Diorama Project

Hello everyone, I’m planning to make a diorama of a helicopter landing in the field in Afghan, supported by a ground squad. I need suggestions as to how I can make the terrain vivid and interesting without spending a hell load of money. What materials/ tools/ tricks could I use?

Thanks all :slight_smile:

Without stating the obvious…sand? Rocks/gravel? Dirt?

I meant detail, so actual types and brands cos you’ll find a lot of variations in model stores

What helicopter scale? That will probably dictate the requirements for the figures & gnd equipment, etc.

The traditional type of cat litter (Fuller’s Earth) makes very effective ‘rubble’ for arid terrain.

Woodland Scenics are very good for all types of flock and foliage.

Mud compound walls should be pretty easy to make from air-drying modelling clay.

Your first step should be to look at actual photos and decide what you want to do.

A cheap make-up foundation, dusted, not painted, over everything, looks good.

Put the heli in a corner (unless it’s a very big diorama or a very small helicopter - otherwise you won’t really be able to include any terrain without it looking unrealistic (with the ac landing too close to obstacles, etc).

About 1/3 of the way onto the board in both directions should work.

If you could construct a sand-coloured board with a massive dust cloud on top of it, maybe hiding a couple of rotor blades in there, that would probably be quite realistic :slight_smile:

have you got anything in mind model wise?
Airfix do a complete Afghan models, I would look there and if you speak to Airfix they use to do a reasonable discount for youth groups to get them interested also join their club I am sure you get discount there too.
As for settings, all the above ideas are great but the old one of using fine chicken wire and paper-Mache to form your ground is good too.
I have used polyfilla and then painted it to give me bases before, for large scale walls I have used walls for in fish tanks and then weathered them have a look on Britmodeller and see what these guys do and how they do it.

one thing is make sure before you start you have a sketch of what you want to achieve, there is nothing worse than making alterations as you go then realise its all in the wrong place (experienced that) .

1:42 (or in that region) is the scale and thanks for all ideas, I was indeed looking at an airfix set thats quite good value. I was thinking of an mdf base with a material on top to create relief with the terrain detail over that.

Hobbycraft (not a plug, nor am I on commission) do some reasonably priced materials you might be interested in…