Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Finished U-Boat Diorama

Das Boot ist fertig, Herr Kaleun!

(Listen to this video in the background while viewing for the full Das Boot experience...)

Well, after approximately 20 hours' work, my U-Boat Diorama is completed.  It has been an emotional project, with a few moments of depression (when I realised my harbour water was far too clean and blue, necessitating a complete repaint) to elation (solving it with a spare tin of field-grey coloured Dulux I had from somewhere).

The crew were fun to paint in 20mm, and a challenge; the boat itself was actually done in about 15 mins (seriously!), with just one wash of black ink, an airbrushed highlight, and a liberal dose of weathering powders.  The water took the longest - painstakingly built up with filler, expanding foam, plaster, and PVA glue.  Each layer took about three days to dry, and the final glossy PVA is still not quite dry in time for its Wednesday photoshoot.

I'll let the pics do the talking.













All in all, a very enjoyable (if intensive) project.  I always find Airfix kits quite difficult after years of very simple 40K kits, but this one wasn't as bad.  I had a lot of reference material and plenty of photographs as well, so at least I always knew where I was going.

The final touches are to paint round the side of the base and let the PVA dry fully - it was in my big wardrobe with a dehumidifier on full blast but there are still a few wet bits.


I would recommend both the kit and the crew to anyone wanting to do a diorama like this, but costs can spiral, especially when you want as many crewmen on deck as I did.  Ah well.


Thanks everyone for your kind comments on the last one, and hopefully you've enjoyed this little distraction.

All the best,

Ed

36 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks a lot, really is something unique I've not tried before.

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    2. Trouble is I am now thinking about a diorama..I dont have time for that lol

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    3. Yes, this took a lot of time and it was only because I was off work for a while that I managed it. I'd have hated to have started it and not been able to finish.

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  2. Absolutely outstanding! The only thing I'm missing is the band ;-)

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    1. I know - if you know of a decent 1:72 band anywhere I might add it at a later date...

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  3. Replies
    1. Thank you András, glad you enjoyed.

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  4. Your finest work yet!

    For such a simple sounding paint job, the end result on that tub really does look good mate.

    Where will this be displayed?

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    1. High praise, thank you Dai. It was originally only the first step, but it looked so good I just left it. No idea where it's going to live, far too big!

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  5. Yeh, where is it gonna live ? Are you going to show it ?

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    Replies
    1. Me and Kieran half-jokingly mentioned opening a Battle of the Atlantic museum one day...

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  6. Awesome stuff mate. Looks brilliant. That water looks fantastic. The colouring with the odd white cap looks spot on given the scene and the dress of the figures. You also seem to have hit the spot with the weathering.

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    1. Thanks - glad you like the water, since that's what took hours and hours! The weathering really was a lesson in 'less is more'.

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  7. God God, man (or should I say 'Mein Gott'?) - this is amazing! Bloody nice work; bloody well done.

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    1. Cheers Drax, appreciate the feedback! Glad you like it.

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  8. This is great. The crew looks wonderful.

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    1. Thank you John - they did take quite a while to do, but it was nice doing them separately from the boat, relaxing from the complexities of the modelling with some light painting.

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  9. OMG! Echoing what everyone else said, this is a sight to behold. I just hope that you are 'not too close to it' so that you can appreciate its beauty as we all can.

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    1. My dear Colonel, all your kind comments help me to do that. It is a real problem though, people often loose sight of the things they model - which is the great thing about sharing it with the blogosphere.

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  10. Wow! That is an excellent diorama. It makes me want to join the Kriegsmarine.

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    1. Cheers Chris - does look like it could be on a recruitment poster, doesn't it?

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  11. It is absolutely splendid. I've spent the last five minutes gazing at your photos in slack jawed admiration. Brilliant work.
    I would say your decision to buy the crew minis was justified. They add so much to the final impact of the piece, and you've painted them very well.
    Lots of other details to appreciate as well, such as the tonnage pennants - did you make them from scratch?
    Bravo, mate.
    Michael

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    1. Some very kind words Mike. Now that the crew are painted and on the model, I agree it was worth it - just goes to show a bit of investment pays off now and again. The tonnage pennants and ensign are both transfers from the Revell kit, but I painted over both with a little hand-painted colour to 'tie in' with the real paint job of the rest of the boat. Thanks again.

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  12. Replies
    1. Danke - schön dich wiederzusehen!

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  13. That is absolutely fantastic - simply beautiful work, man!

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    1. Thanks Mordian - really glad you all enjoyed it.

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  14. I'm utterly lost for words. Something that's not too common. The water effects look spot on and "too scale", the weathering is not over done - as you say so often less is more. And what really sets it off is the crewmen - the attention to detail is outstanding. I've been trying to work out which of the four is the Obersteuermann ;)

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    1. Thanks muchly. Glad the water seems to have been appreciated by most people since it took the most effort - apart from probably the crew. Oh, bottom row, second group from left, second man from left...

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    2. Definitely turned out well. In the line up on the foam, wouldn't he be one of the top row, second group on the left as they're the CPOs... mitt schirmmütze?

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    3. They're all officers (one is the surgeon), so I had to do all the CPOs in ordinary side caps. It seemed more likely that there would be all the CPOs in side caps rather than officers.

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