In-Progress : Anti MS Squad Diorama
25-10-07 : Venturing into new territory...
It was all a matter of time. I knew one day I would attempt something in 1/35 and thankfully, Bandai has started the Hard Graph line so I don't have to stray too far from Gundam.
Here are some test fit shots of the Gundam Arm and two of the figures included in the kit :
Here's a couple of fun shots I did with the arm (I couldn't resist the one on the right) :
I plan to make a street scene where the Gundams arm has been severed off by unknown means (more than likely a Zakus Heat Hawk) and has fallen into a building, knocking some of it over.
At the moment, I plan to have two soldiers in the scene. One is on watch while the other is contacting base with the location of the missing arm so the recovery crew can move it and save it before it falls into Zeons hands.
I also have the thought that it might be good to have an injured soldier under the hand with another helping him out. I still might do that yet, but space is an issue with the base I have chosen (I can always change I suppose).
The wall is the 1/35 Tamiya Brick Wall Set which I managed to pick up cheap from the local hobby shop. It is designed to interlock sideways but not upwards, so I have had to brace it with some styrene strips to stop it flexing and coming apart. I just have to work out a way to hide the braces.
After posting the in-progress page on a few forums, quite a few people suggested that I reinforce the wall with either styrene I-Beams or tubing inside the actual wall. I had some small brass rod laying around so I went with that.
Here's what I did :
- Decided the best spots to reinforce it shown here with yellow lines. Two spots on the larger areas on the right wasn't enough, so I went with three and single reinforcements on the smaller sections on the left.
- I drilled out holes in the pieces with my pin vise with a bit that was slightly larger that the rod itself. This was to allow for misaligned holes so I could move the pieces into place easier.
- Lined everything up and using some good ol' Zap-A-Gap, I filled each hole and some small amounts along the edge to help bond stronger. Then I pushed it all together. I then repeated the process for the rest of the wall.
And here is the reassembled wall (top picture is the front and bottom is the rear where the styrene was attached) :
I will also add some putty to the rear as well to hide the spots that can see seen through from the front.
It has been suggested to me that it would look good if the Gundam was holding something when the arm came off, and after some thinking, I decided that a Beam Saber would look good in the hand (I thought about a beam rifle, but that is a little overkill). I rumaged through some things in my shed and found that left over parts of a Microspray Sprinkler system that I have installed in my garden are the perfect size for a 1/32 scale Saber.
Here's how I made the basic Saber :
I still have to work out a way to plug the ends and then the big test is when it's time to paint. I'm a little concerned that the primer wont stick to the hosing. I have sanded it back a little to get rid of the shine but I'll have to wait and see.
I have also added a door to the brick wall, which I made with styrene, and a broken window which will be scattered in the rubble.
Here are some pics of the new layout. I've added an extra figure, roofing and guttering to the 'building', extra rubble including a broken window, and the hand is now palm up and holding the Beam Saber :
Of course this will change more as work progresses but at least this will give a decent reference to what it will end up like.
On to the road base :
The footpath is just styrene strip scored at intervals to show the concrete edges. The road is a sheet of 120 grit sandpaper cut to size and secured with doubled sided tape (glue likes to soak into the paper side of the sandpaper so the tape works better). I made the crater by placing the hand in the area I want it to rest and marked a rough circular shape around it. I then cut it out and placed small pieces of roughly cut styrene underneath to lift the broken sections up to show the weight of the hand hitting the ground. Sand was glued underneath and painted in Earth Brown. Finally, the cracks were added by scratching the sand paper with a knife.
Painted the wall section :
Basically, it was painted with a black base coat, then a coat of brown and then topped with a light coat of red to give the bricks a natural brick color. The morter was done with a grey enamel wash. The door, frame, and guttering was all done by hand brushing. I also added some texture to the bricks to make them look real using this technique.
I also took some time to do some explosion damage to the elbow with my Dremel tool. I made some small holes in the end too so I can add some wires later on.
I'm almost ready to begin painting the arm now. All pieces are sanded and ready to go.