For Plamo’s annual WOOB competition, the theme this year is Do You Remember Macross. I’ve been honored to be asked to be a judge apparently because Iâ€™m a Macross fanboy haha!
I actually have two other ongoing WIPs that can be considered for WOOB, but what the heck, I decided to add another one. 🙂 Any excuse to take another kit out of my stash. This one is Hasegawa’s VF-0C Phoenix. None of them will be eligible for any prizes of course.
This time I’m trying something different. I’m building as many subassemblies as possible and then painting all of them in one shot. Let’s see how that goes. With this approach, I got quite a bit of construction done in 2.5 hours.
Ejection seat. Made up of 3 parts. No belts but it will be covered by the pilot.
Pilot. Interestingly, the box comes with 2 of these. 2 seats too. Guess they didn’t bother to rebox from the VF-0D release.
Cockpit. I decided to cement this down to the lower fuselage upfront.
Gun and arms. Simple affairs but ugly seamlines abound.
Head. Half of the head will be hidden but it’s nice they included the whole thing.
Upper fuselage. I deviated from the instructions which call for the nose and rear fuselage to be first assembled separately before joining together. My way will allow me to reduce the chances of a step or gap on the joint between the nose and rear fuselage.
Stores. The kit gave me options for the underwing weapons. I decided to go with the HAIM-95A (which look like external fuel tanks) and keep the GH-28A rocket pods for another VF-0. Besides, there will already be a pair of GH-28s overwing.
Wings. These are big delta-wings with all the flaps and slats already attached. Would have been cool if they were separate though. I also added the weapons pylons here.
Front landing gear. I model all Macross fighters with their gear up but it’s clear Hasegawa intended for the landing gear to be posed down so some work needs to be done to close them up properly. Lots of wrestling with parts and sanding down for them to fit semi-properly here. Definitely needs some cleanup later.
One last look before sealing the canopy! First up I hand painted the cockpit sills with black grey and instrument coaming US grey. Both are given a black wash and lightly drybrushed to pop the details.
I dipped the canopy in Future then cemented it to the kit. In addition to the super shine, the Future actually prevents the cement from fogging the canopy. Then I had to mask the frame. I used a combination of masking tape and liquid mask for this because of the odd shapes.
After this I painted the canopy frame in black grey so the main color won’t show through when I paint the main fuselage color.
Cockpit done! First up, an overall coat of Vallejo US Grey. Then Black Grey for the stripe on the bang seat and an overall wash of the same color to add depth.
The same was done on the control panels but they ended up still looking quite bare. Besides, it’s supposed to be inflight so naturally the instruments will be lit. So I added the decals which really ‘pops’ the cockpit. The decals are thicker than usual and required a lot of Gunze Mark Softer to settle down. I’m glad I’m not going to touch this anymore.
Next up, the pilot. Straight assembly and trimming of the seamlines around the pilot before a coat of US Grey as a basecoat. Prussian Blue next for the flight suit. For the yellow bits, I first added white. I kept the chest rig in grey to add some ‘contrast’. Then it’s yellow for the helmet and uniform. The visor itself is Tamiya Clear Green.
I then touched up parts that had paint overruns and to add some depth, I added a wash of black grey but it’s not very obvious. At its scale, I think it wasn’t necessary. Heh. Then it’s a final fit into the cockpit for the results. Not too shabby.
Next, sealing up the cockpit and masking the canopy.
Progress slow (as usual) but basic construction done.
First up though, is to do the landing gear in the up position. I cut out the support beams on the gear doors and then I used some blu-tack as support for the doors to make sure they donâ€™t fall into the bays.
The rear landing gear was much easier to do, since they only have one door. The other subassemblies are then quickly put together. Basic construction is now all done.
Like all of their Macross series kits, Hasegawa engineered the kit to be done up in pretty straightforward subassemblies. I decided to do them up as much as possible before the painting process.
As usual, we begin with the cockpit. It’s quite sparse but should be OK with the pilot figure in it.
Next up, the (really) big fuselage. The engineering for this kit is abit odd. The top is fine. But the bottom is designed like a shell, with all the details in stage 1 (see below) being covered CFTs (stage 2) and integrated weapon pods (stage 3).
After the fuselage is done, I notice a huge gap at the back of it which is odd. I think what becomes the bottom plate here is the shield when the VF-22S is in Battroid mode.
I decided not to follow the instructions where you have to assemble the front section separately. I figure the fit would be better if I cemented the upper portion of the front section to the fuselage first, then fit the bottom portion. If there are any gaps or misalignment, at least it would appear at the bottom of the kit, easier to ignore. 😛