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Vietnam 1959 - 1975 - America’s Longest and Bloodiest War
vietnamdioramas.com
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Very Fortunate Son
Very Fortunate Son
The Base
The base frame is made from walnut with a 1/8th inch hardwood center board. the sides of the frame are grooved to hold the center board.  Carpenters glue is used to hold it together.  It is finished with a one step stain, and when dry polished with 00000 steel wool, then given a coat of simi-gloss clear acrylic.  The name plate is fixed, then holes are drilled to hold the pins.  The 2 inch florist foam is cut into sections and test fitted to the base, leaving about ¼ inch gap on all sides. Durhams Water Putty is applied to the foam sections off the base.  Once these sections are covered and dry, they are glued to the base with Elmers Pro Bond. The pit is too deep to be realistic, so it is filled with some florist foam and Durhams poured on top.  When it is just about to turn hard, a nail is pushed into the Durhams and foam at random locations to hold the punji sticks.  This is done so no drilling is necessary.  Now the section gaps are filled and all visible spots that were missed are filled.  The punji stakes are made from real bamboo which is made by Reality In Scale.  They are cut into pieces 1.75 inches long, some longer some shorter.  The basic shaping and cutting down is done with an X-Acto, then a medium emery bit is used in a Enkay motor tool for final shaping. They can be left their natural color.  A drop of Pro Bond is put on the end of each and they are pressed into the random holes.  Use a tweezer to hold them firm and press them in, since they tend to break.  Fill the ¼ inch gap around the base perimeter with Durhams.  Keep a wet paper towel to wipe off the excess that will get on the display base.  Don’t let it dry on the finished base.  Some residue will remain, so put on a light coat of clear semi-gloss.  After everything has dried for several days, paint the foam base completely (a few coats).  Once the painted base has dried for a few days, the detailing and scenicing can begin.
VFS Base #6 VFS Base #1 VFS Base #2 VFS Base #3 VFS Base #4 VFS Base #7 VFS Base #5 VFS Base #8 VFS Base #9
The Trees
The trees are from Verlinden and assorted plastic palm trees for railroads or architectual use. There are different types of plastic trees available with all different types of trunks. The different types should be mixed for a realistic appearance. They have to be detailed, trimmed and painted. The more trees you can use the more realistic the diorama will look. There is a PDF link on the right which will explain  the necessary steps to finishing these palm trees. Please read below for terms of use on web  and PDF content.
Groundwork
Converting and Painting Figures
The groundwork is about 90% finished.  It will be completed after the figures are finished.  More jungle plants, vines, leaves, etc. will be added.  The trap is almost finished, but will have to be broken as one figure will be posed starting to go down.  The forefront of the trap will be blended in so it will be unnoticable but will still be able to be removed. The PDF that acconpanies this explains just about everything including some of the products used. Please read below for terms of use on web  and PDF content.