My Longest Model To Date

Posted on August September 15, 2020 by Niek Nijsen

With the completion of the Horten, it was time to start a new project. With plenty of kits in my stash to choose from, I went with the Bismarck as she’s been in my collection the longest and I wanted to do something other than another plane. It’s been a long time since I worked on my last ship (the U-96 model back in 2014) so it should prove to be an interesting ride.

Straight away I had all of these ideas floating in my head on how to display the finished model. There’s the option of doing it the “standard” way by placing it on top of a wooden base with some studs as if it’s floating above it. You can present it “at sea” by making a seascape for it using various materials (which results in only “half” a vessel being displayed). Or you can go the other extreme way, which is obviously the one I went for. The latter requires you to cut the hull in half (length wise) twice, in which I’ll sandwich a piece of acrylic to act as the sea surface. That way you can still see the whole vessel both above and below the water line. That being said, it also requires the most amount of work to achieve. And boy did it prove to be a lot of work…

We’re now in September and I’m still in the process of cutting the hull. Granted, I’ve had many distractions at home which have kept me from spending time at the bench, but I still sat there for a good few hours over the last few months. I’ve tried all kinds of approaches, including a knife, mini saw, Dremel multitool and scrapers. So far, the combination hasn’t resulted in two halves and the frustration let me to shift my attention from this job to designing the display case for it. Don’t worry, we’ll get back to the hull at some point in the near future.

The display case will be big to say the least and will have to look good as it’s the first (and only) model I’m allowed to display in the living room (a huge thank you to the missus, obviously). I wanted the case to be informative and suitable for the model, but at the same time not take away the attention from the model itself. A dear friend of mine suggested a very interesting effect to use on the sea surface, which basically looks like a flag floating on the water. The backdrop will be a photo of the actual Bismarck just before she sailed on her last voyage with some information and statistics presented on there as well. Finally, I’ve got a great idea I want to apply to the “seabed”, also known as the bottom of the display case. But I’m going to keep that a secret for now, even if it’s just to keep you excited for this (most likely) multi-year project.

And to be honest, that’s about it for now. Like I said, I’m currently doing a lot of work in and around the house which is taking a priority over the model bench. Hopefully I’ll be back soon with more updates and photos. See you then!

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