|Bandai Master Grade RX-78-2 Gundam Version 3.0 [Completed, with shield and weapons]|
Posing Grandpa Gundam with its weapons and shield was anything but easy. Not all was bad. By itself the RX-78-2 had numerous points of articulation equating to impressive freedom of movement. Moreover the joints were stiff enough to maintain most poses. My beef was with the ability of either hands to sufficiently grip the weapons and shield. In all fairness, Bandai had offered a solution by way of an extendable piece of plastic from either hand that could slot into holes on the Beam Saber hilt. This solution was reversed for the Beam Rifle and Hyper Bazooka in which both had extendable pieces that fit into the hands. Meanwhile the Shield had extensions that the hand and arm could slot into for a secure hold. But as you can tell already, there was a caveat to these solutions.
|1/100 scale RX-78-2 Gundam with its Beam Saber and Shield|
Firstly, I had already painted the hands, weapons and shield. Frequently moving the extendable pieces as well as inserting and removing them from the corresponding pieces increased the likelihood of paint chipping with each attempt. Something I didn't want happening. Secondly, I couldn't for the life of me get the hand/arm to securely hold the shield. In short, Bandai's solutions didn't work, for me. Instead, I used tiny amounts of adhesive tack (too much and paint tends to peel off when the tack is removed) to secure the Beam Sabre hilt into place. As for the rest, I posed Grandpa Gundam in ways that placed minimum stress on the hands. Not an ideal solution but thankfully it did the job.
|For poses, the RX-78-2 Gundam was attached to the Bandai Action Base 1|
|In hindsight, perhaps painting the Beam Sabre's blade would've given it a better shine effect|
Of all the weapons Grandpa Gundam wielded, the Beam Rifle was perhaps the most underwhelming. It looked meh so I only bothered to take one sole photo of the rifle and Grandpa (see below).
|Grandapa Gundam brandishing the Beam Rifle, which is the least impressive weapon in its arsenal|
In contrast, the Hyper Bazooka looked cool and awesome in the hands of the RX-78-2. I guess size does matter, especially if you're a Gundam. The pose with the bazooka (see below) was intended to mimic a battle situation in outer space in which Grandpa Gundam was bracing himself to fire the bazooka. The left hand is on the trigger while the right hand is braced against the top of the bazooka in order to stabilize its aim. This RX-78-2 Gundam pose ranks as my second favorite after the one with it holding Amuro Ray in its hand. In my opinion, both convey a sense of immense size.
|RX-78-2 Gundam wielding the Hyper Bazooka, a beast of a weapon in terms of size|
|Front view doesn't convey the body shape required cushion the bazooka's recoil|
|While the right hand is on the trigger, the left rests atop the bazooka to stabilize it when aiming|
|Floating in space, the RX-78-2 adopts a pose to best absorbed the eventual recoil of the bazooka|
|Hyper Bazooka's bottom section (near the rear) is shaped to fit onto the RX-78-2 Gundam's shoulder armor|
In a previous post I had expressed my doubt as to whether the custom connector provided with the kit could securely hold the RX-78-2 Gundam onto the Action Base. As you can see from the poses, all of which had the mecha secured onto the base via the connector, it was a needless worry. Even poses without the weapons and shield looked more dynamic when done using the base (see below).
|Secured on the Bandai Action Base 1, old Grandpa Gundam can adopt dynamic poses without fear of falling over|
|As is almost tradition now in all my figurine scale model kit poses, the "Arghh! I've been shot and am now falling backwards dramatically" pose is adopted here too by the RX-78-2 Gundam|
For now, the RX-78-2 Gundam is being displayed inside an IKEA DETOLF glass cabinet that has been self-sealed against dust accumulation (see below). I have left it secured to the Action Base with the Core Fighter, Shield, Hyper Bazooka and Beam Rifle also arranged on the base.
|Bandai Master Grade 1/100 scale RX-78-2 Gundam Version 3.0 ...|
|... secured on an Action Base and being displayed in an Ikea Detolf glass door cabinet ...|
|... with the Core Fighter, Shield, Beam Rifle and Hyper Bazooka resting on the base|
Gundam kit projects are time consuming on the basis of the need to manage and paint many small parts before assembling them. Despite this, I wouldn't have it any other way because the alternative may be easier in the short run but would result in a kit that looks plasticky and toy-like. To me that's the antithesis of what the scale modeling and miniature painting hobby is all about. Leave Gundams in their original state and I could imagine them saying what Formula 1 Haas Team Principal Guenther Steiner told owner Gene Haas after a monumental f**k up during the pit stops saw both cars drop out of the 2018 World Championships's opening race ... "We could have looked like rock stars". So do your Gundams a favor and paint them. Make them the rock stars in your hobby collection!