How to Build a Soccer Stadium Model

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Whether it is a component in a model city or simply a tribute to your favorite team, a model stadium can be rewarding to construct. The myriad nature of football stadiums affords a great deal of scope to the model maker, particularly in modern times when up-and-coming architects have sought to stamp their personal blend of art and architecture onto the structures. One of the most iconic football stadium designs is the traditional "oval bowl" type stadium as seen on the old Wembley Stadium in London or the Olympic Stadium in Munich. Of course, since these stadiums were first constructed, new and very different designs have appeared, all of which provide their own unique challenges to prospective model makers.

Things You'll Need

  • Thick polystyrene, thickness equal to the height of your model
  • Sharp knife with 10 inch blade
  • Felt tip pen
  • Sheet of paper
  • Ruler
  • Craft knife
  • Hacksaw
  • Reference picture of stadium
  • White polysytrene primer
  • Polystyrene putty
  • Gray base coat spray
  • Set of paint brushes
  • Set of acrylic paints

Draw your two-dimensional plans on a large sheet of paper. A football pitch is between 300 and 390 feet in length and between 150 and 300 feet in width. Draw a rectangle on the paper with measurements that fit the parameters given here. If your model stadium has a running track, then draw that around the edge. This is your template for the interior of the stadium.

Cut out the template in an oval shape. Leave an inch or two of clean paper beyond the limits of the running track.

Lay the template on top of your sheet of thick polystyrene foam, and then draw around it with a felt tip pen. Use a long knife to push vertically through the polystyrene to make a hole. Keep the knife straight as your push it through to ensure a straight cut.

Turn the polystyrene sheet on its side, and push a saw blade through the hole. Carefully saw around the oval to cut out the central part of the stadium. Decide how wide you want the concourse and seating area of the stadium to be. In the case of Wembley Stadium in London, the stadium concourse and seating area is as wide as the pitch itself. Draw this as a border around the hole you have just cut out.

Cut out the concourse and seating area with a hacksaw, which will leave you with a large polystyrene oval ring.

Place the ring on a table so that the hole is facing upwards, and measure halfway along the top of the polystyrene. Use the felt tip pen to carefully draw another oval ring dividing the polystyrene into two halves. Use the long knife to push through at an angle from this line to the inside of the ring, about two inches from the bottom of the polystyrene. This does not need to be exact at this point. Continue to cut around the oval at this angle using the hacksaw. This will leave you with a polystyrene ring with a bevelled edge on the the inside, this bevelled edge is where the seating area ramps up to the higher levels.

Cut vertically downwards from the felt tip line at the top of the slope with the sharp knife for a few inches. Then, estimate how far you have cut and cut horizontally inwards on the slope. This will remove a notch of the slope, leaving you with a vertical wall and a horizontal platform at the top of the slope, below the level of the roof.

Cut down from the felt tip line, and then cut horizontally inward, removing the topmost part of the slope until you have gone around the entire ring. Don’t worry if you make a mistake and make a small hole in the polystyrene as this can be filled with putty before painting. Now that you have a ring with a seating area, round off the sharp edges on the stadium roof with the knife. You can also use the knife to carve any arches or other structures you wish to represent on your model by carefully cutting curves and indentations into the polystyrene foam. Look carefully at your reference picture before doing so.

Fill any holes you want to remove from the model with the polystyrene putty.

Spray the entire model with a white polystyrene primer. This prevents the paint from damaging the polystyrene. When this has dried, spray the structure with a basecoat of gray. Use the small paint brush and paints to fill in the detail. This includes individual seats, windows on the outside of the building and any other details. Paint the seats in the colors of the team whose stadium you are trying to represent. Study your reference picture carefully before doing this.

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