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Progress on the latest effort grande

This is a works-in-progress layout to assess initial positioning of structures. It’s like working on a model of an architectural proposal with a lot more detail.The projected cost overruns of this project make it worthy of a government contract.

The diorama will be representative of the cargo operation I worked for in the Caribbean, featuring some of the aircraft I flew. Like my farm diorama, it will portray a scene from a few years before my time. A Grumman Goose will be from Antilles Air-Boat that went out of business about ten years before I got there.

The 1/48 diorama will feature at least seven aircraft, along with fully lit hanger equipped with work benches and equipment. There is also a staffed administration building with accessories like working street lights, lit clocks, water tower and rotating beacon.

Aircraft planned are Monogram C-47 (pictured), Revell Beech-18 (cargo version under construction), Squadron Grumman Goose, Encore UC-78 (aerial survey), Hobbycraft J-3, Minicraft PA-18, along with a junk aircraft behind the Quonset hut. I’m thinking of a T-6 as junk metal parts are easier to fabricate than junk fabric.

Support equipment will be a Tamiya fuel truck, in civilian livery, a work stand from Lindberg’s Snark Missile and various other vehicles like forklifts loading the Goon with cargo pallets. The 0-scale Plasticville admin/tower features working interior lights with red, green, and flashing white light signals that cycle when an IR sensor is activated.

The photo shows a partial display of purchased details.

I will feature an article on the hanger and various builds after each completion with the hanger and the twin Beech first on the list, likely followed by the tower/admin building.

15 additional images. Click to enlarge.

18 responses to Progress on the latest effort grande

  1. I love it! The twin Beech (a personal favorite) sounds awesome, too. Of course, the Gooney Bird will likely be (deservedly) the center of focus, but what do you expect? The DC-3/C-47 is one of THE greatest aircraft. Ever. (IMHO)

    I really enjoyed the farm dio and I look forward to this one’s completion!

    • It will definitely be a while before completion. I will have the goon parked off to the right, as pictured, being fueled and loaded, with the Beech awaiting loading in front of the hanger that will house at least four of the smaller aircraft.

      Maintenance will be underway on one of the aircraft inside the hanger. The Beech cargo conversion (pictured) is under construction, a mod that was far simpler to work out than originally anticipated.

      Our Caribbean operation did not have hangers, all our aircraft were parked outside. However, the DC-3 passenger operation next door did have a tin hanger much like this one. I spent so many years working in hangers like this, when I found this one in 1/48, I could not resist creating a diorama featuring it.

  2. Ambitious! I always wanted my own hanger, so I’m real interested in yours. That’s a nice assortment of aircraft, as well. Time to get me one of them control towers, too. I used to have a few Plasticville buildings, K-Line is making them now, I think. How big are you figuring, variable depending on the planes, I’d think. And in my favorite scale!

    • Actually I have two control towers. One is another cardboard model from the same manufacturer as the hanger. The diorama will feature the second, a highly modified Plasticville tower/admin building that is also complete. I’ll be featuring that in another article.

  3. Wow – and I thought I had an ambitious project in mind! I really look forward to this coming together.

  4. You’re a luckier man than I was. I seldom had a hangar to work out of unless it was something that absolutely had to be inside. Patching a hole in a DC-3 elevator on a 2 degree winter night in Dallas comes to mind. That one should have been inside…

    Looking forward to seeing how you do the cargo mod on the Beech. I have that kit in the pile….Do you know of anyone who does a tall cabin or PT-6 turboprop conversion?

  5. Wish I had the room for something this size, can’t wait to see it done.

  6. It’s gonna be a sight to behold….I can tell already!! 🙂

  7. This is going to look real good when its done, cant wait.

  8. It’s going to be pretty sizeable but will make a great setting for the aircraft.

    • The base is 37″x49″ composite board. The board itself weighs about twenty to twenty-five pounds, so it will most likely withstand a 1/48 scale hurricane. I have enough room to squeeze a PBY next to the C-47, but I don’t know if I’m that ambitious at this point.

  9. G and Jaime, thanks for the aviation stories. I suspected it wasn’t all butterflies and sunshine.
    G, thanks for the info on the hangar and the control tower. Every year about now hereabouts this local shopping center has some “O” guage folks in, and they set up a layout for the kids and us old kids. I always enjoy looking at it. And I always wanted to do what you’re doing. Thanks for the nudge.

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