Posts Tagged ‘clear’ »
As soon as I was done with the Sinanju I started on this kit. The MG Exia as it turns out is a huge improvement over the already awesome 1/100 Exia kits. The way the parts are broken down makes for very little work as far as seams go.
I wanted to do something to take the Exia ‘over the top’ in a way and to add a “particle accelerator” ring around the GN drive. A modeler at my forum, Shin0bu, had made some for his 1/144 00 and they looked great. With his permission I used that concept for this piece. The addition of really huge GN blades mounted to the GN condensors gives it a winged appearance. Almost Wing Gundam or Seed like actually. Not intended but not a bad look for this.
I designed the Accelerator ring in Illustrator and had a friend lathe the shape for me from Ren foam. The foam is kinda pourus so I had to give it 3-4 coats of Filler primer to smooth it out, but the end result looks nice and smooth. After that I scribed some panel lines into it and added the notches and bead-holes.
The GN Drive for the “Maelstrom Unit” (going with the “avalanche” naming theme for that) was a leftover from my 1/100 Astraea combined with the drive hole cover that came with the MG. Using that cover as the back of the other GN drive made a REALLY stable mounting point for this backpack. Once the latches lock it in place it’s as secure as can be.
The swords were made from styrene sheet and shapes. To make the beveled edge of the blades easier to create I used Plastruct triangular styrene strip glued along the edge. That saved me the enormous headache of filing the edges to be evenly sharp.The hilt was made from extra 1/100 Exia leg and sword parts.
The GN condenser boxes were based on those on the rear of the Dynames. They were made from various styrene sheets and shapes. The small yellow wings are actually better-looking covers than the hooks they conceal beneath that hold the swords in place. Unfortunately the swords are way to big to allow me to pose them nicely with the model. I like them looking like wings better anyway.
I wanted the paint scheme to denote the Rollout stage of the Exia during which it was probably put through its paces in various tests. The orange is Mr. Color Flourescent Orange mixed with a little Flourescent and Character Red. The blades are Alclad II chrome, the internals ar Mr. Color Iron, and the rest is mixes of Tamiya Acrylics. The base color isn’t white, but instead a very light gray. That photographs better and looks less vibrant and glaring in person.
For the clear parts I was stuck with green. No big deal, but I’d rather have had the option of making them bluish-green. THis I found out though can be achieved as I managed to get a great color-shift effect on some of the clear parts, most notably the GN-Drive and the eyes/forehead sensor. If you paint them with clear-green first then spray them with a Future Floor Acrylic + Blue pearl powder mix it looks very cool. When the light hits it it looks blue. This only works though is the pearl powders are not behind the clear green, but are instead in front. After painting I dipped the clear parts in Future which gives them a super shiny gloss.
Enough chatter… here’s the rest of the pics:
About The Build »
I’ve been wanting to paint something in pink
for a while now, but aside from perhaps the Infinite Justice,
I couldn’t decide what else might look good. Then I picked
up the Astraea Type F and it looked perfect for a pink-build!
The kit itself was very easy to put together.
Not a whole lot of seams or masking involved when painting.
The parts fit is perfect as usual with Bandai kits. This kit
comes with all the things that the other Astraea comes with,
but has extra parts for the “mask”.
The worst part of the kit was the rubber parts
for the panels in the arms, legs, and “kidneys”.
I replaced those with ribbed styrene sheet.
Ironically the most difficult part of this kit
was getting a good pink color. I prefer Tamiya Acrylics and
there was just no mixes that I could find that came out vivid
enough. So I decided to seek out some Magenta Pigment in order
to tint some flat white to the shade I need. Well, apparently
Magenta Pigment isn’t cheap so I went to Michaels to have
a look around.
I found some PearlEx pigment sets, and Series
2 had just the color I wanted. Unfortunately (or so I thought)
it had a pearescent sheen to it. I decided to get it anyway
and work with it. It ended up working perfectly and the pearl
sheen was really minimized when mixed with the flat white.
I mixed enough pigment with my white to get the desired color
and did a test spray. It went on a little thick and lumpy,
but thinning it much more fixed that. The end result was the
perfect color. In fact, I also have a pearl cyan and yellow
that I could potentially use to make any color I want via
Another benefit of the pearl powders was in
doing a color-shift GN-Particle effect to the clear parts
and lenses. To achieve this I sprayed the back of the clear
parts with Future + Green PearlEx, then I added blue pearlEx
to that and sprayed the back-side again, finally I added clear
green Tamiya to that and gave it a final spray. Then dip it
in future to give it a nice gloss and place it over Alclad
Chrome painted internals for the full effect. The end result
is fantastic and unfortunately much better looking in person.
How do I paint the lenses and eyes on my kits? This topic has been brought up at message boards and I’ve gotten quite a few e-mails about it. So since I was taking pics for my MG Wing Gundam Ver. Ka., I thought I’d kill two birds and make a tutorial as well.
Most Bandai Gundam and mecha kits come with shiney foil stickers for the eyes and lenses. These tend to be ugly, a pain to work with, and in the end, they just look like stickers. Blah.
Some of these kits come with clear plastic parts for the eyes and larger lenses like the forehead sensors on a Gundam for example. These come with stickers too, but why cover up a clear part with a sticker when you can make them have depth and interest?
What about the parts that don’t come with clear parts? How can we make those look good? How can we we avoid masking? The answer is not too difficult and we’ll be using the stickers to boot!
Get some clear plastic. Several companies make it, or you can just use leftovers from an action-figure blister package. For this example, I’m using leftover bits of clear vacuform plastic.
Place the stickers on the clear plastic and use them as a template to cut out your new lenses. Remove the stickers and place them back onto the sheet for future use if needed.
Next we’ll place the lenses onto some tape rolled backwards on a skewer so that the sticky-side is out. This will make them easier to paint. Do the same with all of the clear parts supplied with the kit if any.
Next we’ll paint the backs of all of these clear parts with Tamiya Chrome Silver or any silver model paint. After they dry, take them off of the tape and flip them over onto fresh taped skewers. Notice how the silver is behind the part giving the lens some depth. Since eyes on the MG kits are very deep, I normally just paint the front of the eyes silver or else they tend to look too dark and not catch the light.
Next we’ll airbrush Tamiya clear colors onto the tops of the lenses. For this example, I used a mixture of Clear Green and Clear Yellow mixed with a little 91% Isopropyl alcohol to thin the paint. Any of the Tamiya Clear colors will work.
After we spray the clear, you may notice if looks a little fuzzy and frosted. Don’t fret, our next step will fix that.
To make the lenses really glossy and shiney, we’ll use Future Floor Acrylic. I brushed on 4 coats of FFA letting each coat dry for an hour in between. Notice how glossy and much nicer these look than the stickers already. Using the clear plastic gives you thicker lenses than the stickers would have and adds a nice touch to the kit.
After the FFA has cured completely (about 24 hours) we’ll remove the parts from the tape.
Next we’ll use a technical ink pen to outline the outside of the eyes with black ink. After the ink dries, give that part another coat of FFA with an airbrush as to not smudge the ink.
After the kit is completely done and all the clear and flat-coats have been applied, glue these into place using a very small amount of white glue. (Elmer’s Glue)