1978 Ferrari Formula 1 Diorama

A Ferrari 312T3 crashes into a cement wall during a 1978 Formula 1 Grand Prix

by Dave Freeman


The Ferrari 312T3 was introduced for 1978 Formula 1 season to be driven by Villeneuve and Reutemann. It was much cleaner aerodynamically, and the flat 12 engine was tuned to give around 515bhp. A switch to Michelin tyres meant a redesign of the suspension was necessary. All the hard work came to nothing though as the pioneering Lotus 79 ground effect "wing car" took on and beat all comers with ease that season, and Ferrari were left to pick up the pieces of any Lotus failures. Reutemann won 4 races, whilst Villeneuve won for the first time at the final race, his home race in Canada, but it was more a season of consolidation. Reutemann moved to Lotus for 1979, replaced by Jody Scheckter. Ferrari was only 3rd in the Constructors Championship.

Creating the Diorama

The track in this case is framing mat.  The track curb is carved out of balsa and alternate pieces painted yellow or black.  The grass is commercial product normally used for rail setups. The wall is foamcore bent into shape then glued, with the advertising signs being created by scanning logos or downloading the logo’s from the Internet then printing them on a colour printer.  The soil behind the wall is a cardboard product normally used to create texture for hand made greeting cards painted sand colour.

The car is a 1/20th scale Tamiya kit that I first built over 20 years ago.  Due to being carted around Australia on numerous Air Force postings, the model was quite damaged, with one front wheel broken off. I have painted the model in a couple of areas to (mainly the green) to cover some scratches, as well as removing any driver names or identification on purpose.



  • The Grand Prix Who’s Who (Second Edition) – Steve Small, Guinness Publishing
  • Grand Prix Fascination Formula 1 – Rainer Schlegelmilch, Konemann Publishing
  • Ferrari Formula One – Rainer Schlegelmilch, Konemann Publishing
  • The complete Encyclopedia of Formula One, Bruce Jones, Carlton Publishing

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