Like, but not the Bladerunner - Try again

Hi dio builders,

This is a project I started in 2016 and posted on the old site. The idea was inspired by the first Bladerunner movie. At the time, I read the lengthy preamble and realized we were either at, or after the timeframe the movie was said to be representing. I concluded that it would be fun to try and build something similar, but without flying cars and so on. All went pretty well - then I got sick of the project.

And here we are, 6 years later, real work is slow and I’ve been a bit burned out on building models - tho, I am nearly done with a project - just need to paint it uh… :sleeping: I should finish it - but just not in the mood.

Here’s some background:

The not great photos above led me on my way - a couple images from the movie, a scene of an MATV in an urban setting, and the alley behind my old office - perfect - just enough to cook up a concept. My basic idea was that the Deckard character, or somebody like him follows the “replicant(s)” into an alley, and is backed up by some guys in an urban matv. All of which I did:

You can see, I copied/interpreted several of the scenes - the bar/nightclub, big digital billboard, streetside cafe, lots of people, and so on.

And I was feeling pretty good about this. Then I realized several flaws in the concept:

First, as I wanted this to look like urban streets with well defined streetwalls, which is fine, except, it’s all internal - from the outside - well, it doesn’t look very good. If you want to see what’s going on, you need to look up the streets.

Second, I wondered if I didn’t clutter the streets too much - it looked more like some guys chasing a group of bad guys, who looked a lot more like conventional “bad guys” than something more conceptual, like replicants? Just a big crowed mess. As you can see in the “aerial” Deckard in the car with the lightbar on the roof, a heavily modified MATV, the bad-guy-mobile, debris, lots of people, again a crowded mess!

So, here’s where this sits today:

On the dio side, I pulled off a few vehicles and several figures - I am going to rethink what’s going on, and where/if they should be relocated.

Next - the last two photos - you can see, not exactly beautiful from the outside. So, for this, I want to build up some better looking facades.

I will first stabilize the base, which now flexes - as all this stuff is heavy. And the wiring - there is a lot of it - and it needs to be cleaned up - surprisingly, it still works, but looks sloppy.

I thought about dramatic changes - tearing down or removing buildings, but that doesn’t seem to bright.

So I guess the big idea is to fix this - pretty bold eh? :smile:

On we go - I’ll likely paint the other project and get it off the bench, then get after this.

Thanks for having a look.



At your normal speed you will have it done by next weekend, give or take a day or two.

Pass the :popcorn: I am here to watch the show.


Looking good and some good change-up ideas. I liked the original, esp. since I am a fan of both Blade Runner movies. The original movie was set in LA in 2019. This new version looks to be even better.


Well that sure makes my day, the long-awaited Return of not-Bladerunner. So good to see it again and…yep, it’s still the best (unfinished :wink: ) diorama I’ve ever seen. Do you still have that aerial night view photo with the big billboard lit up? Technical question – how did you deal with the years of dust? Asking for a friend… :sunglasses:


Again one on my list to follow!


I remember this dio from the old site, and I’m very glad you have taken it back!!!

Hey, Ryan, let me some popcorn!!


I remember this from a while back too- nice to see it back again!


Brilliant. I followed and loved this thread from the old site as it kept developing, cant wait to see it reemerge with some new ideas and direction … defo along for this one !! :+1: :+1:


Thought it was cool then , still think it’s cool now , and soon to be cooler …
Hey Nick it’s your world , wreck everything out , or , save some , loose some , it’s your mind and your trip !!!


Nick, this was just mind-bogglingly great to begin with. I don’t think you could possibly increase the coolness factor, but you’re about to…


Ya, Buddy! Let er rip, Ruck On. Another masterpiece, good to see you back at it, Nick!


Great to see ‘Like, but not…’ back on the bench! :cup_with_straw::smiley::popcorn:



Great to see it back again.


Hi model builders, thanks - let’s hope it gets done this time!

@Tank_1812 Ha! Well Ryan, this will not go that fast - faster than from scratch I suppose, but there are lots of oddball projects that lay in store as this moves along. Hope you enjoy the ride!

@HeavyArty hi Gino, thanks for dropping by and the fact check! Yes, moving ahead, the basic concept will stay the same, but the storyline will change, which I’ll explain below -

@Dioramartin, Hi Tim, the return - let’s hope it’s better than most sequels seem to be! :smile: As for the aerial and the billboard - the lighting there still works, as for the picture, it’s somewhere on a remote hard drive. I’m guessing I’ll go back to it eventually, just to see what I did to get this where it is!

Dust? what dust? it’s only been sitting neglect for five years!! :smile: So far, a broad artist’s brush seems to work fine for it’s removal - Tell your friend, to give it a go!

@golikell Hi Erwin, thanks! and let’s hope it’s worth watching!

@SF-07-18D HI Nacho, happily the old site was archived! I went back and looked at the project and decided to get after it - on we go -

@Karl187 Hi Karl, thanks!

@Johnnych01 , well Johnny, thinking about your HEMMT… :thinking: lots of opportunities and choices :smile:

@Cheyenne HI Glenn, yeah - the decision of what to make of all of this. I seriously considered a lot of major reconstruction - except, that would likely mess up the feeling of the tight streets, which was a big part of the original idea. My goal is to make a few changes to tell a better version of the story - not to rewrite the script! I’d never finish!

@SSGToms Hi Matt - mind boggling is a good word choice - which could be interpreted as “why on earth did I decide to do this???” There is a lot of work in this and I don’t want to blow it - as the saying goes - “feats don’t fail me now”! :smile: So, As i mentioned to Ryan, I don’t think I’ll race through this. I want to finish - and not fumble on the one yard line!

@PolishBrigade12 thanks Steve - fingers crossed - it seems, looking back at this, I left plenty of room for not getting it right :smile: At the time I built it I looked at dozens of images - and spent a lot of time just thinking about how it might unfold - which both led to it’s shortcomings, and me getting sick of it! :smile: on we go!

Hi Michael - haha! yes, off the shelf of dust and and back to the bench!

Thanks Wayne! let’s keep our fingers crossed that it gets finished!

OK, on to some updates:

First the basics. In the photo on the right, you can see a new base is added! It’s big wood-frame art mat (1" x 2" edges and mid section under a composite wood sheet), which I aggressively dry-wall screwed to the underside of the existing base - It flexes no more!

On the left - you can see all but one car has been pulled off the road surface. The car I left in place is that of our hero - It’s a 1/32 scale McClaren, with a light bar that turned out pretty well. If you look carefully, there is a guy standing next to the driver side - he is indeed, our hero! As for cars removed…well, not a pretty process.

I cleverly used some unusually tacky glue to attach vehicle tires to the road, which is painted cork sheet, so, we now have lots of pot holes - the glaring white dots where the tires and cork came up…perfect what a treat. So, those will get fixed.

This also “allowed me the opportunity” to rebuild several suspension and other car parts destroyed during extraction…nice

I also removed a lot of, but not all of the figures. The basic idea, that our hero, assisted by others, have chased the fugitives into this district, where, due to the narrow and cluttered streets, have crashed and abandoned their car - but, have remained in close proximity.

In the previous version of this, I decided that our hero was chasing a small gang, but that suggested something of a cops and robbers scenario, which is not really/at all what the concept of the film was about - it was about “replicants” seeking longer lives, which would not suggest a group of armed, marauding bad guys. In the ended of the movie, the plot boiled down to the struggle between Deckard and Roy Batty:

In my version, we are chronicling the hypothetical minutes before the inevitable meeting of these two - a chase, an accident, a stare down, and then the final scenes. But, unlike the movie, I won’t even try to represent the final interaction, and focus instead on the Syd Mead inspired urban context! Simple! :smile: :thinking: if not tediously wordy!

So, some additional steps:

Bad/poor decision #325 - the urban MATV personnel carrier, with a very fancy Live Resin CROWS and all sorts of details…perfect. Except - it’s huge! and manages to effectively block most of an entire street - oh, and because it’s so tight, naturally, most of the copious detailing on, or surrounding it, can’t be seen…nice. So, sadly, it’s out.

And well, a change in roles - this:

This was supposed to be the bad guy-mobile, being chased by the MATV. This was the case because I assumed there would be a group of bad guys - well, that doesn’t make much sense. First, why would there be a big group, and if there were, why would they have this highly modified whatever it is ???

This will now be used by Deckard’s back-up force. I think this is ok for a few reasons. First, it is certainly not a stock vehicle - with a unique and believable shape/form, it has front and rear steering, looks appropriately weird, has a CROWS, and while somewhat ominous, is not giant, so you (the viewer) can pretty easily see around it, and what is around it.

Finally - the new (old) bad-guy mobie:

A fast yellow sports car! This was parked on the street before. It occurred to me, our fugitive might be alone, or with another person or two, and as they are not “from here” they would more likely steal a car than a sassy armored personnel carrier!

In it’s new role, under the knife it tediously went - I cut the driver’s door opened - which required making up a door card, and filling several really big ugly gaps. No, I didn’t strip and repaint etc - Instead, tore it apart and took out the various hobby versions of a Sawzall (my trusty X-Acto #11) to get it this way. I also folded in the front wheel/tire, and smashed the front valance. The plot being, it crashed into a barrier and the driver/friends are at safe distance…

On we go - thanks for having a look



Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaammm , … this is so very cool !!!


Thanks Nick (from my friend) about the dust – he’s found that in some corners it’s actually a plus. Your revisions all sound sensible & should make the scene easier to read. And what a scene - here’s the shot I was recalling…

Your remote h/d can slumber on, it’s all but a click away click away:

Cheers :beers:


@Cheyenne, Glenn, come on now, this is serious business!!! :smile:

@Dioramartin, Of course! yes, the Beyonce billboard! It still lights up. While I guess I’m a bit embarrassed to say, I’m not all that familiar with her music, I clearly recall choosing her for that billboard, because at the time she was always in the news and popping up on news feeds on my phone - and as I’ve since come to learn, quite a star! She looked like a perfect substitute for the digital billboard in the movie!

My logic here being that as much of the movie’s predicted future didn’t come to light, other weird things did happen - like social media and the relentless imaging of various stars - they’re everywhere, and I still think she fits the role.

I guess it could now be Taylor Swift - she recently played near me at Levi Stadium (Go NIners!) and it was on the news a week before and after! All of it - the shows, how people took transit to get there, and on and on and on!

Why weren’t those darned kids at home building models!?!? :smile: :smile: :smile:

For this update, something of a photo essay of what’s going on and what I want to change or be sure and highlight as this moves ahead.

This photo sums up the intended feel of all of this - grimy inner city and all sorts of life buzzing around the streets. And Tim, regarding your friend and his dust problem…uhh, yeah, the daylight shows areas that still need to be brushed off…and:

And, our big star! there she is front and center! You can’t tell here, but the lights are on.

Also, among the things I want to change - notice the red dashed line on the left…yes, that is backdrop/outside and undetailed. This occurs on all four sides, so also yes, all exterior sides will get some sort of detail.

The images above are two “aerials” one looking down each primary street. The light blue dashed line represents Deckard’s patrol car, the dark blue dashed line, filled with light blue is where Deckard’s backup will be parked, the dashed yellow bubble is where the fugitive’s wrecked car will go, and the dashed orange line with yellow shade is where the fugitives will be standing.

The images above the various background scenes. Many of these areas have lighting (tho not all are turned on here), so when it comes time to take pics of this, I’ll wait until dusk - so it’s a not bright, and the lights will be visible - or so I hope!

As I’ve been rethinking all of this, I think I’m going to pluck this guy from the bar, and use him as the Deckard-esque character - rather than the guy next to the car I have been using, as he looks a bit more like the terminator and, he’s using his phone - I don’t recall Deckard calling in for help -

Finally, no more group of villains - instead these two, representing Roy and Leon:

While Mr Muscles is a bit cartoonish - he is at least evocative of Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer) and the other, characteristically similar to Leon. And clearly not heavily armed bad guys per se.

OK, thanks for having a look -



If you’re doing him as Roy Batty he needs some blonde hair.


Ok, so Nick, I’m gonna throw in my pig skin and call it as I see your present approach. The beauty of this entire project lays in the research of new techniques and the ability to tell a convincing story in 3D, visuals, rigs, figs, etc. This is one heck of a project, more akin to a Hollywood set, so nothing is taken for granted nor nothing left to chance. The research, IMHO, is half the beauty of this “Sport”, so anything you can add later, which you are, can only enhance the final result. don’t ever lock this set up in a closet, never!

Bro, let er Rip. I say! Or, more famously, “Ruck Over, Bby!” This is awesome, carry on! The spark has been lit, let it fly! :wink:

P.S. A mini-cam roaming thru the scene, single frames, when completed, would really set this off.
P.S.S. I think I need to rewatch this flick, get a better perspective of your work.


Outstanding Nick :beer:

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