Saturday, 20 May 2017

Star Wars C-3PO [WIP - Lower Torso & Pelvic Area]

On the surface, painting Threepio's multi-system connection wires (see below) might seem to be the most difficult task faced by a modeller working on this Bandai Star Wars 1/12 scale kit. But in reality, this couldn't be further from the truth. Personally, I found the work done on Threepio's armour to be much more difficult even though it was already moulded in 'golden' hues. Care had to be taken not to accidentally strip Threepio's gold-plating while creating a weathered yet shiny look to the whole piece. In that regard, Lady Luck played a role in preventing things from going south.  

Bandai Star Wars 1/12 Scale C-3PO: work-in-progress on the lower torso and pelvic area

There wasn't going to be a second chance with Threepio's armour. If the gold-plating stripped off during the weathering process then the model kit would no longer be the protocol droid we know and love from A New Hope. He would instead be the one in Attack of the Clones. Still cool but not the droid I was looking for. Lady Luck smiled on me in the sense that I found a long-sought-after weathering product required for the task - Mr Weathering Color and Solvent. And it's very easy to strip off the gold paint. All I had to do was dab the plastic with a bit of Mr Cement S extra thin glue and out came the gold paint. Add some weathering to the now silver part and voila ... battle damage.

If only these gold platings could talk ... battle damage on C-3PO's left hip
Painting the individual wires on C-3PO's abdomen was a hassle but totally worth it 
Back view of C-3PO's lower torso and rear-end

Coming back to Threepio's multi-system connection wires located on his abdomen, it was a great move on Bandai's part to design a three-tiered wiring system (see below). This provided the section with added depth and realism. It also made it easier to paint the individual wires. After each and every level was stacked on top of each other, Threepio's abdominal section looks fantastic.    

Bandai made an excellent design choice to stack three levels of wiring on top of each other
C-3PO's pelvis was painted with Mr.Weathering Colors and sealed with a semi-gloss clear coat

Once completed, Threepio's lower torso/pelvic area was promptly attached to his upper torso. So far what I imagine in my mind is how he's turning out to be. C-3PO is coming along nicely indeed.  

Bandai Star Wars 1/12 Scale C-3PO work completed so far - head, torso and pelvis
Photography lighting issues saw C-3PO's armour reflect light in a less than ideal way i.e. too dark
C-3PO's primary power coupler outlet (round thingy on his stomach) shines the brightest at this angle
Side view (left) showing how C-3PO's hip battle damage looks in relation to his upper torso and head
When the lighting is angled just right ... C-3PO's armour shines through even the semi-gloss coating
But when the lighting is a tad off ... the gold plated armour loses its shine
And the shine is back again ... lots of tweaking of the lights lie ahead for the completed photos
Side view (right) showing C-3PO sans arms and legs

The photos above don't really do Threepio justice. I have yet to arrange the lighting lamps at optimal positions so as to properly highlight his gold armour. All in all Threepio still looks too dark in the photographs. Hopefully I will have this issue sorted out by the final photo session. Thanks for following my progress on C-3PO so far, and do have a great weekend ... what's left of it anyway.


  1. This might be the first time I've seen C3PO wiring with such a level of detail. This is going to be absolutely great.

    1. Bandai really did a great job on that part of C-3PO. In fact, this whole model kit is awesome! :)

  2. That does look fabulous. Very clever having the multiple layers. I imagine easier to produce as well.

    1. Costlier for sure. But it really does look much more realistic.


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