What a Drag.


  • December 29, 2022 at 12:30 am
    President Elect Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH Neanderthal B Woodman Domestic Violent Extremist SuperStraight

    Father-son time. Priceless.
    You can always go out to eat anytime with friends and family.
    But bonding time with your growing son……..irretrievable.

  • December 29, 2022 at 12:31 am
    President Elect Toxic Deplorable Racist SAH Neanderthal B Woodman Domestic Violent Extremist SuperStraight

    Bring up a child in the way he shall grow, and when he is old, he shall not depart from it.

  • December 29, 2022 at 12:38 am

    Mm-hmm – the other possibility I thought of Monday, but didn’t iterate…

    If Jan and Damon are there, I’m pretty sure Javier came along also.

  • December 29, 2022 at 6:48 am
    Tim Moyer

    Wonderful to see some “Plane Talk” there, Chris. Javier probably did come along as well.

  • December 29, 2022 at 8:31 am

    Chris, if you sent me an email, please resend,

  • December 29, 2022 at 8:41 am
    Stanley Anderson

    My day is already complete at 3:47am this morning seeing today’s DBD strip. The only way it could be even more complete is if that plane were a 25¢ balsa wood kit in a long clear rectangular plastic slipcase with five flat pieces — fuselage with long slot in the middle for adjusting the wing piece position under variable flying conditions, a groove and open slot at the back for the stabilizers vertical and horizontal and the all-important metal weight at the nose for getting a good overhead fling.

    I saw the world and won and lost many a contest and air battle and life lessons with those low-tech planes — far more than any high definition and special effects-laden video game or spatula cell-phone app could ever give.

    But then later graduating into “the real thing” with structural parts glued together and careful application of tissue and dope and painting the covered wing (perhaps the level Zed and Samuel are working on in the panel), carefully getting that tissue on with nary the slightest wrinkle, and attaching (my first one anyway) an .010 engine in front, along with the long cords and hand control for flying around in large circles out in the school yard — my first effort was painted shiny black with a playboy bunny decal on both sides of the vertical stabilizer — VERY racy choice for a shy math-nerd with glasses and acne back then, whew!

    Ok, ok, don’t get started — I’m already halfway down the runway as it is… 🙂 Thanks for the wonderful memory, Chris — and a pleasant lead-in memory for the Feast of the Holy Family tomorrow.

    Eeek! Suddenly now I’m imagining carpenter St. Joseph building a model airplane with boy Jesus in the tool shed: “Now son, no angel support and guidance control here, ok? — we’re going for aerodynamic design and lift properties with the wing. Yeah, ok, ok, we’ll get to the seaplane version next and if it gets stuck out there on the pond you can walk over and retrieve it. But for right now this one will take off and land on solid ground ok?”

    Back off, Stanley, back off!…

    • December 29, 2022 at 11:18 am

      Got one of those slot adjustable balsa wood planes in my garage. One simply must have one.

      • December 29, 2022 at 1:59 pm
        Stanley Anderson

        Chris, it just now occurred to me in reference to my slight rant above about the distinct joys and benefits of “real world” playing as opposed to the virtual worlds of video games and spatula phone apps (I went retro on my last phone upgrade and got what I call my old-fart/non-smart, swipe-free/ten-key, unhip/flip phone — I can’t text for crap but that’s a good thing, and I tell people I’m goin’ even more retro on my next phone with two tin cans and a string stetched taut between ’em 🙂 ).

        Where was I? Oh yeah — real world joys. It just occurred to me that I’m guessing DBD stated online and never appeared in actual print newspapers? Gotta deal with the times and all of course, but I’m thinking that would mean no DBD fans of the younger sort would have ever had the joy of pushing down a lump of silly-putty onto a DBD comic panel to transfer the image over to something else — and stretching it out in strange ways in the process.

        Wouldn’t that be an enjoyable exercise for the young-un readers (along with my inner young-un child) with certain characters and poses on various DBD strips, especially during fundraising periods. I just mention that because it strikes me as a possibly curious and enticing possibility as a candidate for “level” inducement prizes. I’m longing to get my fingers on some silly putty and a newsprint version of a pond setting panel even as I type this reply here… Sigh…*deep breaths*

      • December 29, 2022 at 2:23 pm

        I wonder if there are any “DBD fans of the younger sort”.

        Seems I do recall that Chris’ work was syndicated at one time, but their demands to control the output did not sit well with the artist, hence our daily dose of awesome here on the intertubes. Just as well I guess those silly-putty images of “certain characters and poses on various DBD “strips”, would most likely be R rated, but it sure sounds like fun.

  • December 29, 2022 at 9:08 am

    My first model planes were a balsa rubber-powered one and a thirty-nine cent Lindberg 1/80 scale plastic kit of a Bf109. That was when I was two (no, really).

    Sixty-two years later, I’m still a model builder. Planes, tanks, ships, cars, science fiction; whatever strikes my mood.

    I maintain that building actual things as opposed to blowing things up virtually is a more likely route to sanity.

    clear ether


  • December 29, 2022 at 9:32 am

    I started with similar projects. My ultimate was a battery-powered Regulus missile-firing submarine that ran through a clock-work program of submerge/surface/launch/ submerge/rinse/repeat. My Dad and I spent over a year building her. Regrettably, she broke her safety tether and is now on eternal patrol somewhere beneath Stiles Pond in Boxford, MA. When I took up SCUBA diving I hoped I might spot her, but the weeds on the bottom were too dense. RIP USS Grayback.

    Zar Belk!

  • December 29, 2022 at 10:46 am

    …and another thin layer along the boom.
    Then LET THEM DRY.
    Then one more thin layer on the boom, touch the pieces together, and block them up at the proper angle.
    The wood will snap before that glue joint does.

  • December 29, 2022 at 11:11 am
    Polly Cy

    Sweet. And I’m always a sucker for a good pun.

  • December 29, 2022 at 11:52 am

    Time well spent …

  • December 29, 2022 at 12:24 pm

    Hm-m-m … the earlier artwork seems to have a bit more depth, less two dimensional. I have noticed the style change over the last few years and wondered why … less time to produce the newer art?

    Just an observation, no bad vibes intended.

    • December 29, 2022 at 1:45 pm
      Chris Muir

      When I did the realism, it seemed less ‘connected’ to the actual characters.

  • December 29, 2022 at 1:55 pm

    Father/son time even if adopted, fostered or whatever the circumstances is integral to the raising of a man instead of an old boy.

    Regarding the art; those could be part of the next fund raiser.

  • December 29, 2022 at 2:07 pm

    So has the family genius Javi ever built a model plane with his Dad in between virtual, CG, and AI creations? Can’t be a real kid -or a real man- without that.

    Son and I skipped the balsa and plastic and went straight for the cardboard tubes and solid-fuel rocket engines of Estes… we must have built a couple dozen of various configurations and power plants, and ultimately made a name for ourselves as the “Lizards in Space” experts, having launched many who survived the parachute landing, and quite a few who disappeared in the distance with unknown survival results.

    Funny, his Mom was going through his old stuff a few weeks ago to find some of his Christmas craft projects and pictures, and found that we still have a couple of those custom made and custom painted rockets (don’t ask about the subject matter art, suffice to say we got into some trouble with his Mama over it), one with the clear astro-lizard capsule, in his box of memories that mean so much to me, and to him. Those things almost certainly helped guide his amazing art and tactile abilities with his custom jewelry business and general reasoning and problem-solving abilities.

    With a world changing not for the better in terms of real-world learning, and multiple mergers, acquisitions, a bankruptcy etc, so few of these components and kits are sold these days that the Estes model company is a financial shadow of what it once was, and the world of young boys and the men they will become is the poorer for it. Son ain’t gonna let that happen to his boys and the older one has already built his first rocket. And Zed won’t let that happen to Samuel either.

    • December 29, 2022 at 3:46 pm

      Don’t rule Estes out quite yet. Yeah, when it was run by a multinational “toy company” conglomerate it was “bigger” (and carried way stupider offerings), but it’s now in the hands of business-savvy actual modelers who lived their entire lives in the hobby and are now turning the company into something beautiful.

      I have my modeling years to thank for my skills at doing fine/tiny computer repair work today, as well as lots of other fit-and-finish knowhow that people come to me for.

      • December 29, 2022 at 7:29 pm

        Estes, eh? Centuri Engineering rockets had all the cool designs.

      • December 29, 2022 at 9:13 pm

        More a victim of the “culture” than the “corporate” in this case; if nobody’s buyin’ it doesn’t matter who’s sellin’.

        But Amazon is their friend. As bad as the culture surrounding that place is, a lot of small producers and sellers couldn’t make it without them, when even hobby shops stock only a small selection, if they stock them at all.

      • December 29, 2022 at 11:57 pm

        Centuri was acquired by the same gigantic “toy company” (Damon) in the ’80s and soon after was merged away.
        Vern Estes described his sale of his company to Damon as the biggest regret of his life.

  • December 29, 2022 at 2:32 pm

    Models get them on them young and they’ll be too broke for drugs
    Late wife also built and remember attending a swap meet with a sci-fi modeling group I belonged to where I found the large scale Tamiya WWII USS Missouri. Several of the group asked if we’d be seeing the space battleship Missouri and I explained it was an anniversary gift for the wife. Of course several of the older guys started to speak up to save the noob hubby from committing a doghouse worthy marital fauxpaux where I spoke up and explained no you don’t understand she asked me to get this if I ever found one.
    20 plus years later and I still grin at the expressions that went from we have to help this poor soul to you SOB how did you find The One.

  • December 29, 2022 at 2:44 pm

    Never did play with planes. Dad had me cleaning his guns and learning to lay brick and concrete, digging trenches for waterlines.

  • December 29, 2022 at 6:03 pm

    Did U-Control with .o49s with separate fuel tanks. No Cox engines. We would take off from a “Carrier” aka an Ironing board.
    The landing was basically a crash. Kept us building.

  • December 29, 2022 at 6:05 pm
  • December 29, 2022 at 7:52 pm
    Joe Boucher

    Must be some engunneering in your background, Mr Muir. Not bad on the aircraft structure.

  • December 29, 2022 at 11:43 pm

    I never built planes with dad but learned a more intensive art from him. That of tying fishing flys. Somewhere in the basement is an unfinished Gullow kit of a Pusmoth might try to get grandson interested in helping to build it if I can get him away from the damn screens. In the additional artwork, is she running a #3 Warner-Swasey or is it a Jones and Lamson turret lathe?

  • December 30, 2022 at 12:13 am
    Capn Jack

    I’ve got a bookshelf full of books on paper airplane designs. My favorites are the repros I have of the the old WWII Wheaties box cutouts of Axis and Allied fighter planes. Most of the designs use laminated paper or cardstock because Balsa wood was scarce. They are flyers though. You just have to be careful of getting the wet. A cheap cap of hairspray helps a lot.

  • December 30, 2022 at 12:15 am
    Capn Jack

    Please overlook the typos. My fingers are a little stiff.

  • December 30, 2022 at 5:02 am

    One of my great aunts would talk of Orville and Wilbur coming by to learn how to make an air cooled engine that was very light and powerful enough to get their plane in the sky. Her father had many patents in cooling and built long forgotten cars and postal trucks before Henry started his production line.
    The brothers later flew into the farm to visit and would land in one of their fields. That was back in the day when people made engines and more by hand.
    I am sure that his worker artists were not as pleasing to look upon.
    Making things is good education.
    But now electronics controls so much of what is made and so much is of a toss out when broken grade of product.
    Now Klaus wants 2000 to own everything and everyone else to own nothing and be happy.
    The stories relatives told.

  • December 30, 2022 at 1:22 pm

    Thanks for including ‘Ronnie’ from the Great White North 🙂

    “…Veronica Foster, popularly known as “Ronnie, the Bren Gun Girl”, was a Canadian icon representing nearly one million Canadian women who worked in the manufacturing plants that produced munitions and matériel during the Second World War…”

  • December 31, 2022 at 5:45 am
    S. Momaren Mully Ully Gue

    Sorry to nitpick, but that machine tool Sam is running is a lathe, not a grinder …
    just sayin …

    Happy New Year, one & all!



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