by: Russ Amott [ ]
Reality in Scale has opened a new line of diorama buildings in 1/72 scale. The sets are made up of a partial building face and some additional accessories. This product is made from high pressure resin castings which offer excellent detail.
The subject of this review, "Belgian House", represents, according to the website, "A typical Belgian house including a small outhouse and concrete fence." The contents arrived in a small cardboard box and were carefully packed. They included the small house front in a wedge type molding, the outhouse and a small concrete wall section of two panels in width. Also included is a decal to be used as an advertisement painted on the main wall section of the house.
The house face features a lower brick section with a doorway closed off by cinderblocks and an upper section of stucco or plaster in a diamond pattern. On one side of the house an upper floor window is molded in. The house has a tile roof, brick chimney with two pipes and rain gutters on both roof sides. The left hand rain gutter has downspout piping that runs diagonally across the main house face and then down the right corner of the house.
The outhouse features crisp detail with individual boards clearly defined on all sides, and a small heart shaped cut-out on the door. The wall section has three vertical posts with individual slat sections running horizontally. One is cracked on the top and the surface is nicely textured. The decal is on thick paper and must be trimmed carefully on the edges, but the color is good and the printing is very nice. It appears to be an ad for soda water.
I painted the set with various acrylic colors, trying to find something that would look appropriate. My search for house pictures resulted mainly in images of ugly Belgian houses from a blog of the same name, so I used the box art as a guide. I used oil washes of raw umber as well as some blues and greens. I applied the decal and it went on very well, conforming to all the surface features. Unfortunately for me, I attempted to rub the edges to make it look like the paint was a little worn and only pulled the colored surface off, leaving the white backing exposed and in short ruining the decal.
The three pieces in the set can be used together, or individually as the modeler chooses. I would imagine the home owner would prefer to place the outhouse farther away than as pictured on the box photo. For me the limitation was with the angle of the house as presented with the two pieces. It was simply difficult for me to find a way for the outhouse to fit in the space with the house and wall sections. It was not as functional as perhaps a gate or some barrels or other item might have been. This does not detract from the quality of the pieces. For 1/72 scale modelers, this set should be a most welcome addition.
Reality in Scale products can be purchased directly from them, or from BNA World and Michigan Toy. They may be available from other distributors but this was all a quick google search turned up. There were also some available on ebay. My thanks to Reality in Scale and Armorama for this review sample.