Which Skill Level Should I Choose?

How does one decide which scale model skill level is best for them?   When purchasing a scale model, information is often provided as to the level of that particular model.  Model kits are usually classified in three different levels – Skill Level 1, Skill Level 2 and Skill Level 3.  These levels are indicative of the various ways a scale model can be assembled.

  • Skill Level 1 is the easiest level and the model general snaps together and requires no glue or painting.  This skill level is generally recommended for ages 8 or older.


  • Skill Level 2 is a slightly more challenging level.  At this level, the scale model will require both glue and paint.  Often times though, these are not included with the kit.  This level is recommended for children 12 years and older.


  • Skill Level 3 is the most difficult level and also requires glue and paint. (Also not generally included with the kit.) This level is recommended for children ages 12 and older

Certain cautions should be taken when building any scale model.  For Skill Level 2 and 3 – or any time there is glue and/or paint involved - assembly should take place in a well-ventilated area.  All scale models contain small parts and therefore should be kept out of reach of small children, or any child who is prone to swallowing small parts.

The above are simply recommendations.  Children’s capabilities can differ at any given age and with the assistance of an adult, a more difficult level could feasibly be chosen.  Building a scale model can be a learning experience on many levels, including the development of fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination with additional emphasis on patience and attention to detail.

The Armed Forces History Museum offers a Build-A-Model Camp for children 8 years and older.  The camp focuses on learning various aspects of the Level 1 model, which is a snap together type model.  Valued at over $40, the cost of the camp is only $18/child and includes admission to the museum, the model, a set of dog tags and a certificate.  Parents can also tour the museum at a discount rate of $9.95 while their child participates in the camp.  Visit our link below for more information regarding dates of the Build-A-Model camp and camp registration.