Making a British Victorian Era canteen (1/32 scale)

I thought some of you might be interested to see the step-by-step process I used to make a British Victorian Era canteen so I took a number of photos during the process when I made one a little while ago.  This style of canteen is a bit of a pain to make and time consuming so I am going to have some castings done to avoid this on future subjects I make which require this style of canteen.


Some of the photos haven't come out brilliantly, being either over-exposed, slightly out of focus (some even both of these things!) but I hope that they nevertheless give you a clear idea of the process I used.


The actual size of the canteen is pretty small, a diameter of only a few millimeters.  For reference and accurate dimensions to scale down from, I used the excelent reference I've mentioned in an earlier update, Soldier's Accoutrements of the British Army a750-1900 by Pierre Turner.

Ends of the cylinder cut off using a fine saw to just slightly larger width than required to allow for sanding to correct basic shape.

Smoothing and final adjustment to basic shape using a soft style sanding file.

Basic cylindrical shape in approximately the required diameter fashioned from my usual putty mixture.

Update # 46 - 21st March 2016

For the outer bracing bands, first a thin string of putty was added around the canteen shape close to the outer edge, leaving a slight gap visible.

After completion of the side-panel recess procedure.

Slight recess very carefully created to each side of the canteen using a rounded scalpel blade held between the finger and thumb.   Since the canteen shape is so small I used some blu-tac to hold it with.  (Note the photos have been deliberately posed and when actually performing this task the shape was closer to the block for a more secure holding position.

The thin string of putty was then gently flattened onto the rim of the canteen using the side of a rubber tipped sculpting tool.  The rubber tip was kept moistened to prevent sticking and pulling the putty away from the canteen.

A rounded scalpel blade was then used to clean up the edge of the band and achieve the desired width.  After allowing this to cure the process was repeated for the band on the other side.

Once both bands were applied and cured, the flat edge of a fresh scalpel blade was carefully scraped over the bands to reduce the thickness and make it consistent for both bands around the canteen.

The same process was used to add a section of the shoulder strap to the lower part of the canteen.

The impression of woodgrain was achieved on the side panels by gently inscribing with the tip of a rounded scalpel blade.

Finally, the stopper and holding loops for the shoulder strap (I'm sure there must be a technical term for these) we added.  A thin string will need to be added to the stopper but I will add these individually to a cast copy when being used.  Same for the remainder of the shoulder strap which I usually measure and attach to the canteen prior to painting it.

So if you made it this far and are reading this I really hope you found this workbench update interesting and informative.  If that's the case and you've enjoyed checking out my workbench updates over the last year, I'd be most appreciative if you can spread the word about my website and workbench blog among your modelling buddies to help me reach as many modellers as possible.  Thanks as always!