The Making of “Diorama : WSS German Machine Gun Team” Part 1

First to kick off our blog, we wish to offer you the making of this diorama!


  • to construct a WW2 Diorama for a Facebook Group : 1/6 scale WWII Modelling
  • a showcase for the famous Lafayette Heavy Machine Gun Tripod
  • create a mini diorama with elements of street fighting in WW2 European Theater


This article will be in 3 Parts :-
Part 1 – Diorama Base Construction
Part 2 – MG34 Lafayette Reworking with Accessories
Part 3 – Building the Figures and putting it all together

The key focus is on the construct of the base, the figures and weapons detailing were pretty much how we build our custom.

Part 1 – Diorama Base Construction

Material used was blue insulation foam. Yup the whole base were sub-assemblies of bluefoam fastened together with foam glue and skewers. The construct was very light.
Total of 4 assemblies :

  1. Base cobblestone
  2. Sidewalk Pavement
  3. Brickwall
  4. Concrete Topside


All sections were carefully replicated by carving, scribing, chipping and texturing. Scribing the foam was easy and straight forward, just time consuming. We worked out a technique of printing out the patterns on paper (eg cobblestone or brickwall) then mounting the pattern on the foam using low tack glue and then directly scribing the lines on the foam. Once completed, the paper is removed. Revealing the work was like unwrapping Xmas presents! See pictures below – basic tools were a scalpel, ruler and a needle tool and lotsa patience….

Next was texturing. Trick about this was references, if you live in places where pre war cobblestone still exist, you references are plentiful. We resorted to WW2 pictures, web picture references and self taught destruction skills!

We added more details to brickwall by stamping in the bricks using a rectangular shaped block made of wood to push in randomly on the sections of the bricks. We also created brick texture with a wire brush. Chipping of the bricks were done with a scalpel and a wire brush.

Pavement cracks created with scalpel and needle tool… tedious however well worth it

Priming was done with Matt Black Acrylics brushed on…. also time to spot any areas to fine tune on.

Painting and Finishing up the base. Its a series of painting in this section. First was the brickwall, somewhat primer red/hull red. We used krylon primer red for this. Grout was added by mixing water + plaster of paris + drops of black acrylic. Upon curing, the details will pop! All the hard work on texturing will pay off 🙂

We sealed the brickwall with matt medium as the Plaster of Paris will tend to frost up the wall (pretty cool if you are going for white washing eh?)

On with cobblestone painting. Base coat used was primer grey, (also applied for concrete top section). Then carefully with multiple mix of acrylic colors, individual cobblestones were painted to bring out the characters of each stone. Then a layer of raw umber was laid after the paint cured. This was really cool…unfortunately this would be not be visible after the completion of the diorama with all the debris on it 🙁

Base done for the meantime…..

Next – Part 2
The Making of “Diorama : WSS German Machine Gun Team” Part 2