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1/144 Imperial Lambda-class Shuttle Tydirium (Star Wars: Return of the Jedi Opening Scene Diorama)

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Well, I started building this resin kit back in 2015; I managed to get the bulk of the kit together and painted. It was an easy enough build but before I could call it done I really wanted it in a diorama. In Return of the Jedi, the opening scene shows Darth Vaders Shuttle leaving the Imperial Star Destroyer and heading for the 2nd under construction Death Star.

The diorama I wanted to create was the docking bay that Darth's shuttle arrives in. Now this was going to be a challenge, so the model sat on the shelf of doom until the end of last year. Modern LED lighting technology has now made it possible for me to finally get this diorama built.

So I set about looking for a suitable base, it had to be tall enough to accommodate the shuttle and long enough to recreate the force field entrance. I had an old freezer box tray that I opened up the rear and glued an empty ice cream tub to the rear. This would serve as the hanger bay entrance. Lots of scratch building over the past few months have got me to the present position in the build.

I ordered twelve 1/144 Storm Troopers and a tiny Star Destroyer from Shapeways 3D printing company. I wanted to give a force perspective to the diorama. Hopefully I will get this diorama finished before the end of this month, "The Force is with me, and I am one with the Force”



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Hi guys, when the tiny Star Destroyer arrived from Shapeways it was printed in a translucent resin which allowed for the possibility to light it up. I had no plans to do that mainly because I thought I would have enough light bouncing around the hanger bay to reflect on to the ship. However, I found that it was only dimly lit. So I have fitted a 3mm white LED into the ship, I had already painted it with a black primer base before adding the light grey top coat. This allowed the ship to be light blocked and it was simply a matter of using a fresh scalpel blade to scratch off areas of paint to reveal the light bleeding through. I think it now looks the part and should add more realism to the diorama. Thanks for all the interest in this sci fi build everyone.



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Hi all, here is the penultimate update of the Death Star hanger bay diorama. I have completed all the side walls and placed a Tie Bomber in the roof, as per my reference screen grab. I thought I would show you some details that have gone into this build. The walls are lighted and I added some blue LED highlights.


I still have some detail components to fit in the left-and right-hand roof structures. Finally, in the reveal we will see Darth Vader's Shuttle arrive in the hanger bay and the Storm troopers standing to attention. Until next time "May the Force be with you!”



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Cool! I hope you’re going to install a speaker to play the Imperial March and Vader telling the hapless officer “The Emperor is not as forgiving as I am!” 

Love the forced perspective and lighting.

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Thanks guys,the poor Imperial shuttle has been sitting on the shelf of doom far too many years. Its been cool to finally see it arrive in the diorama i originally planned for it.

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  • 3 weeks later...

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