Tallgeese (Endless Waltz)

July 30, 2013 at 23:37 | Posted in Master Grade | 10 Comments
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Introduction:

The thing about Gundam Wing is that there’s too many overpowered Gundams in it (also applies to SEED). So the Tallgeese comes as a breath of fresh air, with its Trojan helmet and fat thighs. I already have the old 1/100 scale kit still in its box, but I went ahead and purchased the MG version regardless. I felt that the color scheme looks good as it is, so I decided to do what I did to the MG Heavyarms: paint the innerframe and apply weathering effects on the unpainted outer armor.

Materials & Methods:

I snap fitted the inner frame first, and put aside the rest of the outer armor. The inner frame was mostly of a monotonous grey tone, so I decided to paint it in different shades of grey: German Grey, Zeon MS Gray & Gunmetal. The thrusters were sprayed with Gloss Aluminium while the rifle was mostly painted with Olive Green.

Although the outer armor did not require painting, I sprayed some parts with Light Gull Gray to break the monotony of the white color scheme. The only parts that did require painting were the wings on the backpack, which needed a strip of orange-yellow.

Panel lining was done using black enamel on the white colored parts & desert brown on the darker colored parts. For weathering, I just applied multiple scratch marks instead of heavy damage. I used mostly dark grey enamel for the scratch effect and added a few dabs of dark brown enamel using a sponge to simulate rust.

I didn’t have any Tallgeese-specific decals, so I used water slide decals from Wing Gundam & various others in my inventory. And finally, I applied flat topcoat on the outer armor and made the final assembly.

Results:

Here’s the awesome inner frame;

And now with some clothes armor on:

Finally some action shots:

Discussion:

For a MG kit, this one ticks the right boxes: very detailed inner frame, good articulation, good parts separation and gimmicks on the weapons & booster backpack. I personally love the inner frame; it’s quite different from the typical gundam & zaku type inner frames. Overall, it’s a very nicely designed and well proportioned kit.

Now for the minus points. Like the MG Heavyarms, it doesn’t have movable fingers. Instead it has the same HG-like swappable fingers. It doesn’t bother me as much this time, since I didn’t plan to pose it with other 3rd party weapons.

Although the majority of the joints feel solid, the shoulders and waist feel less so. Probably because of the polycap joints that were used. It does tend to lean backwards due to the heavy backpack. Also, snap-fitters may not like the yellow sticker for the backpack wings but for painters, it’s not a big deal.

In conclusion, I felt the plus points outweigh the minus points, making the MG Tallgeese a kit that’s relatively solid and very nice to look at.

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Heavyarms (Endless Waltz)

March 5, 2013 at 18:43 | Posted in Master Grade | 7 Comments
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Introduction:

There’s no doubt in my mind that I will purchase the MG Heavyarms kit ever since I saw the prototype at a hobby show. But I couldn’t really decide what to do with it afterwards. I couldn’t decide whether to paint it  in different color schemes (Heavyarms Custom color came to mind), paint camo patterns or leave the color as it is.

Ultimately I decided on the last option. Sure you could call me lazy but the red-orange-white color scheme kinda grew on me. To spruce it up a bit, I decided to give this kit a heavy dose of weathering.

Materials & methods:

I first assembled the complete inner frame, without attaching any of the armor. Then I separated them according to body parts for easier painting. For the outer armor, I applied plenty of battle damage effects using a mini router and hobby blade and focused mostly on the leg and hip parts. The gattling gun came in two halves, so I had to fix the seam lines. The least interesting part to building was cutting and sanding the individual gattling gun cartridges, or bullets.

I painted the inner frame with german gray  and later hand painted some details using gold enamel. The mini missiles were sprayed with light blue and the missile pods on the legs were painted with olive green. For the gatling gun, I sprayed black surfacer over it, followed by gloss aluminium. I masked the barrels with tape and sprayed the rest of the gun with gun metal. Some parts of the barrels were handpainted with gold. The outer armor remains unpainted, except for the shield.

Before doing any weathering, I applied some waterslide decals on the outer armor, loosely referencing the manual. Then I sprayed a layer of gloss topcoat the protect the decals. For the inner frame, I applied weathering in the form of dry brushing using silver paint. For the outer armor, I applied an enamel wash using red-brown + sand-brown paints. For the damaged parts, I applied some silver paint on them to simulate exposed metal, and then added a dab of black weathering pastel over them. For the feet, I wanted to simulate mud effects, so I mixed some light brown weathering pastel with Mr. Color thinner and applied the resulting paste around the legs using a paintbrush. Finally when all is done, I applied the final layer of flat topcoat.

Results:

Here it is without any armor on and boy does it look good:

And this is after I put on the outer armor (rather reluctantly, I should add):

Whats that you say? Not enough Gatling guns? Well here’s some photos I took with the MG Unicorn’s beam gatlings and the M.S.G Gatling gun (each sold separately). I didn’t take that many photos for the reasons described in the Discussions:

Discussion:

Aesthetically, this is one of the best looking kits that I’ve ever built. From the details in the inner frame to the overall proportions, it just looks pleasing to the eye. Building it was pretty simple and straight-forward, but the fun factor for me was in applying the weathering effects. I didn’t want to go too hardcore with it, just enough to imply that it’s survived a couple of battles.

The weapons included in the kit are the gattling gun, detachable flip blade and a beam sabre on the left arm. I didn’t bother with the beam sabre because the kit does not come with a clear part for the beam sabre itself: only the hilt is supplied.

Now while I’m pleased with 90% of this kit, there are a few things that could’ve been better. This involves the hands. Unlike previous MGs which have moveable fingers, this one comes with swappable fingers, almost like a HG kit. While it’s good for adding stability when holding its default weapons, it’s not so good for holding third-party weapons, like the Unicorn’s beam gatling and MSG Gatling gun. That’s partly why I didn’t take too many photos with those weapons. The second gripe I have is regarding the hinges on the chest. For some reason, the chest covers did not open & close smoothly. In the process of forcing it to open & close, I inadvertently broke the hinge. Now I just glue on the chest covers.

That said, I’m still very pleased with this kits appearance and how it still looks menacing despite the orange-red-white color scheme.

Strike Freedom

January 4, 2013 at 12:42 | Posted in Master Grade | Leave a comment

Introduction:

I have to admit I’m not really a big fan of the Strike Freedom; its predecessor, Freedom Gundam has a better looking design. I bought this kit during one of my Wonfes trips, but it’s actually a limited item from a previous Gunpla expo. I’m having buyers remorse to this day, but I decided to just build it rather than keep it in the box. What differentiates this Expo version from the normal MG is that all parts other than the inner frame is made out of semi-transparent plastic.

Materials & Methods:

The inner frame is molded in a cheesy-yellow shade instead of gold, so I sprayed them all with gold paint from a spray can, and then sealed it with gloss topcoat. I thought about adding panel lines to the inner frame, but I decided against it. For the rest of the semi-transparent parts, I just cut them off the runners and removed the leftover plastic with my hobby blade. Because they’re made out of a different type of plastic, there is a tendency for the white stress marks to remain, particularly on the darker colored plastic. The kit came with foil stickers and dry-transfer decals but i didn’t apply any of them, except for the eye stickers.

Results:

Discussion:

Well there’s nothing much to say about this kit. Other than spraying the inner frame with gold, there’s not much workmanship involved. The details on the inner frame look great, and it looks very slim and flexible. After putting the outer armor on, the gold inner frame is still slightly visible.  The kit comes with its own stand, but is not that particularly useful for action poses since it can’t fully support the weight of the kit. It’s only stable in an upright pose; for other poses, the stand tends to lean where the weight is distributed. Without the stand, the kit tends to fall on its back due to the heavy backpack wings. Overall, if you like flashy kits, then you might fancy the Strike Freedom. For me though, I’m just glad the finished kit takes up less space than its box. Anyone want to buy it off of me? Hahaha

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