Instant ponds and magic water review


Ok, here is a long winded explanation of what I am going to do!

Over the next few weeks I an going to create a diorama that will fill 2 of my needs. The first is to have a diorama that uses as many of the products I sell as possible (within reason, LOL) This will be taken to train shows that I am a vendor. The second will be to make this diorama so that it will fit into my layout when I am not at shows, and act as an access panel.
So I will not only have an important part of my layout, but be able to do product reviews and tutorials along the way conserning the products I used. WARNING! this will be a very lengthy project, and picture intense!
Here is my start:
One (free) 8' x 2' x 1" foam board
One ($10.00) Instant pond by Unrealdetails
One ($29.95) kit of Magic Water
Two bottles of Acrylic paint ($1.00 each)

Total investment to date : $41.95
The products!


Stay tuned folks!

Last edited by a moderator:
Ok, I have cut the foam board into 2 = 2' x 2' Pcs. and set in the template


Next I cut out the template.


And glued the 2 pcs. of foam and the pond in place with caulking!


Thats all for tonight folks, tomorrow I will start to paint the base of the pond when it is dry! So far 1/2 hour time.

Last edited by a moderator:
Today I painted the pond with the first base coat of acrylic blue paint. It will need a few coats to get the right color for depth. The other thing I have tried was to sprinkle some sand in the wet paint to give the base some texture.

well the base paint coats are done, and drying. Tommorow night I will start to glue the rocks and reeds, etc... So far the product has been amazingly simple to work with. The only limitation is that you are stuck with a limited size. They are only manufactured in 3 sizes and this one is 14"x9"



The total time so far has been 3 hours


I have been working on the pond adding some of the scenery. I have used the "Building Blocks" I sell for a brick paver effect behind the house.
Also have started to add some weeds and rocks to the pond. The beach area is in place, and as soon as I build the dock for the marina I will be able to pour the "Magic Water"


Total time invested is 4 1/2 hours
Total cost to date $45.00
Magic Water is awfully expensive, don't you think? I personally will still with Woodland Scenics Realistic Water for now...
We tryed an item I use at work made by 3M, its used for blocking air in telephone cables. (Blocking ompund) It comes in a 2 part bag that you split the seam, mix by neading the bag, snip off a corner and squeeze out. It wicks up the sides like real water...even give some flow lines and great reflexions...and so far (knock on wood) dust hasn't dulled it...we had club members from different states at last show all asking what we used and how we got the effect,,...They were amazed when I said all I did was poured it and it turned out that way...It has a green tint to it already so base painting is easy....and pours like syurp...sets up in less than an hour. So if you have any phone company friends it might save ya some $$$ Can see a pic in my gallery One where East Broad Top is crossing Aughwick Creek
Diorama update

I have put down the parking lot, built a dock, and layed the foundation for the marina/store. Next will try the "MAGIC WATER"


I also used the "BUILDING BLOCKS" that I sell as a retaining wall


Total time so far approx 8 hrs.
Total cost so far $76.00

Last edited by a moderator:
Magic Water!

Just out of curiosity, why do you say it's better than Realistic Water? :confused:

There is very little chance of error with the magic water, just mix and pour.
It also seems to hold up better in the long run, it does not crack even when moved as a display, and does not yellow or dis-color. I just found it to be a simple to use product.
Yes, it may be a little expensive, but how many people have wasted money trying to make a pond only to have to do it over. ( I know of one experienced
modeler from another forum that has had a nightmare with ponds until he tried magic water)

Looks good - I wonder how much it would cost if you tried to buy it? :confused:

I am not sure on the price...have to shop around...I did a search on 3M site and it list state by state where to buy..But have to find a dealer that sells in small quanity and not to companies..(or a phone company employee:rolleyes: ) As long as your not making an ocean he maybe able to hook you up!
This shot might show more of the water details...we painted the edge green and a black strip to the center...this is only 1/8-1/4 inch deep!
Here`s The Water!

Well the water is poured, the canoe`s are in place and the birds are too!

Last edited by a moderator:

Almost done! Just need to add the figures and other small details! There are 12 birds in this diorama, can you find them?




Last edited by a moderator:
Why color blue?

Hello David,

First my compliments:) for making this thread and of course your colorful diorama!!

I hope I am not to impolite but I have to ask you this: Why do you use the color blue by immitating the water in that pond?
I have never seen a pond filt with cristal clear blue water in it. Exept in very cold / very hot areas: temp is so low /high that even in water there is (almost ) no life in it.
If you look carafully into a pond with water that is not streaming, mostly it's quit a mass in that pond: the only thing that shows that it is water is because it reflects. And if it is deep(dark!) enough only than it is almost like a mirror wich reflects the blue sky! ( and of course no wind...:) )

Jos, Here in the frozen tundra of Canada brilliant blue lakes are not uncommon. Also, this will be used as a display for products I sell such as the preformed pond, the blocks and MAGIC WATER. So, I wanted it to be clean looking for the people to see at train shows. The swamp on my layout is more life like as it is murky!


I >was< good in geographie

Hello David,

At "Hihgschool" I was one of the best in my class in geography! But this time my memory did left me:confused: for a short time! It's starting to get "common"when you are almost 50:D :D till a looked your profile .Also my father went, during the 80-ies last century, many times to Canada and he visited Ontario and Quebec a lot!" So I thought :I had to know!?
Now when I think back I remember the pictures and super8 films he took:)
(sweet memories)The many lakes and muskito's!!:D :D my father told of
So I do now know why (and where:) ) that icy blue color:) !!
Next time David I have to get/read more information before I repley, hope you did not mind?