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WIP Shhh! - Trench Raid / Somme 1916 - Part 1

Discussion in 'vBench (Works in Progress)' started by smudger1960, Aug 12, 2014.

  1. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    This year we mark the 100th anniversary of the start of the great war, this is a theatre of war I've never really took a great interest in until this year with all the great releases related to WW1,however it was at the back end of 2013 that I first saw the 2x WW1 busts depicting British and German trench raiders sculpted by Carl Reid,when I first saw these 2x beauties I instantly knew I had to get them,the busts themselves were up to Carls usual high standard but what struck me most was the poses,The Brit with his weapon of destruction and his finger to his lips requesting to the viewer Shhh! / quiet and the german looking cautiously perhaps round a trench corner ready to release his stick greande,these poses are what made my mind up to try and replicate a trench section with the 2 adversary's ready to do battle,i only acquired the busts in July this year but have been planning the scene in my mind for months and now was the right time to start building,i'm planning to do this posting right from start to finish and making notes and taking pictures of the different stages of the project,ive done scenes to set my busts off before and these 2 busts were just crying out for something extra.
    The first step was to construct as much of the busts as I could so I could gauge the scene as I went,some parts I didn't assemble because these need painting separately.
    The British Trench Raider 'Shhh!' WW1 (MC19013) comes in 10x resin parts and some fine wire to replicate the cord that attaches to the revolver,there was very little filling required as once cleaned up the fit of parts was very good,the right hand was drilled out as was the right arm and a small steel pin was inserted to give it extra strength once final assembly was completed,i opted to leave off the left hand,Revolver case and helmet because these would need to be painted seperatley.
    I didn't use the resin plinths for these busts as they wouldn't have suited the scene,instead I opted for black fibre rod.
    trench raiders 002.JPG trench raiders 001.JPG trench raiders 005.JPG trench raiders 004.JPG trench raiders 003.JPG trench raiders 008.JPG trench raiders 011.JPG trench raiders 013.JPG trench raiders 014.JPG

    I then continued with the German Trench Raider (MC19014),this piece also consisted of 10x resin parts and some foil for the areas where the straps were missing,again general fit of parts was good although I did have to use a little more filler than normal around the bottom of the right arm where it meets the grenade bag but generally it went together very well,i decided to add a little filler instead of foil where the straps runs from the busts left shoulder lapel and fastens to the shovel handle,once both busts were partly assembled I could start on composing the trench scene,the Brit would be waiting on one side of the trench wall ready for the kill while the Hun moves cautiously to the end of the wall hoping to catch the Brits off guard with his grenade attack.
    Ive looked at hundreds of photos of trench scenes and trench design and ive come up with a combination very similar to the real life ones.

    trench raider 2 001.JPG trench raiders 015.JPG trench raiders 052.JPG trench raiders 053.JPG trench raiders 054.JPG trench raiders 055.JPG
  2. ellie A Fixture

    Will be watching this as I can't wait to see how it looks when it's finished. it's a very interesting project. have you thought about placing it in a light box that would make it more atmospheric just a thought.


  3. RFL Active Member

    While not my period, these are wonderful sculpts & castings so I`m looking forward to your work.;)
  4. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Following on from the first stage of bust construction I now set about making a base for the project,after drawing the plans out I decided I needed a base 180mm x 110mm,normally decent bases in this size would be quite expensive but I decided I would make my own for this project mainly using balsa block together with some 3mm wood sheet from my local model shop and some 10mm profile strip from my local B&Q.
    I joined the main balsa blocks together using Araldite and finished this with the wood sheet cut and glued to the 4x sides,once dry I measured and attached the profile to the 4 sides using a mitre block for the corner angles,i added the wood sheet to the top of the base to finish off, some very tiny amounts of wood filler were added to any gaps around the mitred corners.
    trench raiders 016.JPG trench raiders 017.JPG trench raiders 018.JPG trench raiders 019.JPG trench raiders 020.JPG trench raiders 021.JPG trench raiders 022.JPG trench raiders 022.JPG trench raiders 028.JPG trench raiders 030.JPG

    For the next stage I needed to construct the the actual 2x trench sections which each bust would incorporate,the dividing wall section was first made out of 15mm thick balsa and 14inches high,the enclosed trench's themselves were sometimes very low in their construction so I gauged this against the busts as I didn't want to hive too high a ceiling area.
    From the many pictures ive viewed wooden planking was very popular on the trench wall sections and I opted for this using 10mm balsa strip,i measured and cut these and attached them to the wall sections leaving slight gaps between them as in the actual photos,i should imagine this would have been done to prevent warping of the wood to allow for expansion during wet and damp conditions in the trenchs,I also added part of a door frame also made out of balsa,reinforced beams were attached verticaly to strengthen the trench walls and these were added again using balsa rod.

    trench raiders 031.JPG trench raiders 032.JPG trench raiders 033.JPG

    Holes were drilled out into the base to allow fitting and positioning of the busts and to keep checking dimensions throughout the construction phase.

    trench raiders 035.JPG trench raiders 036.JPG trench raiders 037.JPG trench raiders 038.JPG trench raiders 039.JPG trench raiders 040.JPG trench raiders 042.JPG trench raiders 043.JPG trench raiders 044.JPG trench raiders 045.JPG trench raiders 046.JPG trench raiders 047.JPG trench raiders 048.JPG

    I also added part of the trench roofing with beams as I didn't want the top just open,i shortened the beams towards the front as I wanted as much light for the viewers eye as I could get away with,this is all still very early days with lots still to do before the painting stage,well that's where I'm at now,i will try to post some more progress in the next couple of days.

    Happy Modeling
    Brian :)
  5. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    I did think of a light box but I've never done one before so I need to get myself clued up Ian,thanks for your comments mate (y)
  6. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Many thanks my friend for your comments,(y)
  7. housecarl A Fixture

    Brilliant idea Brian.(y)
  8. Figure Mad Well-Known Member

    Interesting to watch this as I am painting the box arts now as well....

  9. Richie A Fixture

    Hi Brian,
    This has smudger's stamp all over it, mate I'm sitting comfortably and watching this one develop. Two opposing battlefield soldiers painted your way, I can't wait mate.
  10. Tarracus A Fixture

    A smugerama in its purest form! Love it!
    I Neither have had a special interest on ww1 subjects, but I also felt I needed to work on something to commemorate the centenary. I'llpost it soon

    PS: Have I said yet that I love the idea?
  11. ellie A Fixture

    Looking good Brian as I said before very atmospheric in deed, when you start to paint the trench it will make a big difference. the light box would be hard if you've never done one but you might get the light affects with paint. looking forward to the next part.

  12. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Many thanks Carl,glad you like it mate
  13. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Hi Dave,I'm looking forward to seeing your finished pieces,many thanks for your comments and looking in :)
  14. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Hi Richie,hope your keeping well mate,thanks for your comments mate :)
  15. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Many thanks Gerrard,it's quite an interesting subject ww1 when you get into it :)
  16. Mjølner PlanetFigure Supporter

    Damn good idea Brian, will follow this to the end :coffee:
  17. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Ian I am hoping to try and replicate some light within the scene with the painting,it will look better when the painting starts,it's always strange with new products when you start something new,thanks for your comments mate :)
  18. smudger1960 PlanetFigure Supporter

    Many thanks my friend for your kind coments
  19. megroot A Fixture

    Like this very much, and it is a great inspiration for other projects.

  20. Ron Tamburrini A Fixture

    Most definitely a smudgeramma in the making here , this should be special when Brian adds his unique groundwork style to his weathering technique on the figures '

    Good choice of making the base with balsa Brian as large lumps of wood are pricy and sometimes unstable at these thicknesses and can split as they dry out (y)


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