed and skillful performance shower…

English Performance Champion at Breyerfest 2013

English Performance Champion at Breyerfest 2013

…and makes top quality western tack:

Pleasure saddle made in 2014

Pleasure saddle made in 2014

Erin has been wonderfully generous with her knowledge, helping me learn about working with leather and improve my performance entries. So I was excited to find an opportunity to me to use my skills to help her out in kind.

Although Erin’s short foray into oil painting was pretty successful, she doesn’t do any customizing or repairs herself. Being a clumsy person, I’ve inevitably learned to repair models. Earlier this month I was visiting Erin and found several horses to kidnap and repair. I figured I could do some mini tutorials as I went.

The first horse in need is a OF Stablemate Arabian Mare who was formerly a part of Erin’s mini show string. Alas, Miss Pinto has been staying home since she developed a bent foreleg.

Ouch! That can't be comfortable.

Ouch! That can’t be comfortable.

Bent legs are a relatively common problem in plastic models and can be caused by heat, pressure or a combination of the two. You can prevent bent legs by protecting your horses from extreme temperatures (e.g. never leaving them in a hot car) and packing them carefully for any transport.

Fixing a bent leg on a show quality model follows the same general practice as bending a leg while customizing- only you need to be much more careful about the finish. Overheating an area can cause the plastic to bubble.

To make this repair, you’ll need a heat gun, a wide bowl of cool water (big enough to dunk your horse into), and something to protect your hands while you shift the leg. I use an old pair of thick socks. The plastic will be hot when you touch it, and you will burn yourself without something over your skin. Trust me.

Curious cats are optional but encouraged.

Curious cats are optional but encouraged.

The key to this is to take your time. With your hand protection on, turn on the heat gun and wave it back and forth slowly over the bent leg, keeping the gun about 3/4″-1″ away from the horse to prevent damaging the finish. Move the gun so that every side of the leg gets heat. Bends are generally going to happen between joints. Pinpoint the place you need to manipulate to fix it, and aim to get that whole area warm.

Erins Arab Mare - heating area

The red block shows where I’m aiming the heat for this fix

After a minute or so, gently try to bend the leg back into the correct place. If it doesn’t move easily, heat it a bit more and try again. Once you’ve got the leg in the position you want, dunk it into the bowl of water. That cools the leg and (hopefully) keeps it in the new position.

Erins Arab Mare - cooling

Once the leg is moved some, check your horse again. Is further bending needed?

Frances is skeptical

Frances is skeptical

If the leg is being stubborn, heat and move it again. Something you have to do this a couple times to get it right, as the leg naturally wants to move back into the bent position. Be firm, and show the leg who’s boss… but gently and slowly, so as not to damage the finish.

The final result: showable once again!

The final result: showable once again!

With only about ten minutes of fiddling, this mare now has a straightened leg. She’s ready to go back out on the show table!


RITNY part two: Customs and Original Finish

When the first two divisions finished up, we moved on the OF Plastic and Custom halter divisions. There were lots of gorgeous ponies out on the tables and made me itch to start painting again. I’ve got two horses in prepping stage that refuse to be ready, but every prepping session gets me closer (I hope).

Check out some of the shiny on parade, and a few ribbons for my horses too :)

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Original Finish Eye Candy – part two

More judging, more drooling. Oh, for unlimited money and space…

Stone Horses Country Fair 2009 SR Seeker – photo from Stone Horse Reference

I am such a sucker for rat tailed Appaloosas. This guy has a realistic but still wildly spotted pattern, and nice details too.

Little Horse Show 2011 SR Piccolo – photo from Stone Horse Reference

I love the Pebbles Arabian, particularly in bay, and the twitched head and swishy tail just seals the deal.

2008 Ebay Store SR Alano – photo from Stone Horse Reference

I don’t really like the Chips Drafter (I think he’s rather too leggy) but this golden sheened chestnut with a swishy tail is striking and anyway, he could be shown as a young stallion not quite grown into his legs. I could make it work…

2008 Jubilee SR “Ruth” – photo from Stone Horse Reference

Can you tell I love the swishy tails? And such a lovely dainty grey.

CollectA Appaloosa mare – photo by EMK_horses

I’ve been seeing more and more of the new CollectA horses by Deb McDermott in the model horse world. The Appaloosa mare makes a nice Mustang, and I’m a fan. I’d want to customize one but I think they break my size rules, so I’ll just admire. I like the CollectA Arabian and Thoroughbred mares, too.

Stone Horse Country Fair 2009 SR “Crystal” – photo from Stone Horse Reference

One more Pebbles Arabian, with just a hint of rose grey on the hips.

I’m finally done with judging. Most of my recent free time has been spent working on holiday gifts (crafty!) or on job applications. In this economy, I’m not holding my breath, but at least I’ll put out some feelers. I’m lucky to have a job, even if it isn’t as dynamic and intellectually stimulating as I’d like.

I’ve been listening to the BBC Rado Sherlock Holmes Stories, which are great. I just finished “Shoscombe Old Place” which actually involves race horses. I think Shoscombe would be a good name for a jolly hunter horse- like the lovely custom Roundabout resin that Jennifer Buxton is working on.

Original Finish Eye Candy – part one

I’m currently judging 3 different OF photo show divisions for MHOSS and IMEHA. That means lots and lots of eye candy! I don’t collect OFs, and don’t want to start, but looking at all these pretty ponies is a nice way to arm-chair collect them…and in all sizes, too!

Since I’m getting to oogle all these nice models (and quite busy doing so!) I thought I’d post some of my favorites. These photos are NOT from the shows themselves, but other photos of the same models I’m admiring.

PS Chips Mini Me Par T Time – photo by spirithorse21

Pintos are not usually my favorites, but the combination of the conservative tobiano with the beautiful honey bay is just drool-worthy. Plus the Chips Stock horse is, imho, greatly improved in character with a turned head and/or swished tail.

Breyer G3 Cantering Warmblood in dark palomino – JC Penny 2007 SR – photo by PrincesMilady on flickr

I love this mold, and I’m a sucker for dark palominos.

G3 Thoroughbred RR in rich bay – photo from identifyyourbreyer.com

This picture does not do the model justice. This mold is really complimented with by the simple but rich bay color.

Palouse Echo in red dun – photo from Stone Horse Reference

This is one of my favorite Peter Stone molds, and the red dun is just delicious.

PS SR Hamilton in dapple steel grey – photo from Stone Horse Reference

I’m not usually a fan of the Peter Stone Arabian, but this steely grey is rather scrumptious.

Mini Third Times the Charm from the JAH SR Mini Connesieur Collection – photo by Dorothy Graham on Pony Lagoon

Despite it’s flaws I have a real soft spot for this mold, and with that lovely Conn-quality chestnut paint job she is a real heart-stealer.

All this oogling makes me want to get at my customs, and as always I am experiencing what I call “Customizing ADHD.” I am always starting more and leaping from project to project. There are so many unfinished or about to be started equines! But first, I’ve got to finish judging. And maybe do my laundry…

Nostalgia Time

The last weekend had multiple live shows around the US, including the NW Expo Model Horse Show in my hometown of Corvallis, Oregon. Back in the day I used to show in the novice division at this annual show. And since then I love to visit and see all the shiny ponies, even if I’m not showing. This year the show happened to fall on the weekend my in-laws were visiting, so I didn’t get to attend.

In the hopes of seeing pictures from this years show, I went to the show’s website. I’m sure that Tracy Durrell-Khalife, the show’s host, is still busy getting in the results to NAMSHA and it was overly optimistic of me to hope for pictures already. I didn’t find 2011 pictures, but I did find sometime else fun… two fuzzy pictures of my 12-year old self at a past show!

Setting up my OF Spotted Mule for the Longears Championship judge-off

The grey Brighty on the right is also mine, and is the only model of my childhood collection that I’ve kept

These were fun to find. I actually think Tracy has a picture or two of me winning NW Expo Novice championships, but I couldn’t find them on her site… I think I’ll email her to see if I can get a hold of them. Meanwhile I’ll maybe add one of these to my new About page.

Random Collection Picture

These guys are two of the four in my OF collection. They live on the windowsill above the kitchen sink. On the right is Mirabel, a Safari Mythical Realms Unicorn baby, and on the right is the Safari Flower Fairies Pony, Gavin.