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135
Normandy Surprise: July 1944

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Years ago watching the movie "The Longest Day," I was intrigued by a scene where a German and a US patrol pass one another in the dark along opposite sides of a Norman stone wall. My memory of that scene was recalled when I saw MK35 Edition's "Norman Farmhouse." I had to have it. What ensued was a fanciful encounter between three units that actually were on the battlefield:

  • the US 4th Armored Division and 1st Infantry Division
  • and the 2nd SS Panzer Division, Das Reich
The first step in all this was the Norman farmhouse. The plaster kit is generally very good, but the roof came in pieces thanks to the US post office, and the walls on either side of the building had stone scribing on only one side. Hours of tedious work with a pointed tool followed. Then I realized there was no chimney on a house clearly intended for human occupation, so I scratch-built one with leftover pieces from other plaster buildings.

Various additions followed that, including "glass" and curtains for the door, flower window boxes, and some farm implements and a cart. Here is a list of the things used:

1. Basic plaster & resin kit from MK35 Editions
2. Plus Models window flower boxes
3. Diorama base made of polystyrene covered with papier-mâché
4. Grass from Modelscene, but each tuft was individually removed from mat & glued to base
5. Additional grass tufts made from Woodland Scenics loose "grass" in several shades
6. "Straw" made from Woodland Scenics loose "Winter" grass
7. Door "glass" from transparency film used in presentations
8. Master Box European wagon
9. Master Box Farmhouse barrels, milk containers & wine bottles
10. Plus Models real wood ladder.

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About the Author

About Bill Cross (bill_c)
FROM: NEW JERSEY, UNITED STATES

Self-proclaimed rivet counter who gleefully builds tanks, planes and has three subs in the stash.


Comments

There was a request for photos showing the full diorama so y'all could see how the parts fit together. Well, here you go:
JUL 23, 2012 - 10:45 AM
Hi Bill, Nice one you should add these in as a page two. These give a nice overall view of what's going on. Cheers Al
JUL 24, 2012 - 12:39 AM
Dio looks great Bill, impressive work. Gary
JUL 24, 2012 - 01:20 AM
Thanks, Al, your praise means a lot. I think that's a good idea, and if the Features guys want the extra pix, I have them. Thanks, Gary. I hope to add some ivy on the walls and a roadside crucifix before perhaps donating it to a local museum.
JUL 24, 2012 - 03:00 AM
Bill, I particularly like the third photo up from your post above, and if you squint your eyes a bit it can easily end up looking like this: Agree more ivy would be a nice touch.
JUL 25, 2012 - 08:53 AM
Wow, Matt, that looks GREAT. The Features guys should make that the lead photo, LOL!
JUL 25, 2012 - 09:11 AM
WOW BILL that looks awesome!! Its like a beautiful girl and your favourite meal in one awesome!
FEB 26, 2014 - 07:35 AM
Thanks, Max!
FEB 26, 2014 - 07:45 AM
Love it! what a great Dio, really like the story, show's how confusing war really is. I think maybe the germans have the upper hand, mind you the Sherman is ready to go, how long does it take to crank up a Panther? Again Great Dio, very dynamic original and inspraional. Thanks for showing it again Bill, missed it 1st time around Cheers Geraint
SEP 07, 2014 - 07:55 AM
Thanks, Geraint!
SEP 07, 2014 - 10:21 AM