I need advice & recovery of kits expertise

THE DC

Highly Esteemed Member
Having to take a breath...

Well, my Irish luck is holding.

As some of you know, I had heart failure, despite my age and good health, and spent Thanksgiving and the week after in the ICU under observation. My tests for a cause is ongoing but I usually celebrate my birthday in several pubs; this year was in recovery.

This slowed down my move into the new home I bought, as I now have to hire help, check by check.

Now I'm not whining, I'm still better off than most people, but tonight ended 2019 with a low blow. I was moving some small, light items over to the new house from the old rental, when my special lass heard a sound emanating from my office closet. When we opened the door we found water spraying out of the top of my hot water heater lead pipe. It flooded the closet where I was temporarily storing, you guessed it, much of my paper model collection. Storing them in the plastic salesman cases and on the shelves was no help. I'ver never seen a hot water heater top blow like a geyser before.

Its a total loss.

I'm beginning to determine the lost kits:

I had several McLoughin kits [2 space shuttle, 4 space freighter, 2 space battleship],

several Hathaway kits [4 foil-paper version Macon, 1 regular paper Macon, and 3 foil Hindenburgs],

several Rose kits [3 Hindenburgs, Brooklyn Bridge, Chrysler Building, 2 Empire State Buildings, Japanese Pagoda, Tower Bridge & Tower of London, Sears Tower, 2 Vatican, US Capital, Titanic, Eiffel Tower, and St. Peters],

several Schreiber-Bogens [Roman Merchant, LZ- No7 Zepplelin NT, 2 Montgolfier, Western Locomotive, LZ127 Graf Zepplin, JF Schreiber Lenk-luftschiff Express Airship, Motorized Fishing Vessel 'Gustav Dahrendorf', Graf Zeppelin [1/200], Graf Zeppelin (metal foil), Temple in Jerusalem, 3 Blue-Star, Ulmer Schachtel, and Sirius],

several Smith kits [2 Early American Seaports, Mayflower, couple of Dinosaurs (covers stuck together!), Victorian Seaside Resort, 2 Victorian Village, old FASHIONED farm, Totem Pole, Pueblo Village, New York Harbor, Victorian Cottage, and 2 Early American Village],

New York's Most Iconic Skyscrapers set, LZ-10 airship, Build R2D2, USS Enterprise, Romulan Bird of Prey, 3 Enterprise with Lights & sound in box, 1980 movie Enterprise punch out, Enterprise bridge book, New Orleans' model of The Cabildo, Build a Viking ship,

EDMUND V. GILLON JR [Build Guilloteen and BUILD YOUR OWN SAWMILL, and 2 BUILD YOUR OWN WINDMILL],

Build a Titanic box set, Smock Windmill, Notre Dame Paris, Wickware's Steam Engine, 3 MaBstab LZ-26 Los Angeles kits, Nano's White House, Hall's Famous Balloons Mobiles, 2 WWI L-59 Zeppelins, Make Your Own Robot book, PMI Lockhead P-38, Prin's Paper Galaxy, Paper oats book, SCI Voyager Model, a Rudolph Make your own Paper Clock, A Make a Paper Camera, Wrebbit paper clock, Make Your Space Racers, and my present-to-be-built-for-my Lass [George Withe house] (she loved Williamsburg...).

All waterlogged and shriveled up; many water-logged bricks that won't peal apart.


This is just what I cleared out of several water-logged boxes and salesman cases. I have a few more, and a number of cherished hardbacks (don't ask about my first edition Damon Runon), but have not been able to separate the bricked kits, so stuck together, are they. Even my precaution of placing many in plastic bags was futile. All lost.

So here's my appeal for your expertise; is there anyway to press flat those kits I could peel apart but are wrinkled from water damage? Some foil kits don't look water stained but are shriveled.

Is there a place to get a value what I lost, IF (?) my new home-owner's insurance policy will cover them, and are there any places to find replacements? I bought many of these from the International Modeler's Convention vendors or members, so I don't have receipts.


Yes, this is a first-world problem, and many have it worse than me, but I do feel the loss and I hope someone out there has salvage tips, or at least, suggestions where I might find old kits like this to being the long process of recovery.

Now, I have to prepare for my call to my home owner's insurance about the water heater and pipe damage...

And my cardiologist told me to avoid stress!!!
 

zathros

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Man, that sucks. I would try and find what i could find of what I purchased from wherever i could get it. Your House Inspector may be held liable too. I've seen hot water heaters go from the basement through the house and 30 feet in the air past that. That means hard water, and the pressure valve got clogged. They should be drained yearly from the bottom plug to remove the silt., and the pressure gauge checked manually, for future reference. Hold onto those models, no matter how warped, as they are proof of loss.

Ultimately, it's just paper, you didn't get scalded, and it's replaceable. You heart and you aren't. We're not taking any of this stuff with us anyway, so recover what you can, let it go, and take care of yourself. My younger sister has PPH, (Primary Pulmonary Hypertension) so I have some experience with people with Heart conditions and their stress factors, it's hard for you guys, stress is insidious..

Please take it easy on yourself. Stress creeps up. Sit back, relax, good headphones, with your favorite music, easy walks (if allowed0, or watching some good movies/T.V. shows, but treat yourself, you deserve it. ;)
 
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Revell-Fan

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Oh my God! This is terrible! I'm so sorry to hear that. First of all, I agree with Zathros, take care of you and your health first. That's the most important thing. However, having such a loss sucks. Having no receipts could be problematic but at least you can prove that you have sustained a damage. Photograph everything and make a list of all lost models. A full documentation is essential. I have no idea how insurance companies are dealing with collectibles. Usually only the temporal value is covered. I would guess - and this is a wild guess - that the current replacement value could be covered. So if anyone wants to know the value of your collection I would check the average realised prices for the lost items on ebay (based on sold items, not listed ones). That would be a start.
 

spaceagent-9

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That is horrible. [the only place you will get any sympathy is here]. Normals just don't understand the loss of such treasures. if you need any star trek or general scifi kits, let me know. I hope it gets better for you immediately.
 

THE DC

Highly Esteemed Member
If anyone knows of places to hunt some of those I listed above, please direct me. My homeowners probably won't cover these kits, after deductible but I would like to replace them, even if it takes a very long time.

Kinda sucks, as i'd built a nice collection with some variety, and planned to start building airships and zeppelins during my convalescence. I was working on a Merchantman with Jim and an Andorian Cruiser before the move; both were destroyed too.

I'm checking eBay and Amazon but found none of the airships present. Maybe at next years' International Modeler's Convention...
 

Gandolf50

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Ahhh that is a heartbreaking story! I have salvaged a lot of paper items over the years..Family Photos from some of the hurricanes being the main source.
What I have used ... large sheets of glass that are larger than the pages being recovered...The books have to be disassembled..pulling the staples etc..
They have to be soaked in warm water...with a few drops of washing-up liquid ( 2-3 drops at the most! ) To break the surface tension of the water.
The best way is with blotter paper... and build a sandwich, Glass>Blotter>Page>Blotter>Glass> Weight. In the sunlight is best but slow drying will work...the Blotter has to be dried in between pages... and the glass also/ and cleaned...It is a painstaking process, but for those irreplaceable books?
If you could get a sheet of polished stainless steel ( old photo drier, from a photography lab or find an old drum roller, you would be set ) but finding one would either be difficult or too expensive.)

I hope you can get most of them replaced by the insurance...
 
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THE DC

Highly Esteemed Member
Ahhh that is a heartbreaking story! I have salvaged a lot of paper items over the years..Family Photos from some of the hurricanes being the main source.
What I have used ... large sheets of glass that are larger than the pages being recovered...The books have to be disassembled..pulling the staples etc..
They have to be soaked in warm water...with a few drops of washing-up liquid ( 2-3 drops at the most! ) To break the surface tension of the water.
The best way is with blotter paper... and build a sandwich, Glass>Blotter>Page>Blotter>Glass> Weight. In the sunlight is best but slow drying will work...the Blotter has to be dried in between pages... and the glass also/ and cleaned...It is a painstaking process, but for those irreplaceable books?
If you could get a sheet of polished stainless steel ( old photo drier, from a photography lab or find an old drum roller, you would be set ) but finding one would either be difficult or too expensive.)

I hope you can get most of them replaced by the insurance...


That's a great idea! Fortunately, I am a photographer and have two of those driers that I use for fiber-based paper. I'll run by the rental house and move that to the new house tomorrow. Surprised I didn't think about that. Great tip and some hope???

The Los Angeles airship's too water stained to bother flattening and both kits were in different boxes! Both ruined.

The Macon kits and Hindenburg kits that were foil sheeted all stuck together and even careful separation caused chipping. Can't be salvaged.

The Loughland Space Freighter and Battle ship were dried but badly stained, as was the George Wythe house kit from Williamsburg.

Still, I am trying to salvage and restore what might be saved.
 
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Revell-Fan

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Please keep us informed about your progress. The info could be useful for others who have sustained a similar damage.
 

Gandolf50

Researcher of obscure between war vehicles...
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If you can, I would scan what is salvageable! I scan all the kits I get and never touch the originals. You could, where possible, "photo-shop" out a lot of the staining... I use that technique on damaged photos.

TWO!!! Amazing that you have one, much less two!!
Best of LUCK to your endeavors!!
 

THE DC

Highly Esteemed Member
Please keep us informed about your progress. The info could be useful for others who have sustained a similar damage.



That's a good idea. Maybe I can turn a loss into someone else's recovery?


I picked umps print dryer from my old darkroom yesterday. I've never used it for anything other than fiber prints. I'll have tp wet the wrinkled up pages enough to make it useful, but not so much as to do further damage...