has been known for making high quality diorama pieces for over 40 years by starting out making dry transfers, buildings, and other items for dioramas that were not present back in the early 1970’s and 1980’s. Over the years, Verlinden
has been the big dog in this market until the late 90’s and early 00’s when other upstart companies started flooding the market with aftermarket items of equal or better quality.
item #2794, Brick house ruin in resin, 1/35th scale was received along with items #2799, #2800 in an unassuming brown cardboard box. Item #2794 was the largest of all three. It was placed in a white, heavy cardboard type box, with a book like flip, opening from right to left, measuring 10”x6.5”x1.5” in size. The front of the box shows a box art photo of the item in its finished form. The brick house ruin was sealed in a clear Ziploc plastic bag which contained three pieces in which one of the smaller pieces was wrapped in bubble wrap. Each of the three pieces is cast in a cream colored resin.
It’s at this point when I had to do a search of older Verlinden
catalogues (1991-1995) to see if this was offered in the M.D.A. ceramic format, which it was not. I did this because I personally have Verlinden’s
Ruin Ardennes Farm house and also Trophy Models line, Small Factory Ruin M.D.A. buildings to use as comparison pieces.
Now, you’re thinking to yourself, “Why are you using those pieces for comparison?” Well for three main reasons:
- 1. Texture – how does resin brick look compared to the older M.D.A. brick castings?
- 2. Casting flaws – discoloring, air bubbles, etc.
- 3. To see the evolution of Verlinden products over the years. So here we go!
Let’s start with the larger of the three resin pieces in this kit. This piece measures 8 5/16th” in height and has the tallest point with a 4 1/16th” base at ¼” material thickness.
This piece is two stories in height, the first floor having two windows, one large and a smaller window placed next to each other. Both windows have a brick type sill with brick arches over the tops. The larger window is framed and has places for “glass” inserts while the smaller window does not have a frame showing. The larger window measures 2 5/8th inches in height which was measured from the top of the sill to the center of the arches apex. The width of this window is a consistent 1 inch from bottom to top. The smaller window measures 1 ¼ inches in height and ½ inch wide.
The second floor window is inline above the first floor window and is the same in measurements as the first floor with the upper part of the arch missing being the only notable exception. A large brick section ledge divides them with the second story window sill placed on the ledge. This upper floor window is not complete as it is missing the brick arch and shows signs of a shell hit and collapse of the brick work of the house and roof line. The window frame is damaged and the upper frame where the brick arch was is missing. To the left of the window, there appears to be a metal piece bolted into the brick. This piece appears to be where the electrical lines enter the house and then run off to another house on the grid.
This piece has a lot of flashing in the window areas and around the edges as well. The back side/interior side of the piece has some waving and air bubbles in the resin, however the surface is smooth of the most part. A great amount of work is needed to remove the flashing/excess resin of this piece.
The texture of the brick throughout this piece appears to be consistent with brick worked buildings. The brick sizes vary in height and width, as it appears some are sticking out more than others, giving the piece a rough appearance on the exterior. There are breaks between the bricks that suggest that the grout or mortar fell out or the grout/mortar was not laid correctly during construction.
The second piece of the brick house ruin is about half the size of the first piece, measuring 8 1/8th” tall at the highest point, 2 ¾” wide and with a material thickness of ¼ inch. Since this piece is shorter in width only one window on the first floor is present. This windows measurements are consistent with the other windows expect 1 ½ inches are missing do to battle damage. The second story is almost non-existent. The same exterior brick layout continues through this second piece as with the first with a different metal piece sticking out of what is left of the upper floor near the corner. There are casting bubbles in the interior side of this piece that maybe difficult to remove, however you may consider turning them into bullet holes.
This second piece also has a lot of flashing on it so cleaning it up will take some time.
The third piece had me somewhat baffled for a while since, like the other two pervious reviews, there was no instruction sheets contained.
This is a piece of flooring that goes on the interior of the building. The flooring piece measures 3 ¼ inches by 2 inches. This has wood beams exposed and shows broken floor boards with a small amount of brick rubble placed in the corner. The wood flooring appears to be a 2x6 plank type flooring and appears to show a faint hint of the wood grain in the boards, however this is difficult to see unless you get the light to hit it just right. The wood splintering of the beams is very mild but is present. In between ceiling and the upper floor boards appears to be particles of rubble, however it is this reviewers opinion and observation that it looks to be more like particles of blown insulation. There are some casting bubbles on the ceiling side of this piece that maybe difficult to remove, however one can make them bullet holes if needed.
This piece has very noticeable flashing as well. Again cleaning up these pieces will take time.
As I stated before, I wanted to see the evolution process of not only Verlinden’
s prior releases, but with other items of similar type that are on the market today. After looking at the other kits, Verlinden’s
item #2794, Brick house ruin in resin can hold its own in this competitive market place. This kit is a far cry from the earlier Verlinden
M.D.A. offerings that have come out over the years. The switch from M.D.A. to resin has its benefits and drawbacks too with larger scale buildings. Listed below are those praises and concerns.
Resin Pros: A good starter for less experienced diorama builders yet the more experienced builder will be pleased with the ease of use. Lighter in weight for larger diorama scenes, textures are equal to M.D.A., harder to break if it falls moving from room to room or across the country. Less dust than M.D.A. when sanding.
Resin Cons: Adding more damage would be a challenge, not much flexibility there, but it can be done if you know what you’re doing. Removing flashing is a P.I.T.A. before assembly, time consuming.
M.D.A. Pros: Textures can be added and applied easier to interiors and exteriors. Adding battle damage can be done easier. Little to no clean up before assembly.
M.D.A. Cons: Breaks easy when falls, making repairs very challenging. Heavier material equals heavier dioramas which makes for harder moves with the larger diorama settings.
This is a very good resin kit that Verlinden
has offered in a very crowded market place. It does have some flaws in the casting, however it can stand up to the other products out on the market. The size of this kit is smaller than Verlinden’s
earlier M.D.A. kits and is priced at Reg. $29.95/$26.96 at the company’s website which is inline or slightly higher for a resin kit building of its size. This item could be used in a number of scenes in a number of different eras.
Is this a good value? That depends, some builders I believe will find it a good value, however others may find it a waste of money because it doesn’t meet a higher standard of quality in a kit they are used to.