Saturday, December 18, 2010

GNY001F2 GNHW/A Gundam Astraea Type F2 GNHW/A


       Okay, let's start with this one. Here is my entry for the Bandai Model Kit World Cup 2010 which was held in the Eastwood Mall from November 5 to November 7 2010. This was one of the distractions I mentioned earlier and it even caused to be sick for almost a week due to lack of sleep from working on it.


           I didn't win the competition but at least I got a certificate for my participation in the event. Of course winning wasn't my original intention for joining the competition (although the idea of winning is a nice thought.) but to get some actual practice in painting a Gunpla with the idea of the competition looming ahead serving as a deterrent for slacking off. This was originally an HG 1/144 Gundam Exia converted to an Astraea from the conversion parts included in the Dengeki Hobby Magazine a couple of years back. With the release of the HG Gundam Astraea I decided to experiment on this one as an entry for BMKWC 2010 as I no longer had the fear of messing up and losing my unique but now obsolete Astraea. I decide to use purple for the main colors as I found some inspiration in purple bad guys like Galvatron and Kamen Rider Ohja. I also added some special equipment to the Astraea which I will discuss later. So here's the details on my entry. Pardon the crappy pics as I was using a different camera when I took these.

GNY001F2 GNHW/A Gundam Astraea Type F2 GNHW/A 


This is a GN Heavy Weapons (GNHW) version of the Gundam Astraea that I thought off where A means Assault. Designed to increase the firepower and defense capabilities of the Astraea and also give it the ability to adapt to the conditions of its current mission. Here's some info on the equipment of the assault pack.

GN Variable Launcher

    The main weapon in the GNHW-A system. A customizable beam launcher that can change its output and rate of fire through various attachments. The Default  form  of the launcher allows it to fire blasts similar to Seravee/Virtue which also consumes a lot of energy. It has an onboard GN Drive to supply its own energy requirements without relying on the mobile suit's GN Drive. TransAm can be activated for the weapon itself to increase its capabilities three times . Recharging can be sped up with some help from the mobile suit's GN Drive. It also has two beam guns for missions not requiring high energy bombardment and four GN blades in front for piercing GN Fields with the GN Drive providing additional thrust, making it an effective stabbing weapon.The launcher can also function as an additional booster unit.

GN Variable Launcher Gatling Mode


 The launcher equipped with the Gatling attachment. It allows the launcher to fire weaker rapid fire shots.

GN Variable Launcher Saber Mode


The Launcher with the Saber attachment equipped. It focuses the beam energy into a large Beam Saber.

Anti-Field Grenade Launcher


I was originally going for missiles but I felt it was overused so I went with Anti-Field grenades instead. Anti-field grenades are the ones used by the GN-X III in Gundam 00 season 2 during 00 Gundam's debut  that diffuses beam weapons. I figured this was a weapon worth having on a gundam to protect itself from beam attacks or screw your opponents over if they are using beam weapons.

GN Shield II



An upgraded GN Shield capable of emitting a GN Field large enough to cover the entire mobile suit. The field strength, however, is inferior to that of  Seravee/Virtue and can't hold up against powerful beam blasts (e.g. GN Mega Cannon, GN Bazooka). It mounts a hidden beam saber and contains two GN combat knives for closed range combat.

So that covers all the stuff about my GN Heavy Weapons Astraea. Overall, I'm not completely satisfied with the way this project turned out  but then again I only had two months to work on this. There were also other factors like budget restrictions, schedule conflicts  and the weather being uncooperative. The good part though is that I learned how to spray paint my Gunpla and I was able to apply the stock knowledge I had accumulated through tutorials and hobby magazines. This also my first success in kitbashing/ scratchbuilding custom parts which I found to be a difficult yet enjoyable activity. This would be the last time I paint using Spray cans as I am moving on to Airbrushing which would prove to be inexpensive and less wasteful in the long run  as soon as I have my AB setup prepared. I'll probably revisit this design again once my I get some new ideas.
 The rest of the pics can be found here:

No, I'm not dead. I just forgot I had a blog

         The title says it all. Well this is kind of embarrassing. A lot of stuff has happened for the past three months. Very interesting stuff, I might add which I wasn't able to document in real time. . Due to too much work deadlines and other distractions I wasn't able to post some stuff and even forgot about my blog. So now, I have post some catch-up stuff for the following days ,so I can give you guys an idea of what I've been up to this past three months.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Dendrobium Project Start!

     I did this one three days ago, but I was only able to document this today because of my busy schedule and a few distractions along way. No major progress though, just assembled some of the components to determine the  parts that don't need to be painted (in order to save time and paint.). Some of these components will be disassembled afterward for seam removal,priming and painting after washing the parts, of course. Here's a pic.
        As previously mentioned the Stamen (MS) and  beam sabers were assembled a week ago. I really wasn't supposed to assemble the mega beam cannon and I-field generator, but curiosity got the better of me. Besides, I did trim the pegs to make the connections a bit loose so that I can dismantle them easily when needed. Anyways, here are some additional pics:
I-Field Generator (Front)- note that I am using the part that shows the I-field generator being activated.

 I-Field Generator (Side)

Size comparison with the 1/144 HG GP03S Stamen.
Size comparison of the mega beam cannon with the stamen

Another size comparison, the cannon is really tall.
       Just a warning to future 1/144 Dendrobium owners, the barrel of the cannon takes a lot of strength to join together, I actually had to sand the connections and still had to use excessive force the tip of the barrel to the main barrel.This part actually scared me a bit as I had to force it down while still being careful not to break it. I think I did hear in some reviews that it takes some brute force to join certain parts together or maybe I'm just out of shape. Okay enough about that here's some more pics:
Platform for the Booster (I don't know what it's really called) and rear fin(side) for the Orchis, I will have to paint/detail  these first before I can connect the boosters. 
Arm base for the claws of the Orchis. I realized that this pic is crappy a bit too late and I regret that I wasn't able to take multiple shots.
Cover for the weapon containers, I built 2, oh and the same goes for the arm base.

Rear fin (upper) of the Orchis.

I somehow forgot to take some close up shots of the stand which I also built. I'll just have to make do with this. Its the gray one at the bottom I'll post a more detailed pic next time.
So far those are the parts that I have built. I am actually resisting the urge to build other parts any further as some of the parts that I have built will be sandwiched between other parts. So I have to finish these first before moving on to the next ones. Before I end this, I decided to fool around with mega beam cannon and my Gundam 00 1/144  HG's a bit and the results....  


                                   Setsuna and co.'s answer to Team Trinity's High mega launcher. Anybody who has watched Sentai(s) in the Philippines during the 80's/90's would know what this is.

Hopefully I can show pics of the parts being puttied/primed once I make some significant progress in this project.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Dendrobium Unboxing

                  One post after another, I am starting to find blogging interesting if not addictive.

                  Anyways, I kind of did this a couple of weeks ago already. Better Late than never I guess...

       First, some pics of the box at four different angles.         

                Notice the Psyco Gundam in the two pics. I just put ithere fore size comparison. Indeed, the box towers over the almighty Psyco Gundam.

                                  Just fooling around before opening the box.
Psyco Gundam tries to pushes the box but to no avail.
Emergency! Unknown Object detected!


                    Alright now on to serious stuff, Upon opening the box we get...

A fully assembled Dendrobium... or maybe not.
             Joking aside, upon opening the box we get two smaller boxes labeled Container A and Container B.

When taken out of the Big box the two containers form two halves of one of two images.

Image1:  Image of Dendrobium (Front)

Image 2: Dendrobium (Lineart Side View)

              I was supposed to take it out the parts one by one from the each box and take pictures of each but I seem to have mixed up the parts when I inspected each runner back at the shop. And to think the parts  were originally put in the boxes in a specific order so that you'll  only get the specific runner from the box when you follow the assembly sequence in the manual.(You start at Container A then B.) Plus I admit that I got a bit lazy (And we're off to a good start... sigh) to take pictures of individual runners. So i simply opted to lay them in the floor and take group shots.

           This kit also contains  a bunch  of  screws for connecting/closing up various parts and springs for the deploying mechanism the weapon containers. Three metal plates are also included to support the structure of the Orchis' main body thus preventing it from collapsing from its own weight. (Probably due to the weapon containers.)

          You'll probably notice the GP03 Stamen in one of the pics. Actually I assembled that a few days earlier
 just to hold off the urge to straight-build this whole thing. Plus I didn't see any problems in painting the Stamen after assembly compared to the Orchis. A little pic of the stamen runners:

I also assembled the beam sabers out of the fear that they will be bent or have stress marks if they stay any longer in the box, along with the other parts.
One beam saber blade is slightly bent as I suspected.
     From what I have read in other reviews, the beam saber blades (or beams) are for Perfect Grade models. I don't really know since I haven't had a Perfect Grade before but I let my old HG ZZ Gundam hold it and the result...
The ZZ Gundam gets a longer Hyper Beam Saber.
So that's it for the unboxing of the HGUC 1/144 Dendrobium . I'll probably do some pre-assembling of the parts to determine which parts are going to be hidden during assembly in order to save some paint and time. I also need to find parts where the paint is most likely to be scraped off (mostly on moving parts)before I can start painting/detailing. Hopefully I can cover these things by tomorrow if my work schedule permits it.

Let's Start With A Big Bang!

           Sorry for the crappy images, I was using a webcam at the time.    

           So much for adding mystery... My Profile pic alone is already a dead givaway.

          Okay, so you must have skipped my boring introduction and decided to check out this one . Yup I am now one of the proud ,if not few , owners of the  HGUC 1/144 GP03 Dendrobium.

            I'll just share a short history on how I got this kit.  I've been considering on buying this for quite some time now only to hesitate because of the cost and the storage space until I finally thought to myself: Screw the cost and Storage Space! After working really hard for two months, plus the timely arrival of my mid-year bonus and a little bit of borrowed money from my family I've finally scraped enough to buy this High Grade behemoth. I actually tracked this kit down at the GreatToys Alabang branch which is really far from where I live compared to Greenhills branch which is just a walk away.  Earlier, when I first decided to go there to confirm the dendro's existence I was actually prepared to carry/drag this thing back home after buying it. (A bad move in hindsight and thankfully something that I didn't have to do)  Luckily my brother (yes, my brother accompanied me, that place was still unfamiliar territory for me and I admit that he is better in taking care of transactions than I am.) asked the salesperson in charge if the kit can be transferred to the GH branch, which thankfully was possible although I would have to pay the minimum of 25 percent of the price (valid for 15 days).  So I returned home and had it reserved  at the GH branch, which basically sealed the deal, which means no more turning back. So I just waited until the next pay day to pay the remaining balance and claim this dendrobium . End of Story... or maybe not.
                     Funny thing is, there was no plastic big enough to wrap this kit and I have to carry it with me back home with the box shown to everyone I pass by. Just imagine the curious looks of the people around you while carrying a box with an image of a "robot" (for the not so well informed people) with it's gigantic vehicle.  And boy is this thing heavy! I was glad I didn't drag/carry this thing from Alabang thanks to my brother's PR Assist.(What can I say? I lack some people skills.)   However, the weight didn't stop me from bringing this thing to work getting even more curious looks in the process. (In the jeepney , at work, heck even the security guard didn't even bother inspecting the insides of the box while commenting on my new "toy".) I guess I couldn't resist showing off a bit.
                      Many people would ask; Why the Dendrobium of all kits? To put it simply, this is my number one favorite mobile unit/armor in all the Gundam universes even if new releases would come that would surpass this one's design.  9 years ago, this unit would also be the very catalyst in my Gunpla  collecting craze. Back then I would just buy a few models with no intention of starting a big collection. This was during the Gundam Wing/G Gundam craze here in the Philippines and my earlier models reflected this. I did buy some models outside these series (Zeta Gundam, Kampfer.. ) but it was really nothing serious. I got hooked to playing the Super Robot Wars games on the Playstation and there was a stage where the dendrobium appeared. Upon looking at said unit I was perplexed at the unit's appearance.  As the mechs appeared SD (Super Deformed ) in SRW, the dendrobium looked a battleship with a Gundam head on it. I was able to read GP03D Dendorobiumu on its name in Katakana and deduced that this is connected to the GP01 and GP02A (Two units that I am vaguely aware of the existence of and would later join my collection.)  I asked a classmate of mine who is knowledgeable in Gundams about this wierd battleship with a Gundam head and GP03 on its name. He told me that  I must be talking about the dendrobium and it was not a battleship with a gundam head but sort of a huge vehicle/armor with a gundam docked in it.  The concept really intrigued me (One could say I have a huge, if not unhealthy, obsession to Area Dominance units/Mobile Armors as I'll probably show in the future. ) and got me into surfing the net to find more details.(I guess I'll also have to thank the GP03D for exposing me to the internet and the whole Gundam series.) I didn't stop with the GP03D though as I decided look around a bit and found even more interesting designs which I really couldn't bear to not have in my starting collection and this got worse as I found about HobbyLinkJapan which shows kits I never even knew existed.(Making me ask myself what have I been doing until now?) All of this happened during my college years where I had to resist the urge to eat lunch using my allowance and just to save up for a kit.(Although I did eat alot at breakfast and dinner.) The HGUC Dendrobium was also released around that time and it was definitely a no go during college with my meager allowance and all. (I would save my allowance for a month and just be able to buy a HG Mobile GINN from Seed). I figured things would be different once I graduate and get a job and my goal was to get the HG's I missed at that time and probably even the GP03D. I eventually managed to do just that and got all the HG's I missed as well as the new releases which  I still continue to this present this day. I already got the 1/550 and 1/400 versions of the dendrobium and finally after 8 years since I saw it's initial release I finally had the courage to buy this HG monster in my collection. Looking back at those times, I still can't believe I used to be a struggling college student trying to have his bills changed for coins to put in his piggy bank to save for  gunpla. (I actually attempted to save coins for the HGUC Dendrobium when it first came out until I realized the futility of it and that I had to pass up on other kits in the process.) Now I'm person who is living his dream job and could buy a kit like this just by exerting some initiative and some extra effort. It has really been a long journey to arrive at this point.

                 Oh crap, I took too much time reminiscing. I  was supposed to show some of the stuff about the dendrobium on this post. I'll just have to show it on the next post. I am not a very talkative person in real life which is probably the reason most of my words go into my writings. I hope I didn't bore you guys too much with this long winded post.