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How to build a Gundam Model Kit (GUNPLA)

 :: Anime :: GUNDAM

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How to build a Gundam Model Kit (GUNPLA)

Post  Dilly on Tue 30 Dec 2008 - 23:33

Introduction:

Gundam Model kits is based on the Anime: Mobile Suit Gundam Universe (franchises). These are models made from styrene plastic injections into frames. Frames in which you cut and build using the instruction manual. These kits are made by Bandai in Japan (or China). These kits have become popular among anime fans and model lovers.

Categories: (General) arranged based on difficulty/price.

1/144 (FG) First Grade - Easy (Starter kit), Cheap. Limited detail and Limited articulation. Takes only minutes to build.
1/144 and 1/100 (HG) High Grade - Easy to Normal, Less limit on articulation, a bit of detail.
1/100 (MG) Master Grade - Normal to Hard, More articulation, More detail (Internal Skeleton/Frame + Outer Panel)
1/60 (PG) Perfect Grade - Hard and expensive, Highly detailed than MG. Really takes a long time to build.

See: How Bandai create these kits.




Back to Topic:

[Basic] Things you’ll need:


Bandai (FG, HG, MG, PG) Gundam Kit.
Tamiya Modeler’s Side Cutter
Tamiya Modeler’s Knife
Tamiya Sanding Paper (400, 600, 800)
Tamiya Polishing Compound
Tamiya Tape 40mm
Cotton swab hehe (Qtips)
Tweezers
Scissors
Cutting Mat
Step1: Open the Gundam (damn) box. 1st thing to check is the instruction manual. It is in Japanese writing but the pictures are so descriptive enough you don’t need to learn Japanese to figure it out. Check how many frames you have on the instruction manual and what is in the box. Use scissors to open the plastic of each frame.

Step2: Back to instruction manual. Frames are organized as ABC’s… and within the frame are numbers 123’s… Cut only when needed by the instruction manual! Cut the runners using Tamiya Modeler’s Side Cutter.

Step3: Sprues (tiny plastic that you cut to get the part out of the frame). DO NOT cut the sprue close to the part. You may cut near the frame. Doing this may damage the part.

Step4: After cutting a part from the frame, you may remove the sprue sticking out from the part using the modelers side cutter, any excess not accessible by the side cutter, use the modeler’s knife with care. Use the sanding paper to even out the plastic. Using a cotton swab, apply a pea sized amount of polishing compound and rub it on the sanded part. This way the discoloration from sanding will even out to non-sanded part.

Step5: Follow the instruction manual’s directions. Cut when required. Clean the sprues using a modeler’s knifer and sanding paper. Snap build. Until you form a Head, Leg, Torso, Arms…

Step6: Stickers or decals may come with the kit for detail. Simple stickers are factory cut, so you may use your tweezers for accuracy. Make sure that the area that needs the sticker is clean and free of dust. This lessens/removes the bubble on the sticker when it is applied.

Rub on decals requires cutting using a modeler’s knife on cutting mat with ruler as they are not factory cut. After cutting the decal out from the decal set, use the Tamiya tape on each end of the decal and paste it on the plastic that needs the decal so the decal wouldn’t budge when you rub it. Rub using a blunt device, may be a pencil or ball point pen. Rub evenly, apply a little pressure without tearing the decal.

Water slide decals are like rub on decals but it needs water. Same materials/tools as rub on decals is required, difference is a cotton swab to rub it on the plastic part. (Sold separately, instructions of application on the packaging)

- A video instruction from Basic—Intermediate—Advance: Enjoy!








Easier to watch than to read!

—Since you are done with the Basic part. Should you want, you can proceed to Intermediate: Removing Panel Lines.

[Intermediate] Things you’ll need:

Tamiya Cement
Rubber bands
Tamiya Plastic Scriber
Staedtler or Rotring Tech Pen 0.05mm, 0.1mm, 0.2mm.
Step7: Panel Linings: These are lines in between the plastic when snapped/built together. These can be removed by using a Tamiya cement so you can glue them together. Apply evenly on both ends of the plastic using a brush that comes with the Tamiya cement. Snap it together. Apply a bit of pressure. Instead of using a clamp, you may use a rubber band. Wrap it around opposite direction of the glued part where it needs pressure, tighter the better. Let it dry overnight.

Step8: … Use the modeler’s knife to remove the excess dried cement. Use the sanding paper again for small imperfections. After sanding, blow or wipe the dust off then use a cotton swab for the polishing compound and apply on sanded part.

Step9: After sanding the part, sometimes, Detail lines (necessary lines) would even out with the sanded surface. Use the Plastic scriber or modeler’s knife to re create these detail lines. (with care, of course)

Step10: Use tech pen to emphasize on the Detail lines. Simply follow the lines. Wipe off the excess lines using a cotton swab.

[Advanced] Things you’ll need:

Tamiya Spraywork (Auto set Compressor, Trigger type airbrush, 2 Spra work Cup) AC adapter sold separately.
Tamiya Paints! (Color Charts) Acrylic, Enamel, Spray
Tamiya X20A Acrylic, X20 Enamel Thinner
Gunze Sangyo Mr. Color (Color Charts) Acrylic, Enamel
Mr. Color Thinner
Mr. Surfacer either Spray (White/Gray) or Bottle for airbrush.
Mr. Top Coat - Super Clear (Gloss, Semi-Gloss, Flat)
Mr. Masking
Tamiya Tape (6, 10, 18, 40mm)
Tamiya Paint Stirrer

aligatoh~!!! Hav fun~!!!

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