September is here and lots of changes with it

Hi guys,

It was about time that I gave an update on how are things going.

Finally I can say that the workplace has been set at 95%, you should probably know that it was not as simple as redecorate an actual room, but the workplace I had shared and still shares some other stuff, so in a way it is still a storage room (it is merely 25% storage room now).

For this very same reason, there have been lots of things that had to go, old clothes, old furniture… there was so many stuff lying around that the floor had to be painted in 3 steps. Many trips to the recycle center in order to make room for the equipment and for me to work in a better and cleaner environment.

Speaking of environment, one of the changes that will come in September and that it is currently the second main reason of why there are basically no stock of items at the store is the acid used in the photo etching process.
Reached this point I had some liters/gallons of acid that had to leave because it was already dirty after the use, my surprise was that the two recycle centers I went neither of them accepted such type of residue and did not give me any advice on what to do with it.

They accept car batteries, but I do believe the acid used in those batteries is more hazard than ferric acid. Still, not even the seller replied me on regards recycling this product, so after reading and searching on Internet, I found a way in which I can try to neutralize this acid and impact as less as possible with nature.

Having said that, I will use a cleaner substitute for the ferric acid, which will be copper sulfate. It is a little different process and again, due other changes in the photo etched process, some tests will need to be done to find the right setup, right exposure times, etc. It is always a trial and error process with most of these things.

 

Now on regards the GSE and also the lack of availability of them at the store. I am currently producing a new range of GSE, 99% of items that I made in the past are now computerized, so between times reorganizing the workplace, I also had an intense 3D course.

Items will still be resin made, but the process is now totally different and as I explained with the acid, a lot of tests are currently going on.

So far I can share some photos of some of the tests that I’ve done so far, with two new models substituting the old Tug MA50 and the belt loader. This time the tractor is the TLD JST-25 and the belt loader is the Tug 660. Other models such as the towbarless pushback AST-1, GPU C690 etc are still the same model, and a new GPU of TLD has also been made.

Note the two levers on the lower left hand side of the seat near the wheel.

Keep in mind that what you see, will also be produced in 1/200 and 1/72 scale, so each scale will require some modifications as well as modifications on the photo etched parts. Most of the parts such as rails will already be solid in the 1/72 scale, and some that used to be photo etched in the past for 1/144 scale, will now be solid/round such as the steering wheels, the towing bars etc.

The 1/200 scale will be the smaller scale of the family, thus I will try to keep as many detail as possible, although some will be virtually impossible and photo etched will be used instead.

Because these items and others not shown yet are new, photo etched will be designed specially for them,  thus some extra time will be required, same applies for the decal design which for some, the artwork will be readjusted.

It is a very big effort, these days I am thinking that this is like starting fresh, but I know that if I keep working hard, results will come.

I will continue doing tests every day to obtain the best results I can offer to you guys, this does not only end here, as I plan to do other parts and figures.

Lastly and although I can’t confirm it 100% because I haven’t had the chance to test it yet, my good friend Evgenij has provided me with some data from Airbus, therefore some of the parts that I will include in the catalogue will be genuine and true to the original part from the factory. He has been extremely kind to share this with me and give me the approval to put these items at your disposal for the sake of boosting the modeling experience.

I want to thank everybody who supported me during all this time since I begun and that still do, as I said, to me it is like a new start, so many new things to produce these items, of course I take a look back to see how I used to make things and I see I am taking a risk, but with the results I am seeing I think it is worth to take this chance.

 

More tests will continue and as soon as I progess, I will be posting here individual items and write a little bit about them, what the decals will be, which PE I want to make for them, etc.

Thank you all for the support and patience!
Best wishes,
Guillem

Open post

New GSE models in the works 1/72, 1/144 and 1/200 scales

Hello all,

It has been quite some time since my last update, as some of you may have read on the latest entries, I was trying to improve some of the GSE models that are currently in the catalogue and during this process, I realized that this attempt may become just a new change entirely on the current items.

Technologies change and everything moves very fast, I enjoy building these models scratch build, but sometimes one has to face limitations (specially of time) and thus some changes need to be implemented in order to not to get extinct and to provide more variety.

This is important for example in the case of the Neo engines for which I may have made a marketing mistake. Revell models will be produced and thus these engines no longer will be required, this decision made me “waste” a very big ammount of time which I could have dedicated to other things, again, I am quite new into the airliner modeling and not up to date with what is being released. In this regard I am more focused on what I like and what other’s may like instead of searching which company made what, I always compare this to cars, a brand X will make a car and brand Y will design another but both will still be cars.
I have to say that despite of this, I am still not sure if I should discontinue the Neo engines because there is actually no point into having them, although I am pleased with the work done on these engines, economically speaking those who want to do a conversion will have a better deal purchasing a Neo Revell kit, I may still produce them until molds give up and depending on the demand.

Taking advantage of these technologies I mentioned at the beginning, my main goal is to renew completely the GSE catalogue (besides continuing producing new models) in three different scales; 1/72, 1/144 and 1/200. The 1/72 is a very big step, items in this category may be produced under demand because of the size (check out the comparision photo below of the model next to the 1/144 B767) mainly for BPK models and those who produce 1/72 airliners.

The 1/144 scale GSE will be destinated to the injected plastic kits mainly from Revell and Zvezda and the 1/200 scale GSE will be focused for Hasegawa’s 1/200 collection as well as 1/200 diecast enthusiasts.

In between these scales I may also produce these models in 1/100 scale which aren’t that far appart from the 1/144 and thus won’t require too many adjustments.
Tests are still being done, but that is my main goal at the moment. Things will change a little bit, allowing me to make these items in more detail, in different sizes and with a better control over the stock.

The Ground power unit C690 presented here still has some parts missing, photo etch is one of the materials that will still acompany these kits as well as decals. Some photo etched parts will be substituted by more solid items in the case of the tow bars of the baggage carts and trolleys for example.

This will be a little bit long project, but at the moment I am working on the items that have already been made prior getting into the new ones such as the FMC15i Universal cargo loader and the hydrant dispenser. New Tugs will substitute the MA50 which is currently discontinnued.

This is another reason why there aren’t new livery decals at the moment and why the 777 / 787 decal sets are on pause, this process is taking me most of the time, so once things are more advanced and tested, I will resume the work with the decals.

If all the above goes well, I will also try to make a new series called “Figure series”; in a similar way as the GSE models, these figures will be produced in different scales and in different case scenarios, fuel loading with an actual worker holding the fuel hose, walk around situations, boarding and ramp workers.

It is still a bit early to tell if all of this will be possible, but so far things seems to work well, I am testing every single model that I make so once the entire catalog is tested, it will then be the time of this new sets to take place.

I am in the meanwhile still working on the 747-8F/-400F detail deck set, I have cut the fuselage into three sections having 6 parts. It makes things easier to assembly specially on regards the ceiling which is currently “built in” within the fuselage. Alligment is easier thanks to the ceiling which also works as a positioning reference point.

I am fine tuning the union of the fuselages and deciding on wether the deck should be mounted first and then added to one side of the fuselage or join the 3 halves of the fuselage and insert the deck portions into each. I tested this last method and deck fits tight, no issues.
Work will continue and once these adjustments are done, I will start to add the side wall and cargo holds panel details.

That is all for now! I am going to take a few days, a couple weeks, to clean, organize, paint the work place but will continue working on these items. Store remains open but stock will be limited to what there is.

Thank you all for the patience and reading this very long entry.

Wish you all a very peaceful summer holidays and for those like me who are suffering due this terrible heat and humidity, let’s hope December will be here soon 🙂

Guillem

 

 

Adjusted shipping costs – “summer holidays”

Hi guys,

I have re adjusted again the shipping costs, guess what; the shipping calculator at the postal service website was NOT working properly at the time I entered the shipping rates neither is working properly now. If I had to guess, this is all due this new shipping method is still being fixed in their postal systems.

I can however update this post after shipping the first orders with this method, that the “Paq Light” method, it is actually treated as a priority shipping, so it says on the label. So as I mentioned in earlier entries, although the shipping is a little bit more expensive than it was in the past, it is now priority.

This is something that I realized today while preparing some orders. Shop shipping rate was higher than what the postal service webform actually showed me, I went to the the shipping calculator from their site, entering the same data, and price was different, expensier on the shipping calculator, cheaper in the actual shipping preparation menu, shipping difference refunds were made to these specific orders.

What I did was to go to their 2019 shipping rates PDF file and add the ranges of different weights, up to 250, 500g etc. Now the shipping rates are accurate as per order weight as it should be, it was strange that the shipping cost was the same for 100g and 500g, but the problem was that I trusted their shipping calculator which I linked to the shipping preparation system thinking that both were the same.

Anyways, problem was taken on time and solved very quickly, shipping rates are adecuate and 100% accurate now.

Another thing I would like to mention is that we are a few days away from August. I am going to take a couple weeks of August as “holiday” to do a reorganization and cleaning of the workplace.
As some of you know, my current workplace has other stuff mixed in the room and I am actually working on having more space, add new tables, shelfs, make space for the new equipments/systems, paint the floor/walls and such.

It is the only time of the year besides Christmas that I can do this because I will need my father’s help. The store will remain open but during that time I won’t be able to make stock (except for decals) due the mess I will have in the room, so what there is currently in the store, is what will be till I can make more units after mid August.

There are going to be some changes in the current GSE catalogue, some of the products will be updated into a new version, some may have just certain parts updated and some will stay as they are. Once I have some progress of this, I will post it right here.

Thank you all for the support and patience.

Best wishes,
Guillem

1/144 catering truck general build guide – Info shipping

Hello,

It seems that the tests done so far come out well and thus I will be able to use this equipment for upcoming projects, this will also help me enormously with the 1/12 B737 cockpit project. Once I have more info on this and some photos, I will share them here.

On regards the new shipping methods; they have been implemented in the site, I have managed to maintain the shipping as “certified letter” for the decal sets, so purchasing up to 4 decal sets will cost a fixed price.

To outside EU, shipping costs will be 7,20 Euro for one decal set (shipping with tracking information) and for 2 to up to 4 decal sets, price will be 14,05 Euro. From 4 decal sets onwards, the shipping method will automatically change to “package” type.
For shipments of decals within Europe, shipping prices will be 6,25 Euro for one set, and from 2 to up to 4 sets, 10,40 Euro. All methods are trackeable and have more priority character than “ordinary” letter.

I have extended the shipping materials so that more chances are offered depending on the items purchased. Because “package” has dimensional weight, it really did not matter shipping 100g or 500g in the same box, but it did putting that 100g to a smaller envelope. So by changing the packaging and offering a widder range, shipping costs are adjusted to item/package.

I added a new category on top of the blog menu called “GSE builds” where you can see some progress photos and explanation on how I build these models, just for reference. So far the first model added is the catering, you can visit the new section by clicking on here.

Catering truck will be back in stock on Friday 26th.

Last weekend I have been working on the 747-8F/-400F deck set and I am glad for how things are going. Cargo holds are finished, but just the main structure, need to add the detail on the walls and side walls of the main cargo compartment.
I have been thinking what would be the best way to cast this big fuselage and the idea I had was to cut it into 3 parts; front section (nose to wing root) middle section (wing area) and rear section (from wing root to past cargo door).

This will be very useful for several resons:
– It will be easier to cast. Due the shape of the cargo holds, I would have had problems with the resin and using the quantity of silicone I am going to use to make the molds, it better come out right at once.
– It will allow me to work better and focus on each area instead of having a big plastic fuselage on the table risking to break any detail once I start working on a particular area.
– It will make things simpler for shipping purposes, no long box is required, trying to keep shipping rates as low as possible (less volume).
– Now the ceiling can be “built in”, meaning that each half will have its ceiling, therefore no need to worry to put it in one side and adjust to the other side from the interior.
– Will make things “easier” (or clearer) when converting to the -400F version.

The con may be that it would take just a little bit longer to assembly, but for that same reason it will make the kit challenging and fun.

I am getting closer to having the panels made on the inside, so once I have that done, I will update this project with some photos.

Thank you all for your support, apologies for the latest entries which have been very boring and long, but I promise new photos of new stuff in the near future!

Best wishes,
Guillem

 

Shippings, catering, decals, projects and changes

Hi everyone,

I am afraid this entry may be a little long, there are several changes going on, some (the most) positive, and some (one) not that great that can’t be avoided.

Shipping rates (The not so great change but still with a positive outcome).
Shipping costs will increase a little bit because apparently, our national postal services made changes in one of the shipping methods that I use, but not on the costs; in the description of the shipping itself.

So far, I shipped all the orders as a “certified letter” which had a very competitive shipping cost; yes, it does not make much sense that you would ship goods under that kind of shipping, however, their site stated that you could ship documents and goods without exceeding the required dimensions and weights (which had been always within limits).

Recently some of the “freshmen” at the office started to tell me that I declared my shipments as a “document” when I did not do such thing, I just used their online form as always and attached the CN22 customs declaration form for shipments outside the EU.

This questioning kind of threatening and “I did it wrong” started to bother me, specially because no one informed me on how to do things right, (and I must confess, I am afraid that workers are not being updated of the changes). I ship the packages and evenlopes ready, all they have to do is scan the bar code, make sure the online info is the same as in the box/envelope and hit “admit”, this is how I’ve been doing it for the past years.

I went to their site and double checked the “certified letter” specifications and… voila! they did remove the word “goods” out of the description, leaving that area for “documents, contracts, signed budgets etc”.

So now what? I wondered, well, it appears that by removing that feature of that shipping method, they created a new one called “Light International Package” (which you can ship goods up to 2kg anyway).
So the strategy that they did was; modify one shipping and create another one a little bit more expensive. This change does not only happen with international shippings, but with national ones as well.

Have any of you guys ever heard of “volumetric weight”? This is an aspect that now takes part in the preparation of the packages (box/envelope) and price increases if the volume is bigger.

That is why now I am currently working on settings within the store to provide the less volume possible per product as well as purchase smaller envelopes for single-item order (small blister), so that if you buy one single item, the store automatically detects its dimensions and chose a proper package (volume). This is a very tedious task that I am doing offline at the moment, so I am going to need a couple days to make those adjustments.

Here is an example of a shipping to EU (same can be applied outside EU but with other costs)

Weight of the package 200 gram, box 30 x 20 x 15cm shipping costs: 20,5 Euro, now if I push the weight up to 500g in their automatic shipping calculator, it still costs the same, pushing the weight up to 1000g cost the same, and I can say that I don’t remember shipping anything over 1000 gram.

So what I can see here is that the weight really does not matter that much but the volume does, this translates in the end meaning that you can add more items to the package for the same shipping costs.

Not only I will have to modify the products by including more information but I will also have to re arrange the shipping zones so that shipping is calculated precisely.
Another downside of the new “International Light Package” is the inhability to ship to PO boxes, however, I will solve this by creating another shipping method in case you want the order to be delivered to a PO box, I may also include a “Premium shipping” which is like the EMS shipping.

Now the good thing of all this new mess; the shipping times (and it is still using tracking number).

I am quoting their site:
“Main European destinations: 3-5 days”.
“Russia: from 9 days”.
“Main destinations in America: 5-8 days”.
“Main destinations in Asia: 6-8 days”.

Shipping costs increased but according to their site and comparing to the “old method”, shipping times have been reduced.

In any case, I am going to do my very best to keep the shipping costs as low as possible. I am a buyer too, and sometimes I feel uneasy for some shipping costs, but even more uneasy on the other hand when shipping prices are too cheap (for that thing of it may take ages to arrive).

I hope this can be understood, shipping rates aren’t set by me, they are set by the government and I do not add any other cost to the shipping totals, the price you see is what I see when preparing the shipping.

I did check private companies here, and they were charging me 117 Euro for shipping a small box of 10 x 10 x 20 cm to the USA, so I don’t think that private carriers could offer a better shipping solutions at the moment.

I am also going to see what I can do with the shipping method for the decals, most sellers do ship them as a document, so I will do my best to keep prices as low as possible.

So far shipping costs will remain all the same for all items in the store until I update it with the new regulations, info on the change will be updated on the blog.

 

Now the positive points:

The positive points… I will try to be brief here because nothing is tested, proven yet, but I have new equipment on the way which will allow me to make the new items in a better way, ease things for me, save me times (at first) and produce a widder range of products. If this works, the GSE family will grow, for both the 1/144 and 1/200 scale, I will be able to perhaps create ramp worker figures to go along with these models and civilians as well in several kind of configurations.

The other positive point is that I am looking to join forces with a professional decal company so that an important part of the artwork will actually be silk screened with white colors behind the decals, and include metallic color as well. It will be a combo of silk-screened plus laser print. Can’t really expand much on that since it is something that I still have to test, to consider the costs and quantities, but what I know is that this may be possible right from the start with the 777-300ER and the 787 decal sets for which I am putting all my efforts to include the smallest of the details. If things go well, this change will be made for the A320, A320Neos and A350’s.

Current projects:

Since I am taking the chance to write this very long entry, I wanted to say that although I don’t publish updates on the projects, I am currently working on them, I am advancing with the cargo holds on the 747-8F/-400 deck set, for which the next update I plan to show finally the interior detail completed, prior working on the side cargo door/nose cargo door area.

I am also starting to write a brief “tutorial” or guide for building the 1/144 catering truck for which units I expect to start during this week, taking the chance that humidity has dropped a little bit.

 

That is all for now, I will write another entry once I managed to change the shipping methods and will be posting the catering guide. An increase of the shipping costs is something that no one likes, I apologize for that, but I want to think positively and remember that even shipping rates increased a little bit, shipping times will be faster and all orders will have a priorized shipping over the old “certified” type.

Best wishes,
Guillem

Catering truck finished – Livery decals back online

Hello everyone,

I was finally able to set up the printer in another location where I could actually have a room with better weather conditions and the results were successful. Livery decals are now back online and I am glad to mention that I started working on the B777-300ER and B787 decal sets.

My friend Alan has been giving me a couple of very good ideas that I am going to try to implement on these decals. I will give a little bit more info once I have something clear and something to show.

I have been working on the following catering truck during the last days and I am very happy with the result of the new chassis. It is easier for me to cast and actually more similar to the real system (rollers) it is also easier to position and more fun to build.

I will be restocking the different items including the kit for this catering little by little because weather dictates and materials are very susceptible to temperature and humidity, so I will be preparing new units as time/weather permits.

I will take a couple of weeks “off” this summer (but still accepting and shipping orders) because I want to clean and reorganize my workplace and the only way to do that is to pause a little bit the production for that period of time.

I also want to take some time to continue working on the current projects, the B747-8F/-400F deck set, the new cargo loader and the 1/12 B737 cockpit. Hopefully I can have an update on these soon, this weekend it is time to continue with the AFT cargo holds of the -8F.

I took some photos while I was building this catering model, my intention is to upload them in the next days as a “work in progress” so that anybody who wants or is building this model, can see which are the steps that I did to build it (painted).
It is everything explained in the instructions, however, I like to paint certain group of parts first, then assemble them, then paint others and join parts step by step.

I hope you guys liked it and I am really looking forward to advance with the new projects!

Best wishes,
Guillem

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