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  #271  
Old 02-28-2017, 12:12 AM
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Ok. Mostly finished my MG Full Armor Unicorn Gundam.



I say mostly because there's two gigantic decal sheets that I'm not going to bother with. This is a "Ver Ka" kit, and Hajime Katoki likes superfluous decals a little too much. I'm mostly going for screen-accuracy with a lot of my junk too, so all those little details never manage to make it on screen, even if they are a part of the original design. I have a lot of complaints about the kit, but at the end of the day it looks pretty swell. More pics and descriptions in the spoilerpop:



This is the Unicorn in Unicorn-mode. The appeal of this kit is its ability to transform between Unicorn and Destroy modes. The HGs, you either get one or the other. It's also a good deal bigger than a HG, and in theory comes with more detail. However, I've read pretty consistently that people suggest either getting the HG or the PG, and skipping the MG line of Unicorns. Why? Because they're fiddly AF. Here in Unicorn-mode, the armor is all snapped close and it's relatively a relatively sturdy kit for having transformations. But like a lot of transforming kits, it's very flimsy at specific points. I don't regret getting the MG because it was (mostly) fun to build, I like the size compromise, and I don't have money/space for PGs. But I wouldn't exactly recommend it to most people. The HGs still come with most of the detail here (outside of the mountain of decals) since there isn't actually a lot of places to panel line on this kit. And in Destroy-mode, the thing can barely stand up under its own weight, though that's not a big deal for me and you'll see why later.

If you notice the v-fin/horn transforms too. Unfortunately, it can't actually close properly, especially with the slight increase in girth that the color sticker adds to it. If you want to keep the thing in Unicorn-mode, it comes with a swappable part that's just a single piece. But I'm not gonna keep this thing in Unicorn-mode and didn't feel like swapping parts. In the PG, there are magnets inside the v-fin so that it stays closed.



The rear-view of Unicorn-mode.



The Full-Armor version of the Unicorn comes with this thing that you could have your Unicorn ride around on. It's basically a base-jabber, but specialized for the Unicorn. The big rockets there can detach and get thrown on the Unicorn's back for its Full Armor configuration.



Rear-view. One thing I really liked about this kit is that the inside of the rocket bells have plastic inserts to maintain color separation. Most kits I've made, the builder is just told to fuck off and paint the inside of those bells. I've never understood why more kits don't do this, especially MGs. You've got the size to make it easy, and one of the draws of MGs is supposed to be the color separation.



Here is everything assembled that comes in the box. There's 38 runners on the kit, and the instruction manual is super dense. Half of the manual is simply for building the accessories. I've read several places on The Internet that if you ever want to attempt building this kit (or anything of a similar nature) that it's a good idea to start with the weapons/accessories so you don't burnout. And I feel that's a good idea. The monotony of building those weapons was not fun. Especially the gatling guns. Lots of careful nub removal on small curved surfaces. If you do the accessories first, you have the main mecha afterwards to look forwards to. I might have given up had I started with the Unicorn first however, especially when I don't even plan on displaying any of the accessories.



Here's the kit in Destroy-mode with its Full Armor attachments. In order to allow for the transformation gimmick, the kit itself loses a lot of its stability as parts can't snap firmly into place if they need to slide open. The knees, waist, and forearms in particular are very flimsy (the armor on the kneecaps doesn't even snap into place, and just kinda falls off if a gust of wind brushes up against the kit). I had a hard time getting the kit to stand up under its own weight with all of the "armor" on its back, so I threw it on an Action Base. If it was standing on a flat surface, the kit comes with little stands to prop up the rocket boosters so it doesn't just fall over. However, on an AB, the included stands are too short, so everything is kinda slumping backwards. Thus why this picture was taken at an angle so you can kinda imagine what it's supposed to look like properly oriented.



I do like how it looks with all this ridiculousness attached, but it's kinda a little too big, and I have different plans. One thing that bugs me about the "Full Armor" nature of this kit is that... there's actually no additional armor, outside of the additional shields. It's just a buttload of extra guns and rockets. I feel like if you're gonna call something 'Full Armor', you should at least do it right like the ZZ or other "Full Armor" variants in the franchise that actually add chunk to the main body.



More angles.



So the reason why I got this kit over say, the regular Unicorn, is the green psycho frame. The coolest part of Unicorn is when the Unicorn and Banshee stop the Gryps colony laser, and I wanted to make a little diorama. So this is how I'll be having it on my shelves. Because of the pose, being on an AB, and not really needing any of the accessories, most of this kit's woes aren't a big deal to me in the end.



I've got a MG Banshee Norn Final Battle ver. sitting in my closet; all I need to do is assemble that, and find a way to prop up the Unicorn's shields like so. The PG actually comes with a special stand to do so, but for this MG I'm on my own to try and jury rig something. This is something I'll get to eventually, because the last thing I want to do at the moment is build what is effectively a Unicorn palate swap. I am glad though that I got a hold of a Banshee w/ green psychoframe though (it's a p-bandai exclusive, so not as easy to get a hold of).

So that's that. Again, don't know if I can recommend this kit to everyone, but I mostly enjoyed it. It has a LOT of problems, but most of them aren't going to be an issue for me personally and what I want to do with it. It's pretty massive for a MG though. I think I remember reading that there are 700+ individual pieces to put together. So if that sounds like a good idea to you, go for it. But consider if the other grade kits might not be better for your needs.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Dracula View Post
But the weird ones are the best!! Where's my HG Zakrello
LMAO, that's the other problem. The obsession with Mobile Armors basically renders plamo of them logistically impossible. There's only a few HG mobile armors, and they're all massive and expensive AF. Bandai can only really justify that for things that are going to be very popular like the GP-03 Dendrobium, or the recent Neo Zeong. They're never going to do that for an obscure design that most people wouldn't care about. This is the kind of scale we'd be talking about:




Last edited by WisteriaHysteria; 02-28-2017 at 12:25 AM.
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  #272  
Old 02-28-2017, 08:10 AM
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Look just give me a 1/1200 Zakrello, I won't complain
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  #273  
Old 02-28-2017, 08:46 AM
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There's been a 1/550 Zakrello for a long time



You definitely gotta paint it tho.
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  #274  
Old 02-28-2017, 10:34 AM
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What a beautiful boy. I would totally build that, but I do kinda wish there was one designed with more modern kit sensibility.
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  #275  
Old 02-28-2017, 12:07 PM
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That MG Unicorn is a whole lotta mecha. Nice, despite the problems. The green frame is sweet.

I have the HG (Destroy) Unicorn though (I think I started this thread with it actually), and yeah, it doesn't seem like it's missing a whole lot of detail compared to the MG, and since it doesn't transform it's fairly sturdy. Though I did manage to break the front skirt connectors, but that was because it got dropped. Oh, and it's a special edition that comes on a fancy base with a big head in Unicorn-mode which, despite being huge, *also* has the problem that the horn won't stop splitting apart slightly.
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  #276  
Old 03-07-2017, 01:44 AM
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Been snapping away lately! Did a HMM Command Wolf zoid. Interesting kit. appreciate the strong mechanical stylings. Zoids seem more practical/purposeful than they should be. It's sorta mysterious and alien. I don't recall the fiction doing anything cool though...

Also finished panel lining a RE/100 Dijeh I completed awhile back. I really like having it out for display.

I've been meeting a lot of gunpla fans recently and it's strange that the modeling is like it's own separate thing from the anime fandom, but then again I just built a Zoid without being too familiar with that franchise, so modeling is just fun.
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  #277  
Old 03-07-2017, 07:02 AM
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Gunpla modeling is not only kind of separate from anime fandom, it's also kind of separate from the overall plastic modeling hobby. It's weird like that. That said there are plenty of people who are into all three.

Your Command Wolf is beautiful and I wish HMM kits weren't so gosh darned expensive. Dijeh is also a real looker, hoo-ee
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  #278  
Old 03-07-2017, 07:31 AM
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Nice doggy! Who's a good boy? Yes you are!

I need to find some time to get back into my kits. (Especially since I was just at B&N and couldn't help throwing a few bucks at an adorable little SD Barbatos.)
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  #279  
Old 03-07-2017, 10:09 AM
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Lookin' real good, s p a c e f o l d!

I have some kits I need to put the finishing touches on, but new Zelda is proving to be a model-killing proposition.

It is weird how Gunpla and Gundam are at times almost separate things for fans. I remember reading about how for Tomino it's always been that way, and part of his drive for late-UC is to stick it to model builders, because (reading between the lines) they're only there for the models and not anything he actually does with regards to making a show. I for one, appreciate a good model as much as the next guy, but I don't think I'd spend money and make anything I didn't have an emotional attachment to. But that's almost a moot-point at this point given how much crap I've seen.
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  #280  
Old 03-25-2017, 05:36 PM
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I recently built four of these Drop Pods. What an awesome kit! They're bigger and heftier than I thought, and they come together in a really satisfying way, and pretty quickly. Painting the interiors will be a bitch, but the outsides will be a cinch with my airbrush.



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  #281  
Old 03-25-2017, 08:13 PM
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I love drop pods. They look cool. I hope you didnt glue. Because the inside is a bitch to paint once it is all assembled...
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  #282  
Old 03-27-2017, 07:40 AM
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I never paint things in multiple parts if I can avoid it. It's a really good way to have half-painted, half-built models lying around. I'm going to give the inside a pretty quick airbrush-drybrush-wash(also airbrush) treatment so it shouldn't be too bad. I'll let you know how much I regret it when I get there! It's still not warm enough to do spray primer here.
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  #283  
Old 04-04-2017, 03:29 AM
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I've been watching and really digging Aura Battler Dunbine lately. And I got a hold of an MG Dunbine and put it together.



And you might be wondering, why is this kit laying down instead of standing up? Does it have weight distribution problems? Nope. It's just the only way to make it look like it's backpack-thing is attached. Because I broke it. Irreprably.



I love the Dunbine, and this kit looks so cool, and oh god is it a terrible model kit. Just about every peg that fits together is just a little too big and doesn't fit without putting enormous amounts of stress on pieces shoving it together. The plastic and engineering just isn't up to stuff here for that. I actually snapped parts in about 4-5 different places here putting it together. I dunno if it's because the plastic on this specific kit is old and brittle (this kit was first released in 2000, for all I know this is a decade old plus kit) or if the engineering is simply deficient, but yeah. It also included a lot of really shitty tiny screws, which made things even worse, since those too didn't fit and I stripped the heads of several screwed trying to get them to fit. Just overall a very stressful and unpleasant experience. I managed to fix most of the breaks, but the backpack break is probably going to be impossible to fix without just fusing the pieces into place. Something I just don't have the enthusiasm or the tools necessary at the moment, so it's probably going to go in a box to be hidden away forever.

There's apparently several modernish Dunbine HGs? Anybody have experience with those? I probably should have gone for those instead. TBH the surface detail on this kit is pretty lacking and not really worth a MG. The articulation isn't great either, and the joints are so stiff that it can't really be posed well. There's a crazy amount of detail on the inner frame, but that's just lost underneath the armor. If I did things over again, there's probably a few things I could do to make the parts fit more smoothly, but that ship has already sailed.
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  #284  
Old 04-04-2017, 10:20 AM
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Well that's just a shame. Sorry for all the frustration; looks cool aside from the broken crap.
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  #285  
Old 04-04-2017, 10:20 AM
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Dang dude. Yeah I've never heard anyone mouth a positive word on older gunpla/mecha kits that required screws. They're usually from that early MG period where they don't have the charm of a vintage kit nor the sophistication of a modern kit. Growing pains.
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  #286  
Old 04-04-2017, 03:32 PM
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I blame the engineering on the whole rather than just the screws. 20 yrs ago, Bandai mustn't have been capable of having the kinds of precise, computer-assisted engineering that gets you gap-less seams and perfect peg fits. In the MG Master Gundam I made a while ago, the screws worked as intended and it lent the model to having very sturdy joints for excellent poseability. Same with the old MG ZZ, where it kept a kit that should have fallen apart under its own weight and complexity, and instead it's pretty sturdy. There are times where I make some flimsy modern kits (like the MG Unicorn) where a few well placed screws would have helped keep everything together immensely. Especially when you get to larger and larger sizes where the plastic they use simply can't support its own weight (probably the #1 reason why we don't have a MG Kshatriya yet). But in this kit, without the screws everything already didn't really fit. Kits this old in general, even if there are no screws involved, are just extremely lacking and antiquated, but not so much that it has its own charm like First Grade kits.
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  #287  
Old 04-04-2017, 04:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dracula View Post
Dang dude. Yeah I've never heard anyone mouth a positive word on older gunpla/mecha kits that required screws. They're usually from that early MG period where they don't have the charm of a vintage kit nor the sophistication of a modern kit. Growing pains.
Eh, I have some older MGs that have screws and work well for them. Screws tended to allow for a finer control of tension to make posing easier. My S Gundam, Ex-S Gundam, Burning Gundam, and Master Gundam pose super nice because of their screws.

What I am reminded of, though, is older MGs like the Quebely that are literally just larger HGs (or non-grades). Huge, empty sections, very few details, and just generally feeling cheap even though it cost a lot more then a HG.
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  #288  
Old 04-07-2017, 01:16 AM
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This is an HG G-Lucifer I put together a lil bit ago but neglected to snap pics of.



I hear lots of complaints about the G-Reco kits, but so far the ones I've made have been fun and great lookin'.



The big-ass fin-funnel things on the back come with their own little stands so you can have them flying around, but I opted not to because it's just goofy looking and takes up extra space.



There's a few annoying color separation issues with this kit, mostly with regards to the solid black parts (required painting) or some of the little laser canons on the fin-funnels and elsewhere that require painting purple (that I didn't do, on account of not having that hue of purple paint) but nothing awful or out of the ordinary for an HG. Overall, a quaint, fun kit. It's kinda weird thought that it's roughly the same size as the G-Self and G-Arcane though; you got the feeling while watching the show it was MUCH bigger. The G-Lucifer is also just a rad design in general. Nonsense like the Zeta-Zaku aside, is this the first time a Gundam has had a monoeye?

Last edited by WisteriaHysteria; 04-07-2017 at 04:18 AM.
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  #289  
Old 04-07-2017, 03:54 AM
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Nah, at the very least there was a whole G Gen game about some. Sisquiede and Dezpada.

Also, based on the definitions of the series, Vayeate and Mercurius were both Gundams. But whether you want to count that is your call.
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  #290  
Old 04-07-2017, 07:43 AM
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I know next to nothing about G-Reco, but I did think the suit design looked pretty odd and neat. I still don't understand why a jetpack for an HG costs 20 bucks, though (maybe it's just my local hobby store)
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  #291  
Old 04-07-2017, 01:45 PM
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Nice. Solid black is super easy to paint at least, but yeah, that purple would be tricky. If you had paint pots or the kind of markers you can draw paint out of you might be able to mix something up from red, blue, and white/black if necessary, but otherwise that's a ridiculously uncommon color to have to buy.
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  #292  
Old 04-08-2017, 10:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dracula View Post
I know next to nothing about G-Reco, but I did think the suit design looked pretty odd and neat. I still don't understand why a jetpack for an HG costs 20 bucks, though (maybe it's just my local hobby store)
It MSRPs for 1296yen in Japan (~12usd), so that's big markups on your hobby store. Which is still a little pricey for what amounts to an add-on pack (tho you can usually find it for cheaper these days online). But to be fair, the Space Pack is almost as big as the G-Self itself, plus it comes with its own stand (since the G-Self probably will have a hard time standing upright with it attached), and option parts to replace the shoulders on the G-Self, the G-Self's shield, and a little core fighter as well. So it's not the worst deal in the world.

G-Reco has easily had the best mecha design in the franchise in decades. The show is worth watching for that alone, IMO.
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  #293  
Old 04-09-2017, 02:10 AM
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This was the last kit I made before Zelda BotW came out and destroyed my free time: The RE/100 Bawoo.



This kit looks amazing, but my pessimism set in while building it and I couldn't help but be disappointed during some of its construction. I've never done a RE/100 kit before, and while I knew what I was getting into, I don't think I was actually mentally prepared for it being a glorified HG. I don't mind the fact that there's no inner frame, because I'm not doing the kinds of modding that takes advantage of it being there. But it's disappointingly flimsy, especially in the legs considering how hollow they are and not reinforced in any way. The levels of surface detail is exquisite and at first glance it looks like a MG, but there's tiny details everywhere that is a constant reminder of what could be, but isn't. Like baffling color separation issues (The red circles on the shield, for example, should be brown on the outside, and red only on the concave section; making that happen would have been easy, but they just didn't because...?) or lazy seam placements, or parts that don't fit well. The whole kit feels like they got halfway through designing an MG Bawoo and said "oops, fuck it" during its design and then did a lazy salvage-job and turned it into a RE/100. That wouldn't be a big deal to me, if it weren't for the fact I really like the Bawoo, so it's just kinda disappointing instead. I should be thankful that we even got this, I guess.



All that said, it's still really nice looking. The Bawoo, as an evil Zeta Gundam is just super slick. The kit also does the transformation gimmick, and is a lot less flimsy than you'd expect with a tranforming kit. Which is more than I expected. I didn't bother to do it though, because I actually dislike how the Bawoo looks when it splits in half. There's tons of surface details to panel line; not as much as some other RE/100s, but enough that it looks pretty slick. It also came with a huge sheet of decals, but I didn't feel like using them. Also as a Zeke-suit, it's yuuuugee. Probably one of the bigger kits I've built to date.



All in all, it was a pretty decent kit. In hindsight, I probably should have waited a month or two to buy one so that I wasn't paying list price for it. And annoyances aside, it was a lot better build than the MG Dunbine turned out to be. I'm just probably being a nitpick with a mobile suit I love a whole lot.
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  #294  
Old 04-09-2017, 05:22 AM
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It's a little sad to hear that the RE/100 isn't as good. The RE/100 line itself is something I really like because I just don't like 1/144 (they're a little small for my hands), so RE/100 being a "cheap" line for unusual machines is something I've wanted for years. I've got a few, and they really are basically 1/100 scale HGs, with almost all that entails.

I'm still going to get the Bawoo at some point. I've just been putting it off.
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  #295  
Old 04-10-2017, 10:36 PM
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If I'm being more objective, it's a pretty decent kit. It's mostly just a problem of my expectations and desires not lining up well with reality. RE/100 kits seem like a nice compromise for certain things. IIRC the next RE/100 is going to be another ZZ kit (Hamma Hamma) and we were never going to get anything close to an MG Hamma Hamma ever (shoot, I'm pretty sure we don't even have a modern HG Hamma Hamma).
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  #296  
Old 04-19-2017, 08:47 AM
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Apparently, the website Hobbywave is going out of business and clearing inventory. Some of the prices for recent kits aren't all that great, but their backlog of older kits are all highly competitively priced. Shipping is a flat rate of $12 domestically, so it behooves you to buy in bulk. I just put in an order for 6 or so kits; that's gonna be fun.



Made another Valvrave unit. This time Unit V "Hiuchiba". I didn't know the different units had names...? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I think this one is my favorite, because dual wielding shields and blue. I actually liked this build a lot, there were changes to the kit versus unit 1 that addressed a lot of my complaints with that kit, plus unit 5 is real purdy. Still a buttload of stickers thou.
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  #297  
Old 04-19-2017, 08:54 AM
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Man I've browsed Hobbywave so many times but never really found a way to make the shipping work for me (I usually only buy one or two kits at a time). Sad to hear it's leaving us, some of their prices were quite good.
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  #298  
Old 04-19-2017, 08:56 AM
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Oh man, are all those angled white lines stickers? My fingers are cramping up just thinking about applying them all. If the parts are grooved well enough where the stripes go I'd be seriously tempted to find a nice very-opaque white paint pen and do it that way instead.

Nice looking kit, at any rate.
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  #299  
Old 04-19-2017, 09:12 AM
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I don't think a nice opaque white paint pen exists.
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  #300  
Old 04-19-2017, 09:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dracula View Post
Man I've browsed Hobbywave so many times but never really found a way to make the shipping work for me (I usually only buy one or two kits at a time). Sad to hear it's leaving us, some of their prices were quite good.
I ordered 6 kits, so that's $2/kit for shipping and that's stupid-good prices. If you can't bring yourself to purchase more than one or two kits however, it still might be worth looking through their modeling supplies like paints, glues, etc. If you're buying a bunch of their paints or some equipment on sale, like dozens of little paint bottles, gundam markers, action bases, or an airbrush setup, then the flat shipping is still very advantageous.
Quote:
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Oh man, are all those angled white lines stickers? My fingers are cramping up just thinking about applying them all. If the parts are grooved well enough where the stripes go I'd be seriously tempted to find a nice very-opaque white paint pen and do it that way instead.
They are stickers, and no there's mostly no grooves to guide them. They aren't hard to apply however? Most of them line up along a straight edge of the armor, so it's just a matter of using that edge as a guide. It also helps to put them on with a pair of tweezers, and I usually do it while resting my wrist on my desk to steady my hand. It just takes a little patience, is all. Some of them you might be able to paint on, like the white and blue lines along the legs and hips. But you'd either need a steady hand and good brush work, or heavy usage of masking tape. Either way though, all the stickers on the upper body are too complicated to mimic with paint unless you carefully engineer stencils or something and spray paint.
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