Little Armory M870MCS

November 8, 2017 at 21:09 | Posted in Little Armory | 1 Comment
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Little Armory M870 shotgun

The M870MCS is the second shotgun kit for Little Armory, after the AA-12. What’s unique about this kit is that you can build 3 variations of the shotgun. Each has different barrel lengths and buttstocks. The MCS stands for Modular Combat Shotgun and as the name implies, you can more or less mix and match the parts.

As you can see, the kit doesn’t come with any extras once everything is assembled.

All the parts came on black plastic runners and so to avoid them arr rook same, I painted them differently using variations of olive green, german gray and steel.

Here’s a size comparison:

And closeup shots:

And action shots:

Final thoughts:
Design-wise there’s nothing much to say. The M870 is the quintessential image of what a shotgun looks like.
I have a mostly positive impression about this kit. First of all, you can build 3 complete shotguns in a single kit. The pistol grips are a nice touch, making them easy to hold in both Mr Skeleton & the GM.
And the M870 looks much better on HG kits than Kotobukiya MSG’s oversized shotgun. Probably the only downside is the lack of extras.

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Little Armory AA-12

October 30, 2017 at 22:07 | Posted in Little Armory | 2 Comments
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Little Armory AA-12 shotgun

The AA-12 is a fully automatic shotgun, and the first shotgun for the Little Armory series. I can’t remember seeing the AA-12 in any movies, except maybe in 2010’s Predators.

Anyway, the kit comes with two types of barrels, a forward grip with flashlight, a standard magazine, a drum magazine and a couple of shotgun shells. The drum mag has a back cover made of clear plastic.

Since the design was rather bland, I decided to give the AA-12 a camo paintjob. First I sprayed navy blue as the base layer. Then I applied some camo patterns using Mr Masking Sol. The applicator brush was too big, so I used a toothpick to apply the camo patterns. Then I sprayed German Gray over it. The barrels were painted with silver. I also hand painted the shells with enamel paints, but I left them on the runner.

Here’s the size comparison with the M870 shotgun (coming up next).

And now some detail shots:

And action poses:

 

Final thoughts:
Superficially, the design of the AA-12 may look quite basic, but at the same time quite unique. Most people would probably recognize it just by its silhouette.
The kit itself is well detailed, complete with debossed text on the buttstock & magazine. There’s plenty of swappable parts too. The clear plastic on the drum mag was also a nice touch.
And it fits the hands of Mr Skeleton and the GM, so posing it was no problem at all. So overall, the AA-12 is a pretty solid kit.

HG 00 Gundam 10th Anniversary colors

October 10, 2017 at 21:47 | Posted in 1/144 scale | Leave a comment
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Introduction:

The main reason I bought this HG 00 Gundam kit was to pair it with the XN Raiser kit that came with a copy of Hobby Japan. That was many years ago, but recently I came across some images of the 10th anniversary edition, which is basically a reissue of the HG 00 kit with white, baby blue and mint green colors.
For some reason I was quite drawn to that color scheme and so I decided to recreate it for this project.

Materials & methods:

For starters, I downloaded a front & back image of the 10th anniversary version for reference. Compared to the HG kit, there are some differences, shown below. Obviously there’s other differences, but I only highlight the changes that I made.


To make it look closer to the reference image, I added some notches at various locations using a 1mm wide chisel.
I made the v-fins on the head and chest thinner and more pointy by scraping them with a hobby blade. I added some additional panel lines on the backpack and shoulders.
To add more details to the GN drives, used a combination of clear parts, U-verneirs and Hasegawa’s clear green finish stickers, like so:

For painting, the main colors are white, baby blue (white + cobalt blue), mint green (pearl green + white) & yellow. The pearl green paint was actually decanted from a spray can.
Instead of decals, the white stripes on the chest and shoulders were actually painted on. First I painted the whole part with white, then masked the appropriate patterns using 2mm masking tape. On top of that I sprayed the baby blue paint.
Speaking of masking, there were many other parts that required it. Notably the v-fin, face and lower legs.
For the bladed weapon, I sprayed a bit of pearl white on it (also decanted from spray can). For the clear parts, I hand painted clear enamel paints on them and for panel lining I used German Grey enamel paint.
Decals were kept to a minimum, and I applied Hasegawa Mirror finish sheet on the side of the head, elbows, wrists and knees. And finally instead of the usual flat topcoat, I used semi gloss topcoat.

Results:

Now for some action poses:

For a HG kit, I’m quite impressed by the level of articulation. It can handle a slav squat pretty decently. The kit comes with 2 beam sabres that are placed in a rather unfortunate position. No clear beam parts were included but I had plenty of spares.

Discussion:

Out of the box, the HG 00 Gundam has nice proportions and impressive range of movement on the joints. I was particularly impressed with the ankle joints.
What it lacks is good parts separation, hence the substantial amount of masking required during painting. The standard weapons were kinda boring as well. That somewhat limited the action poses that I can do with it.

For this project, it was a nice change to try out different color schemes. It’s also quite refreshing to do a clean build instead of my usual lightly-weathered, dirty builds.

Anyway, happy 10th anniversary 00 Gundam.

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