Category: On the Bench

WIP : Bandai HGUC RGM-79 GM Pt.3

It’s been a while heh. I always get bogged down in the sanding process but anyhow, finding some spare ball joints in my GM Quel resin kit spurred me to fix the one glaring problem with this project: the broken neck.

The original fix (August 30 entry) I did worked somewhat. The head would fit OK but it can’t tilt nor turn. With the ball joint, it would get back its mobility. For the head, I used a chisel to carefully and slowly scrape of plastic to make space for the female part of the ball joint. Then a healthy amount of super glue is used to fix it in place. Then I drilled a hole in the torso to fit the male part of the ball joint. It’s also fixed into place by super glue.

It has been raining almost everyday so the environment wasn’t condusive for painting. But it’s almost done! Except of course, more things to fix. Sigh. The pic on the right are some of them that require a final fixing before I can proceed. Bring on the sandpaper!

I try to build my kits with ease of painting in mind. So the more the parts that can be taken apart and painted separately the better. But alas, this being a HG kit, this is not possible so I have to settle with at least some masking, which is what I did below with the leg actuator parts.

This being the holiday period, I hope I have enough time to fix all of the problems and at least be ready for decaling by the new year. Heh. Wish…

I am finally onto the decal stages for this one. Although there are still some parts to fix, I decided to decal the ones that are all set.

I don’t really like to add too many decals to my kits. For one thing, it’s distracting to the overall lines of the kit, and for another, I’m a lazy bum who doesn’t like to deal with too many of them.

Because access to Gunze gloss coat is hard here, I decided to popby Ace Hardware to see whether there was an alternative. I found Krylon Preserve it! which was used for paper and photographs. Checking out the label, it says it would work for plastics so what the heck, I decided to try it.

And it actually works better than Gunze gloss! It’s cheaper too by the can! It dries into a very smooth and slippery glossy sheen which I couldn’t achieve with the Gunze-branded one. Nice.

WIP : Bandai HGUC RGM-79 GM Pt.2

I cut up the leg joints up so the lower leg can twist independently from the thighs. I find it gives the GM a better look. The cutting is quite rough so I’ll probably need to do some fixing to make the break in the joint less obvious.

To allow the legs to be pushed further back for a wider leg pose, I added 1mm to the butt plate (for lack of a better word). I then cut a length of paper clip to replace the male part I cut away. I then extended the forearms by 1mm each. 1.5mm makes them look too long. I prefer my mecha looking with longer legs, helps to make them look slimmer.

I tried extending the neck 1mm and dammit, I lost the PC nub for the head. Since I didn’t have my spares with me at the moment, I fashioned a new nub with epoxy putty. Then it’s a matter of sanding down till the head fits. 😛 The head itself I added a hood above the visor. This idea is blatantly stolen from Erix93 heh. I also carved out some of the bottom of the head to give it a nicer shape. The original looks like a helmet to be honest. Lastly, the visor was dipped in Future Floor Polish for a supershine. Can’t really see the effect from the photo though, but rest assured, it’s shiny.

More work done to fix the proportions. The epoxy putty ball to replace the lost PC was carved so the head can fit on it. The visor in the head is now masked to facilitate primer and paint. One last mod is thickeing the top of the shoulders by 1mm. So the shoulders won’t look ‘droopy’.

And I’m now more or less done. Below are before and after pics of the kit. The open palm is from the Cold District GM. The design is different from the GM’s so I’m sure whether I’ll use it the end. For now it’ll have to do.

All that’s left is adding some panel lines to detail up the kit a bit. Then it’s the tedious task of sanding and priming, sanding and priming…

WIP : Bandai HGUC RGM-79 GM Pt.1

My previous RGM-79 was a custom colored work. I decided that since I want to start a GM collection, I’d better have at least one GM in the standard red and white color scheme. So here it is, in all its assembled glory.

For some strange reason, I find that it looks a bit stumpy. It’s actually the same height as the GM Command and Cold Climate Type but it just doesn’t look like it is. Compared to the other GMs, it’s also very retro-looking. So much so that I feel that they end up not looking like they are related MS. So I’m going to do a bit of surgery to hopefully fix that.

I’m going to mod the kit systematically. First up are the feet. I added 1.5mm to the toe area to lengthen them.

Playing around with lineart coloring. As mentioned previously, I’m going to paint this thing in the original red and white color scheme… so I’m limited to just playing around with the color combo. Here’s what I have so far. The first is of course, the default anime-accurate color scheme. Whichever scheme I finally decide on, I’ll probably go for some ‘splinter’ camo with 2 shades of red. Just to break the monotony of the plain-jane color scheme.

Thighs and legs have all been extended by 1.5mm, which now makes the GM look oh-so lithe… which also means compared to the other HGUC GMs, it’s probably much taller :P.

To improve the pose of the GM, I did the same waist mod as I did in my (old) Rick Dias build. Just a simple build up of plastic plates into a slope. I then cut off the male part of the waist on the kit and repositioned it slightly to lean forwards. Then it’s all a matter of slipping on the slope and adding the upper body on top of it.

Next is a holster for the beam spray gun. I didn’t really have idea how it would look like so I just added a plaplate here and there until I got a holster-looking construct. The neat thing about this holster is the beam spray gun is mountable without additional mods needed to be done on the gun itself. It’s also a good fit on the holster. So much so it won’t fall off without aid.

WIP : Bandai HGUC GM Command Pt.2

OK… after 3 straight days of puttying and sanding, I’m finally done and am ready to begin painting the darn thing. Man… I really need to brush up on my construction skills. It will seriously reduce the amount of time I spend on this stage.

I dipped the visor into Future to get a super-gloss (although I must say since it’s so small the effect isn’t as effective as I’d hoped) and masked it carefully.

Right. Painting starts. I’m too much of a preshade slut so it’s no different for this kit. What’s different this time is that I’m trying to avoid using black for all my preshade. For the main body which is a desert sand color, I’m using a dark brown as a preshade. To be honest, I’m not sure whether it will work or not since it kinda didn’t for my last project, the PGM.

For the two thrusters, I use a preshade of black with both gunmetal and silver for the main colors. The interiors of the thrusters are first colored in red. Then I add it a gob of blutack before spraying the outside colors. Saves a lot of time in masking.

I decided to handpaint the Flecktarn camo pattern onto the kit. It just seemed easier that way. I also decided to reduce the original’s 5 colors into 4. [A] First a preshade of black then a light green/grey for the fill color. [B] The orange brown and the dark green come next. [C] And lastly is the dark grey.

The end result looks nothing like Flecktarn. Darn (hey it rhymes!). For one thing, the patterns I did are more patches than the dots that make Flectarn unique. I think the pattern also lost some ‘impression’ with the reduction of one color.

Being handbrushed, the camo itself is also very rough to the touch. I’m letting the paint cure for the night in an air-conditioned room and I plan to lightly sand the surface. Hopefully it’ll do more than just smoothen the surface. 😛

Given another go, I’d definitely take more time to do the camo properly. But Project WOOB’s deadline is coming up real soon so I better just quickly finish this.

All the main colors are done. I would safely say 80% is done as of the end of today. I should be able to finish everything by the end of the week. Here’s hoping.

To ‘meld’ the camo better, I decided to lightly sand the camo with a 4000 grit sandpaper. It does look better. At least, the paintjob looks more even now. Hahaha!

OK… I’m done with the decals. But I didn’t put too many anyways. Too much would have been overkill.

The decal on the shield is silvering abit. Damn cheapass decal sheet. Oh well. Hopefully another layer of gloss coat will reduce the silvering effect. Which I can’t get to right now since it just stopped raining and it’s super humid right now. Big no no for doing gloass coating.

WIP : Hasegawa 1/48 F-16C 414th CTS Pt.1

This kit is part of the ‘US Aggressors groupbuild’. Construction went on quite straightforward although there are some problems here and there. Nothing that putty couldn’t fix though. One particularly annoying part is that I have to putty off the holes under the wings meant for underwing stores. Obviously if I was bulding a normal F-16 loaded with a ton of weapons I wouldn’t be bitching.

As per normal with aircraft kits, the cockpit has to be painted first before further construction could be done. It’s simple matter of grey for the whole cockpit tub, black for the control panels, green for the MFD screens and some drybrushing to bring out the detail of the control surfaces.

I decided that with the F-16’s huge canopy, I needed the ejection seat to be more detailed than what came in the box. So I got hold of a pair of ACES II resin seats from Legends Productions, a Korean resin kit manufacturer. The resin seat comes with molded-on seat belts and is generally much more detailed than the default kit seat.

I colored the seat based on references I got from The Ejection Site. A simple wash with diluted black color and some minor drybrushing is all I need to add depth and bring out the fine details of the seat.

Yep. Been awhile. My mates in the groupbuild has also been bugging me no end hehehe. So anyway, a lot has been done and I’m ready to prime the kit, fix some obvious problems then start painting. Small mistakes can be hidden pretty easily since I’m going to do some weathering. I can’t stand clean aircraft. 😛

I tried out a new method of filling the gaps: liquid paper aka correction fluid. This was suggested by a good friend G-Man from the Plamo Forums. Applying is easy: just whack on a dollup onto the gap. Then I ran a cotton bud with Gunze thinner through it, which thins and softens the liquid paper and makes it flow flush. So it works, I’m just now sure how it will look after priming. We’ll see.

I also added all the major not too fragile parts onto the kit, so I can paint in one shot. I guess in this sense, aircraft kits are actually easier to paint than mecha kits. So anyway, all the tiny sensor bumps and blades are added.

Next came the RWR sensors on the wings. These are the major parts that are missing from the kit which is too bad since they are quite obvious on the real aircraft. A bit of a challenge to scratchbuild them since the RWR sensors have an odd shape. They are pretty small so I decided to just make a general likeness hehe.

Oh bugger. It rained in the morning which ended up being a muggy afternoon which isn’t good for any sort of painting. So I couldn’t do the priming. Sigh…

So the only update here is a small old one. The canopy had a big seamline running down the middle so I scraped it off with a hobby knife and slowly sanded the area with ever finer sandpaper, ending with 400 grit. Then I dipped the canopy into Future floor polish to give it a supershine. To top it off, I carefully masked the canopy with Tamiya masking tape. To attach to the kit, I would use white glue as it dries transparent.

Here’s hoping tomorrow will be a bright sunny day…

Alright! Finally the priming’s done and lo and behold… stuff to fix. Man… when will I learn to be more careful during the construction phase? Brrr…

Here are the spots I found on top of the kit that need further fixing.

Not as many problems as I’ve foreseen, but still… it ain’t perfect. Oh well. There were also some problems at the bottom of the kit. During construction, I paid more attention to the top of kit since that’s what everyone will see first (hardly anyone will purposely flip the kit and look at the bottom) so there are actually a lot more problems to fix. However, since it is the bottom afterall, I decided to just fix the major ones hehehe…

The good news in all this is that the RWR sensors turned out very nice and I don’t have to make any further changes to them. Score!

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