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Model Expo Contest and Swap Meet, 9 June 2018

This year's themes are 60 years of Chevy Impalas for the cars, and Poke the Bear (communist revolution to cold war era) for military models. 

Every year, the San Diego IPMS chapter, and the San Diego Model Car Club put on a model contest and swap meet at the San Diego Air and Space Museum's restoration hangar at Gillespie field. This year's model Expo will take place on Saturday, June 9th from 8:00 AM until 4:00 PM with awards presentation at 3:00 PM. There will be vendors with kits, hamburgers and hot dogs for lunch, and a raffle. The restoration hangar is located at 335 Kenney Street in El Cajon. Just look for the building with an Atlas Rocket as a lawn ornament. 

Once again, there will be a separate category for Gunpla, and Mecha models. 

For registration information, please read the flyer and category list below.

Judging will be IPMS national rules, including the no sweeps rule.*  The model car club supervises judging for autos, and the IPMS club judges everything else. If a category is too large, we will split the category and issue multiple awards. 

If you don't want to enter the contest, there will be a display only area. Please, come and share your builds. 



  • All scales and categories, except automotive


  • 1/72 & smaller-Prop
  • 1/72 & smaller-Jet
  • 1/73 to 1/33 - Prop
  • 1/73 to 1/33 - Jet
  • 1/32 & larger - Prop
  • 1/32 & larger - Jet
  • Rotary Wing - All scales & types

Military vehicles

  • Armor-1/72 & smaller, all types
  • Armor-1/48, all types
  • Armor-1/47 & larger - Fully tracked
  • Armor-1/47 & larger - Wheeled, semi-tracked
  • Softskin - 1/47 & larger, all types


  • Small composition (fewer than 5 models or figures)
  • Large composition (more than 5 models or figures)


  • 1/451 & smaller
  • 1/450 & larger
  • Submarine
  • Sailing


  • 53 MM & smaller
  • 54 MM & larger


  • Sci-Fi & Fantasy
  • Sci-Fi & Real Space Vehicles: all scales & types
  • Gunpla, Gundam and Mecha: all scales & types
  • Hypothetical: all scales & types
  • Others: all scales & types
  • Out-of-the-Box: all scales & types (non-automotive)


  • Juniors
  • Production/Replica
  • Hot Rods, Street Rods and Street Machines
  • Custom
  • Competition – Non-Drag Racing
  • Competition - Dragsters
  • Large
  • Low Riders
  • Motorcycles
  • Out-of-the-Box

There are special awards for:

  • Best Aircraft
  • Best Military Vehicle
  • Best Diorama • Best Ship
  • Best Figure
  • Best Space, Sci-Fi & Fantasy
  • Best Automotive
  • Best Irish Subject
  • Best Tamiya Model
  • Best 1:48 Stearman Biplane
  • Best of theme for both autos and military
  • Judges Grand Prize - Best of Show



* The no sweeps rule says that a builder may win no more than one award in a category. This ensures that one builder doesn't flood a category and win all the awards. We also do not allow previous Model Expo, IPMS Nationals, or Region 8 winners to recieve awards. 


Coming Events

Tue, 02/20/2018 - 6:30pm

The February 20th meeting theme is Agitate some gravel; Competition cars of all kinds. As always, bring in whatever you're working on, or have completed; theme related or not. 

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