Diorama prep

Discussion in 'Questions on Kits, Decals, Tools and Pilots' started by dneid, Nov 27, 2012.

  1. dneid

    dneid Active Member

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    Hey, All,
    Once again, I am not real sure where to post this one..... correct me if I am wrong.

    I am finishing up a couple of BoB birds and I am interested in one or two diorama ideas. What I am needing is a few pictures of a "typical" UK and German flying fields and maintenance equipment.
    Are the Eduard various personnel "kits" as good as the aircraft kits?
    Does anyone manufacture various British and German WWII, 1/48th scale ground maintenance equipment kits? I am not necessarily talking about jeeps and transport equipment.
    Thanks in advance for the time.
    Dale:?:
     
  2. Rogi

    Rogi Active Member

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    Oh My hobby shop ran through a lot of those fuel cars and other equipement and such in 1/48, if you pm me, I'll try and contact them for you to get the kit names :) so you can at least ebay search it
     
  3. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    First, you will need to decide which Squadron or Jagdgeschwader you wish to depict. Once that's known, and the particular period, preferably the month, during the BoB, then the actual airfield(s) can be identified. This will allow you to find photos of the dispersal areas etc. (RAF Squadrons not only rotated between Groups, for R&R, but also operated from forward airfields at times, arriving at dawn, and returning to their 'home' base at dusk).
    For example, with RAF fields, permanent aerodromes such as Biggin Hill had purpose-built dispersal pans, and blast pens, whilst forward stations such as Hawkinge were basically grass fields.
    Likewise, most of the Luftwaffe Geschwadern used improvised fields, with part of JG26, for example, occupying a huge wheat field, at Caffiers, which had been rolled flat, and the '109s dispersed under trees, some eventually in 'splitter box' blast pens, with camouflage nets and/or foliage across the frontage.
    The Eduard and ICM/Revell figure kits are very good, and lend themselves to easy conversion. As for equipment, given you don't want to clutter the scene with fuel bowsers and such like, then it's fairly simple - a 'trolley ac' starter trolley and a fire extinguisher for the RAF, and a fire extinguisher for the Luftwaffe (the '109 was started by a hand-crank inertia starter).
    As far as I know, the ICM/Revell figure kits include a fire extinguisher. Revell used to produce a 1/48th RAF ground equipment set (and I think Luftwaffe also), but I haven't been able to find any - I think they're out of production. In addition, the Tamiya Panzer servicing crew kit includes some useful items such as tool boxes, work bench, ladders and so on, and the figures can easily be converted to suit requirements. However, Tamiya figures tend to be slightly smaller than most, but, when mixed with other figures and equipment, look acceptable.
    The main thing, before commencing work, is to research the subject, otherwise your diorama(s) could turn out looking like the set for the BoB sequences of the Pearl Harbour movie - and that's just not cricket old boy!
    Hope this helps.
     
  4. Rogi

    Rogi Active Member

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    Forgot to add this one, Tamiya did a dual release 1/48 Spitfire with ICM RAF personel. its a Spitfire Mk.Vb for Jan Zumbach with Personel (lots of figures, ladder, and lady RAF.) Try searching Tamiya 1/48 Supermarine Spitfire Mk.Vb #89730 on google it should be there :)

    I actually have it on the shelf, have to get it made soon :D was thinking of doing a similar dio. but the rest of the projects atm keep me busy :) Its a great kit and for the price its nice with all the additions in it.
     
  5. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    The figures included in the Tamiya Spitfire (and the Italeri produced, Tamiya Hurricane) are the ICM figures, and of course the MkV Spit wasn't around during the BoB.
    In the UK, each ICM figures set (of 5 or 6 figures) is around £5, so about £7 or $8 US.
     
  6. Rogi

    Rogi Active Member

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    Ah cool Thanks Airframe :) here at our local hobby shop the figures sometimes cost more than the kit itself, 15-17 Canadian :S and sometimes more :D cause they dont get them in that often :(
     
  7. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    I did a small dio for my Me 262 and mixed Tamiya abd ICM figures. The ICM Luftwaffe guys are kinda hulky next to their Japanese counterparts but the quality is not bad.
     
  8. dneid

    dneid Active Member

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    Good Evening, All,
    Thank you all for your input. I do appreciate your time. Terry, you are dead right on the research. I just ordered several BoB history books from Amazon. I have decided to start in on rebuilding my WWII aircraft/battle library I used to have (the ex gave my entire collection to Goodwill right after she filed for divorce). I look forward to getting my hands on the books next week. I'll do a ton of reading over the holidays and start to zero in on squadrons/Jagdgeschwaders soon. I did some googling on BoB sites earlier this evening and found a few interesting looking sites. If any of you can recommend any sites you consider to be excellent, I would appreciate either a post to this thread or a PM.
    Rogi, let me see what I can track down here in the US. If I come up empty, I will PM you. Thank you for your kind offer as well. I did stop in at one of our "serious" train hobby shops on the way home...... BIG mistake! Tons of ideas came to me. I guess I need to be sure I keep any dio I build up as simple and uncluttered as possible. Once I start, I will post here through out the build up. Please feel free to slap me as needed.
    Dale
     
  9. A4K

    A4K Well-Known Member

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    Nice diorama idea Dale, should be alot of options! (How about a Spit with it's MG's being loaded? Or a 109 with engine being maintenanced? - or a 'scramble' scene with RAF pilots running to their aircraft - that would look cool I reckon!)
     
  10. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    I've always loved the juxtaposition in this photo from the Bundesarchiv.

    [​IMG]

    The caption explains "Englische Kanalinseln Betanken eines Flugzeuges". I doubt Mr Miller had much say in what the Germans did with his truck!

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  11. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Always fancied doing that scene Steve! It's Mayerweissflog's kite I believe? I've nearly finished a 1/24th scale cameo diorama of it, bellied in after his trip to 'follow the boys'.
    Dale, just to add a few ideas - about 20 years ago, I made a couple of smallish dioramas for a local exhibition, both in 1/48th scale. One was a Hurricane, pilot on board, signalling start up, with an 'Erk' at a wing tip, and another at the 'trolley ac'.
    The second was a Spit, parachute on the port tail plane, 'trolley ac' plugged in, and a few pilots nearby, sitting in chairs, on boxes etc, some reading newspapers, others playing chess.
    If you need any help with details - equipment, aircraft markings, uniforms, airfield layout and structure etc, just ask.(the BoB has been a particular interest of mine since childhood - and that was a long time ago!)
    Cheers,
    Terry.
     
  12. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    I think so too,though some may differ.

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  13. A4K

    A4K Well-Known Member

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    Do like that scene, good post Steve!
     
  14. dneid

    dneid Active Member

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    #14 dneid, Nov 28, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2012
    Hey, Terry,
    Be careful what you offer! I just may take you up on it! Like you, I have been a huge WWII air ops fan since childhood and that was a long time ago as well. I very good friend of the family was a scale plane modeler and a B-24 co-pilot in WWII. He got me hooked at age 5 according to my mom. I started reading all about WWII history when I hit grade school. I drove our librarian nuts asking her to get more and more books on WWII for me. She finally tracked down a few books I had never asked for. One was on the Battle of Britain and the other was the history of the 8th Air Force in WWII. I think I damn near memorized both books. I watched ALL the old WWII movies AND 12 O'Clock High every week. Loved the Damnbusters, Mosquito Squardon, the Battle of Britain, and sooooo many more. So, I am off getting my nose back in books and finding the web to be a great resource as well. The Wikipedia article on the Battle of Britain is excellent with tons of links.
    I like all the ideas for a dio you all have tossed out on the table. I never thought of the scramble scene, but the more I think about it, the more I like it. There was a great scene from the Battle of Britain movie (it is on Netflix) resembling the scene you described in your Spit dio as well, Terry. Between my ability to scratch build and what is out there now, I think both ideas are great. Maybe a Spit based scramble and a Hurricane based "loitering" dio?
    One idea I have for the German side of things is a Stuka being loaded. 1st question I have is, what variants of the Ju-87s were flown in the BoB? My initial sniffing around leads me to believe a B variant? If so, just what "block" of the B? After that, I need to track down an appropriate kit that is worth a hoot.
    Ok, ramble hat off.
    Thanks once again guys for all the input and guidance and ideas! Man, I am thrilled I stumbled across the forum.
    Dale
     
  15. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    #15 stona, Nov 28, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2012
    Here's the units flying the Ju 87 in France on July 1st 1940.

    [​IMG]

    And here in August for the BoB proper.

    [​IMG]

    They were all flying B-2s. You've got plenty of units to choose from,though some research would need to be done to narrow down a particular unit for a particular action.

    This represents 332 out of a total establishment of 456 Ju 87s. Of this 332 only 280 were serviceable on this date (1st July 1940).

    Much is rightly made of the Stukas vulnerability,revealed during this period. Nonetheless these Stuka units sank 6 warships and 14 merchantmen. They damaged 7 airfields and 3 radar stations and destroyed 49 British aircraft,mainly on the ground. This for the loss of 59 Ju 87s. Definitely not the abject failiure popularised in certain films and histories.

    Good luck with your dio(s)

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  16. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    #16 Airframes, Nov 28, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2012
    You're welcome Dale. You probably already know, but the airfields used in the BoB movie where actual BoB airfileds. The main one was Duxford, which also doubled for a couple of others, including the 'Hurricanes in France' scenes, where the '109s strafe the field, and was also used for some of the Luftwaffe fighter scenes (those shot in the UK). Duxford later became 'home' to the 78th FG, and is now a fantastic museum and active field.
    Stuka kits in 1/48th - I've juts got the Revell (ex Hasegawa) kit, which is excellent. The types used were the Ju87B-1 and B-2, and available kits of this type (all B-2 or R-2, but easily modified) are:
    Airfix - first released around 1979, and basically a 'scaled down' version of their superb 1/24th scale kit. Still good, but perhaps lacks the finesse of more current offerings.
    Hasegawa - excellent, but pricey. (see Revell).
    Italeri - a good kit, lots of detail and PE parts, includes an engine etc. Apparently a few fit issues and, unless you want to display the engine, and fit PE parts which probably won't be seen, then it's a bit expensive compared to Airfix and Revell.
    Revell - this is the Hasegawa kit, at around half the price! Very nice detail, nicely moulded, and about 30% or more less than the Italeri kit. Only downside is the typical RG instruction sheet (not a major problem) and the irritating, end-opening box!
    Price wise, from low to high, it's Airfix, Revell, Italeri, Hasegawa.
    My choice? Revell, followed by Airfix.
    If you need any re the StG and their codes and badges, just shout - I'm currently in the research and planning stages of replacing my BoB collection, concentrating mainly on the 'Hardest Day', 18th August.
    If you're going for the whole collection, then the problem areas will be the Defiant on the RAF side, and the Ju88 and Do17 on the Luftwaffe side. I converted a Hobbycraft Ju88A-4 into a BoB period A-5 of KG30, moulding my own rear canopy section, and I'm waiting for a Hobbycraft Do17Z to arrive from the 'States. This will need a little modification to obtain the correct shape, using the Falcon vac-form set, and some scratch work.
    If you want to add the Ju88, then the HC kit is reasonable, and conversion fairly simple, otherwise, the Revell A-4, converted to A-5 or, if you feel really mad, converted to A-1 !!
    If you want the Dornier too, then it's a case of checking e-bay regularly, or those places which stock and sell out of production kits. Hobbycraft are back in business, but the Dornier kits, in all three versions, are not yet listed.
    Hope this helps.
    EDIT: crossing posts with Steve. There were Ju87B-1s in the Stg. For example, Werke Nr.5167, code S2+UN (red 'N') of 5/Stg.77. This force landed on Ham Manor golf course, with both pilot and gunner wounded, after attacking Ford airfield on 18th August.
    Outwardly there is little difference, and the kits can easily be modified.
    Differences were:-
    1) The B-2 had the broader chord, wooden prop, as supplied in the kits.
    2) The B-1 did not have radiator gills, and the radiator itself was slightly shallower, with a slightly more pronounced upward curve to the lower cowl, in front of the rad. The latter two points are not really noticeable in 1/48th scale, and the engraving for the gills can be filled.
    3) The B-1 had an open access hatch for the starter crank, on the lower, port cowling, whereas the B-2 had an access hatch cover.
    There were a few other minor things, outwardly, but not really seen, or worth bothering with, in this scale.
    Note that by this time, the siren and it's 'prop', on the port u/c fairing, had been deleted, and a domed fairing fitted. This is confirmed by photo evidence, and surviving crew accounts. The ,ain reason was to save weight, drag, and performance.
    So main job with the kits is either replace the prop with a suitable item from the spares box (can't find any aftermarket items), or, as I will, re-shape the kit prop, if you want a B-1.
    I'll be doing the one mentioned above!
     
  17. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Great stuff and ideas fellas!

    How about a flying 'dio', where the victor passes close by, as his victim is in the middle of bailing out, one foot in the cockpit, the other on the edge, just about to jump out in great blue wonder...maybe with dropping landing gear and some trailing smoke? ;)
     
  18. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    You've almost read my mind old chap! I've been planning a 'boxed' diorama for some time, along a similar theme, but the 'victim' will be a V1 ......
     
  19. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    That does sound pretty cool!
     
  20. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Well, get cracking old boy! Seen your other 'dios', that will sure be another 'killer'! ;) :thumbright:
     
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