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René Hieronymus
23 articles

BOOOM ! I had another name for this dio but I’m afraid some people would call that "political-incorrect".

April 28, 2016 · in Uncategorized · · 16 · 4K

I'm building models for quite some years now, and I like to depict especially unusual things or ideas in a diorama. So it was no wonder that since many years I wanted to recreate an explosion in a model, the question simply was: How on earth can I do that? I tried several ways to depict something like this but all ideas failed miserably. But then one day I came across this rather new LED technology. The lights are pretty small and most important they stay cool and come in innumerable designs. So the only thing I had to worry about was how to recreate/build an actual good looking explosion. Once again I tried several techniques and finally I came up with a rather simple solution, in fact it is so simple it sounds almost insane, because all you need is some chicken wire, cotton balls, a few LED lights, some color and believe or not, that's it!
Ok, to be honest I needed 17 attempts (no kidding) to recreate an explosion plume which looked good to me, but hey, model building is fun! So after a whole lot of fun I finally had build that explosion plume (actual there are 2 on this dio) and to further enhance the dynamic motion I added some “streaks” to recreate those phosphorous particles so often seen in a Napalm explosion.
The “rest” of the diorama was good old fashioned “ground work” with lots of self-made trees, bushes and grass, a small river and smaller swamp, some trenches and a small hut in place of one of the original rice paddies. ( The second rice paddy fell victim to a nasty accident with some new und untried “water casting experiment”) so after 3 failed attempts, some serious nerve wrecking and an “last-second-aborted attempt to fling the whole dio into a suborbital trajectory I made this dio. The is the beautiful and then brand new model with some alternate decals.

Have fun with the whole thing and if there are any questions, let me know.

Reader reactions:
9  Awesome

18 additional images. Click to enlarge.

16 responses

  1. That is absolutely amazing and very realistic. Bravo to you for a unique diorama!

  2. I remember seeing this some time back on that "other" modeling site. I'm glad you posted it again (with more pics this time). Fantastic work, sir.

  3. This is incredible, very challenging slight to capture in a diorama - and you nailed it! I wonder what color were the LEDs? How many? etc

  4. AB. SO. LUTE. LY. Stunning! Very realistic and creative.

  5. Love the smell of napalm in the morning... A fantastic build sir.

  6. Outstanding build!

  7. Well done Rene', I too have seen this before, but I don't get tired of it. Modeling has to be fun, and it appears you had a lot of fun with this project.
    I've seen a lot of people use cotton to try and replicate smoke and fire and it never looks right,until now. Very nice !

  8. Superb Rene - quite simply one of the best! Bravo!

  9. Wow. I can almost feel the heat...

  10. WOW, that is amazing...

  11. I remember following this on another site, great build man, just super!

  12. Very ingenious technique. Nice to see LEDs used more widely. We often see them in SyFy models or similar, and this is just the sort of alternative thinking that certainly gets my attention.

  13. Rene, try "Choi duc oi!" (best I can do, my contacts with the folks were liimited) I believe that is equivalent to "Holy stuff!" or "I say, what was that?"

  14. The best DIORAMA!

  15. Stunning diorama! It's hard to believe that it's a static model! The phosphorous particles are a lovely touch!

  16. Rene I have seen this on another forum and it still amazes me. This is a true piece of art. Looking at it you can almost hear the Skyhawk and the resulting explosion! AWESOME!

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