Rinaldi Studio Press- SM.02 S-65 City Tractor
Author: Mike Rinaldi
Dimensions : 7.5 X 6.5 inches
Paperback, 128 pages filled with excellent color photographs and SBS text
I was surprised and pleased when I heard the news that Casemate was going to be carrying Mike Rinaldi's excellent books. This Single Model series differs from the original books in size and instead of covering a handful of different projects to highlight his techniques, they focus on obviously a single model- in this case two of Trumpeters S-65 City Tractor kits- one a completed model he weathers up, and the other one built from the beginning. Anyone who has ever watched a Mike Rinaldi seminar in person or on You Tube knows you are getting schooled when you take the time to listen and absorb what he is teaching.
The text is presented in a format that highlights the techniques and why and how they are being done. Rinaldi bemoans the fact that so many SBSs don't go into enough detail. "Using oils to weather..." or "I applied a wash..." might give one a general sense of what was done, but leaves the knowledge of why and how it was done lacking. The process is the key and these guides provide plenty of that missing information to the reader. He gives information of essential tools- like a round #2 brush, good quality odorless turpentine, and the like. The book provides thorough information on the Windex Removal Technique (WRT), the Hair Spray Technique (HS), and Oil Paint Rendering (OPR).
The chapters in the book give an overview of what is inside- but this isn't your typical sit down by the wood stove and read book. You will feel inclined to grab your test bed model and some supplies and actually try out what is being shown. After the Introduction, he goes into how he selected the paint scheme for his tractor build, being inspired by the heavy equipment he often comes across in his travels through the Pacific Northwest and his town of Portland, Oregon. There are some close ups of some of the equipment he has photographed and how they have inspired him in this book's content. A section on his Weathering Philosophy follows and he then proceeds to take the completed model he had and applies some of the aforementioned techniques to it.
Reference photos of Portland construction equipment
The latter part of the book centers on the unbuilt kit and his latter chapters involve Assembly, Painting, Weathering, Tracks, Seat Painting of the tractor's leather seat, and Last Details. Throughout all of the chapters, other than some brief paragraphs on the philosophy- we get captions labeled either W (for the Why) and H (for the How). These are the best parts of the book in my opinion. My only small gripe is that some of the text is in a faded gray color which makes it difficult to read. Considering the advanced age of most modelers, this might prove to be problematic and I don't always read with my Optivisors, but it is a small gripe and more frustration for my failing eyesight than anything else.
After a Model Gallery showing excellent close-ups of the work from the book, the last few pages are a step by step reference of each phase of the book's content with page numbers so you can refer back to them. Throughout the photos are small circles indicating areas of focus that coincide with the text. I apologize for the photo scans but the odd size of the book makes it difficult to get on the scanner well...yet it is ideal for laying on the bench to try your hand at the tips and techniques.
I am beyond ecstatic to see not only these volumes of Mike Rinaldi's works back again, but also to see Casemate offering them up for the masses. There are other books in this Single Model series-- SM.01 involves a Steampunk Fish Submarine which I hope to see back in print soon, and SM.03 on a Bandai Sazabi Custom kit which is also available now from Casemate. There look to be upcoming books in the series on the Brummbär (shipping this month according to an email from Mike), Hanomag SS100 (printing and shipping in January), and the He-219A-7 Uhu aircraft (also in January). It is also good to see his larger books back in print- we have his German Armor and Modern Armor books, which have been out of print, being reviewed soon in their latest reprints. According to an email from Mike, the second book in the series, Allied Armor, should be done printing and begin shipping soon. There is also another series called Technique Guides- one on Hair Spray Chipping and another on the Oil Paint Rendering that should be out sometime around or after the holidays. This is all in regards to orders on his website, but I am sure we will see these available from Casemate soon. Check Mike's website or the Casemate website for more up to date news on releases.
Highly Recommended for anyone looking to up their weathering and finishing game.
Thanks goes out to Casemate Publishing for this review sample.
Reviewed by Michael Reeves
If you liked this review, consider joining AMPS. Your annual membership
includes six copies of AMPS's magazine, Boresight,
and helps to support our ongoing reviews.
Click here for more information about joining AMPS