Collecting > Star Wars Dioramas and Displays

Jrnyfan's Custom plastic "Playsets"

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So I gave up hope long ago that Hasbro would ever give me the playsets I want. So, I'm trying my hand at crafting my own using a plastic called Instamorph. Smooth-on type stuff was way out of my budget. I have no real art background and I haven't sculpted anything since I was in 4th grade (I'm now 36).

I have a wall of shelving and my goal is to create playsets that would fit in my shelf space and would give my figures worlds to inhabit, just as the old Kenner playsets used to. I want them to be constructed entirely of plastic - no foam, clay, and ideally no paint. While I'm certainly going for the spirit of the film, I'm not trying to create a inch-by-inch recreation of the set and shooting exteriors. Instead, I'm trying to create something that would come close to a "toy" (though I'm lacking in action features for now). Aside from furnishings and accessories, these playsets are one piece.

Of course, the more I work with the material, the better I get at manipulating it. Collecting SW since I was 4 in 1980, I also like to integrate allusions back to the vintage Kenner line wherever possible.

I'm currently creating "rough drafts" of my projects and letting them sit for a while, giving me time to contemplate how I'd like to finish them out... so none of these are considered "done" yet.
Hoth - Echo Base Playset

This was my first project. Wampa cave on the left; raised snowbank for Probot on back. Snow field in middle for Taun Tauns. Cave entrance leads to a small Han/Leia spat hallway. Interior has a spot for the Bacta chamber and a control room (which I already want to massively revise - I hadn't managed to get very flat sheets of the material at this point). Lookout spot on top. Shaped to fit nicely on the right side against the Hasbro trench playset.


My second project - a plastic version of Hasbro's cardboard Cantina playset. Left side includes an opening door that permits the droids to "hide." The bar is made by Hasbro and I've yet to glue all the sections together (Currently they're just scotch taped). I plan to integrate a sound module to play the cantina theme - that will go over the main entrance on the right. The foor was a nightmare and needs some cleaning up (maybe some form of border at the front to make it look a little more level). The exterior of the building also plays double duty as a Mos Eisley street (a nod to the Sears Cantina playset). Haven't started adding any decoration really to the exterior yet.

A few of the chairs I've made using the bright orange of the vintage playset. The distillery didn't turn out all that great, so plan on replacing that eventually.

And third project - an Ewok Village. Endor is just starting, so this is just a bit of a "teaser" picture. Have to re-do the roof of the hut; it collapsed while hardening!

Wow!  These are amazing works of art dude!  I would totall buy any/all of these sets in the stores.  I didn't have a chance to check out the video, but definitely want to see how you went about this.  How long did they take you?  How did you get the colors?  That Ewok set in particular is awesome with the wood coloring and black rope ties.  Cool stuff man - thanks for sharing!


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