Imperial Compound

Imperial Compound

I’ve been asked to build a Star Wars diorama for a friend’s son to display his 3.75″ figures on. So I’m building him an Imperial Compound because nothing is better than the Rebels infiltrating an Imperial compound!

It’s will be 16″ high, two levels plus a rooftop landing platform. Garage and side door entrance and has to be ready in two weeks! I like challenge!


    • Building the Scene

      So far I’ve cut variation of 14″ high lengths, widths of 6″, 4″ & 3″, cutting out doors and windows. Then gluing this all together as one piece.



      I’ve cut two 10 mm panels (14″ x 9″) and then two 6 mm panels of the same size, glued the 10 mm & 6 mm together for the walls. The cut out the floor on a pieces of 10 mm then glued it onto a piece of 6 mm. Leaving this to dry over night before carrying on.



      I’ve added a platform where a Canon can be mounted and a viewing balcony demonstrated here by Grand Admiral Thrawn.


      I have added a layer of 6 mm foam board to the inside of the front wall, not only to strengthen but also a guide for the first floor to sit in between.


      I’ve started to add the detail to the front of the compound, while building up the sides so they aren’t flat walls.

      I’ve built a central console for the first floor. With the shape made, I can start adding in the detail before adding a small roof to the structure.


I’ve started etching in the panels on the exterior


Started etching the central console.

Began working on the underside of the floor. Once that at done I started working on the etchings of the upper floor.

Finished off etching panel work first floor interior, finished the exterior and then started working on the design of the ground floor.
Just need to finish etching the ground floor interior, then I can start building the roof.

Finished etching panelling into the ground the floor.

I’m going to add a couple of lifts into the rear of the model, which will double up as supports for the first floor and roof.

Painting the Scene

My client decided to go with an open plan and not to go ahead with the roof, instead I’ll will be using the what was going to be the roof as the foundation for the model.
Making the most of the good weather by spraying a black base to coat to the structure.

The base has been base coated with a medium grey. Certain areas where then painted with a light grey. A few external panels where painted with a metallic blue and a touch of metallic red.
The next phase is to complete the console and then to mix a black wash which I’ll paint into the recesses of the base.

Started painting the detail on the the console then making up a dark blue wash and painted it into the crevasses of the internal walls and the exterior of the side walls.

I finished off shading the entire base before dry brushing each piece. The central console I have added some more detail to it before dry brushing that as well.
All that is left to do is dry brush the floor and paint the border black. Then I can hand it over to my friends son.

Final Pictures

Snake Eyes Log Cabin

Snake Eyes Log Cabin

I’ve been commissioned to create a log cabin for the new 6″ G.I.JOE Classifieds series based on the classic 80’s comic.



Building the Scene

The specifications I’ve been given are 30″ x 15″ x 15″, it is to be made from foam board and designed to be flat packed. I have been asked to do both exterior and interior.

Unfortunately I do not own a 6″ Snake Eyes, to help model the construction of this set will be Arnold.


With the sheets still drying, I have cut notches into the inside walls for the walls to fit into and for the floor.

When the sheets have dried I will start scoring the foam to make it look like a log cabin.


Still working on the overall structure of this piece before going into detail.

Working on the foundations adding slots into the floor and then drawing on the “logs” on the front at 1″ width.


Today I’ve finished marking out the logs for both the exterior and interior. I’ve cut out four windows and a door. I’ve also started scoring one of the exterior.



I spent time shaping the walls internally and externally, to look like they are made from lengths of wood.

My client asked if I could fit a door in one of longer walls between the windows.

The next steps are to score the floor and porch before starting on the roof.


The wooden floor is now done. I’ve marked out 6″ x 1″ beams running the width, then scored the floor before taking a wire brush running it width ways across the floor.

With this now done, it’s time to work on the roof.


With the floor completed, it was time to bite the bullet and make the root.

Cutting two pieces 23″ x 5.5″ which gives 1.5″ over hang on both sides and two smaller pieces which fitted inside the frame of the cabin. The roof pieces where glued onto them with PVA glue, when the pieces are dry I’ll score the detail onto them.

The last piece to make before making the doors and windows is the stone chimney.


I’ve added a chimney breast using three 10 mm strips glued together, then scoring in bricks. I’ve also marked out 1″ thick slats running the length of the roof. Just need to score these and then it’s off to do the doors and windows.


Using bolsa wood for the doors and door frames,the cabin has two working doors.


Next steps are adding dirt to the floor and I can start painting this.


The last bit to do before I start painting is to make the ground surrounding the cabin. I’ve done this by using ordinary garden soil mixed with PVA glue.

Making the most of the one day of sun this weekend, I’m leaving it to dry outside.


Now I can start painting the cabin.

Painting the Scene

First layer of paint applied to exterior, once dried I’ll use the same paint for the interior.


The base coats of the cabin walls are now finished, I’ve used a dark brown for the interior floor, nut brown for the porch floor and one of the doors.


Next I’ll base coat the other door, the chimney and the roof.

I started by mixing a dark brown wash and painting it between each of the logs both internal and external, the crevasses of the door and roof.


Mixing up a light grey with a touch of light blue for the chimney stack. When that had dried I went in between the bricks with the dark brown wash.


When the wash on the walls had dried, I dry brushed the exterior with a dark brown.


I then added white to the dark brown and dry brushed the interior walls, the floor and roof.


I took this piece outside to do a couple of test shots and show how big the cabin is, my cat thought I built him a new house.


What’s left to do is paint the border of the base with black and add the windows.

I’ve added the windows and window frames. All that’s left to do is paint the edges of the base and stain the window frames and then this piece will be complete.