In-Progress : Guncannon Diorama
26-03-08 : New project after a few weeks off...
It's been a few weeks since working on any models (well, since finishing the Zeta Gundam at least) and after a little rest, I'm itching to get back into it.
I've been toying with the idea of a Guncannon dio for a while now, but never really commited to any one idea until I had a good one the other day which involved a Guncannon, Zaku II, some light heartedness and some possible snow. I'll elaborate more on that when the build progresses.
Anyway, here are some standard Ghost of Zeon test fits so you can get an idea of what I'm working with here :
The Guncannon is the HGUC version whilst the Zaku II is the newly designed No Grade version. I would've gone with a HGUC version of the Zaku but since it will be more of a background element, I went with a cheap NG version (which is quite well made for such a 'cheap and nasty' model).
I plan on making the Zaku OOB with some darker greens for the colors while I plan on adding some details and refitting some parts of the Guncannon to suit the scene better.
More to come...
When I began to glue pieces together on the Zaku, I realised that it will be an absolute bitch to paint if assembled as is. I had a look at the model and made a couple of modifications to the neck and arms to allow for easier painting and seam removal.
The picture on the left here is what I have done so far to make the Zaku easier to work on.
The pictures directly below show the arm modifications I have done as well. This, again, was primarily for making painting easier.
The first picture shows the shoulder joints and what I have done to them. I removed the mounting holes (similar to the neck one) and widened them. I then got some left over sprue from the kit and glued in the 'pegs'.
The other picture shows the other end and what I began with. I removed the internal piece of the mounting hole and inserted a polycap underneath for the 'peg' of the shoulder to slide into. I'm not overly fussed on how rought it looks at this stage as they will be covered when it is finally assembled and will more than likely be glued in place.
Finally for this update, the layout of the scene :
I have abandoned the light hearted scene I was thinking about and went with a Guncannon kicks arse scene. There will be terrain either side with a river running down the middle.
The Zaku will be damaged, lying on the ground trying to shoot the Guncannon. Guncannon sees this and moves in for the kill, knocking the Zaku's gun to one side whilst opening fire right through the Zakus head.
For the base, I have made the terrain with foam which was covered in air drying clay. Once that dried, I made a frame from Balsa and covered it all in Plaster of Paris.
Slowly making progress with this build (made a few small adjustments to the site as well which has taken a little of my build time away from me). Since last update, the Zaku has been glued, puttied and sanded. The right leg has also been severely battle damaged - and by severely I mean completely blown off.
Here is some photos of the damage process.
- The original piece and hobby saw.
- The piece after being attacked with the previously mentioned saw.
- Soldering Irons make wonderful explosion damage. I just pushed a hot iron into the edge on the cut pieces at random intervals to melt and warp the plastic. Notice that I have also cut half the foot off.
- The end result. I have also cut the power conduit in two pieces as well. I have also drilled a small hole and plan to add some wires hanging out of the damaged piece.
And last for this update is the new Zaku hand. I plan on having the Zaku leaning on its left hand as its trying to get up and it would look unrealistic if I included the original hand that comes with the kit. I raided the spares box and found a polycap hand that suited, so I modified the hand to fit the backing armor and attached with some CA glue (normal plastic glue doesn't bond all that well with polycap materials).
I plan to have the Zaku done over the weekend so I can start on the Guncannon. Only 6 weeks or so until I have to get this one done to meet the groupbuild deadline!
Some more damage to the Zaku has been done and some adjustments made to the power cables.
Picture to the left is of the new power cable set up. It was suggested to me that the cables would be too static in the scene if they have been blown off. To remedy this, I cut each 'cover' off and drilled a small hole in them with my trusty pinvise. I then threaded some wire through them and fixed each in place with some CA glue. The wire will allow me to place the cable in such a way to look more realistic than the way they were straight from the kit.
The picture above is of the damage to the shield. I took my Dremel and created chips, dents and scratches all over the kit (not just the shield - the picture of the shield is for reference). Some scratched were made with coarse grit sandpaper and my hobby knife. I plan to highlight these damage marks with washes of blacks, browns, grays and maybe some dry brushing of gunmetal or silver.
Here is a quick picture so you can see where I am up to with the Zaku. It's been painted with Flat Earth, Steel and Black paints. The damaged areas and power pipes have been lightly painted with Burnt Iron (more so on the damage to give the impression of heated up steel oxidizing. Weathering wise, the panel lines where done with a black enamel wash and the dirty look came from an oil paint wash (Burnt Umber). Now I have to paint the chips and other damage done to the armor with gray and silver.
As you can see from the picture, he needs a little help standing up...
Next, I'll continue on weathering the Zaku then go back to the Guncannon (which I have already glued and puttied ready for sanding).
I finished the Zaku portion of the scene the other day. I added some Decals to the chest and shield, dry brushed along the hard edges and painted the chips with some grey, black and silver. I also weathered with some black 'Soot' pastels.
And here is the final positioning on the base :
The damaged part of the leg that has come away will be partly buried in dirt and underbrush - at the moment it looks weird as it's just sitting there which is unnatural. I also plan to add 'smoke' coming from underneath the Zaku from the thrusters (the Zaku is firing thrusters trying to get up quickly) and also an explosion from the rear where the Guncannon's rifle will be blasting through.
I also made a few Palm trees the other night to go into the scene (it will now be a Jungle setting similar to that in the 08th MS Team anime) :
These were made with skewers, masking tape, epoxy putty, winding wire, tin foil and some CA Glue. The skewers were taped up with masking tape which each layer overlapped the one above to create the look of palm tree trunks. At the 'top' a putty ball was added for the fronds to attach to. Each frond is made from a 40mm piece of wire attached to tin foil with CA glue. Once the glue had dried, the general shape of a leaf was cut and then snipped along the sides at random intervals to give the impression of individual leaves on a jungle palm.