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If you are a model collector, you collect models,
what more is there to discuss? The answer is..... a lot !
There are a lot of aspects
to collecting scalemodels that could be used to define what you collect, how
about some planning:
- What is going to be the focus of your
collection ? Collecting every model that was ever made is hardly an option,
even if you were the richest man (or woman ofcourse) on earth and wanted to try to collect 'everything', you
would most likely still have to determine whether
'everything' is really 'everything' or if it is just going to include
carmodels only, just truckmodels, just
models of for instance policecars or maybe even things that closely resemble
modelcars like penny-toys.
- If you have decided that you are going to collect
truckmodels for instance, is your 'area' going to include all truckmodels or
will your collection consist of heavy haulage trucks or tankertrucks only ? Are you going to collect them as individual
models or do you want them mint and boxed ?
- How about quality ? Some people only want
models in mint condition in their original boxes, others will settle for
slightly chipped models and do not care if these are boxed or not. Other
collectors will buy any model in any condition and include it in their
collection with the idea that if they find one in a better condition they will replace
- Any chance you will be setting limits on your collecting
interests ? Some people only collect models made before or after a certain
date like for instance pre-1950s or post-1950s. Others may collect models
from other periods like from a period of time when they were living in a certain
country or city. Others collect models related to a specific historical period
like for instance models of cars made in the former German Democratic
- Are you going to set other limits on your collection, such as only collecting
models made by a single prototype manufacturer ? Or maybe models made by a
single coachbuilder ? Or are you going to include models made by
subsidiaries and sub-brands ? And models of rebadged prototypes as well
- And, not an irrelevant topic, how much can you afford to
spend ? I do realize that this may sound rather commercial, but your budget defines how well you
will be able to stick to the collection plan you have made for yourself . It
is not uncommon that the amount of money you will be able to spend on your collection
varies over time, so maybe it is best to set a figure. And while I am at it,
it is a good idea to set aside some money for the really good deal you may find, or for an unusual
model that would otherwise be out of reach.
- Now that you have decided what you want to
collect and how you will be able to afford that, how are you going to build
a collection ? Perhaps you want to build a collection that only contains new
models, never taken from their original boxes, and you choose to purchase directly from
the manufacturer. Perhaps you want to collect older models, and there's a great dealer in your home town
or you have found another great source for older models. What happens if the
shop where you buy those brand-new models closes ? Or your source of older
models dries up ? Besides that, chance is that your interests get wider, and
the way you add to your collection should reflect that. So you might want
more sources, just in case !
- How about taking care of your collection ? How
about displaying your models ? Or storing the part of your collection not on
display ? Taking care of the models you acquired is just as important as the
purchase itself, so how about cleaning your models without having to worry
about damaging them ? And are you going to need to insure your collection ?
And although it may not be something you want to think about right now, how
are your heirs going to dispose of your collection if something happens to
you ? If you want to make sure your collection gets handed down to a
relative or maybe even donated to a museum or a good cause you may already
want to specify that in your will.
- How about some recordskeeping ? This is not
only good for determining the value of your collection for insurance
purposes, but it may proof to be essential if you decide to sell some
models. That is when you need to know how much you paid for a model in order to determine
if your 'investment' has increased in value. There is no need for a complex
database, but your records should at least include where you bought what, and how much you spent
on it at the time.
I do hope the above hasn't scared you away from
the hobby, but as already mentioned above, there is a lot more to collecting
then you might have thought. The aspects pointed out are not the ultimate list
ofcourse, and I am sure that you will agree with me when I say that the major
aspect of our hobby isn't even mentioned. After all, why bother collecting if
there's no fun in it !
In that sense, have fun collecting, but give it
some serious thought as well sometimes.