Thursday, March 7, 2019

HG RX-160 Byarlant


Introduction: 

For a while now I’ve professed my love for the Byarlant design. This is my third HG Byarlant project (the first two were Byarlant Customs from Gundam Unicorn).


One of my favorite things about the Byarlant is the lore behind its design. The Byarlant was designed to be capable of self-sustained flight without transforming. And it does this by basically brute forcing it’s way through the air using massive thrusters situated all over the body. The end result is a mobile suit that works… but there are some sacrifices. The Byarlant’s offensive abilities are limited. It only features a pair of mega particle guns integrated into the hands and a pair of beam sabers. The non-standard set of manipulators also limit the Byarlant’s ability to wield other MS weapons. Also, one can assume that the Byarlant’s operational time would be limited due it’s large brick like nature and lack of aerodynamic surfaces. 

Kit Talk:

The Byarlant has more seamlines than most recent HGs. They’re found all over the arms, shoulders, thighs and on the back fins. I had to use a variety of techniques to disguise, remove or otherwise mode the kit around these elements. None of these fixes were particularly hard, but it’s frustrating to see so many issues present on one kit. If you don’t mind seamlines then don’t let this comment detract from your enjoyment of this kit.

A big reason I opted to build the Byarlant right after the Dijeh is because they have a lot of similar colors in common.  As a result, the colors below are almost all adapted from the colors used on the 
Dijeh:

Mermaid Green: (my wife really likes this color). 70% Gaia Emerald Green, 15% Gaia Color Blue Gray & 15% Mr. Color sky blue

Dark Blue: 70% Gaia Color Midnight Blue, 15% Purple Violet & 15% Pure White

Grey Purple: 55%  Gaia Color Neutral Gray #3 & 40% Gaia Color Purple Violet & 5% Gaia Color Midnight Blue

Neutral Gray: 100% Gaia Color Neutral Gray #4

Yellow: 60% Gaia Color Sunshine Yellow, 30% Gaia Color Yellow Orange & 10% Gaia Color Pure White

Red: Gaia Color 100% Bright Red


Unlike the Dijeh, I decided to keep the decal scheme on the Byarlant very simple. I only included the Titans logo and the Titan’s name. Since I’ve been on a Zeta kick recently, I made keep the simpler decal scheme in mind once I build the Gabaldy.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

HG MSK-008 Dijeh


Introduction:

I feel like the Dijeh (De-Jay) is one of those designs that simply doesn’t get enough love. 

The Dijeh was a prototype mobile suit developed by Karaba based on the Rick Dias. During the Gryps War Amuro Ray piloted a Dijeh during the events of Zeta. Later, just prior to operation Phoenix Hunt we see several operatives from Luio & Company piloting several Dijehs during Narrative.  

To me, the Dijeh looks like a spiritual successor to the MS-14 Gelgoog. It shares a similar head design a beam naginata and wide flared armor at the waist and around the legs. 

Kit Talk:

The HG Dijeh is a really solid High Grade release. It only has a few seam lines that need to be fused, a good overall amount of detail and pretty decent articulation considering the design. I would have appreciated the inclusion of the Hyper Mega beam cannon from the HG Zeta evolution type, but it’s understandable that it wasn’t included. 

There is a P-Bandai variant on the horizon. But, the variations on this release: (a shoulder lamp and restyled beam rifle) aren’t enough to encourage me to order one.

Here are the colors I mixed up:

Mermaid Green: (my wife really likes this color). 70% Gaia Emerald Green, 15% Gaia Color Blue Gray & 15% Mr. Color sky blue

Dark Blue: 85% Gaia Color Midnight Blue & 15% Pure White

Grey Purple: 70%  Gaia Color Neutral Gray #3 & 30% Gaia Color Purple Violet

Yellow: 90% Gaia Color Sunshine Yellow, 10% Gaia Color Yellow Orange

Red: Gaia Color 100% Bright Red

Metallic Gray Weapons: Neutral Gray IV + Black + Gunmetal

Mono Eye: Gaia Color 100% Fluorescent Pink


I really didn’t have anything planned for a decal scheme when I started this build. But, I eventually stumbled across this Tamashi Nation Signature Dijeh figure. I ended up really liking the RG style of the design and opted to replicated elements of it. I used decals from the RG Sinanju, HG Blue Destiny and Zeta/ZZ decal packs to create something similar.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

MG SYSTEM ∀-99 ∀ Gundam


Introduction:

I received the Turn A Gundam as a gift from redditor u/graymulligan. This was the final kit in the last of ‘gift builds’ that I wanted to finish in January!

I hate to admit it, but I’ve never made it past the 2nd or 3rd episode of the Turn A Gundam anime. I have a few friends that are die-hard fans of the series, but it still hasn’t ‘clicked’ for me. As such I don’t think I’ve ever actually seen the Turn A Gundam on screen.
The A Gundam or Turn A Gundam was design by Syd Mead. If you’re a fan of sci-fi from the 70s, 80s and 90s you’re probably very familiar with Mr. Mead’s body of work.


Kit Talk:

The design of the Turn A Gundam is… weird. And so, I decided that I was going to do something pretty different from my normal paint process.

I created pearl colors for each of the armor colors. The mixtures are below:

White: Gaia Color Ultimate White & Mr. Crystal Color Diamond Silver 1:1

Yellow: Gaia Color Sunshine Yellow & Mr. Crystal Color Diamond Silver 1:1

Blue: Gaia Color Cobalt Blue & Mr. Crystal Color Amethyst Blue 1:1

Red: Gaia Color Bright Red & Mr. Crystal Color Diamond Ruby 1:1

Light Gray Gaia Color Neutral Gray #1 & Mr. Color Super Metallic Superfine Silver ¾:¼

Grey Frame: Gaia Color Neutral Gray #4, Gaia Color Gun Metal & Gaia color Black 1:1:a pinch

All of these colors are raw, I haven’t top coated anything to preserve the pearl effect of the paint. I’ll admit that the colors aren’t as ‘punchy’ as I originally hoped. A final topcoat of each respective pearl color would probably have enhanced the effect further.

Overall I really like the pearly metallic finish present throughout the color scheme of the kit.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

HG FA-78-2 Heavy Gundam [Rollout Color]


Introduction:

Shin from JoJoHobbyandStuff sent me this kit as my holiday present last year! Thank you Shin! It was a great build and I love the design and color scheme!

The Heavy Gundam is an MSV design. And unsurprisingly it’s based on a series of planned upgrades for the RX 78-2 Gundam. Unlike the FA 78-1 Full armor which merely added additional armor plating on top of the existing design. The FA 78-2 was designed as a new mobile suit from the ground up. The new design resolved the flaws of the original, removed the core block system, improved mobility, added armor, and integrated weapons. Three units were built, the last unit was completed a full year after the end of the war.

This particular version is the ‘Roll Out’ version. Basically, from a kit perspective, the only difference between this and the original P-Bandai release of the Heavy Gundam is a color palette swap. I really like the white, grey and orange color scheme. The color combo really just screams ‘prototype’ to me.



Kit Talk:

There isn’t too much to say about my Heavy Gundam. It’s a clean out of the box build, (just the way I like it). 

This model is actually based on the Origin Gm’s design instead of the Local Type Gundam. The Origin GM is one of the best HGs on the market right now, so I was very happy with this build.

I removed the seam lines along the shoulder cannon, beam rifle, and head. 


Added some slight scribing to the head and chest. 


And I hand painted or masked a few details on the chest, legs, and feet. The decals from this kit are taken from the Gundam Decal Origin Multipack. Unfortunately, there isn’t an official decal set for this kit, so I had to make do with what was available. As a result, I did add an RX-78 decal to the chest even know this is the FA-78.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

MG MSN-00100 Hyaku Shiki 2.0


Introduction:

The MG Hyaku Shiki 2.0 is one of my favorite models of the last few years. It nails absolutely all of the fundamentals of good model design. The proportions look great, the detail is just right, the design pulls similar elements from the MG Nu Gundam Ver. Ka and honestly the pre-painted gold doesn’t look awful. That didn’t stop me from stripping it and repainting it, but I think most people would be satisfied with the color right out of the box.

This kit was actually a gift from the 2017 R/Gunpla Secret Santa. I regret taking so long to finish this build. So a belated thank you goes out to u/captplanetz who generously provided this kit to me during the gift exchange.

This is my first build of 2019, Happy New Year! The bright (borderline gaudy) gold and silver feel appropriately celebratory. Here’s to another year of cranking out little plastic robots!

Kit Talk:

I really want to emphasize that the gold on this kit was fully stripped and repainted. I made an effort to source a bottle of Mr. Color’s Gundam Color XUG 06 Hyaku Shiki-Gold. I really love the finish of this paint, and it may actually be my go-to gold from here on out. The metal flake in this gold is very finely ground, and very similar in consistency to their line of Super Metallic paints.
In addition to the gold here are the other colors I used:

Gaia Colors

Inner Frame: neutral gray IV + black

Red Pipes & Feet: bright red + pinch of ultra blue

Chest & Backpack: ultra blue + midnight blue + grey-blue

Weapons: neutral gray IV + black + gunmetal

Silver Details: star bright duralumin

Eyes: scarlet

Mr. Color

Gold Armor: Gundam Color Hyaku Shiki-Gold

Sensors: Base coat of Super Metallic silver, Overcoat of clear green and tourmaline green 

Decals for this kit were sourced from a 3rd party decal set available on eBay. The overall quality is just ‘okay’. The large decals are well detailed, properly spelled and the small writing is legible. The finer ‘caution’ decals are incomplete, inconsistent and generally just not great. The AG Argama decal on the wing binder was the only decal sourced from an official Bandai set (Zeta & ZZ Multiuse).

Overall this was a pretty simple build. I wanted to contrast the bright raw colors of the metallic against the flatter colors of the red blue and gray. I used hand brushing to paint the silver joints between the red pipes on the backpack and knees as well as a few other small details.

I, unfortunately, lost a few pieces like the hand inserts to the beam sabers and the silver details above the knuckles. I built this kit while still living in New York, and it doesn’t look like those parts made it to the Texas Colony...




Friday, December 28, 2018

HG MS-15KG Gyan Krieger


Introduction:

The MS-15Kg Gyan Krieger is a mobile suit featured in the video game Mobile Suit Gundam Gihren's Greed. The design is clearly descended from the YMS-15 Gyan. And as you would expect, the Gyan Krieger was a close combat powerhouse. The Gyan Krieger comes equipped with a beam lance and a multipurpose shield. Mounted under the shield is a twin beam gun, on the front of the shield, a 4 tube grenade launcher is equipped.

This model kit was released as a part of the P-Bandai line. Which is unfortunate considering that most of the plates included in the box are exclusive to this model.

Since this is a P-Bandai kit, and It may not currently available from JoJoHobbyandStuff. But, you can still get an extra 10% off just about anything in their store using coupon code "GOODGUNPLA"!

Kit Talk:

I really love the regal design of the Krieger, and I think that this model would look fantastic in a metallic silver like a knight of yore. But since I just ordered a bottle of lavender, I knew what I had to do!

This model was painted primarily in Gaia Color's Lavender, Neutral Gray 4, Neutral Gray 5, Red and Gun Metal. The decals I used came from the Gundam The Origin Multi-Pack. I kept the scheme very simple.


A fair bit of masking was needed to separate the gray and red elements inside of the shoulder vents. The same goes for the green sensor lenses in the backpack.

The mono eye is an aurora dome taken from HIQ and painted lightly with clear red.

Friday, December 21, 2018

HG AMS 123X-X Moon Gundam


Introduction:

I really think the name 'Moon Gundam' is dumb. But, I didn't let that color my opinion of this mobile suit. This model is an example of the new innovations Bandai is pushing into the high-grade lineup. My favorite feature is the excellent moving detail built into the legs. The legs, in general, are a real treat to build.

Despite being an early prototype for Char's generously sized Sazabi, The Moon Gundam is only about 22 meters tall. This mobile suit features many design flairs seen in the Sazabi such as the oversized shoulders, skirt mounted verniers/vents waist piping and the rack style backpack. The weaponry is even similar with and includes a beam shot rifle and unusual hybrid beam saber.

Kit Talk:

This was originally going to be a really quick basic paint job. But, one day I picked up my .15mm scriber and I just started tracing the elements of this build. After that, I committed myself to a slightly more complex build. 

The 'Psycho Plates' were painted with a combination of clear red, prism red, and semi-gloss. In person, it catches and reflects the light in a neat way. But, unfortunately, it's not really visible on camera. 

The rest of the kit was painted with a combination of Gaia colors such as neutral gray #2, cobalt blue, and neutral gray #5. I hand painted the red elements on the head and lower legs with Vallejo. And, I used Vallejo Mecha color Phantom Grey was for the various grey details on the head, body and psycho plates.  

This kit was provided to me by JoJoHobbyNStuff. If you'd like to support their shop and me by proxy then use my coupon code "GoodGunpla" to save 10% 12% off just about everything until the end of the year!


Thursday, December 6, 2018

HG Gundam Love Phantom


Intro:

This is the fourth patron collaboration I’ve done since starting the program at the end of 2017. The 'collab' is a program where patrons submit their built kits for consideration, I then choose a kit from the pool of submittals, paint it and send it back its owner. I’ve really grown fond of this program and I hope as time goes on we have more and more submissions!

This kit was sent to me by Violet, she did a good job of putting this one together, fusing seam lines and sharpening elements. I have a critique of her build here on my YouTube channel if you want to gain a little insight into what I look for in a cleanly built kit. I don’t think I will shock anyone when I say that I didn’t really care for Gundam Build Divers. Sure, it's ‘harmless’, but it also felt like low effort filler series between bigger and better series. There were some interesting MS designs to come out of the series. But, none of the kits really ‘wowed’ me including this MS design.


Use my coupon code "GOODGUNPLA" at JoJoHobbyNStuff to save 12% off just about anything in stock including P-Bandai and Preorder kits!

Kit talk:

Since Violet has sent this kit to me completely built I don’t have too much to say here.

The paint scheme I ended up using is inspired by the color schemes of the following kits: Deathscythe Hell, Blitz, and X2. The design feels most like the Deathscythe Hell despite being made mostly from Strike Freedom parts.

The high center of gravity caused by the inverted Strike Noir’s wings makes this kit very difficult to stand up on its own.

For the sake of safety, consistency, and ease of photography I opted to support this kit using a stand. If you’re considering picking this model up I would strongly recommend using a stand.

Friday, November 30, 2018

HG MS-08TX/N Efreet Nacht


Introduction: 

For those not familiar with the MS-08TX Efreet, it was a very limited production mobile suit developed and constructed on Earth by a branch of the Zeon armed forces. Despite output performing the MS-07B Gouf in close quarters ground combat, the MS-09B Dom would put an end to the production run of the Efreet.

The MS-08TX/N Efreet Nacht is a variant of the base model design. Designed for stealth and night operations the Nacht features jamming, sensor baffling equipment, and smoke dischargers in addition to components to limit its thermal signature. The Efreet is equipped with several ‘cold’ melee weapons including a unique sword and four kunai, all of which are capable of delivering an electrical jolt capable of disabling or destroying a mobile suits electrical systems. The Nacht also features a 3 barreled machine gun integrated into the left forearm. The stealth hardware and focus on melee combat would make the Efreet a terrifying opponent.

 While I really like a lot of elements of this mobile suit’s in-universe backstory, one thing that isn’t addressed is... In the 08th MS team series, we're introduced to the idea that the EFF has the ability to accurately track mobile suits by listening to the amplified vibrations from the ground. Eledore demonstrates that this equipment can be used to identify mobile suit movement and location in relation to each other as well as their model type.  So, unless the Efreet has an MS sized pair of sound muffling bunny slippers, I think many of its stealth advantages may not amount to much.

 Kit talk: 

This kit was a P-Bandai release which is a bit of bummer because it seems to have a pretty strong fan following. 

Since this is a P-Bandai kit, and It may not currently available from JoJoHobbyandStuff. But, you can still get an extra 12% off just about anything in their store using coupon code "GOODGUNPLA"!


I think most people will either love or loathe the aesthetics of this kit. I personally really like the ninja vibe this kit gives off. But, I think the spiky shoulders may have gone too far; and the word ‘edge-lord’ definitely comes to mind. 


Speaking of which... the shoulders were by far, the most frustrating element of this kit each spike was an individual piece and they didn’t fit very well into the shoulder. I added and sharpened pla plate to each spike to make them super pointy, and I used putty and primer to fill gaps around the base of each spike. Don’t get me wrong, they look great now, but they took way longer than desired to fix.

This kit received a dark coat of blue and purple paint to emphasize the ninja/night ops themes. Decals are taken from the HG Blue Destiny decal set from 2018. I purposely chose to minimize the number of decals featured on the build as the bright white would give away the position of the MS. 

RE 1/100 AMX 107R Rebawoo


Introduction:

For those not in the know, the AMX 107R Rebawoo is a modified and refitted Bawoo from the UC88 era. It was originally intended to be piloted by Full Frontal, who is the leader of Neo Zeon's "The Sleeves". This mobile suit was abandoned following the hijacking of the Sinanju Stein from Anaheim Electronics. Despite never being used by its intended pilot, the Rebawoo would repeatedly see action throughout UC 0095.

Kit Talk:

Here's something a bit controversial, I like the design of the Rebawoo just a bit more than the Sinanju. I prefer the sharper lines and angles of the Rebawoo to the sweeping curves of the Sinanju. And, I find the more simplistic and subdued white and black sleeve details to fit the aesthetic better than the ostentatious gold trim featured prevalently on the Sinanju.

This kit featured a very straightforward build. It was exactly what I expected a RE1/100 kit to be. Only minor seamline fusion was required on the head along the front section of the crest.


I used my heavy duty file to remove material along the thruster pods to streamline and sharpen their edges. This required the removal of about 2mm of plastic along the piece. I used the same technique to bring the fins on the legs and along the collar to a sharp edge.

I am not a fan of the large leg amount beam guns. They stick out like a sore thumb and are woefully lacking in detail. I eliminated them completely from this build and replaced the connection with a Kotobukiya detail part. Their removal takes away from the character of the mobile suit, but I prefer the streamlined appearance.


The waterslide decals I used are included with this kit. The decal scheme is very similar to the scheme used on the Sinanju. I like the slash marks through the '10S' markings. They're a nice detail that shows that this mobile suit is no longer Full Frontal's personal unit.

The included decals aren't a perfect fit for this mobile suit. The decals on the leg cowls and shoulders need a stronger curve to properly fit the geometry of these parts. The worst offenders are the 4 cowls on the thruster pods. I had to cut each of the decals into 3rds to have them follow the design.

As a P-Bandai release, I can't guarantee that this kit will still be available. But, If you'd like to save 10% off your order at JoJoHobbyNStuff use coupon code 'GoodGunpla'!

Monday, November 26, 2018

Gundam patches are now available!


I'm happy to announce that I have patches available on Etsy!

Nobel citizens of Zeon! Show your support of the brave laborers, scientists, and engineers of Zeon as they help to bring the fight to the corrupt government of the earthnoids!

This patch is a fan design suitable for cosplay, or everyday wear.

Show your support for the Zeonic Corporation, the manufacturer of the Zaku and so much more!

This patch is approximately 3x3 inches and features an iron-on backing.

Click the image above or here to get one today!

Friday, November 23, 2018

HG RGM-79SC GM Sniper Custom


Introduction:

As soon as Bandai began showing off photos for this kit, I knew that I had to get one. The design of this kit is based on the recent Intercept and Guard type GMs from Gundam Origin MSD. This is a great little kit, it's simple in terms of colors and construction but I love the look. If anything this kit has made me want to pick up the Guard and Intercept types.

Kit Talk:

The color scheme for this build is dead simple, green & gray. I originally planned on using two separate grey colors for the frame and external armor. However, after painting these parts, I determine that the colors didn't add to the overall scheme and painted them all to match.

The gray strips on the shins and ankle guards were carefully masked and painted. I'm a bit surprised by how symmetrical they came out.

The decal scheme for this kit was cobbled together from a few separate decal sets I've collected over the year including the Origin decal pack, MG Gouf 2.0, DX-06 and others.

This is a P-Bandai kit, and It may not currently available from JoJoHobbyandStuff. But, you can still get an extra 12% off just about anything in their store using coupon code "GOODGUNPLA". JoJo provided this kit to me to build and review, show them some love!

Friday, November 16, 2018

HG Sinanju Stein Narrative Ver.


Introduction:

HG Sinanju Stein Narrative is a kit that I have been looking forward to for a long time. In many ways, the older HG Sinanju felt like a scaled down version of the MG. This new HG Stein feels almost the exact same way compared to the MG. The high grade does somethings better, and some things worse. But, overall I think that the HG would be a fine alternative if money is tight, or if you only have a passing interest in the design.  

This kit is currently available from JoJoHobbyandStuff! You can get an extra 10% 12% off just about anything in their store using coupon code "GOODGUNPLA". JoJo provided this kit to me to build and review, so show them some love!

Kit talk:

The main issue that I have with this kit, is that the Bandai made a very poor decision by splitting the sleeve detail on each wrist into two pieces. This isn’t an impossible fault to overcome, but the fact that Bandai could have designed around it without too much cost or trouble irritates me. 



Aside from the sleeve details, there are a few seam lines that should be fused on the bazooka, rifle, head, knee frame and half the fuel tanks. I’m a little disappointed that there are quite a few,  but as a consolation, none of these seam lines are particularly difficult to fix.


I painted my Stein with a more saturated color scheme at first, but after looking the pieces together I walked the scheme back to a less saturated scheme and only kept the more saturated grey/blue/teal color on the main body armor. One disadvantage to my specific color blindness (Protan) is that my eyes have a tough time understanding how some colors work together, it can be confusing and a bit frustrating, when my perception of color doesn’t really match reality. But, I had a good support network of people that can help point me in the right direction. 



All of the sleeve 'engravings' on the chest and wrists were painted using the reverse wash technique. I have a tutorial here if you would like to learn how to use this technique.



The decal scheme I created for this kit pulls decals from a pile of partial sheets I've kept over the years, including the RG GP01, HG Unicorn, HG Sinanju, DX-06 and HG Origin Decal set 1. I like creating decal sets this way, I can take elements of the lore (affiliation, design history, setting, style, etc) and build that into a design. 



This kit is currently available from JoJoHobbyandStuff! You can get an extra 10% 12% off just about anything in their store using coupon code "GOODGUNPLA". JoJo provided this kit to me to build and review, so show them some love!

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

HG RX-78XX Gundam Pixy


Introduction:

 What do you think of when you hear the name Pixy? Some fairie wings, maybe a tutu and a wand? I get the feeling that the only wish the Pixy will grant is a quick and messy end.

 The RX 78-XX is another in a long line of upgrades to the standard RX 78-2 Gundam. Several of these units were constructed during the One Year War, and they saw action in major and minor conflicts. Built without the core block system and with enhanced apogee motors, the Pixy Gundam was both lighter and faster than the RX 78-2. This mobile suit excels at close range combat using a paired of beam daggers and paired 90mm machine guns.

The mechanical design for the Pixy was handled by Kunio Okawara. The rounded features and exaggerated proportions of the model highlight the distinctive style of its designer.

Kit Talk:

From what I can tell the Pixy Gundam has a long in common with the design of the HG Ground GM from 2017. It's a solid design and features a lot of parts unique to this P-Bandai release.

It's a simple build, that is light on molded detail and basic in design. In my opinion, this kit does 'simple' right.

I mixed a variety of custom colors for this kit including the grey purple, light grey, and medium blue. I like this moodier variation on the classic bright colors of the Gundam. It looks substantially different from any other color schemes on my shelf right now.

I kept the decal scheme of the build very simple to reflect the simplicity of Okawara's artwork. I only used the iconic 'arrow through the heart' decal off of my old P-Bandai DX-04 decal sheet.

As a P-Bandai release, I can't guarantee that this kit will still be available when you're reading this. But, If you'd like to save 12% off your order at JoJoHobbyNStuff use coupon code 'GoodGunpla'!

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Review: HG AMS-123X-X Moon Gundam


Intro:

I built the HG Moon Gundam over the course of a few building sessions. The first chunk (about 3 hours) is captured here on my 10/6 live stream. Apologies in advance for the late posting this kit late! Sometimes life happens!

During the live stream, I described the build of the Moon Gundam as 'a snowball rolling downhill'. What I meant was that this kit builds momentum as you work through it. It started pretty 'meh' with a rather bland an boring torso and eventually moved onto more interesting, better, and cooler designs.

The HG Moon Gundam comes with 17 runners including while, light grey, yellow, red, green, clear, blue, psycho frame red and dark grey parts.

Most of the exterior armor of this kit is molded in a light grey color that sets it apart from other many other Gundams. It's a nice color and it complements the bright blue and white very well.

This isn't a perfect kit, but it does some interesting things with the HG formula and sets a nice precedent for future designs.

Things like:
  • Unlike most HG kits, the Moon Gundam doesn't feature any polycaps. Joints are always plastic on plastic.
  • The legs feature a pretty decent inner frame. It's not current MG or even RG quality. But, it's nice to have it included. 
  • The inner frame in the leg actually does stuff! The knees feature a fantastic double separation at the knee.
  • Bandai included interchangeable eye lenses. You can use an opaque green piece, or swap it out for a clear piece and modify it to include a LED. 
  • Upgraded Translucent pieces. I know some people didn't care for the translucent beam effect pieces with the RG Sazabi, but I liked how substantial and detailed they looked. Bandai has brought that back in the form of the psycho material used in the funnels, and they look great in my opinion!  

Let's dive in!

Monday, September 10, 2018

Let's take a look at: Perfect Grade 0 Raiser


The Perfect Grade 0 Raiser was released in 2009 as a part of the PG 00 Raiser. Since the PG Skygrapser released in 2005, the 0 Raiser is the only other non Mobile Suit released in the Perfect Grade line (excluding the PG Evangelion).


The 0 Raiser comes packed inside of its own box within the larger PG 00 Raiser. The 'B section' of the kit includes parts for the 0 Raiser, it's weapon system and the GN Sword III. Twenty five runners are included in this section of the kit and the manual dedicates about half of the manual to this section. 

For those who are not in the know, the 0 Raiser is a weapons support fighter. And while it can technically function as a 'starfighter', the 0 Raiser is really meant to support the 00 Raiser's twin drive system. 


Monday, August 27, 2018

EVA-01 Evangelion Test Type TV Version


Introduction:

The first Evangelion model kit I got my hands on was Bandai's EVA-01 Test Type w/frame; this was way back in 2003 long before I knew what I was doing, but I remember at that time I managed to create a pretty decent kit. Like most of my earliest work, that kit was lost between moves, college, etc...

Fast forward 15 years, and here I am again, building another Evangelion model, this time from Kotobukiya...

During the photo shoot, I rather ironically pulled a 'Sachiel' and broke the Evangelion's left arm. So, if those poses look a bit limited, that's why.

Kit Talk:


The first, and perhaps the only thing you need to know about this kit, is that it has seam lines, lots of seam lines, and they're in very unfortunate areas. If you're not prepared to deal with them, you're going to have to live with them all over the arms, shoulders, chest, and legs. While none of these lines are impossible to fix, they're a frustrating nuisance.


One quirk of this model is that it includes a pile of interchangeable and very expressive hands. You will find a collection of punching, grabbing, holding and stretching hands that can be easily popped on and off for different effects. I had to hand paint the knuckle designs on each of these hands.

Evangelion color matched paint is available from Gaia Color. I was lucky enough to source all of the bottles I needed through a proxy service in Japan. If you'd like to source some of these colors for yourself, you can find more information in my video here.

I will have a review up for this kit a few days after this post goes live, for those of you that would like to hear more about the build.


Real Grade GNT-0000 00 Qan [t]


Introduction:

The RG Qan[t] is a great example of a kit that I picked up entirely on a whim. Originally I convinced the staff at Walt's Hobby Shop in Syracuse to open up and display this kit for customers. And so, it sat in a display cabinet for a while with its guts all over. After about a month or two I decided that it was looking lonely, so I bought it. Turns out, that was a pretty good decision.

I completed a review of this kit a short while ago. If you'd like to hear more about the build experience then check it out.

Use coupon code "GOODGUNPLA" to receive 10% off your order on this kit, or most other items for sale on the site!

Kit Talk:

This was a basic and quick painted straight build. I am moving across the country this week, so, leading up to the move, I wanted to finish as many kits as I could.


This is the first time I have used 'Finisher's Model Paints' on a kit. The cobalt blue color is super saturated and vibrant. But, I had to apply 3 coats to achieve a consistent color. I'm not sure if this is the intended results, or if I ended up with a bad bottle. After applying the basecoat, I added some grey details using a hand brush and 'phantom grey' from Vallejo paints.

Decals are from the official RG Qant[t] waterslide set. In hindsight, I should also have used the HG decal set, as they're modeled after the 'designer' Qan [t].

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Review: Real Grade MSN-04 Sazabi


Intro:

I'm not going to start this review off by waxing philosophical, sharing lore or making funny quips. Let's get right down to it. The RG Sazabi is a fantastic kit. If you haven't already ordered one, then stop here, place an order and come back, you'll thank me later.

On that note, this kit was provided to me by JoJoHobbyNStuff. Use coupon code "GOODGUNPLA" to receive 10% off your order on this kit, or most other items for sale on the site! 

I'll start off by saying that the RG Sazabi doesn't feel like a Real Grade, it feels more like a 1/144 scale Master Grade. I mentioned that feeling several times during the two streams (Part 1, Part 2) over the weekend. My reasoning is that it:

  • Is as large as an MG kit both in stature and part count 
  • Has the same level of complexity and detail as an MG
  • Features a full inner frame, that doesn't rely on the 'Advanced MS' frame 
  • Has a price similar to an MG 
I built this kit over the course of two sessions, the first being nearly six hours and the second about an hour and a half. I don't recommend building this kit in this way; this build really deserves to be savored.

The RG Sazabi's box includes 17 plates of runners including:

  • Red, salmon, yellow, grey and black runners
  • 1 small runner of Advanced MS joints
  • 2 beam effect runners in semi-translucent yellow 


Standing 18cm, the RG Sazabi towers over other 1/144 scale kits (12-13cm). The wide cowls along the feet, enlarged tail binder and massive shoulders and fuel tanks further add to the bulk of the design. The RG Sazabi truly dwarfs other models in the 1/144 scale.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Review: HG Gundam RX 78-XX Pixy


What do you think of when you hear the name Pixy? Some fairie wings, maybe a tutu and a wand? I get the feeling that the only wish the Pixy will grant is a quick and messy end.

The RX 78-XX is another in a long line of upgrades to the standard RX 78-2 Gundam. Several of these units were constructed during the One Year War, and they saw action in major and minor conflicts. Built without the core block system and with enhanced apogee motors, the Pixy Gundam was both lighter and faster than the RX 78-2. This mobile suit excels at close range combat using a paired of beam daggers and paired 90mm machine guns.

On to the review!

Monday, August 13, 2018

Review: Gundam Astray No-Name


The Gundam Astray No-Name was an antagonist suit and came out of nowhere and got a lot of people excited. Although this mobile suit has only been featured in a single episode so far, I think it's fair to say that, we will see it again.

Onto the review!

This kit was provided to me by www.jojohobbynstuff.com, I really appreciate being given a chance to build and review this kit. If you would like to purchase this, or any other kits, you can use coupon code "GOODGUNPLA" at JoJoHobbyNStuff to receive 10% off of your order!


Friday, August 10, 2018

Action Base 04 First Impressions


Since I've started in the Gunpla hobby I've mostly been using the Action Base 01 & 02 to pose my kits for photo shoots. Both display stands have been perfectly adequate. But, I decided to pick up Action Base 04 to try something new.

I chose the clear version of the action base since it photographs better against different backgrounds; this stand can also be found in black.

These action bases and much more are available from JoJoHobbyNStuff.com if you use coupon code "GOODGUNPLA" you can save 10% off of your order! 


The action base comes packed in a plastic bag. The label in the bag is also the instruction sheet. Speaking of the instructions... the sheet is dense, to be honest, a bit hard to follow. I would have preferred a larger sheet with a bit more real estate to spread things out.   




This stand includes 3 hexagons that can be assembled in a number of formations. I feel like overall they're more space efficient than the earlier action bases.


I like that you assemble them end on end, and have two HGs charging headlong at each other.


This action base includes a variety of different stand options to hold your kit and it's accessories up.



The pack includes two small stands that can be used separately for smaller HG/RG models or combined together for a larger MG/RE 1/100 kits. These stands can use a variety of different pieces to hold the model kits in place including adapters for the common stand connectors included with most kits. The ladder looking pieces are used to prop the stands open.


The package also includes a smaller accessory style stand that works well for weapons and other items. This works perfectly for the RG Qan [t]'s GN Sword V. Interestingly this stand also fits the common peg type stand featured on some Kotobukiya kits like the Eva TV series.

The new action base 04 and 05 are compatible with each other and with the figure-rise effect parts.

I can see that action base 04 becoming a mainstay in my display cabinets. I like the versatility of the stands, the interconnectivity and the plethora of connection options. And, I feel that if I switched to this new base system I could potentially save a lot of space compared to the older 01 and 02 models.

These action bases and much more are available from JoJoHobbyNStuff.com if you use coupon code "GOODGUNPLA" you can save 10% off of your order!