"How to Build Large Scale Dioramas"

Discussion in 'Dioramas & Displays' started by JohnReid, Jul 7, 2007.

  1. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Wow! working in here is like working in a bird cage.This is the general arrangement of the engine,fuel tank and rad.I have used brass rod to connect everything up.A little judicious use of the tarp should cover most of it.I am just looking for a general overall shape here.
    The fuel system is gravity feed therefore it is set higher than the engine.The rad is from the Ford T.I will not be using a lot of piping or fittings other than maybe the large rad hoses to hang the tarp on.Speaking about the tarp, it should be fun making that in there
  2. Millenniumfalsehood

    Millenniumfalsehood Active Member

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    John, the only reason I haven't posted before now is I just simply can't find the words to express my stunned mind! Seriously, it's an honor to see a master at work with the art, and I'm anxious to incorporate your techniques into a diorama I'm doing which you may be interested to hear about:

    A 90-year-old man I know loved to fly, but can't pass his physical anymore (he can barely get in and out of the cockpit of his plane), so he's regrettably willing his J-3 Piper Cub to his grandson. This thing is in top shape for a plane bought in 1964, and it still flies as well as it did when he bought it, so he says. He loves this plane to death, so I decided that since his birthday is in November and Hobbycraft has an excellent model of the J-3, I'll build a model of his plane on the ground on a Kansas airstrip(read: a grass field with a dirt road :wink: ), ready to take off. He'll be standing next to her, with his hand on the wing, posing as the proud owner next to the door.

    I have a feeling he'll love it, and I'll definitely be using a bunch of the techniques you've demonstrated here to achieve several of the effects I want to incorporate.
  3. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  4. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  5. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  6. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  7. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Sometimes the easiest and best solution is staring you right in the face.
    I put the flier in the diorama and realized that most of the I am trying to hide is not visible anyway.No sense in wasting a lot of time on something that will never be seen. Instead I will concentrate on what is visible and add a bit more to it, like fittings, piping etc...The tarps, if I show them at all, will have been completely removed or blown off over time.Once the whole thing is weathered it should be even more interesting this way,or at least more fun for me as I love the weathering process.
    Speaking about finishing only what is visible,this practice has been well established with shadowbox dioramas, where a lot of what you don't see has never been completed in the round, especially detailed figures etc..
  8. Testostrogen

    Testostrogen New Member

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    Those look amazing!
    I've never been into dioramas, but your(Reid) stuff looks really cool.
  9. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  10. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  11. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    I made up the engine support brackets and installed the basic engine.I have started a little weathering using pastels.Later I will be toothbrush spraying a little watery acrylics over the aircraft's wooden structure to age it as well.The fuel tank is next ,then the rad.
    Doing a under construction build really has its advantages ,as you can quit with the detail anytime you want.Want to put a bracket without a bolt to secure it?Fine,he just hasn't got around to installing it yet.You don't even have to drill a hole cause you can't see it anyway.If I was doing this as a finished airplane my plan for the build would be completely different and much more complicated.All of my aircraft to date have been of the "under construction" type so I get to decide when to stop.This freedom helps to keep me sane!
  12. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  13. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    The copper fuel tank is not in its final position but has been lowered to rest on the engine support beam.I left the tank fitting in a unusual place on the tube to indicate this.The fuel tank can easily be positioned higher, to its final gravity feed position ,when all the fittings etc ... are installed.(after he returns from the war)
    The prop will not be installed because something as valuable as that (if he even had one)would not be left outside.
    Next?
  14. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Making windows
    Well I think that I will go back to woodworking for awhile.Ken Hamilton has a great tutorial on making windows which I will borrowing from extensively.It is a really great step by step method using a jig and real glass or plexiglass.
    The facade will play a secondary role in the diorama but in reality it represents a good portion of the overall work involved.I have to be careful here that I don't get too fancy with the facade.I thought about shutters but it would just be too much.Luckily this is a backyard which would not normally have any anyway.
    I will build a few until I get tired of it and then return to the flier somewhere down the road.
  15. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  16. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Talk about going from one extreme to another! From aircraft engine to windows.On a long project like this you have got to keep learning something new.Dioramas provide lots of room for learning and is one of the main reasons I do them.
    The above pic is Ken Hamilton's almost finished window.Mine of course will be an exterior window so therefore will be a little different but basically it will be his methodology that I will be using.
    Looks simple doesn't it? and I guess like most things it is after you have done the first one but you would be surprised just how much planning goes into it.(thanks Ken)
    Well here we go!
  17. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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  18. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    Windows
    The above pic was taken with a flash so the facade looks washed out.

    The window jambs have already been installed so I will be required to build each window right on the facade rather than in a jig.I used 1 inch insulation and then wound around a large rubber band in order to get the facade to lay flat .Over the facade I have placed a cardboard sheet to protect the brick and then cut a hole in it for the window to be worked upon.
  19. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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    [​IMG]
    deleted pic
  20. JohnReid

    JohnReid Active Member

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