First Diorama Completed!

Well it was 5 months in the making (to be fair there was much downtime and other model building in the meantime), but my first venture back into Scale-model building, since my pre-teen years, and my first ever diorama are in the in books.

I had fun making the 1/72-scale planes, lots of learning and relearning applied. I have always loved the air forces of WWII, not to mention the tanks, so I though I would start with two early war iconic aircraft, the German Bf 109-E3 and the British Spitfire Mk.1a. I choose to model the cliffs of Dover, as a setting for these two early war combatants and the German pilot to have the upper hand – mostly because the decal marking are for real pilot in 1940 colors.

Feldwebel Hienz Bär (earning the rank of Oberstleutnant by war’s end) was credited with 220 victories, and he had a tally of 17 by the end of the Battle of Briton. Bär survived the war after flying in every theater of war the Luftwaffe was in, finishing the war as a Me 262 jet fighter pilot. He died at the age of 43 doing a routine test flight on a commercial light sport aircraft. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heinrich_Bär

There are many firsts for me in the diorama (the first being making a diorama in the first place – thanks @patmcf http://modelmanpat.com for your inspirational dioramas!), modeling water using toilet paper, using an airbrush to paint a realistic model and camouflage and making smoke/fire from cotton balls!

What I learned from this process is that trying to show the models together is impossible to keep scale distances. I need to make the next dio a single subject. I really like 1/72 scale for airplanes – small footprint, not so much detail that my poor painting skills show through and fairly quick to assemble and finish (I have the next plane model 90% finished!). Most importantly, I need to work one new method on each subsequent model going forward, I tried too many on these two birds and it basically slowed me down chasing perfection.

The model kits. The Spitfire is an Airfix kit (a UK company) and the 109 is from ICM kit (a Ukraine company). The Airfix kit is much nicer. Simpler design, superior fitment and more options for wheels up or down. The ICM kit has lots of detail, but comes with bits not for aircraft in the box, I think they make limited sprues and cover several planes with that sprue. The canopy came in three parts, but no option to have it open, only closed, so a single piece design would have been preferred.

Since the Airfix went together so swimmingly, I bought out three other WWII planes that my local Hobby Lobby had on the shelf. I bought the pan three separate trips, using my 40% discount each time, so they were each about $5! Not a bad investment for some scale modeling fun.

Speaking of canopies … they are my bugbear. I can never get them to fit right, and even with masking, getting the frames painted is never satisfying. So that is one of my goals, to paint better canopies!

Be health my blogger friends, be healthy!

3 thoughts on “First Diorama Completed!

  1. Well done Eric, you have started of with a difficult one but you have managed to pull it of beautifully mate! the aircraft are really well done ,the painting of the canopies is very clever I have never bothered or even thought about doing it . Using the cliff face was smart thinking, great anchor point for the planes, and the sea is turned out well. your use of the cotton wool was another smart move and it looks pretty real to me, overall I’d say you did a very nice job mate ,well done, and give yourself a big pat on the back ,and thanks for the mention mate and Its good to know I’ve been of some use !! Cheers mate and keep well .

    Liked by 1 person

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