HGUC GM Sniper

May 4, 2013 at 10:33 | Posted in 1/144 scale | 2 Comments
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Introduction:

The GM Sniper only featured for a few minutes in the MS 08th team but is one of my favourite units from that series. That’s because I’ve always been a fan of grunt units & snipers. There’s no official HGUC kit for the GM Sniper (yet), but there is an old HG version of it.

So I decided to make one from the Gundam Ground type, since their bodies are very similar. All that’s missing is the GM head and a sniper rifle. Turns out that the HGUC Ground War Set comes with not one, but two spare GM heads. As for the sniper rifle, the recently released System Weapon 004 includes a few variants to choose from. With that, I have all the necessary ingredients to build a GM Sniper.

Materials & Methods:

The main difference between the ground type GM and Gundam (apart from the head) is the chest vent. The Gundam has a vent on the right side and a flare/vulcan gun (?) on the left whereas the GM has vents on both sides. I decided not to modify the Gundam’s chest and so everything was built according to the manual but with a GM head instead of a Gundam’s. Parts that needed seam-line fixing were the head, forearms, ankle armor, shoulder armor and weapons.

After I finished snap-fitting the kit, I thought it looked a bit plain so I added some detail parts on various parts of the body. I used a mix of M.S.G parts & some leftover bits from my HCM-Pro kits. Because the Ground type Gundam only comes with a huge box-like backpack, I decided to attach a smaller one which was a leftover part from my GM type C kit.

Before painting, I primed the whole kit with black surfacer. I decided to use two shades of green for painting; a darker green (Mr. Color IJA Green 16) for the feet, chest & hips and a lighter tone (Mr. Color Dark Green 70) for the rest of the body. I also painted the sniper rifle and the box-backpack with green while the weapons were sprayed with Tamiya Gunmetal. The HGUC Ground War set includes two hover trucks which I painted with camo patterns: one with blue/grey combo and the other with black/brown combo. Because the GM Sniper is 95% green, I used mainly white-colored waterslide decals for contrast.

Since this is a ground war set, it would be a sin not to include some weathering. First I applied enamel wash using light brown paints. Then I applied some paint chipping effects using enamel silver, followed by some rust effects using red-brown enamel. I applied dry-brushing on some metal parts and weapons and then added a few sprinklings of weathering pastels around the legs. I didn’t apply any battle damage effects this time. And to finish, it’s the usual flat topcoat spray.

Results:

Here’s the ‘vanilla’ GM Sniper:

Because the Ground War Set includes a lot of extras, I might as well take photos of them as well:

Discussion:

There is a particular satisfaction in modifying a model kit into something else, in this case turning a Ground Gundam into a GM Sniper. Although admittedly, those two units are very similar to begin with. Regarding its range of movement, I have to say I’m quite impressed: the elbow joints can bend >90 degrees; the knees can bend just enough to make a decent kneeling pose. The amount of goodies that came with the Ground War Set was also pleasing. Not pictured are several 1/144 scale soldiers that I didn’t bother with. I really can’t think of any negative points about this kit. Overall I’m really satisfied with this kit and how it turned out.

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HCM Pro Gundam Ez8

April 24, 2013 at 12:17 | Posted in HCM Pro | 1 Comment
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I bought this Ez8 together with a bunch of other HCM Pro kits a few years back. Having done some weathering on the Gundam Ground Type, I decided to do apply the same treatment for the Ez8.

So the same processes were repeated: enamel wash, dry brushing, paint chipping & applying weathering pastels.

The Ez8 is not so much different from the Gundam Ground Type; it comes with the same types of weapons & accessories. The only additional stuff is the parachute backpack & a bazooka. It also comes with some add-on details parts, which I am saving for other kits. You can also remove the chest armor to reveal some details underneath.

Like the Gundam Ground Type, I am equally impressed with the level of details & articulation in the Ez8, given that it’s such a small scale model. So anyway here’s the pics:

HCM Pro Gundam Ground Type

April 22, 2013 at 12:42 | Posted in HCM Pro | 3 Comments
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With the current revival of interest in the MS 08th Team, I thought now would be a good time to post some pics of my HCM-Pro kits from that series. First up is the Gundam Ground Type. When opening the box, I came to realize just how small these HCM-Pro kits are. Yet the level of details & articulation is comparable with a HGUC kit.
Like all HCM-Pro kits, all the parts come pre-assembled. This one comes with a submachine-gun, a cannon, 2 beam sabres, a shield and a box-like backpack. In addition, it comes with several add-on detail parts (attached to a runner) to give it a more military-feel. I decided not to use any of it because I’m thinking of using them on my HGUC kits instead. Another thing that impressed me about this kit is that it already comes with some decals attached.
Since this is a ground type unit, it’s crying out for some weathering. So I applied (almost) every weathering technique that I know. These include enamel wash, paint chipping, dry-brushing, and dabs of weathering pastel. I should add that applying these techniques are a little bit tricky given the small scale of the HCM-Pros. Finally I gave it a layer of flat topcoat.
The results are as you see below:

And that’s all I have to say about it. Hope you enjoyed the pics.

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