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German Bookstore Diorama

Synergy 1/35 German Bookstore Diorama First Look

By Ray Mehlberger

Date of Review August 2011 Manufacturer Synergy
Subject German Bookstore Diorama Scale 1/35
Kit Number 1402 Primary Media Plaster of Paris
Pros Very nicely detailed damaged German bookstore diorama Cons Very poor instructions
Skill Level Basic MSRP (USD) Out of Production

First Look

German Bookstore Diorama
German Bookstore Diorama
German Bookstore Diorama

This diorama set was produced by Synergy Dio. Productions Inc. based somewhere in Canada in 1988. I got this date off the top of a sheet of newspaper that was wadded up and used to cushion the plaster parts in the kit. A search of the internet does not find this company in existence anymore. I inherited this kit from a friend that died of cancer about 10 years ago. The price he paid for the kit was $17.00 in 1988 probably.

The kit comes in a generic brown cardboard box. The box art consists of a very inky photograph of the diorama completed that has been glued onto a sheet that is further glued to the box. The sheet says the name of the company and MADE IN CANADA, but not street address or city is given. Features listed are: a complete diorama setting, just assemble and paint, detailed base and building interiors, instructions and helpful hints enclosed. It further says that cement, paint, models and accessories (shown in the photograph of the diorama made up) are the products of other companies and are not included in this kit. By these they mean the figures and a lamp post barely visible in this very dark and inky photo.

The box is double shrink wrapped and has multiple tabs that are stapled shut.

Inside the box are 11 white plaster of Paris parts wrapped in several layers of bubble packing and cushioned with a page out of the Sunday Oct. 16th, 1988 issue of the Times-Colonist newspaper that is wadded up. Most of the classified ads on this page are mentioning Victoria B.C. So I assume that this is where the kit came from and that Synergy was once located there??

There is a sheet in the kit that serves as the instructions. However, it is very poor and has no illustrations. Leaving the modeler to scratch his head and wonder just were all the parts go. It only says to sand, file, chip, scribe and cut the components to suit. Below that is joining and filling components instructions. These call out various parts but which is a mystery and not clear at all. These have got to be the worst instructions I have ever come across in a kit.

The parts consist of the building front wall, with an arched window opening in it that has the word BUCHHANCLUNG molded into it. There is an inner wall surface to go behind this that has the same arched window opening in it. However, when you match up the two opening together the inside wall is a good quarter of an inch or better longer below the window opening??? The base is a round section with rubble and a brick paved street molded into it and a U-shaped building foundation. There are several inside wall sections and a second floor section that are all damaged and showing the plaster removed and brick exposed beneath. Very nicely detailed. No clear parts are provided for the windows.

Once it is determined just how these pieces should all go together this will make for a very nice diorama of a war damaged German building. Highly recommended.