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The Battle of the Brandywine 11th Sept 1777 Options
Wilfy the Sea Dog
#21 Posted : 10 January 2013 21:34:38

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Thanks Robin,

The kit has arrived & is good value. Hope to have a crack at it soon.

Thanks again

Wilfy
yamaska
#22 Posted : 10 January 2013 23:41:31

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I agree that the Woodlands scenics products are very good for dio building. Very useful SBS Robin and lots of great stuff in your dio.
Bravo
John
Plymouth57
#23 Posted : 23 January 2013 18:46:17

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Thanks to John and Wilfy and good luck with that kit!Cool

After the stages above, the next job was to add some rocks and stones to the groundwork. The Brandywine was fought mainly over rough meadow leading down to a river valley so there is no need to plaster the landscape with rocks! (in fact most of them would have been removed by the local farmers to avoid damaging their ploughs). All I wanted was a few representative stones weathering out of the sides of the spring fed water filled ditch. Mellow
The stones could be found from any source, from bits and pieces in the garden to a bag of fish tank gravel but for the Brandywine I chose the medium grade brown Talus (Rock Debris) by WS. This stuff comes in Fine, Medium, Coarse and Extra Course depending on what you want and the scale of the model and Buff, Grey, Brown and Natural colours. A pack of this will last for many dioramas and is pretty good value. Large boulders and rock faces would be made from other materials for lightness of course, the Talus is simply the loose bits at the bottom (just as the title says!) The rocks were simply placed into position dry until I was satisfied with the 'look' and then a 1/4" stiff brush was used to apply the scenic cement around their bases and left to dry, (this is not superglue! you need a good half hour or more to let this set well) The top centre and right hand photos show these rocks in position, unfortunately there arn't any without the later water and grass added in on top!
After the rocks comes the next layer of foliage which in this case is WS's Medium Green Coarse Turf. In a larger scale diorama this would be the actual grass component of the groundwork but in this 1/72 scale it is used to produce the 'clumpy' element of the field. Again, this comes in fine and course grades with a large range of colours (14) from basic brown soil through various greens to Autumn reds and oranges.
The turf was applied with the same scenic cement, sprayed onto the ground work after which the turf was applied by hand, given another spray of cement over the top and the damp turf then dabbed down onto the base with either a small stiff brush or just fingertips (fingers tend not to lift the turf back off the base!)
The final photos show the raw Turf and the section of the diorama just in front of the fence line where a lot of the clumpy bits were stuck down.
The next installment goes all yellow!BigGrin

See you soon

Robin
Plymouth57 attached the following image(s):
Sculpted base 4 pic.JPG
First wooden ship: The Grimsby 12 Gun 'Frigate' by Constructo Second: Bounty DelPrado Part Works Third: HMS Victory DelPrado Part Works 1/100 scale
Diorama of the Battle of the Brandywine from the American Revolutionary War Diorama of the Battle of New Falkland (unfinished sci-fi), Great War Centenary Diorama of the Messines Ridge Assault
Index for the Victory diary is on page 1
Plymouth57
#24 Posted : 12 February 2013 19:29:55

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Carrying on from the last instalment, this is the 'yellow' phase. Woodland Scenics produce two "Flowering Foliage" packs, one in yellow as seen here and another in purple which would be perfect for simulating heather or other moor and mountain flora.
The pack is composed of a mass of fibrous material with the coloured 'leaves' pre-fixed to it. To use, it is simply pulled out into as large a piece as required and torn off the main lump before applying to the ground work where it can be teased out into position and once satisfied with the effect glued down into place with the scenic cement. The main thing is not to go overboard with it, just use enough to provide a little contrast to the overall green of the turf and scatter, imagine a little clump of buttercups or primroses in a green field and that's the effect to go for.
After the foliage comes the first '3D' layer to be added - logs and other 'woody' items.
Any twigs or small bits of wood can be used for this, in the past I have used dead twigs etc. from the garden but often these need a little 'tweaking' to get them to look correct in scale, either re-modelling (snapping bits off!) or dry brushing highlights and shadows etc. For Brandywine I again used one of the WS products called Dead Fall. As the same suggests this is primarily used to simulate fallen branches etc. but in 1/72 scale it can be anything from logs to tree stumps. This material doesn't feel like ordinary bits of wood, it is very dry to the touch, almost as though it has been kiln dried which perhaps it has, this would not only completely dry it out but also kill off any potentially nasty organisms which might adversely affect the wood down the line.
Again, the effect is best when used sparsely in open fields, I just used a few nicely shaped bits along the edge of the ditch. The thinnest and straightest pieces were perfect for constructing the wooden fence over which the Redcoats are advancing. The posts were first sharpened at their bases and then pushed into the foam groundwork, once in deep enough they were then removed, dipped into PVA and stuck back into the holes again. The horizontal beams were again PVA'd onto the posts. This was accomplished by standing the entire base on its back so the front was sticking up in the air, the beams could then be glued onto the posts without them falling off until they had dried.
The wooden fences and the yellow foliage effects can be seen below and in the next installment the 3D effects will be increased with the addition of the tussocky high grass. Be back soon!

Robin.

PS. A stroke of good luck! In the actual Battle of the Brandywine, this section of the battle was fought by both the British Line Infantry (the Redcoats) and also by their Grenadier Companies. I have just managed to acquire a box of the old Airfix 1776 Grenadiers on ebay! Not only are the figures in perfect condition but unlike many of the sets produced in the 'good old days' these are not coloured red or even cream but pure white! Much better for undercoating and painting so eventually there will be British Grenadiers charging over the hill! Funnily enough they come in just about every position you can imagine except one - throwing grenades!!Blink

Hope you enjoy!
Plymouth57 attached the following image(s):
Sculpted base 5 pic.JPG
First wooden ship: The Grimsby 12 Gun 'Frigate' by Constructo Second: Bounty DelPrado Part Works Third: HMS Victory DelPrado Part Works 1/100 scale
Diorama of the Battle of the Brandywine from the American Revolutionary War Diorama of the Battle of New Falkland (unfinished sci-fi), Great War Centenary Diorama of the Messines Ridge Assault
Index for the Victory diary is on page 1
Tomick
#25 Posted : 12 February 2013 19:54:31

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Stunning work Robin ThumpUp
Nemesis
#26 Posted : 12 February 2013 19:58:34

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Some very impressive modeling going on here! Superb work!!BigGrin BigGrin
Plymouth57
#27 Posted : 12 February 2013 22:25:15

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Many thanks for your kind comments guys and my apologies for the vertical lines which sometimes creep into the photos, its something to do with the photo compression on my Corel program but it doesn't show up on the original jpegs until after uploading!

Thanks again

Robin
First wooden ship: The Grimsby 12 Gun 'Frigate' by Constructo Second: Bounty DelPrado Part Works Third: HMS Victory DelPrado Part Works 1/100 scale
Diorama of the Battle of the Brandywine from the American Revolutionary War Diorama of the Battle of New Falkland (unfinished sci-fi), Great War Centenary Diorama of the Messines Ridge Assault
Index for the Victory diary is on page 1
Plymouth57
#28 Posted : 23 June 2013 18:34:16

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Apologies for such a long delay to continuing my diary, the Victory has been taking up all my attention for months now! Blink

Here's the next procedure in the scenic base construction: adding the clumps of long grass.

Photo 1 shows a packet of the Woodland Scenics "Field Grass" (the light green variety). This is a natural hair product that comes in four colours; Light Green, Medium Green, Natural straw and Harvest Gold (Corn fields etc). The gold and straw are also brilliant for super detailed thatched roofing effects. It comes in an 8gm pack which doesn't sound much but the pictured packet has already supplied all the long grass in the Brandywine diorama so it really goes a hell of a way!

Photo 2 is a small clump of the grass removed from the packet. At this stage the hairs are pretty much in a straight line, cutting them to size now and glueing them down would produce a very artificial looking effect so the first job is to gently 'tease' out the hairs to produce a higher central group with lower hairs around the edge as can be seen in Photo 3 beside it.

Photo 4 illustrates this same clump with the top inch or so clipped off. The piece to be applied is the smaller one on the left. The beauty of this method is that the larger clump on the right becomes the next one to be trimmed to size, after that, the resulting neatly trimmed remainder is then teased out again and the process repeated again and again. The actual wasteage from this process is virtually nill, just some very short 'stubble' which is too short to work with.

Photo 5 shows the actual application of the clump to the base, in this case not the Brandywine but the little demo base I'm making up for an article in the future. The clump of trimmed grass has had it's bottom end (or base) dipped into a small pool of standard PVA (in the back ground) and is then simply pressed down onto the groundwork in the position required. Woodland's actually recommend using their own Scenic Glue (a thicker version of the Cement) or their Hob-e-Tac, a water based glue which remains tacky (I like glues which dry properly though!) Try to stick it in as upright as possible to begin with, after about five minutes or so the PVA will begin to stiffen up, at this point the hairs can be gently teased apart with any kind of 'needle-like' tool and bent out into a more natural looking effect.
Once dry, any loose hairs can be either removed by blowing them away or else fixed to the base by applying Woodland's own Scenic Cement which is (as I've probably already mentioned) a very high quality very thin PVA which will soak into the grass and groundwork, binding them both together. Any obviously 'wrong' looking stray hairs can also be removed or trimmed back to size once dry too.

The final Photo 6 shows the finished effect of the grass positioned around the flooded ditch, the PVA and Scenic Cement dries completely clear and perfectly matt so no visible glue joints can be seen once it has dried.

Again, apologies for the delay and hopefully the next instalment will be dealing with the ditch again as the solid water effects are added in. Blink

Happy building to all!

Robin
Plymouth57 attached the following image(s):
Applying grass clumps to base Pic.JPG
First wooden ship: The Grimsby 12 Gun 'Frigate' by Constructo Second: Bounty DelPrado Part Works Third: HMS Victory DelPrado Part Works 1/100 scale
Diorama of the Battle of the Brandywine from the American Revolutionary War Diorama of the Battle of New Falkland (unfinished sci-fi), Great War Centenary Diorama of the Messines Ridge Assault
Index for the Victory diary is on page 1
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