Huge diorama...

Matt Bittner (
Thu, 31 Aug 1995 07:21:55 -0500

Okay, not necessarily WW1, but definitely modeling.

In case you forgot, our IPMS club was (t)asked by Offutt AFB to
create diorama's to commemerate the 50th anniversary of WW2 and the
Martin Bomber plant that used to be part of (what was then) Offutt

There are actually three separate diorama's: the first was one that
showed what the whole bomber plant looked like during production.
This was done in a scale approximating 1/200th and is HUGE. Imagine
15-20 B-29's in this dio, and you've got some feeling for the
immensity. Luckily, the B-29's were mass produced (via resin), and
weren't required to have and detail. So, spray them all one color,
glue them down on the floor, add the plexiglas lid, and there you
have it. Luckily for us, the building/plant (for all three dio's)
were built by the architecture/design office on base. You could say
the hardest part was done for us.

However, the other two dio's are in 1/72nd, and most of the work is
ours. The only thing Offutt did for us was give us the bases to work
on (as well as the plexiglass lids), and the front part of the bomber
plant so we can show the "roll out" of two B-29's, and one B-26.

The first 1/72nd dio is of a section of the plant's "floor". There
are four-six B-29's in various parts of assembly: the only two that
were added last night are (1) front part of fuselage with wing stubs
having the tail added; and (2) one with tail added and having
internal "bits" added. Racks for and engines were also installed
last night in a section that was dedicated for this purpose. I think
you get the gist that this is an "assembly" area, with B-29's in
various stages.

The second 1/72nd dio is the front part of the plant, with the
rolling out of two "completed" B-29's, as well as one B-26.
(Granted, to keep the area of the dio down, the second B-29 "rolling
out" was cut in half, and positioned in front of a blackened section
to "simulate" the open area of the front of the plant.) The only
items added last night were the "half" B-29, the B-26, and various
vehicles and figures (which my two Jeeps and one Kettenkrad (!) were
part of).

There are subtle jokes (and tidbits) through out the dio's. One -
which I think is the best - have a bunch of engineers standing around
a desk, with "models" of an Me 262 and a B-2 (!) sitting on the desk.
The thinking is "these will never fly!!". Others are (1) Dick
Tracy; (2) Lenin; (3) Redd Foxx; (4) Charlie Chaplin; etc.
Luckily, there were only three deaths, through out the entire history
of the plant. This occured one afternoon during lunch. A B-26 on
final approach hit a wind shear, and crashed in through the roof of
the plant. All three were crew members of the B-26. So, in honor of
(plus reports of ghost sightings through out the building), we made
three figures into "ghosts", and have them standing off to the side.

So, quite an undertaking. All three will be "rolled out" tomorrow
during a luncheon to celebrate - and thank those who worked at the
plant - the 50th anniversary.

All will also be revealed in an upcoming IPMS Journal, and -
hopefully - FineScale Modeler.


Matthew Bittner WW1 Modeler, ecto subscriber, new dad, PowerBuilder developer; Omaha, Nebraska

Hickory Dickory Dock
Two Mice ran up the clock
The clock struck one
And the other escaped with minor injuries