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A little fishing diorama...

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This will be my first diorama, so feel free to chime in pointing out my mistakes, inefficiencies or other weirdnesses...  I'll save the actual figure placement/story until later.


So, I've got a chunk of wood, and I managed to glue some foam to it, using some 'project glue' from my bounty of adhesives.


I gave it a day, everything seems pretty solid, so I soaked it down with water and got crazy.  Moss Flayer made me some rocks using one of the Woodland Scenics (WS) kit.  I mixed up some "Mold-A-Scene" plaster and worked it in.  I gave the 'rocks' a soak in water and merged them into the scene, then dappled some little rocks and sand around.  The whole thing then got sprayed down with some of the WS Scenic Cement:





After drying, it didn't look too bad, although some of the rocks had cracked:




I dabbed on some ModPodge, covered the cracks with more sand and rocks, and then started playing with colors.  The lower right side will be deeper underwater and the upper left will be above the tide, so I mixed some acrylics accordingly.  After that, the whole thing got a another dousing of the Scenic Cement:








Edited by Count Urlik
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Okay, time to start mutilating a figure!  Drilling for pins went okay, I managed to not drill out through his knees:








I clipped them off, picked my spot and jammed them in:




He left a pretty clear impression:



I slathered the area with ModPodge, returned him to his pose and added some sand:



I figured I was committed at this point, so his “buddy” and a bunch of other bits of flotsam and jetsam were glued in as well.




I’ll give them a day to dry, then double check for any paint mishaps.  

Note that the liquid was just a little test of epoxy I mixed this weekend.  I wanted to make sure the base wasn’t going to soak up too much.  

More to come!

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More prep work.  First, I cut a border out of melamine and checked for a tight fit:


As Norm liked to say “we’ll just use a few brads to hold it in place”:


I’m not doing much to seal the edges, but I don’t want any major leaks, so I laid some duct tape out to match the bottom footprint:



…and then pressed the diorama in place.




A little trimming to keep things tidy:




Okay, ready to move on!





Edited by Count Urlik
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cant wait to see how this works out.  I will totally steal some of thee ideas next time I do one. 

on my dioramas I usually pour water in first to check for leaks, then let it dry before applying resin.
are you planning on sanding the edges to increase clarity of resin?   I hand sanded my last one, but I hear machine sanders are a better way to go. 

Edited by Evilhalfling
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Water first would have been a very good idea!  I didn’t, but on the other hand it got doused a few times over with the scenic cement to keep the sand in place, so I was pretty sure any remaining leaks would be pretty minor.  So far it seems to be holding well, so we’ll see how it looks tomorrow! 


 I figure I’ll make the call on treating the sides after I pop it out.  There’s very little area that I’ll need to sand.  The base wood is 3/8”, and the form is 1”, so even the deepest parts of the water are only a 1/2”, so I’ll probably just hand sand.  I have papers to get to 600grit, and if I need to go higher I have some polishing compounds. I’ll post pix and details as I work through it.  How high a grit did you sand to? 

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Okay, time to break out!  Looks like the insurance tape on the bottom paid off:




A little problem with tearout, but fortunately it was backside.  


Okay, some lip to deal with from the meniscus curing, but that’ll be in the next series.


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Okay, a little interim cleanup work.  Because the edges were raised, they needed to be smoothed down - they were sharp enough to slice skin.  To do this, I found that I needed to have a stiff but razor sharp blade, and I needed some way to secure things.  I brought it out to the shop, where the bulk of the lip could be removed with planes or chisels.  I really wish the crab wasn’t so close to the edge, as I had to be super careful not to accidentally gouge her.  

Once I got things cut down, I sanded with 400grit dry sandpaper.  The texture felt nice, but it looked pretty bad.



I started working up though the grits, using Abralon pads. Funny thing - I mostly use these for bowling balls, but they’re just the ticket here.  I gave the edges and lip a once over with 1000grit:



then worked up to 4000:








So, at this point, the edges are smooth, but everything looks a little frosty.  I think that’ll go away when I put the next layer on.  Let’s find out!


I blobbed gloss ModPodge on in a 1 - 2mm thick layer, then used the air brush to spray little wavey patterns in it:



It looks okay, almost dry:




It appears that the surface recovers most of its clarity, so I could probably just wipe down the sides when it’s time.  But I’ve got a bunch more to do before then!



Edited by Count Urlik
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17 hours ago, Count Urlik said:

It appears that the surface recovers most of its clarity, so I could probably just wipe down the sides when it’s time.  But I’ve got a bunch more to do before then!



Once you finishing sanding the sides down you can paint on some future floor polish to clear it back up or paint on some two part epoxy resin as that will make it clear again. 

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