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batfink21
July 6, 2012, 4:54 AM
Here it is... my work in progress thread!

Currently I'm working on 1/100 Astray Red Frame Lowe Gule. This was the first model I ever built and its going to be the first one I've ever painted - so be gentle with the criticism!

Some pics of the model after it was first built:

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7077/7295094378_58f05cee96_c.jpg

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7079/7295154062_9b542ed752_c.jpg

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7076/7295170886_6ac281e8ec_c.jpg

batfink21
July 6, 2012, 6:22 AM
This is where I'm at the moment.

Both legs and feet have had their first coat of primer, its a bit patchy in places but I'm hoping a second light coat should sort it out:

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8156/7513695092_60e150ec6f_c.jpg

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8434/7513689568_1805cc56a4_c.jpg

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7264/7513693546_dd7384cd29_c.jpg

The rest of the kit has been broken down, sanded, cleaned and organised in sandwich bags (great tip found here http://youtu.be/fIh5x2-j-qM )

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8423/7513697248_53ff5fd67e_c.jpg

That's it. Not the most exciting update!

thwalker13
July 6, 2012, 9:22 AM
Very nice sir. The Astray Red frame has been on my to buy list for awhile now. Can't wait to see the final product.

Asterisk
July 6, 2012, 9:39 AM
Your priming looks insanely smooth. I'm really anticipating what you do with this, I've loved the Red Frame for a long time.

batfink21
July 6, 2012, 3:47 PM
@ thwalker13 - I really like the Red Frame kit, my favorite of the kits I've built is probably the Strike + IWSP, but I thought it was a bit too ambitious to try and paint that first, way too many little fiddly parts. The Red Frame is nice and simple, not too many pieces, and I really love the way it looks with the sword. My plan is to do a custom paint job in matte black - kind of make it look like a ninja / F117 stealth bomber!

@ Asterisk - I use Mr Surfacer 1200 for the priming which goes on really nicely - I was amazed how well the details came out on the parts, even with my inexperienced, heavy-handed airbrushing technique!

Tonight I did one of the arms and the sword and shield and now I've run out of alligator clips! Waiting for a new lot to be delivered.

I wasn't sure whether to repaint the chromed plastic sword blade or just leave it as it came out of the box, but there were a couple of white nub marks where it had been attached to the sprue so I sanded it down and I've primed it... hopefully the Alcad II chrome that I've ordered will restore it to it's original glory!

batfink21
July 7, 2012, 11:07 AM
A bit fed up today... I drove all the way over to the post office expecting to pick up my HG Zaku II sniper and a few new paint colors but all I got was an electricity bill :(

Right now I'm stuck waiting for things to arrive in the post - my Zaku kit, alligator clips, Tamiya and Alclad II paints. It sucks living in a country where you can't even find basic things like alligator clips!

thwalker13
July 7, 2012, 1:38 PM
I had to look all over creation to find the ones that I have. And what sucks more is that I live in a location where the nearest hobby store that carries Gunpla kits is over 1.5 hours from my house.

jayhat100
July 7, 2012, 6:17 PM
The red frame is a really nice kit i hoping to pick one up some day. Sad enough where i live it is easier to find guns and porn than modeling supplies. So i just use blue tack.

batfink21
July 8, 2012, 4:19 PM
Just ordered this:

2999

Plus the LED for its eye.

.)

batfink21
July 11, 2012, 12:39 PM
New arrival:

3018

3019

So this might be the kit I try some salt weathering on. Now just need those alligator clips to turn up...

batfink21
July 11, 2012, 12:48 PM
So i just use blue tack.

I've gone with your suggestion and put most of the rest of the kit on skewers with blue tack, but for the really fiddly pieces I'm just not that confident they won't fall off and get lost during the painting process. It's too humid to do any painting here at the moment anyway so I'll just get on with some sanding!!

batfink21
July 14, 2012, 1:27 AM
So I snapped together my HGUC Zaku I Sniper Type (Yonem Kirks) last night.

I really enjoyed building this kit, it has some great details despite the smaller size. The only thing I really missed from the MG kits was the pose-ability of the final model, but that's not such a big issue. This was my first Zaku and it's good to have a kit with some curved armour (good practise for the MG Marasai that's on the way).

My plan for this kit is to keep the colours quite close to the original, a kind of desert camo pattern. I also want to try out the salt weathering technique...

A few quick pics:

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7121/7566106958_46800696fc_c.jpg

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7108/7566109708_2140146ef7_c.jpg

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7271/7566114130_117b69f0b9_c.jpg

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8026/7566126502_00270dc959_c.jpg

batfink21
July 14, 2012, 6:29 AM
Some better photos:

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7256/7567088920_0c67a01f75_c.jpg

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8141/7567083940_df7bd4485c_c.jpg

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8159/7567086432_f19e6cd6d0_c.jpg

thwalker13
July 14, 2012, 10:33 AM
That Zaku Sniper looks awesome man. I think that's the 1st one I've seen all built up. Looks very cool.

batfink21
July 14, 2012, 1:38 PM
@ thwalker13 - yeah, i think it looks really cool too, I wish it came in a MG size kit, but at least painting it should be a bit easier as a HG. Its a nice change to see a Zaku without a huge bazooka or the standard machine gun (sorry if its got a special name...) and I love the muted desert colour scheme. The backpack is very cool too - love the little details like the cord, thrusters and the spare barrels.

I haven't seen one made up or painted either (except on the box). If you see one let me know as it would be good to get some inspiration.

batfink21
July 15, 2012, 10:30 AM
So the sniper didn't stay in one piece for long... and its a tough one to get apart once its been snapped together! I managed to break three small pieces. One of them was okay as it's not visible in the final build, the other two I managed to cement back together quite successfully.

Here is most of it all glued up ready for sanding. This is the first attempt I've had at cutting the posts so that I can glue the armor together, get rid of the seam lines and still fit everything back together easily. Very nerve wracking! Was constantly worried that I was cutting the wrong bit and was gong to end up with a few dozen pieces of useless plastic!

There were at least two parts which I couldn't see anyway to modify the joints so they're just going to have to get masked off when it comes to painting.

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8290/7574525426_8cdac401c3_c.jpg

jayhat100
July 15, 2012, 5:32 PM
Can't wait to see this and the redframe come togehter

MiyoMiyoChan
July 15, 2012, 7:10 PM
Ya - Redframe progress pics please :D

batfink21
July 16, 2012, 3:26 AM
There's not been too much progress on the red frame. All the parts have had at least one coat of mr. Surfacer 1200 now and some need a little touching up.

Next step is to wait for my gun metal paint to arrive...

EDIT_

Yesterday my MG Marasai arrived and today my Alclad II delivery arrived (black gloss base coat, chrome, stainless steel and jet exhaust) so big smiles all round! There's also something waiting for me at work which I think is probably my alligator clips.

batfink21
July 19, 2012, 3:49 AM
So there is an update...

Last night I spent a few hours putting on the two main base coats for the whole kit. Unless I specify otherwise, all the paint I use is Tamiya enamel.

For the base coat of the frame I've used a mixture of Tamiya Metallic Grey with a bit of Tamiya Flat Black (approx 4:1) to darken it down slightly. It's still come out a bit lighter than I wanted, but it has given it a really nice 'titanium' looking colour and finish. I'm in two minds whether to go over again with a darker metallic like gunmetal or just leave it like this.

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8154/7602129224_a1c540af5c_c.jpg

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8424/7602137696_d850e65d9f_c.jpg


For the armour I'm using Tamiya Flat Black mixed with Tamiya Flat White (approx 3:1) which gives a really really REALLY dark grey. It's very close to black, but I think 100% matt black loses all the details in the part so the grey keeps some of the shadows and highlights to allow the contours and details of the part to remain visible.

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8283/7602120364_933dfae6a4_c.jpg

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7132/7602121682_c9252a48bc_c.jpg


I also had a go with an Alclad II paint that I got - Jet Exhaust - which is a kind of metallic redish black, like the exhaust of a jet... It didn't work out quite as well as I hoped so I'm going back to the drawing board on that one! Need to watch a few more Alclad painting tutorials I think, that stuff it pretty tricky.

I was amazed that for all the metallic pieces I used a total of 1 1/2 (airbrush) cups of paint and all the black pieces just one cup! I think the key was that I dialled the pressure on the compressor right down to around 15psi and was spraying very very light coats. I was getting a lot of coughing and spluttering from the airbrush and I think that was probably a combination of the low psi and the metallic paint flakes clogging up the nozzle. I only had three major spits of paint, but luckily they were on the two ankle pieces and the hip piece which I don't think will be very visible in the final model.

Asterisk
July 19, 2012, 8:03 AM
Do you hand paint at all? Your idea about the darker metal color would be awesome on the raised detail, if you could pull it off.

batfink21
July 19, 2012, 9:22 AM
Do you hand paint at all? Your idea about the darker metal color would be awesome on the raised detail, if you could pull it off.

I was thinking about trying some hand painting, but its not something I've ever had any success with before - either I don't seem to have enough paint and it looks streaky or too much and it runs everywhere. I guess its just all about patience and plenty of separate small coats of paint.

I also thought that maybe just dry brushing in a darker grey would bring out some of the raised details a bit.

This is the Alclad II Jet Exhaust paint, with a very thin layer of the metallic grey over the top - this is the kind of colour I was thinking of for the gun metal.

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8146/7602133400_8bba2a6db3_c.jpg

Asterisk
July 19, 2012, 9:25 AM
The dry brushing could work, yeah. I dig the color you got going up there, looking forward to more.

batfink21
July 28, 2012, 4:36 AM
So quick update as I've been busy painting over the past couple of days, no pictures since it doesn't look much different to the last update:

Astray Red Frame
All armour parts have now had two coats of the flat black/grey. The frame has been touched up with the metallic grey and had a coat of Future applied in preparation for some panel lining and detail work. I've tried a bit of hand-painting on the jet pack pieces and it's come out a lot better than I hoped, so that's good.

Zaku Sniper
Instead of Mr. Surfacer I decided to start with a base coat of Alclad II Base Gloss Black on all of this kit. That's been laid down and most of the armour parts have had a quick blast of Alclad II Gunmetal - it's a really really dark gunmetal color, and its quite hard to distinguish it from the black base coat. i'm not sure its quite what I had in mind, but since its just the frame I'm going to leave it. Next step is to apply a coat of Future to the entire kit ready so I can start on the salt weathering.

batfink21
July 28, 2012, 6:42 AM
Do you hand paint at all? Your idea about the darker metal color would be awesome on the raised detail, if you could pull it off.

Here's the backpack. Instead of a darker color I've used a lighter aluminium color to highlight the trusters and some other little bits. I think once its had some dark weathering and maybe a touch of smoke it'll look proper bo.

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8142/7661191096_bf03627b21_c.jpg



EDIT: I've removed that annoying little hair as well!

Asterisk
July 28, 2012, 8:23 AM
That's pretty swanky, I like that quite a bit.

thwalker13
July 28, 2012, 9:49 AM
Backpack looks awesome man. The highlighted areas really sets it off.

batfink21
August 3, 2012, 4:06 PM
I've been pretty busy trying a few things out on the Zaku Sniper... some of them worked, most didn't... lol.

Since the last update, where I'd primed the armor pieces with Alclad II Black Base Gloss, I've been attempting to do some salt weathering on the pieces. Unfortunately I've got no images of the work in progress, but I'll briefly describe what I did and the results.

So, after the black gloss base I gave all the pieces a coating of Alclad II Gun Metal, it came out much darker than I hoped, but I left it on. This dried pretty quick, but I gave it a few days to make sure it was completely dry and cured. Over the top of that I put a layer of Future floor finish to try and protect the base layer.

I left the future to dry for around 48 hours, then I made a start on the salt weathering. The method I used was to spray the pieces with hairspray then sprinkle fine salt onto the wet hairspray to try and make it stick. I'm not sure if it was the hairspray, but the salt didnt seem to be sticking so I really had to put a heavy coat of the hairspray (TRESomme Salon Finish Freeze Hold) down. I think this was the first problem, too much hairspray.

I then left the pieces coated in hairspray and salt for a couple of days as I didn't have time to carry out the next step, again, I think this was a mistake.

I finally got round to putting on the first layer of paint over the salt. I chose to use Tamiya Desert Yellow (enamel) as I wanted to try and keep the final color scheme pretty close to the original. I put on a pretty heavy coat and left it to dry and cure for around three days. On reflection, again, probably not long enough to let the paint properly cure.

Next step was to try and get the salt off... I'd read that soaking the pieces in warm water would dissolve the salt, this seemed to make sense, so I filled a container with hot water and put each of the pieces in. After around 5 minutes I started to try and rub the salt off. As I rubbed, large areas of the paint were coming off with the salt and underneath the Future seemed to be clouding. I think this was because the enamel wasn't properly cured AND the heat of the water was softening the Future and/or the thick layer of hairspray. The longer I tried, the more enamel was coming off. I finally managed to get most of the salt off, but was left with a very patchy coat of desert yellow.

I decided to try and use what I was left with as the starting point for a camouflage type of pattern and oversprayed with a very light layer of Tamiya Khaki enamel.

You can see the results below... A VERY weathered Zaku Sniper...! I'm going to continue with the project and do some more weathering and a bit of hand-painting to tidy a few places up.

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8434/7704982414_18a782647b_c.jpg

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7260/7704942642_efa66c06fd_c.jpg

batfink21
August 5, 2012, 5:57 PM
Almost finished on the Zaku Sniper. Finished off painting the head, rifle and backpack. Put on some decals and added a bit more weathering.

All in all, I'm really happy with this as my first ever painted, weathered model. I set out to create this rusted, beaten-up effect via the salt weathering, and although, at one point, things didn't quite go as planned, I still think the end result look pretty much like what I had in mind.

Need to find time during day light to take some better photos, but until then, enjoy:

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8284/7720540190_db81862e04_c.jpg

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8434/7720553956_55cf9efc85_c.jpg

thwalker13
August 5, 2012, 11:47 PM
Looks pretty darn good to me man.