Greater New Orleans, Louisiana Area Model Maker

© 2015-2019 by Rieth Creations llc.

June 7, 2019

This diorama is my tribute to the brave men that fought the Battle of Midway June 4-7, 1942. The battle became a pivotal turning point of World War II.

I based my diorama scene on the after-action report of Ensign Albert K. Earnest. Not only did I try to recreate the battle damage to the TBF-1 Avenger aircraft, but I also depicted the injuries to the crew. The Naval Aviator, Ens. Earnest, had his right cheek and neck cut by shrapnel. The turret gunner, AMM3/c Jay D. Manning, was mortally wounded and the radioman, RM2/2c Harry H. Ferrier, was knocked unconscious.

The hydraulic system was hit, which caused the tail wheel to drop, making the stinger machine gun useless. The cables to the elevator were severed, causing the TBF to lose altitude. The pilot dropped his torpedo at the nearest ship, a light cruiser or destroyer, to try to lose weight. He used the trim tabs to level off and was able to crash land at Midway Island, when the right landing gear didn’t lower.

I installed a small electr...

May 31, 2019

This photo was the inspiration for creating the diorama using the 1/48th scale Kitty Hawk F2H-2/2P Banshee with my Rieth Creations Resin Correction Set.

I found it a very interesting juxtaposition ("primitive" to 1950s modern), how the men were working to strip and clean the 20mm cannons, propped up on ammo cans, on the deck of the aircraft carrier, out in the elements of winter, off the coast of South Korea.

Years ago, I had bought the Tamiya WWII U.S. Navy Pilots with Mototug. I always thought it was implausible to have a mission briefing on the deck of the aircraft carrier and not in the Ready Room, so I put it in the stash. For this scene, I had to modify the Naval Aviators, which were wearing WW2 tropical flight suits and "Mae West" life vests, and make them Korean War Aviation Ordnancemen in winter clothes and repositioned their arms.

I built the mototug, painted it yellow and weathered it, as I had seen in newsreel footage. I added the black non-slip areas from a Testors mylar sand...

April 26, 2019

I was looking for a “pick me up” and coincidentally I needed a 1/48th scale pick-up truck bed for this model project I’m working on. Scratch building is relaxing and is a feel good “pick me up” when the tiny pieces come together with a satisfying result.

I do a lot of online research when model making and so I found a drawing with measurements for a 1940 Ford pick-up truck that would do the trick. I created CAD drawings and laser cut the parts. The fenders, cut from .25” basswood, were sanded to the proper shape, but had to be hollow, so I vac-u-formed two fenders from .010” sheet styrene.

I created the impression of stamped sides and tailgate by sandwiching 3 pieces of sheet styrene, one with the “hole”, one solid and the outer one with the inside of the “hole”.

Some .047” styrene rod, laser cut pieces (for the stake side post holders?) and the end result is a bed for a 1939 Ford pick-up truck.

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I built my first model when I was 6 years old. Unbeknownst to me, the kit box had been opened and the instruction sheet and decals were missing. It didn't matter. I had to have a model of the jet that flew over my house as it approached for landing at the Naval Air Station. I built it and painted the markings using the raised decal locator lines. It was messy, but it was mine. And I have had a passion for model making and thinking "Outside the box" ever since.

I was influenced by the film, Star Wars. I liked movies and I liked model building. I had to find a way to combine both into a career. I worked my way through college as a self-employed professional model maker, building architectural and engineering models.

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