Turn X

August 11, 2014 at 11:18 | Posted in 1/144 scale | 3 Comments
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Introduction:

This is an old 1/144 scale kit; it’s not even labeled as HG. I bought it on a whim during one of the hobby events I went to. I have several concurrent gunpla projects going on (some on indefinite hiatus), so I wanted to build something quick and uncomplicated as a side project. This kit seemed like a good candidate for that.

Materials & Methods:

The building process was uncomplicated as expected, but there were plenty of parts that required seam-line fixing. Although I was tempted to modify parts & add details, I eventually decided to stick to an Out-of-Box build. The only part that I couldn’t let slide was the left hand. It was made of polycap material so I replaced it with a resin hand from B-club.

I didn’t want to stray from the original color scheme, but I did paint it. I was lazy & didn’t apply surfacer to any of the parts. The parts were sprayed as follows:

  • outer armor – MS Green (Gundam color spray)
  • the rest of the body – Gun Metal (Tamiya)
  • weapons – MS Gray (Gundam color spray)
  • the huge backpack – Navy Blue (Mr Color spray).

Some parts required masking but it was relatively painless. I used black enamel for panel lines and then added some water slide decals. I used the manual for the MG Turn X as a reference. After that is the usual flat topcoat.

Results:

Discussion:

For a relatively old kit, it has surprisingly good proportions and level of detail. But it also suffers from limitations of old kits: plenty of seam lines, usage of polycaps for the joints and hand. The articulation was also quite poor. It’s very difficult to get good action poses with it.

But overall, I had no regrets purchasing this kit, given its unique design and size. If you prefer more details & gimmicks and superior posability, get the MG Turn X instead.

 

 

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System Weapon 001 and 002

June 29, 2012 at 10:27 | Posted in 1/144 scale, Etc | 3 Comments
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Since I have quite a few 1/144 scale model kits, I thought having more optional weapons for them would be a good idea. That’s why I bought the System Weapon 001 and 002 for ~1000yen each.

First, a general description. Each box includes two different class of weapons with swappable parts to convert into different configurations.The main weapon of each class comes pre-built with decals, whereas the swappable parts are on runners. It also includes a weapons stand:

So let’s start with System Weapon 001:

The main weapons in the box are the Gatling gun and the Zaku machine gun. The Gatling gun and Zaku machine gun are each capable of being modified into 3 configurations, as follows:

However, because the main body of the weapon (the one with the grip) is limited, you can only have 2 gatlings and 1 machine gun complete at the same time. The good thing is that you can mix and match the option parts to make the weapon of your choice. I chose these configurations for the Gatling gun and Zaku machine gun:

And now on to System Weapon 002:

The main weapons are the Gelgoog beam rifle and the Zaku heat hawk. The beam rifle can be attached with 2 different types of long barrels while the heat hawk can be transformed into a twin axe and a huge axe, like so:

As with system weapons 001, you cannot have all three configurations simultaneously; at a given time you only have enough parts to make 1 beam rifle and 2 heat hawks, and I preferred these configurations:

You may have noticed I added some details to the weapons. In fact, I sprayed them all with German Gray and handpainted some parts on the heat hawks. I applied some water-slide decals and added M.S.G pink transparent parts to the rifle sensor/scope. To add a bit of weathered effect, I applied dry brushing using silver paint, some weathering pastels and finally a spray of flat topcoat.

And here’s some pics of the weapons in the hands of some of my completed 1/144 kits:

I must say these weapons really suit the Jesta and Zeon suits. Oh, I should add that the weapons may not fit nicely on the hands of existing models. Thankfully, System Weapon 002 includes several pairs of hands which can properly grip the weapons and they come in both designs: Federation (sharp & squarish) and Zeon (rounded) finger designs. Unfortunately they are all molded in black so some painting may be necessary for those hands to match your kit color scheme.

Pros: Well-detailed and nicely designed weapons; ability to customize the weapon; comes with weapon stand and hands.

Cons: Although 3 configurations of each weapon are possible, you are limited to having at most 2 weapons at the same time; some building & possibly painting required.

The final word: Although I was quite irked by the cons listed above, I didn’t regret the purchase. At least the leftover parts can be used to modify other weapons (actually I did that already for my RG Launcher Strike). So if you have some 1/144 scale kits and you find their weapons rather inadequate, you might consider these System Weapons. For me, I’m actually looking forward to System Weapon 003.

SHCM-Pro Unicorn Gundam

February 18, 2010 at 18:22 | Posted in HCM Pro | 6 Comments
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This marks my first purchase of a SHCM-Pro model. The main difference between this and the standard HCM-Pro is the size: SHCM-Pro is at 1/144 scale similar to HGUC while HCM-Pro is smaller at 1/200. SHCM-Pro also comes with more details and gimmicks as well as an inflated price tag. I wasn’t really interested in the previous SHCM-Pro releases (RX-78 & Zaku II) since I already have plenty of them in different scales, but I haven’t had a Unicorn in my collection yet. There’s the MG and HGUC versions of the Unicorn but I opted for the SHCM-Pro because well, I’m getting lazy. The price is higher than the MG or HGUC versions (officially priced at approx. 10,000yen) and I couldn’t seem to find the SHCM-Pro version in any retail stores nearby. So I tried my luck at Yahoo auctions and found one at a nice price. It wasn’t in mint, unopened condition but I don’t care about that. I was going to do stuff to it anyway.

The SHCM-Pro Unicorn is a transformable model which involves swapping some parts. The default ‘out-of-box’ mode is the Destroy mode and you actually have to transform it into the Unicorn mode. Weapons include a bazooka, beam rifle, beam sabres and shield. No gattling guns but I wasn’t expecting any presents from Bandai, anyway.

Even though decals have already been placed on the model, a small sheet of waterslide decal was also provided. I decided against applying them because I think adding more decals would be overkill. The white parts seem to have a slight glossy pearl finish and as usual, I added some panel lines with some black enamel paint. I’m not sure of the articulation of the MG or HGUC versions, but this one seems to be pretty flexible, allowing for some nice poses. However, the bazooka ammo doesn’t seem to fit too snugly to the bazooka  and it can get tiresome changing hands for different poses/weapons.

Transforming into Unicorn mode involves swapping parts on the head, shoulders, chest, skirt armor, knees and the whole foot. Pretty straightforward, but just be careful not to misplace the small parts. I actually prefer the Unicorn mode for its simple, sleek and clean design. To me, the Destroy mode looks slightly unbalanced with the elongated arms and legs and the high-heel feet.

Part of the reason why I bought this model is because of the 1/48 Unicorn head I already have. The stand at the back of the head display base has a round peg to fit the HGUC version of the Unicorn. Unfortunately, the SHCM-Pro version doesn’t have the necessary ‘hole’ at the bottom of the waist to fit this peg. So I made a custom adapter peg modified from the 1/100 and 1/144 Bandai action base. It fits like a charm.

And there you have it, a pseudo-review of sorts for the SHCM-Pro Unicorn. For the price paid, I can say I’m satisfied with what I got. Design, proportions, articulation, details and finish are top notch. Transformation into the Destroy & Unicorn modes was easy too. So if you’re a lazy modeler like me, or you don’t already have a Unicorn in your collection, you might consider getting this SHCM-Pro version. As for finding one at a nice price, good luck!

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