vietnamdioramas.com
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Vietnam 1959 - 1975 - America’s Longest and Bloodiest War
vietnamdioramas.com
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Leave No One
The Diorama
This will be a 36” by 24” diorama on an oak base as shown. As the different stages of construction are completed, pictures will be posted.  Below are pictures of some of the products that will be used.  The first section is done showing how the base was made.
The Base
The base was made by Kevin Conlon whose work can be seen on his site www.kevinconlonart.com .  It is made from oak and has been finished in Honey Pine.  This design is very close to the walnut base that was used for “Run”, but it had to be made heavier and stronger since the weight will be almost double.  It has to be able to stand up to transporting for exhibit.  There cannot be even a fraction of a millimeter of play in the joints or the groundwork will crack.  This design is tried and proven for exceptional stability.  All attaching points are internal and all are screwed together. The base used for “Run” has travelled to shows for at least 15 months and gone at least 12,000 miles by vehicle.  It is as tight as the day it was made.
Leave No One
The Groundwork - Stage 1
The groundwork is elevated in part, so a retaining wall had to be made. This was necessary for appearance and stability. It was made from ⅛ inch plywood. It was finished with the same Minwax Stain and varnish as the main base.  This seals it so it will not buckle with moisture.  As the pictures show the walls were attached to .75 x .75 runners which were in turn attached to the top of the base.  They were squared off and lined up so they would be straight and even.  They have to be secure and buckle proof so the wet Durhams Water Putty will have no ill effect on them as they stand in place. The styrofoam has been cut with a hot knife to give a graduated slope.  The bottom edges of the styrofoam was also cut to fit over the the side mounting pieces.  The pictures show each step of the construction.  Durhams was made in a heavy pancake batter type consistancy and poured over the styrofoam so it would sink down.  White styrofoam was used since it is more pourous then the green type.  Do not use common packing styrofoam.  Styrene plastic was cut in half inch strips to make a retaining device on the low side so the poured Durhams would square off evenly.  Additional Durhams will be applied to make the groundwork smoother.  All holes will be filled and the edges will be filled and reshaped where necessary.  Painting the base color can begin, then the color toning by section.  The stream beds and water areas will be done first with all vegitation being applied.  Then the water will be poured so the grass and the groundwork falls into it.  Grass and groundwork cannot lay on top of the water, it has to be absorbed into the water.