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Unfortunately, HostingPics, my image host, is shutting down. I have a 'few months' in which to retrieve and replace my photos. I am in that process now, but obviously with so many pages and photos to edit, it may be that at some point the links will be 'dead'. Bear with me, because I do intend to replace them before or after that happens. Pics replaced up to and including page 42. ATTENTION! ANYONE WHO HAS FOLLOWED ONE OF MY DIORAMA WIPs WILL KNOW THAT THEY TEND TO EVOLVE OVER TIME! THEREFORE IT WILL COME AS NO SURPRISE THAT THE ENTIRE THEME OF THIS DIORAMA HAS CHANGED, AS OF TODAY, 24/01/17. WHISLT THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE MINIART BUILDING (WITH MOULDS AND CASTINGS) CONTINUES AS PREDICTED THE SETTING FOR THE DIO IS NO LONGER A WINTER ONE, AND THE FEATURED VEHICHLE IS NO LONGER A STuG III. SO, THE 'WINTER TREE' FEATURED IN THIS THREAD WILL NO LONGER APPEAR IN THIS DIO. APART FROM THAT AND THE PROLOGUE/THEME PARAGRAPHS, THE THREAD CAN BE READ AS IS, AND ALL OTHER CONTENT IS STILL RELEVENT. FOR THOSE WHO ARE UPSET ENOUGH TO WANT TO KNOW WHY, THE REASONS ARE LISTED ON PAGE 9, MY SINCERE APOLOGIES BADDER ATTENTION AGAIN! 28/01/17 I DECIDED TO DOUBLE THE SIZE OF THE BASE, SO NOW THERE'S ROOM FOR ANOTHER BUILDING. For the fourth time of trying... grrrr.... at interrupternet. Where's the Autosave function gone? PROLOGUE Having just completed my StuG III I now find myself with three finished AFV's sitting on the shelf with no bases. Now, when I joined BM I was determined not to move onto a new project until I had completed the current one, and that was to include a diorama for each. I am now three dioramas behind, or four if I count my dismantled Viller Bocage diorama which is waiting for a re-build. So, how better to remedy the situation that to build a diorama for the AFV most fresh in my mind? THEME: It was about 1975 when I first started building models, inspired as I was by my elder cousin's Tamiya SAS Jeep, Tamiya Sd.Kfz 222 armoured car and Tamiya Pink Panther Landrover (you can see a theme developing here). And I positively drooled over the Tamiya Catalogues, or more precisely the Francois Verlinden dioramas featured therein. So, upon my return to model-making 35yrs later I had in my head those wonderful Verlinden dioramas. I could recall them all, in fairly good detail and one related to a StuG IV. It was photographed laid up in an ambush position, observing the lowland fields from within the ruins of a farm building. I want to pay homage to that diorama, although mine will be set in winter, in the Ardennes during the Battle of the Bulge. Oh, and of course, mine is a Dragon StuG III, but that's another story. Anyway, a quick look at the title will tell you that there's going to be a bit more to this diorama than was evident in Francois Verlinden's and anyone who saw my entry to the Vignette GB will guess that this one is also going to feature a pig, only one that is somewhat larger and more ferocious. The 'ambushers' will in fact become the 'ambushed' or 'hambushed' hopefully, with humourous consequences. Aaaah the luxury of having time to plan a diorama rather than rush a vignette and make compromises! So, that's the theme and title sorted. MATERIALS: I will add to this list as each material comes to be used. I believe I have all the materials I require, but I may run out of some along the way. For now though, I will be starting on the base and basic structures with: MDF board roughly 80cm x 60cm Pine battens. Balsa wood. 2mm. Privet Hedge 'Branch' MiniArt 'Ruined Village House'. MinArt 'Ardennes Building' Plasticard sheets of varying thickness. Semi-transparent 'white' Plastic Milk Container. Thin card. Graph paper. Grass mat. Corrugated cardboard. High density polystyrene sheet. Bryant and May extra long safety matches. Bar-be-quick giant safety matches. Toothpicks. Balsa 'stick' from a spent firework rocket. Diamond patterned rubber mat (the kind you might find lining the tray in the dashboard of a commercial vehicle for example) Coffee stirring sticks. WIRES, FISHING LINES. 'Brass' picture hanging wire. Maxima Nylon Monofilament Fishing line in spools of 100m.... 12lb, 10lb, 6lb, 2lb breaking strains. Drennan Braided Fishing Line 6lb breaking strain. Green. Drennan Micro Braid Hooklength Line 5lb breaking strain, silver and black spiralled thread. PVA glue CA glue, thin, medium and thick. Liquid Poly. Squadron Products Green Putty. Plaster of Paris. Polyfilla. Liquid Latex. Sellotape. Miliput. Humbrol Enamels. Humbrol Weathering Powders. Humbrol Washes. Tamiya Acrylics. Japanese 'Grit Paints' MIG Pigments. Daler and Rowney Acrylic Artists Inks. Winsor and Newton Watercolours. Winsor and Newton Galeria gloss, satin and matt varnishes. SCATTERS/EFFECTS: Plaster of Paris dust (that is Plaster of Paris which has set solid and then been scraped away to form dust) As such, it acts much more like weathering powder than it does 'talcum powder'. Bart's Dill Tops. Bart's Chervil. Bart's Basil. Peco Scene Static Grass. Woodland Scenics Static Grass in Light, Medium and Dark Green, Straw Yellow. Woodland Scenics 'Yellow Grass' (scatter) Woodland Scenics 'Field Grass', in Dark, Mid and Light Green, and 'Harvest Gold'. Woodland Scenics 'Underbrush' in Dark and Light Green. Cat litter. RP leaf punches: Maple, oak, lime, beech, in scales 1/16, 1/24th, 1/35th 1/48th Non-standard tools: 'Snowflake' paper punch from Hobbycraft for manufacturing 'ivy leaves'. 'Chain of 3 snowflakes' paperpunch 'Lace-doily' pattern paperpunch That's it for now. If anyone follows this thread, I hope you find at least a few nuggets of helpful information. I will also welcome any advice/tips/criticisms. Thanks, Badder THE FOLLOWING LIST OF 'CHAPTERS' IS CURRENTLY UNDER CONSTRUCTION, BUT WILL GIVE PAGE NUMBERS AND CONTENTS. I'VE TRIED TO BREAK THE THREAD UP INTO CHAPTERS EACH CONTAINING A SPECIFIC 'THEME' SO THAT READERS CAN 'ZOOM IN' ON THOSE THAT INTEREST THEM, AND SKIP THOSE THAT DON'T. PLEASE NOTE THAT THE LIST WON'T BE CORRECT UNTIL IT HAS BEEN COMPLETED AND CHECKED. CHATPER ONE. PAGES 1-3 MiniArt 'Ruined Village House'. It should be noted that this building was made prior to the purchase of the MiniArt Ardennes building, which ultimately supplanted it. Making latex moulds of kit parts. Casting copies of kit parts in plaster of Paris. How to quickly and easily remove vacu-formed parts from their backing. Using kit parts and casts to construct a larger ruined building. Joining hollow plastic vacu-formed parts to plaster parts using CA-doused cardboard and paper to increase the contact areas and strengthen the model. Pages 3-4 Painting, weathering, adding moss (herbs) and other details to the building. NOT USED IN THE DIORAMA DUE TO CHANGE OF SCENARIO: Page 4 Making a 'winter tree' from real twigs. Making 'ivy' using Silver Birch 'catkins' and paper leaves made with a 'snowflake' paper punch. Snow effects using CA and Bicarbonate of Soda. Pages 4-5 More work on painting and weathering the building. Pages 5-7 Making a fireplace and chimney stack from plaster parts cast from Tamiya's Brick Wall Set and the Miniart building. Painting and weathering of fireplace and chimney. Soot and burnt hearth. Moss using 'Grit Paint'. Using paper to emulate old plaster. Pages 7-8 A quick and easy method of making corrugated iron from corrugated cardboard, with the assistance of Thin CA. Pages 8- More work on the building Tea leaves as wall 'creepers' CHAPTER TWO Pages 10- MINIART 'ARDENNES BUILDING Cutting, removing, fitting and reinforcing vacu-formed parts. Correcting mistakes in the kit with regards to fit. Making moulds of the kit's walls and roof, casting and constructing new walls and roofing to create a whole building. Page 22- Creating a heavily weathered whitewashed wall. Making 'ivy' leaves using Hobbycraft 'snowflake' paper punch. Fixing ivy to the walls. CHAPTER THREE Page 27- THE BIG TREE Scratch building a large tree using my nylon monofilament fishing line method. Real twig armature. Wire-cored Gardener's Twine used to create branches, each holding bunches of fishing line 'twigs'. Dipping bunches of 'twigs' in CA and herbs and attaching to the armature. CHAPTER FOUR Page 32- STARTING TO ADD COMPONENTS TO THE DIORAMA BASE. Constructing a hedgerow 'off the diorama'. Metal gauze embedded in plaster to aid static grass application.Sea Foam bushes and trees. Fishing line plants. Flowers made from paper punch 'off cuts'. Page 34- Fixing hedgerow to the base. Making a stream bed. (A Mill Race) Mill Race 'walls' from Plaster cast brickwork. Astroturf for marginal rushes. (Reedmace) How to make streamer weeds using cotton wool and CA. Sluice gate. 'Marigolds' and water plants made using paper punches. CHAPTER FIVE. Page 36- THE GRASSY BANK AND BARBED WIRE FENCE. Opposite bank with metal guaze embedded to aid static grass application. Applying static grass. Making a realistic barbed-wire fence using braided fishing line for the main wiring and nylon monofilament fishing line for barbs. Tamiya 'fence posts' from their Barricade Set. Flowering the bank. Gauzing and plastering the track area. Painting the track area. (undercoat) CHAPTER ELEVEN. CHATPER TWELVE. CHAPTER THIRTEEN. CHAPTER FOURTEEN. CHAPTER FIFTEEN. CHAPTER SIXTEEN. CHAPTER SEVENTEEN. CHAPTER EIGHTEEN. CHAPTER NINETEEN. CHAPTER TWENTY.