HGUC Zeta Plus

December 8, 2014 at 14:25 | Posted in 1/144 scale | 1 Comment
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Introduction:

The Zeta Plus is one of my favorite designs when it comes to transforming mobile suits. It immediately went to my shopping list when the HGUC version was announced. However, it took a while before I finally got my hands on it. This was because Bandai recalled the first batch due to ‘defective molds’ which involved the crotch armor and vulcans on the side of the head.

Once it arrived, I began to ponder which color scheme to paint it. In the end I decided to mimic the blue color scheme and decal styling of the GFF Zeta Plus.

Materials & Methods:

Since this is just a repainting project, I didn’t do any major modifications to the kit. However I added some details which include ‘support beams’ on the inside of the back skirt and the back of the neck.

The kit comes with three hands: one right hand for holding the beam rifle and a pair of hands for holding the beam sabres. I added a pair of fists and a left hand from my spare GM parts.

Even though the kit already includes a beam rifle, I decided to arm it with the beam cannon from HGUC Ex-S Sentinel (parts from Yellow Submarine). I originally intended to use the beam cannon with my RG GP-01 kit, but I have new plans for it. After fixing the seam line on the forearms, head and weapons, I sprayed all parts with grey surfacer.

Here are the color schemes I used for painting (note the ratios are only a rough estimate). The parts marked with an asterisk were airbrushed. The rest were painted with spray cans.

  • Body*: Off White (~80%) + Character Flesh (from spray can, ~15%) + a few drops of orange-yellow
  • Blue parts*: 1st layer (Intermediate Blue 100%); 2nd layer (Cobalt Blue 100%)
  • Joints, hands: Germany gray
  • Feet: Dark Gray (1)
  • Weapons: stock beam rifle (MS Gray); Sentinel beam cannon (German Gray, Gunmetal)

To create the mosaic pattern for the blue parts, I first sprayed the 1st layer (intermediate blue). Then I masked the parts with masking tape to create squarish patterns and then sprayed the 2nd layer (Cobalt Blue). After that comes decals & panel lining. I didn’t add any weathering effects this time.

Results:

Here is the waverider mode:

And finally some action shots:

Discussion:

I have mostly good things to say about this HGUC Zeta Plus kit. First of all, the proportions are almost perfect; very close to the MG version. Another thing I like about this kit is the sturdiness. The transformation mechanism involves swapping parts, and as a result, the kit feels a lot more solid (compared to the RG Zeta). The parts separation is also very good, making the painting process a breeze.

The few grievances I have about this kit is the limited articulation. The waist joint can only turn a few degrees whereas the cannons on the side of the thighs can limit leg movement. I’m also a bit disappointed that it doesn’t come with landing gears for the waverider mode. As a result, you can only pose the waverider mode with a stand. In case you’re wondering, the stand I use in the photos was from my HG Gouf Ignited kit.

The most satisfying part for this build was when I peeled away the masking tape and knowing I hadn’t messed up the paint job. Getting the decals to mimic the GFF or ver.Ka style was also satisfying. I only wished I had decals for ‘Karaba Air Force’. But generally, this is a very good kit and worth getting if you’re a fan of the Zeta (or Sentinel) series.

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  1. Master piece!


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