Project Research: Looking for Info on the Web

While searching for information on the P40M-N: Kittyhawk Mk4 for my current project I came across several websites that I had forgotten, or simply had forgot to bookmark. So it seems prudent to write a timely reminder on researching your subject and the importance of bookmarking your Internet references.

While caught up in the research for your current project it is easy to forget to look at what you have found, to discard a web page because it’s content is off subject or simply not  relevant to your subject.

While it’s easy to just click the back button on your browser, just take a moment to look at where you are and ask your self a few questions.

  • Is this in my  general area of modeling?
  • Do I have other projects that may need this information?
  • Am I on the home page? and lastly..
  • Does it provide a wealth of knowledge I can use in my hobby?

Learning to Use Search Engines Effectively

The reason to ask yourself if you’re on the homepage is so you can look at all of the website’s content. It may have what your looking for but just worded differently to what you asked the search engine to look for.

search enginesSearch engines are wonderful things, however if you are asking for the information in a different way than it’s provided on the web, no amount of searching will find it! Sometimes it pays to think of different ways to ask for the information you need.

Now it is not necessarily the search engine’s fault as not all website owner’s know anything about search engine optimization (S.E.O), particularly hobbyist’s whose main focus is getting the info up on a web-page and that is that. I am fortunate that my wife and webmaster knows a little something about SEO and works hard on this site to optimize it for web search.

So remember if at first you don’t succeed using your search term (keyword phrase) try wording it another way or break down your keyword phrase to it’s most simple common word or words.

 “I Still haven’t Found What I’m Looking For…”

Now I’m not advocating going through every page you find, just don’t be in a hurry to discard a page you’ve found.

I’ll be the first to admit that I find more pages that don’t relate to my project research or provide none of the information I need than pages that have exactly what I need. More likely it will be in the middle ground where it’ll provide some tantalizing pieces of information but not the whole picture I’m looking for.

Even web pages devoted to the subject may lack what you are looking for, also you may find that there is no free source of information to hand. Specifically if your looking for plans or line drawings of your subject.

In my case, I need to find line drawings so I can define where my panel lines need to go as the casting of my fuselage is on the poor side and need to be redefined. Re-scribing panel lines can be a mite hard if you’ve no idea where the panel lines are supposed to go.

Bookmarking Effectively

In my search I found a site dedicated to line drawings and airplane information in general. Now the website is French but has an English menu! (You can add a Google Translator add-on to your browser if you’d like to translate the pages). I recommend this site as it’s full of useful information for both us propeller heads and jet jockeys! And the name of it is Wings 2.12 go check it out!

Try these Social Bookmark SitesI recommend you bookmark for exploration later, you can then decide what to keep and what to discard. Remember to keep your bookmarks well organized using folders and sub-folders. Use whatever structure or classifications you want just as long you remember them. It’s OK, your browser will handle it.

If you don’t want to clog your browser with spurious amounts of bookmarks I recommend you use a book marking website like Delicious or any of the sites pictured here to keep your bookmarks in a safe place.

Computer crashes are horrendous not only in terms of data lost but also the bookmarks for hard to locate sites! The web is an excellent resource and it takes some thought to get the best out of it.

Happy hunting!


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Avid WW2 aviation enthusiast and modeller. Been making model kits since age nine and I now model mostly ww2 model airplanes. (my wife is an understanding one!)

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