Star Wars Snow Speeder – Battle of Hoth
.This diorama using the AMT/ERTL Star Wars Snow speeder kit has been on my ‘to do’ list for years.
I always wanted to build it crashed after being inspired while watching the movie The Empire Strikes Back many years ago as a kid.
The kit itself is very basic and lacks interior detail and has some pretty average, (in fact less than average) figures which by-passed the spares box and took a direct route to the bin.
Being a science fiction model, it gives you a lot of scope to detail it as you want. I added my own interior detail to make it look more like the cockpit of a jet fighter. This was achieved using a combination of items from my spares box and bits of plastic rod.
My other, and much bigger issue was figures, and what scale to use? I had read on-line there is some disagreement among modelers about this with people having varying views as the scale of this kit ranging from 1/24th to 35th. I didn’t apply to much science to this, I just sat a 1/35th scale figure in the pilots seat and it looked perfect, a 1/24th would have had to fly with his knees under his chin and would be too tall to close the canopy – so 1/35th it was.
I then decided on using figures from the Dragon Kit US Marines Tet Offensive, they would be perfect with some changes. For the heads I used heads out of The Dragon Vietnam helicopter crew set.
I had to add extra detail to the helmets including adding a raised strip down the centre from front to back and having the visors in a down position.
The bodies were easier than I had envisioned and the changes were pretty basic but effective. Some strips of thinly sliced masking tape glued onto their flak jackets gave an excellent ribbed effect. Masking tape was also used to make the webbing straps hanging down around their legs.
The markings on the figures helmets and the Snow speeder itself were inspired by the movie, but changed to reflect what I was able to sort from my decal spares box, again some ‘poetic licence’ was used here.
I was very nervous about making the snow – get this wrong and I would ruin the whole effect I wanted to achieve. Luckily we now have YouTube, and lots of talented modelers share their techniques on there. I used a combination of the techniques I watched that mainly consisted of PVA glue and baking soda, and luckily for me it worked.
This was something very different for me to build as 1/35th WW2 Armor is the normal era that I build.
Over all I am very happy with how it’s turned out, and really enjoyed making something just that little bit different to the norm for me.
5 additional images. Click to enlarge.