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by Dorrell. March 2020.
In this time of uncertainty and self quarantine it may seem gloomy, with museums closed for the duration and military events cancelled or postponed.
However, being housebound does have its benefits and the most important of which is spending quality time with your nearest and dearest. And, let’s face it, the grind of daily life can cause strain on any relationship.... what I am talking about here is quality time with your... collection or military vehicle.
But seriously though, it is not only the time to keep you and your family safe and healthy, but a time to keep yourself sane. So here are a few tips that you can do from the comfort of your own
man cave, bunker, garage or foxhole.
Knowledge is power, or so they say, and rightly so. Dust off those reference books and get yourself back up to speed. Who knows you might even discover something new about a piece or model. If you fancy something a little more relaxing then take a virtual trip to our book review page for some great reads, which can be sourced independently online and delivered straight to your door.
If your other half or home office is placing demands on your ass, then short snappy articles are what’s called for. Peruse our homepage articles, and then check out the many war history ones online. If you have a taste for military sarcasm and humour double time over to the Duffelblog at your own risk. Ooohah.
What better way than to flare up your collecting critique talent of equipment, vehicles and uniforms, than a war movie marathon. Grab a bowl of munchies and raid that DVD stash, log-on to that video streaming site, or your favourite online video web-page and do your best impression of a 5 year old watching TV (or a hypnotised Zombie, whichever fits best). It’s quality viewing and a good distraction to the world outside.
Perhaps the more boring side of collecting for some, but taking photos and writing a full description about the pieces in your collection is a valuable way to learn more about it. Who knows it might even lead to a book draft and can help later when you upload it to a blog, forum or online gallery. In the worst case scenario you have a detailed record in case of theft or damage.
There is nothing like the smell and feel of having an original item in your hands. It can bring you straight back to the exciting days of when you first started and also remind you of what a fantastic piece you have. Making a video of your collection or jeep and posting it for the viewing pleasure of others is an ideal way to be more active in your hobby and can prove to other collectors, and most importantly your better half, that you are an expert in your field.
Online blogs and galleries:
Share it online and get the respect and admiration your items command. Create a profile on a website or better still make your own mini-museum or blog and display your collection to the wider world!
Half the frustration... er I mean fun of collecting is researching a piece and/or its original owner. Some features of an item may not correspond to regulations or standard patterns, and so to discover exactly what that darn thing is or means often takes hours of fruitless trawling. With time on your hands and an internet connection in your holster, open up a new offensive and nail it once and for all. If you want to trace a soldier‘s name give it a simple internet search with keywords and try war graves directories, regiment associations, the National Archives, London Gazette (or your countries equivalent) or other, and bit by bit you can build a picture of an officer’s service record.
Virtual museum tours:
Need to get out the house and visit a museum? A virtual tour is the next best thing and you can even do it holding a black and steamy or short and amber... (I am talking about beverages here). Either from your smartphone, tablet or computer. A quick online search will show you what’s out there, but to get the ball rolling here is a selection to wet your appetite: Austria’s HGM Military History Museum, HMS Belfast, Churchill’s War Rooms, WW1 Trench experience, Air Force Museum of Alberta, National War Museum of Malta, National Museum of the US Air Force, Americain Battlefield Trust, Imperial War Museum Hall of Remembrance, and the Avro Lancaster and Bomber Command Memorial. Alternatively you can “visit” some great venues with 360 videos on the YouTube app, which can be used with virtual reality goggles.
Indulge your green eyed monster and check out other collector’s pride n joy or collection. OK this sounds like a double edged sword and may make your feel like you need to go straight out and buy a slick V8 muscle car to compensate... and why not indeed... but it can also give you inspiration, motivation and a new direction. Comparing weapons is not like when we were at school but can help convince you whether a piece is correct and original, or not. Go on drag your mouse over to our military collections and reference directory links and get ready to drool.
Money to burn, no place to go:
Of course now is a good time to save, but, but... what about buying instead... or at least window shopping. I am not saying go into the red and get a Hazmat suited bailiff banging on your door chasing that overdue credit card. With shows and shops closed there are still opportunities online from dealers, shops and auctions to develop your collection or find that missing spare part. Direct from your lazy boy to your front door. If your feeling the pinch from hamster toilet roll purchases then window shopping is a perfect way to waste away hours, devise a wish list and simply learn more about your hobby, such as current prices, original characteristics and developing your awareness for reproductions and fakes.
Last of all:
Heck! Just for the fun of it download our paper Jeep, Spitfire, Harrier, and Huey models, and build yourself a true classic. If you even don’t mind waiting a few days order yourself as well a plastic scale model with all the trimmings and pretend you are a teenager again.
So that’s it for now. Whatever you do during this “crisis” the most important thing is to stay safe and healthy, stay calm and keep collecting, or “vehiculing”.
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Inform your passion! The World of Collecting.
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