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Author Topic: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?  (Read 3272 times)

carlmt

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Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« on: March 16, 2011, 11:22:08 PM »

As the title says really - I am nearly finished preparing the kit / build plans for the Free Enterprise V ferry kit and was wondering what the opinions of the collective are as to print colour?

For me, I prefer them in colour as each type of item (resin cast, etched brass, fibreglass, railings etc) and each structure (A Deck + superstructures, B Deck + superstructures etc.) can be shown in their respective colours, thereby differentiating them from other items on the drawing.

However, I am accutely aware that some people suffer from colour-blindness. Now, not knowing how this affects peoples vision myself would this cause problems with reading colour plans, drawn on A1 sheets? Or should I just stick to black & white copies?

Unfortunately, I cannot post clear enough shots of the plans for comparison here as the allowed limit is too small to allow a decent view.........

Look forward to your thoughts guys & gals!!!!!
Cheers
Carl

Roadrunner

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2011, 07:32:38 AM »

Keep it black and white, most who read plans will understand a line drawing, color referencing parts will just make it confusing, if you want to mark up parts just use a number code on the plan to the parts, this is the simplest solution which is also practical.

TO be honest even most newbies in the hobbie can work out a B&W plan, and then you have the cost option .. color will be more expensive to print, especially at larger sheets say A1.

Choice is yours but im quite happy sticking to tradition and working out where parts go at times, all part of the build working things out you know.  O0
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tigertiger

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2011, 07:44:04 AM »

Black and white works for me. They are also more photo-copyable. I sometimes copy part of a plan to cut out templates for bulkheads.

Colour can get confusing, especially if two close shades coincide. It can also be unreadable for the same reason.
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #3 on: March 17, 2011, 07:45:30 AM »

Black and white is best, with clear annotation.

Colin
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carlmt

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2011, 09:26:25 AM »

Thankyou all - your input is appreciated  :-))

I think I will go along with your suggestions of B&W - no point in over complicating matters  O0 O0 O0
Carl

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2011, 10:33:58 AM »

One thing I would suggest, especially if annotating or giving instructions, show draft plans to another modeller.

You know the model, and you know the plans. As such everything will be crystal clear to you. But to a fresh pair of eyes some things may not be clear at all. Especially true for written instruction, hard to follow instructions are something British model manufacturers are notorious for, sadly.
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carlmt

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2011, 10:42:04 AM »

Thanks for the suggestion TT - already anticipated that one!!!  :-)) Will be giving the drawings to my father this weekend for him to have a squint at.

He has built a few!!!!! And will be building the prototype :-) :-) What with between the 'day job' and designing the future range..........I just dont have the time to build at the moment  <:( <:(

Cheers
Carl

As they say on the bridge of the Dover ferries when they are prepared for sea.................'We are Top-Line'............ALMOST.
'Topline' indicates that loading has been completed & that the ship has 'secured for sea' & is ready to sail.

essex2visuvesi

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2011, 02:47:21 PM »

One thing I would suggest, especially if annotating or giving instructions, show draft plans to another modeller.

You know the model, and you know the plans. As such everything will be crystal clear to you. But to a fresh pair of eyes some things may not be clear at all. Especially true for written instruction, hard to follow instructions are something British model manufacturers are notorious for, sadly.

No Offence but the Chinese are not far behind  {-) tho they can be entertaining to read

If you want to see well laid out instuctions and plans pick up any Tamiya kit
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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2011, 03:17:07 PM »

The Americans also seem to be well sorted in this field.

As for the Chinese, if you only copy something by dismantling and replicating, then how are you supposed to tell people to put it back together. Although knowing most Chinese, they probably skip that phase. Some also think that by putting instruction in Google translator (coz it is free) it will suffice.

But hey, I am just cynical.
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RaaArtyGunner

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #9 on: March 17, 2011, 08:49:20 PM »

Black and white works for me. They are also more photo-copyable. I sometimes copy part of a plan to cut out templates for bulkheads.

Colour can get confusing, especially if two close shades coincide. It can also be unreadable for the same reason.

Also "blues" are lousy/difficult to reproduce, some people do their own copying so Black & White seems to be favoured.
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carlmt

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2011, 09:51:08 PM »

Well, at the moment this kit is running to 11 A1 sheets at two scales : 1:192 for overall deck layouts and GA's and 1:96 for the detail work. Each deck has two drawings.

I honestly cannot see how I can reduce the number of drawings without comprimising on the quality of the detail or information.  There will be a build manual - not exactly an instruction book - as, unless you know the ship intimately (as I do now after 4 months of drawing!!!), it could be a little confusing to build. In addition there will be a CD containing photographs of the real boat and photographs of the build process of the prototype model.

After printing off a set of the plans this afternoon, I am in total agreement that black & white is best - much clearer and, with a little more fettling, will (hopefully) be pleasing on the eye...............This latter point is important as, in most cases, this is the first thing a modeller will look at before building and, if the plans are 'clumsy' then the modeller is immediately thinking that the kit could also be 'clumsy', and sets off in the wrong frame of mind.....

Thanks for all your comments folks - I do appreciate them  :-)) :-))
Carl

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2011, 09:58:48 PM »

Some commercial plans reproduce detail at 50% size to save space. Purchasers can then either scale up from that or have the material enlarged at their local copy shop. Giving everyone 11 A1 sheets is going to be pretty expensive and may well compromise the financial viability of the kit. It's no good going for perfection if nobody can afford to buy it!

Colin
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carlmt

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #12 on: March 17, 2011, 10:04:02 PM »

Hi Colin - I am lucky in that I have my own A1 plan printer and copier so, unless it suddenly goes on the blink, my actual costs for this element are quite reasonable.

I am quite shocked at how much commercial copy-shops charge for for copying large sheet sizes - it is out of all proportion to the costs of paper, toner and machine costs.....

Carl

Colin Bishop

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #13 on: March 17, 2011, 10:48:39 PM »

Carl,

I can assure you that if you provide accurate full size drawings the modelling world will beat a path to your door as this is an area where many kit manufacturers are found wanting.

The potential downside is that the plans may be ripped off and sold on Ebay.

Colin
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carlmt

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #14 on: March 17, 2011, 11:01:57 PM »

...................
The potential downside is that the plans may be ripped off and sold on Ebay.

Colin

How can we stop this trade? The only way I can think of in the beginning is to register each kit sold and not release plans without either a kit or receipt of a 'request note' supplied with the kit (in case of accidental damage to original drawings) - and even then I would want the original, damaged drawings back first!!!

However, that will not stop someone who has built the model then selling copies of his plans on......unless I get cunning in inserting a 'code' into each set printed related to the kit sold - something like a watermark - that would ruin the drawings should it be tried to be removed......and this 'watermark' would be traceable back to each kit sold......................and the buyer!!!!!!

Carl

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Re: Model kit plans - Colour or Black & White?
« Reply #15 on: March 18, 2011, 03:58:28 AM »

Watermarking, but sufficiently bold as to show when photocopied.

This could be placed at even intervals by software, or what might sound better would be to place them at random intervals where it does not cover any detail, but can run through a line. However, if you do avoid details, then people can tip-Ex out the waterline.If waterlines run diagonally they can't be confused for instructions.

Watermark should include the text that this is copyright property. Me personally, I would put in large text (200 point) across the plan "These plans not for sale on Ebay. If you bought these plans on Ebay they are stolen". That way Ebay will have to act.
You can also put, original plans available from ............

Also, numbering the plans, so that if they do turn up it is traceable. It would also be fair to point this out on the plan somewhere "these plans are numbered to avoid IPR theft. Copying of these plans is not permitted, copying is traceable. The plan number could also be part of the watermark. This is a bit more laborious.

At the end of the day, you cannot stop a modeller knocking off a copy for a mate, but you can reduce wholesale copying. And make it very difficult to flog on Ebay.
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