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My visit to Scale Model Challenge Veldhoven, Holland (1-2 October 2016).
The train (not the city subway line) from Amsterdam Schiphol airport to Eindhoven train station took 90 minutes (Euro $21 one-way). Outside the Eindhoven train station is a bus interchange where I boarded bus #15 to Veldhoven, venue of  Scale Model Challenge (SMC) competition. The 25 minutes bus journey costs Euro $3.70 and arrived right at the doorstep of NH Koningshoff hotel where I stayed. This hotel is the final destination for bus #15, a loop service that returns to Eindhoven bus interchange, now that is convenience. This 509 room hotel is venue to every SMC since its inception in 2007. The hotel is located in a nice forested area. On the downside there are no supermarkets, convenience stores or restaurants nearby so all my meals had to be taken in-house. Meals are buffet style, Euro $15 for breakfast and Euro $24 for dinner. I took my lunch within the competition hall, the usual hot dogs, french fries, hot pastries or some simple dutch fare. 

This 10th anniversary of SMC is my first attendance and I entered two models - 1/700 scale IJN destroyer MATSU and F-16 egg-plane. Matsu didn't place but I'm fortunate the judges deemed my egg-plane good for a Gold award in the 'Class 4 Aircraft 1/72 and smaller all levels' category. Here is the F-16 egg-plane, fourth row from the top, middle picture http://www.scalemodelchallenge.com/wp-co...dex17.html Do scroll to the other pages to view other high quality eye candy.

And here's my little ship model IJN destroyer MATSU that didn't medal, bottom row extreme left picture http://www.scalemodelchallenge.com/wp-co...dex45.html 

The hotel's conference center (venue for this SMC event) is an impressive 6,500 square meters of floor space. Both weekend days included interactive workshops and painting demonstrations by renowned modelers and figure painters and seats were fully booked even before the competition dates began. It was good that the organizers of SMC put lots of bright daylight table lamps on the competition tables for a better viewing experience. So far all the competitions that I have attended abroad have always been dependent on hotel or convention halls ceiling lights that are usually the dim and yellowish variety which isn't conducive for good photography. This competition is similar to IPMS USA Nationals in that nobody knows whether he has won anything until the awards presentation at 3pm on Sunday, and names are announced on stage with accompanying slide presentation. I guess this is to ensure a full house attendance and nobody scoots off early. Happy is not the right word when my name was called to receive my award, its more like I went nuts - somersaults, back flips, side flips, single arm handstands, high fives, you name it :D But of course I acted cool and nonchalant. Tomcat's credo is to look good and stay cool at ALL times but I forgot my sunglasses on stage :D Chairman Mr. Crombeeke remarked, "you're from Singapore, right?" I guess my name sounded familiar because I'd introduced myself on SMC's Facebook page a few weeks prior to my visit. The informal awards presentation was a long 90 minutes affair punctuated with good natured ribbing between chairman and the attendees. Only Gold, Silver and Bronze awards are presented. There are no Commended awards in SMC. According to chairman there were more than 1,100 models entered this year which compares favorably with its UK cousin Scale Model World, in terms of numbers on the competition table. Modelers came from many countries in europe, UK, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, USA, Mexico and myself from Singapore. 

For once I didn't overspend in the traders hall which numbered about 100 traders selling their wares. Of note is my chance meeting with Chris Meddings from UK. He was one of the volunteer stewards in our local Mcon II competition in 2012. His wife was posted to work in Singapore for nearly one year in 2012, so he too tagged along. He runs a small resin aftermarket parts business for armor modelers and is a modeler himself. He won a Silver award in the 'Class 2 Ships, all scales, all levels' category. We talked a little and he said he misses nasi lemak, laksa and char kway teow, quite funny, this said by a true blue Englishman! He joked that had he knew I'd be at SMC 2016 he would've got me to bring some of those yummy local food over.

I plan to attend SMC 2017 in the third week of October 2017. Another excuse to visit the delightful and picturesque city of Amsterdam, the windmills in the countryside and perhaps The Hague and Rotterdam as well.
I like sniffing plastic........and the instruction sheet.
Bro swee job !  Smiles9wc Clapping
If you can measure, you can make !

Whopper's Hangar

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