"U-Boot VIIc in a Dry Dock"

1/72 scale

a project is „under construction“ (and it will be for a long time…)

I currently work on a mega-diorama with the submarine U-Boot VIIc (Revell, 1/72) in a dry dock: I haven’t started the submarine herself yet; I put together buildings in a harbour, incl. super-detailed interiors. Dimensions of the whole work will be approx. 130 x 40 cm, the height 40 cm, too. Yep, the sub herself is 93 cm long… The diorama will be electrified – lighting in the buildings, lampposts in a harbour, blinking “welding” effect – some 40 – 50 “electrical points”. There will also be about 50 figures there, a freight train (Planet Models), 4 – 5 cars and trucks, 2 cranes, a boat on a sea etc. Enclosed see some pictures of the buildings and structures under construction. All weathering, wash, drybrush, pigments etc. will be done on all buildings simultaneously, once the harbour will be complete.  

Currently, I have more or less completed buildings for the harbour (headquarters, warehouse with a workshop and a water tower) and two cranes. I will add a large warehouse building with a gantry crane (last row, 1st picture from the left) implemented in it, aboveground diesel tanks and some small bits. The railway modelling shops are a great source of suitable buildings – the scale HO (1/87) is easily usable, just doors need enlargement to correspond to the figures in 1/72.

Some photographs follow!

Details of interiors of the harbour headquarters building. The stove, desk, long conference table and wardrobe are scratch-built from styrene Evergreen profiles; metal desk, typewriter, radio, kerosene lamp and wall telephone are from white metal (unknown producer from the U.S.A.); a bust of AH is made from a figure in 1/87 by ROCO Models. A standard Zippo lighter and a pack of cigarettes are used for a comparison of sizes.



The are parts of interiors of the headquarters – a general view, commander’s office, meeting room, guards’ room and a staircase with a reception desk shown below. There will be an electrical lighting in the office, on the stairs and in the guards’ room. A desk and a chair in the first picture, fourth row, are placed on a one-pound coin…



Following photos show details of a warehouse with a workshop. There is also a water tower on a small inserted picture. The water tower is a kit by Auhagen in 1/87, built nearly straight from a box (there is just a scratch-built water tank and a round walk inserted in a top part of the tower). The warehouse is scratch-built (using windows, roof and WC by an English company Wills). The workshop is a kit of a coal handling shop by POLA (1/87). Machinery, tools and furniture inside the workshop is a combination of products by Preiser, Extratech and scratch-built. A figure in a toilette is a tank mechanic by Extratech.




In the last row, there are pictures of the two cranes – a gantry crane by Faller (1/87), which I had to increase by two bases to enable a train in 1/72 to pass under it, and a port crane, totally reconstructed model by an English company Dapol.


Opinions, ideas and comments are welcome!

Petr Vanek