Model Airplane News
An up close look at some of this year’s entries
One of the things that make Top Gun different from other scale events is its Static judging, which is divided into four sections. Outline,
Finish Color & Markings, and Craftsmanship categories each receive a maximum of 30 points for a total of 90 possible points. Up to an additional 10 points can be awarded for Realism and are a result of the judge’s impression of the model’s overall scale appearance.
At an event as long enduring and popular as this, one expects to see a field of excellently executed replicas with many of them falling into the “outstanding” category.
Four different classes are statically judged using detailed documentation packages submitted by the builders with the model. (The Pro and Sport classes require only a single image for documentation.)
Each point is hard fought and no effort too great. If you plan to place, you can’t give away even fractional points!
1. This beautiful replication of Charles Lindbergh’s Ryan NYP “Spirit of St. Louis” was entered in Team by Tom Street and Bob Noser. The engine turning on the cowl and spinner looked great!
2. Nice detailing on this Fleet 2 bipe, CJ&W Aviation’s Unlimited entry. Check out the cockpit coaming.
3. Close up of the empennage on Will Berninger’s T-34B shows well-executed scale details like corrugation, crimping and trim tab installation. Lots of skillful effort there!
4. Cowl area on the Berninger T-34B shows that the model was a showcase of scale model detailing. This requires effort, research, and multiple skills! 5. Boli Muentes brought his BVM F-16 Viper in “Thunderbird” livery and equipped it with a future version of his daughter Marley—proud parenthood at its best. It was an X-class entry.
6. Look closely through the “skylight” of Larry Folks’s Cub Crafters “Cub” and you can see the wing-root-mounted fuel sight gauges. Some competitors stop at nothing—that’s what it takes at Top Gun!
7. Close ups of the BAE Hawk 100 by 2022 Mr. Top Gun, Peter Goldsmith show only a portion of why he won the title. Surface detail, accurate finish and markings and subtle “in-service” weathering all combined to complete the illusion.
8. Tim Dickey’s amazing Fairchild PT-23 was pulled around by a perfect-running Robart radial that looked (and sounded) amazing. The closer you got, the better this plane looked!
9. Nose area of Mike Barbee’s beautiful Beech T-34A King Air entered in Team Scale, flown by Frank Noll. Everything looked near perfect and remember, this is not a brand new model! Well-maintained and electric-powered, it looks good from any angle!
10. Craftsmanship Judge Len Bechtold scrutinizes this L-39 Albatros, built and flown by Rod Snyder, shown here overseeing the activity. This electricpowered beauty was spectacular in both appearance and performance. It achieved High Static in Expert class.