Jump to content

Making your own glass display case for individual models and Dioramas

Recommended Posts

a glass covering for your models is far easier to do than most might think, I'll go through the steps on how to using my simple method. Please bear in mind this methos is for glass, not clear plastic, in my view, clear plastic sheet looks terrible after just a short time, with scratches and yellowing.

A glass case does so much for a model, it protects it from little inquisitive fingers, Dust, and worse, a duster, it encapsulates, encompases, a model, protecting the fine details like railings, antenna and other fine fragile details, so lets take a look....

First step, measure your model baseboard in millimeters or centimeters, not both. take the length and width measurements. lets say the model is 100mm long by 50mm wide by 50mm high. Your glass order would be x2 pieces of glass 100mm by 50mm x2 pieces of glass 50mm by 50mm, x1 piece of glass 106mm by 50mm. The last single piece is the lid, 6mm longer than the sides to take account of the end pieces, order 3mm thick glass from your local glass cutter, it's light and thin enough to minimize light distortion through refraction.

 Your glass cutter will produce the glass wrapped up in newspaper, get it home and check for the correct measurements, also check that the cut edges are straight using a steel ruler, return any glass the same day if either of these basic requirements are not met. It always helps to explain to the glass cutter what you want the glass for.



the next step is to trial fit the glass box using masking tape to hold it all together, this is where you double check that the cut edges are square and the mating surfaces meet up. The crucial join is here, and the reason you order the lid 6mm longer than the side, 3mm either end lips over the top of the ends.


Edited by Sprocket
Link to post
Share on other sites

once you are happy that it will all fit together, a light smear the full length of the join so it doesn't squish out and smear over the pane, join it all up using masking tape to hold it while the glass glue sets. I use Serious glue, but any product with glass on it's packaging should do a good job.


leave the glue to dry overnight until it cures, then lower your glass dome over the base to check for fit.

mark out a piece of bottom card using the glass case as a guide, this card is then glued to the bottom of your base board leaving a lip that the glass bottom edge glues to, again, serious glue is great for gluing card to glass. 



make sure any figures or other model items are firmly fixed into the model base, as any falling over items will require you to cut the base card off, sliding a blade between the glass and the cardboard, separating them. its a pain, as you then have to redo the card and cut the original piece flush to the base board. But it does mean that small corrections and repairs are possible.


Edited by Sprocket
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

nice mild weather today,having shelled out £70 on glass for seven cases, I went out to the workshop to glue some together, here are the first two, the front one is for the Liner Queen Elizabeth, Airfix 1/600, the one behind is for the the Revell Trawler.



here's one for the MBT 70


  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 5 months later...

here's a case in point, no pun intended, having a model move around, brought down the Vosper MTB. It has a thick layer of dust gipping the top pane of glass, Mrs S is using a anti bacterial multi surface wet wipe. A layer of dust like that on the intricate, complex delicate and fragile upper surface of a model may well write it off, the glass however wipes of easily and away you go....


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 years later...

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Create New...