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Dioramas
Do you love dioramas & vignettes? We sure do.
Water...Going Deep
Bluestab
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 11:24 AM GMT+7
I've got a project I hopefully will be starting in a few months. I've always liked the image of the submerged tanks from wrecked transports such as the SS Empire Heritage. I have been wanting to model a dive on such a wreck.

My question is realistic depth using resin. Has anyone done something similar with a large block of resin or even acrylic? Any problems to watch out with trying it, like bubbles? Do you apply in layers or all at once?

Or would it be better to simply suspend the figures in a non-resined shadow box display?

Thanks in advance.
BigfootV
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 11:47 AM GMT+7
Hello Alex,

I've not tried messing with water effects myself, but I'd think it would be an idea if you start small and get a feel for how and what the resin is going to act. A study cast of different thicknesses.

Plus weight could be an issue also. Not sure what scale your trying to go with here.

HTH.

See ya in the funnies..........................
justsendit
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 12:01 PM GMT+7
Watching this with much interest.
TAFFY3
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 12:37 PM GMT+7
You didn't mention what scale you'd be working in. Resin can be very expensive to use in large quantities. It generates a lot of heat as it cures and must be poured in thin layers, about 1/8 of an inch, allowing at least 24 hours between pours. You might consider using a plexiglass box instead. The sides can be tinted any color. the surface of the water can also be made from a piece of textured plexiglass. Additional wave effects can be made using Acrylic Artists Gels. They come in different textures and thicknesses and are white but dry clear. They can be tinted using acrylics. Here's a photo of a small 1/35th scale vignette that I did featuring an Italian manned torpedo.



You'll notice that the water laps over the bottom rung of the ladder. The angle is bad or you could see the ladder disappearing into the water's 'depths'. It was done with resin and I used a medium acrylic gel for the waves. Here's a photo of a deep water base for a 1/35th diorama of a LVT-2 at Tarawa.



It took a number of pours to achieve and objects were suspended in the different layers as I went. Resin will darken over time so take that into consideration when tinting it. One more view from a different angle.



Both of these pours were to a final depth of about 1 inch. I hope this helps. If you're going to portray really deep water I would recommend the plexiglass box method over the resin. There was a fellow who did a spectacular diorama using this method. It featured a German Land Wasser Schlepper floating above a sunken ship with divers descending towards the wreck. Al
Bluestab
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 02:57 PM GMT+7
I'm sorry but the scale is 1/35.

I was thinking of using a Stuart and/or Sherman as the sunken vehicle. So even with them jumbled up we're talking about a decent sized base of around 10x8 inches (26x20cm). Add probably 6-8 actual inches (15-20cms) for a minimal water depth. That's a chunk of resin just to get the water depth over the top of the tank.

What I would like to do would be to expand the idea to have the dive vessel topside and then depict the depth down to the wreck. I'd convert Tamiya's Pibber to a dive vessel. But that's really a lot of resin to get 50 feet of water.

What I might do instead is split the idea in to two projects. The first being the dive vessel and a group of divers getting ready to go down and some in the water. The second the dive site with the sunken vehicles. I think the surface project would be a great way to get my feet wet with working with resin. For the second, I'd go with the shadowbox and maybe later, after I've gotten more comfortable with it, immerse the pieces in resin.

By the way, lovely pieces of work Taffy. Any suggestions for resin brands to use.
66fastback
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 03:17 PM GMT+7
This older posting might give you some ideas.

http://www.armorama.com/modules.php?op=modload&name=SquawkBox&file=index&req=viewtopic&topic_id=174774&ord=&page=1

And a lot of techniques/how to's have been put on the internet. A bit of surfing around will give you more than enough help to jump in the deep.
Below an other example of a 10 min Google search.

http://www.akaranseth.com/blog/tutorials/how-to-make-water-effect-using-resin.htm

I'm just skeptic if a shadowbox will give you a realistic underwater feel.


Eric
SdAufKla
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 04:51 PM GMT+7
The best sunken ship dioramas that I've seen actually used tinted acrylic sides and a water textured top. The model subjects were built on the base and the interior was hollow.

IIRC, there was a very nicely done dio of the Titanic in a past issue of Fine Scale Modeler built like this, but the top of that one was done with the same tinted acrylic as the sides (since the water depth was impractical to model).
gastec
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 05:09 PM GMT+7
Thought.... If you use acrylic to make the sides and top, I wonder if adding real water inside will help with the effect?

Gary
Bluestab
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 07:02 PM GMT+7
Thanks for the comments guys.

Eric, I've been in multiple websites about resin water effects. Most modeling sites are set around shallow applications for surface vessels. Here is one of the first places I have looked. Like Peter's Sherman...it's a beauty....but no progress pictures that I could find at the site he linked to. His water isn't nearly as deep as I am looking to do. I was more interested in techniques he used on the submerged sections of the tank. The second link, I've seen it as well and it's addressed a few of the questions I have. I've also visited a few crafting sites. I found a site where they make acrylic paperweights. This is a pretty big deal and a screwup during the pouring could ruin the whole thing. I want to have as many questions answered as possible.

Mike, I think I have that issue of FSM. It was a model made for the movie. I'd forgotten about it. I'll dig through the issues and see if I can find it. I think the ship is on the cover.

Gary, I think I'm going to try the shadowbox approach first and see how that goes. I can always use it as a test run for the component build and work out the placement. I can maybe then add resin.
bgcmd59
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 09:17 PM GMT+7
I had good success with an amphibious tank underway with about 2 inches of resin. I used a polyester resin from the craft store. Epoxy will heat up and melt your model and requires very thin layers. The polyester comes with a table for different ratios of catalyst for different thicknesses. I had no problem with pouring up to about 5/8". No real heat problems, but I suggest doing this outdoors.... very good ventilation will not even begin to help indoors and it off-gases for a long time after it sets up.
bgcmd59
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 10:08 PM GMT+7
Giving your project some further thought forced perspective comes to mind. Perhaps with the tank in 1/35 and the surface vessel in 1/72.
justsendit
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 10:15 PM GMT+7
Alex,
First of all, thank you for posting this most helpful thread.

I have a similar dilemma as I am considering a dio which in part would include a sunken cargo truck at a depth of approximately 3"-4" of inches. Unfortunately, I don't have anything constructive to add just yet.

So for now, good luck with your project. And I'll post here if I find out anything new.

--mike
TAFFY3
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Posted: Monday, August 04, 2014 - 10:41 PM GMT+7
Found a photo of that LWS diorama that I mentioned. It was on a German model building site.



You can see how it was done using the plexiglass box technique. The inside of the box is hollow. The tinted sides give it the effect of deep water. The top is a piece of textured plexiglass with a hole cut into it for the model to sit in. You seal any gaps around the model using the Acrylic Artists' Gel that I mentioned previously. Using this method there is no limit to the depths your model can sink. Al
justsendit
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Posted: Tuesday, August 05, 2014 - 04:52 AM GMT+7

Quoted Text

Found a photo of that LWS diorama that I mentioned. It was on a German model building site.



Hi Al,
My concern here would be the vertical overlapping PlexiGlas joints. I also wonder what the Land-Wasser Schlepper underside looks like when viewed from below. However, this is a really fantastic diorama!

--mike
TAFFY3
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Posted: Tuesday, August 05, 2014 - 09:19 AM GMT+7

Quoted Text


Quoted Text

Found a photo of that LWS diorama that I mentioned. It was on a German model building site.



Hi Al,
My concern here would be the vertical overlapping PlexiGlas joints. I also wonder what the Land-Wasser Schlepper underside looks like when viewed from below. However, this is a really fantastic diorama!

--mike



Hello Mike, The underside of the LWS would be just as visible as the wreck beneath it. As to the joints, there's no getting around their visibility. But for all practical purposes doing this dio any other way would have been terribly expensive, extremely difficult to pour, and very, very heavy. That LVT dio of mine weighs a couple of pounds and the resin is only about an inch deep. It all comes down to how big and how deep you want to go in your dio. Al
Bluestab
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Posted: Tuesday, August 05, 2014 - 10:16 AM GMT+7
Taffy, my hat's off to the guy that did the Land-Wasser Schlepper. I think he caught the cloudy haze without overdoing it. Even that one photo you can really see a lot. The seams aren't that big of a factor as the wreck draws one's attention. And the Land-Wasser Schlepper looks very nice and was used very well.

That ability to look up and see the vessel overhead is something I'd like to try to capture. You wouldn't happen to have a link to more pictures. Aside from tips, I'd like to see more of this gem.

Again, thanks all for the comments. This one has been in the planning stages for a bit, part of my plan to clean out some kits from the stash and repurpose others. A lot of this will come together as the components are assembled.

TAFFY3
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Posted: Tuesday, August 05, 2014 - 10:54 AM GMT+7
Hello Alex, I just Googled LWS Diorama and a bunch of pictures came up and two were of that particular dio. Here's the other one.



I didn't look further, there may well be more, the site was www.panzer-modell.de, a German language site. Al
jphillips
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Posted: Tuesday, August 05, 2014 - 11:21 AM GMT+7
That's amazing!
TAFFY3
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Posted: Tuesday, August 05, 2014 - 03:26 PM GMT+7
If you want to see some spectacular dioramas using cast resin for water effects go to Jean Bernard Andre's website, jbadioramas. Here's an example of what you'll see, it's titled "View From a Bridge".



He used to post here quite often, and is an artist, to say the least. Al
justsendit
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Posted: Friday, September 05, 2014 - 09:23 PM GMT+7
Jason's thread (Page 6, posted: Friday, September 05, 2014 - 02:54 PM GMT) — very useful:

'A Dragon Wagon Odyssey'

—mike
parrot
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Posted: Saturday, September 06, 2014 - 10:07 AM GMT+7
From my experience go with the plexi box and the textured plexi top that Al is showing.The tinted sides really do the trick.
I attempted a dio with frogmen a while back and gave up on it.Spent a small fortune on layers of Envirotex and found the deeper it got the harder it was to see them from some angles,not to mention all the time wasted between layers.To do it again I would go with this method.

Tom
justsendit
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Posted: Saturday, September 06, 2014 - 05:58 PM GMT+7
I stumbled upon this nice deep water diorama by Jaroslav Galler on a random web-search:

'The Souvenir Hunters, A6M3 Zero'

—mike