|Master Grade RX-78-2 Gundam Version 3.0: Shoulder Armor, Arms and Hands [Completed]|
|Master Grade RX-78-2 Gundam Version 3.0: Beam Saber Hilts [Completed]|
In my fist serious set back with the Gundam painting process, I noticed metallic paint chipping easily from the hands. While friction between moving parts played a part, I suspect this was more a case of the plastic type being incompatible with paint. So far most of the parts I've painted were made from Polystyrene (PS) and these had no paint issues. However parts made from Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) like the hands and from Polyethylene (PE) such as the polycaps saw paint chip rather easily. It seems that the paint doesn't adhere well to ABS and PE even with an initial primer coat.
|RX-78-2 Gundam Hands primed and painted on the sprues, which in hindsight wasn't ideal|
|Parts of both hands connected to the sprue had to be primed and painted separately|
|Both of the hands before the respective armor panels were attached|
|Master Grade RX-78-2 Gundam Version 3.0: Hands [Completed]|
|Paints on both hands chipped easily due to excessive friction between moving parts; another likely cause is either the metallic paint was applied too thickly, not allowed proper curing time; or the plastic type was incompatible with paint|
Thankfully it was much smoother sailing when painting and assembling the Shoulder Armor. I had no issues with paint chipping; none with assembly fit and surprisingly no major problem with the dreaded sticker decals this time. Armor panels on the Shoulder Armor are attached to inner frames with a certain amount of give and freedom of movement. This should allow both arms of the RX-78-2 Gundam a greater degree of motion within the confines of the Shoulder Armor.
|Individual parts of the Shoulder Armor all painted up with decals applied, and awaiting assembly|
|Core of the Shoulder Armor assembled with only its outer armor panels left to be attached|
|Master Grade RX-78-2 Gundam Version 3.0: Shoulder Armor [Completed]|
At the connecting point between the Shoulder Armor and the Body Unit is an inner frame which allows for upward and downward movement only (see metallic part with a circular hole, photos above and below). As limited as this may be, it should be taken in a proper context together with the greater amount movement allowed by joints on the Body Unit itself, which actually connect to the arms via the circular hole. Flexible panels on the Shoulder Armor lower resistance to movement that rigid armor panels would inevitably have. All in all, this will increase poseable options.
|Part on the Shoulder Armor with a hole eventually attaches to connectors on the Body Unit to form a shoulder joint|
|Back view of the RX-78-2 Gundam Shoulder Armor|
|Top down view of the RX-78-2 Gundam Shoulder Armor|
|Innards of the Shoulder Armor which will largely be hidden from view after attaching to the arms|
|Insides of the Shoulder Armor is hollow as it will be attached to the arms|
Meanwhile, the Beam Saber Hilts were straightforward constructs that didn't take long to finish. As they stand, they will be inserted into specific holders on the Ransel (Backpack). When unsheathed and in the 'activated' mode, an elongated, clear red plastic piece mimicking an energy blade will be inserted into the hilt. It will then become a weapon that the RX-78-2 Gundam can pose with.
|Beam Saber Hilts before (top half of photo) and after assembly (bottom half)|
So now all the components of the Arm Unit are ready for the next step. They will be assembled into complete Arm Units and then subsequently attached to the Body Unit together with the Head Unit, Ransel (Backpack) and Beam Saber Hilts in order to form the RX-78-2 Gundam's Upper Body. That's coming soon, pictures and all. Until then, enjoy this piece of wisdom from everyone's favorite 'Assistant Regional Manager' i.e. Dwight Schrute ... Whenever I'm about to do something, I think, "Would an idiot do that?" And if they would, I do not do that thing.