Ice Station Zebra - Under the ice scenes model filming setup?

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  • jphatton
    Lieutenant
    • Jan 2021
    • 84

    Ice Station Zebra - Under the ice scenes model filming setup?

    Hi Everyone,

    One of my favorite films when I was growing up was Ice Station Zebra.

    Nominated for an Academy award for special effects in 1968. The nuclear submarine miniature is modeled on a "Skate" class submar...


    I particularly enjoyed the scenes of the fictional USS Tigerfish navigating its way under the ice.

    Does anybody know how the under the ice model filming set up was done?
  • redboat219
    Admiral
    • Dec 2008
    • 2881

    #2
    Same model used in Grey Lady Down http://www.modelshipsinthecinema.com...down-1978.html
    Make it simple, make strong, make it work!

    Comment

    • Das Boot
      Rear Admiral
      • Dec 2019
      • 1178

      #3
      I’ve looked for years for set pictures and under the ice FX shots to no avail. I guess the sets are long destroyed and pictures non existent.
      Of the 40,000 men who served on German submarines, 30,000 never returned.”

      Comment

      • Alucard
        Lieutenant Commander
        • Aug 2023
        • 105

        #4
        Thank you for posting Model Ships in cinema link.
        I love looking at it.

        Comment

        • jphatton
          Lieutenant
          • Jan 2021
          • 84

          #5
          Originally posted by redboat219
          Thanks for the link on the reuse of the same Skate class model in Grey Lady Down.

          In the meantime I also found this webpage giving some details of the special effects in Ice Station Zebra, which notes that a 10ft model was used in a water tank.

          Director John Sturges was not flying quite as high as when he had greenlit The Satan Bug. Since then two films had flopped – big-budget 70mm western The Hallelujah Trail (1965) and Hour of th…

          Comment

          • QuarterMaster
            Rear Admiral
            • Sep 2015
            • 1206

            #6
            Great topic.

            This movie doesn't get the attention it deserves. It's the recruitment movie that led me to volunteer for the Silent Service.

            The TIGERFISH is on my list of builds. So the bigger question here...

            How do we simulate an ice pack for RC Submarine operation at SubFest? Including surfacing Hopefully we won't need to go as far as what Cdr. James Ferraday said, "We'll see how Torpex and ice mix."

            Click image for larger version

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            v/r "Sub" Ed

            Silent Service "Cold War" Veteran (The good years!)
            NEVER underestimate the power of a Sailor who served aboard a submarine.
            USS ULYSSES S GRANT-USS SHARK-USS NAUTILUS-USS KEY WEST-USS BLUEBACK-USS PATRICK HENRY-K432-U25-SSRN SEAVIEW-PROTEUS-NAUTILUS

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            • trout
              Admiral
              • Jul 2011
              • 3559

              #7
              I know in some movies, the ice covered pond is paraffin wax, like Arnold in True Lies as he was in dry suit in the opening scenes.
              If you can cut, drill, saw, hit things and swear a lot, you're well on the way to building a working model sub.

              Comment

              • Das Boot
                Rear Admiral
                • Dec 2019
                • 1178

                #8
                Originally posted by QuarterMaster
                Great topic.

                This movie doesn't get the attention it deserves. It's the recruitment movie that led me to volunteer for the Silent Service.

                The TIGERFISH is on my list of builds. So the bigger question here...

                How do we simulate an ice pack for RC Submarine operation at SubFest? Including surfacing Hopefully we won't need to go as far as what Cdr. James Ferraday said, "We'll see how Torpex and ice mix."

                Click image for larger version

Name:	PXL_20230806_151112102.jpg
Views:	249
Size:	87.0 KB
ID:	173577

                Click image for larger version

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Views:	235
Size:	82.6 KB
ID:	173578
                The SKATE is my favorite boat. Always wanted one for RC, but it never came to be.
                Of the 40,000 men who served on German submarines, 30,000 never returned.”

                Comment

                • JHapprich
                  Captain
                  • Oct 2017
                  • 737

                  #9
                  What is THIS cool model!? Scratchbuild SKATE? More about it!

                  Comment

                  • QuarterMaster
                    Rear Admiral
                    • Sep 2015
                    • 1206

                    #10
                    Originally posted by JHapprich
                    What is THIS cool model!? Scratchbuild SKATE? More about it!
                    Apparently it was a limited 1:72 scale run (5?) by some dude living in the land down under.



                    v/r "Sub" Ed

                    Silent Service "Cold War" Veteran (The good years!)
                    NEVER underestimate the power of a Sailor who served aboard a submarine.
                    USS ULYSSES S GRANT-USS SHARK-USS NAUTILUS-USS KEY WEST-USS BLUEBACK-USS PATRICK HENRY-K432-U25-SSRN SEAVIEW-PROTEUS-NAUTILUS

                    Comment

                    • QuarterMaster
                      Rear Admiral
                      • Sep 2015
                      • 1206

                      #11
                      Originally posted by Das Boot

                      The SKATE is my favorite boat. Always wanted one for RC, but it never came to be.
                      I do hear ya Casey. Need to keep bothering Bob about kicking Randy to do the SKATE Class. NOTHING beats the look of an early US Nuke.
                      v/r "Sub" Ed

                      Silent Service "Cold War" Veteran (The good years!)
                      NEVER underestimate the power of a Sailor who served aboard a submarine.
                      USS ULYSSES S GRANT-USS SHARK-USS NAUTILUS-USS KEY WEST-USS BLUEBACK-USS PATRICK HENRY-K432-U25-SSRN SEAVIEW-PROTEUS-NAUTILUS

                      Comment

                      • wlambing
                        Commander
                        • Nov 2020
                        • 298

                        #12
                        That might be a 1:48 scale by Garry Gray of Australia. It looks an awful lot like the 3-piece hull one that is sitting in my man-cave. It was Bob Harris' and I am going to try to get her up and running. Bob was adding the 1980s-90s configuration details and left a butt-ton of reference material! The superstructure is in 2 pieces, with the main deck super-imposed onto the rounded upper hull casing. Makes for an interesting challenge to do fully functional bow planes!

                        Comment

                        • QuarterMaster
                          Rear Admiral
                          • Sep 2015
                          • 1206

                          #13
                          Originally posted by wlambing
                          That might be a 1:48 scale by Garry Gray of Australia. It looks an awful lot like the 3-piece hull one that is sitting in my man-cave. It was Bob Harris' and I am going to try to get her up and running. Bob was adding the 1980s-90s configuration details and left a butt-ton of reference material! The superstructure is in 2 pieces, with the main deck super-imposed onto the rounded upper hull casing. Makes for an interesting challenge to do fully functional bow planes!
                          SHAME ON YOU COB!!

                          I WANTED THAT BOAT!! I asked you what was happening with it after Bob's passing! I wanted to see it got a good home (ME!)

                          You'll suffice (only cuz I like you.)

                          Yes, I think it's the same boat, but check your length. Mine comes in at ~50-3/8". SKATE Class comes in at 267 ft 7 in.

                          Doing the math...

                          267' 7" is 3211" [12(267)+7)]

                          3211/50.375=63.74 (~1/64 scale)

                          Double check the math....

                          50.375"=4.1979166666667'

                          267.58333333/4.1979166666667=63.74

                          So I was wrong, I'm at 1:64 scale.

                          What do you measure?

                          Ed

                          PS, She's a BEAUTIFUL girl! I really am glad you have her and she did not end up in some one's attic or closet. Bob did some amazingly authentic work. Was she her Qual Boat? I would have NOT have "TIGERFISHed" her.
                          Last edited by QuarterMaster; 09-16-2023, 12:34 PM.
                          v/r "Sub" Ed

                          Silent Service "Cold War" Veteran (The good years!)
                          NEVER underestimate the power of a Sailor who served aboard a submarine.
                          USS ULYSSES S GRANT-USS SHARK-USS NAUTILUS-USS KEY WEST-USS BLUEBACK-USS PATRICK HENRY-K432-U25-SSRN SEAVIEW-PROTEUS-NAUTILUS

                          Comment

                          • wlambing
                            Commander
                            • Nov 2020
                            • 298

                            #14
                            Bob started his Navy career as a skimmer ST then went Subs. I believe he qualified on Gudgeon and spent time on Albacore, too. Somewhere he got into the ST part of the spook world and did a bunch of work on the Pacific "Blind Man's Bluff" mentioned units. Many. many spec op installs under his belt!

                            Now your gonna force me to get my tape measure out!! I do know she's very close to the same length as the 1/72 Fletcher that's sitting right beside her. Will let you know. :)

                            Comment

                            • Albacore 569
                              Commander
                              • Sep 2020
                              • 360

                              #15
                              One of the biggest regrets in my life was many many years ago selling my 1/48 Skate fiberglass resin hull built my Garry Gray in Australia. I was forced to sell it to someone back east (Quartermaster'?) to help pay my mortgage that time despite a A hole alcoholic boss then. It was never completed, fine, but I am building again, my Mortgage is now paid off, boss has drunk himself to death hopefully, I am retired and I'd like to buy it back if anyone knows where it is? Who has it. Some estate sale? Quatermaster, if you - I'd like to bring her home and finish her please.

                              Painful to think about it. Here are some Hi res images from Ice Station Zebra. The under the ice scnes are my fvorite too. I can grab more off the film if you need. Just tell me.

                              Thank you.Click image for larger version  Name:	7Njcmyi.jpg Views:	0 Size:	73.8 KB ID:	173913Click image for larger version  Name:	NpQ8JfK.jpg Views:	0 Size:	82.6 KB ID:	173914Click image for larger version  Name:	4q57h3W.jpg Views:	0 Size:	60.1 KB ID:	173915

                              Steve​

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