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Bandai 1/72 Scale Transformable Macross Δ Kits


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I haven't transformed my Ba at all yet owing to my frustrations transforming the Hs. I remember that just putting together that head was a chore and a half, though. I can't imagine what it must be like to transform it as well.

As for the molding, I actually wish the entire thing was molded in just one or two colors. Same with the other Delta Valks. They tried as much as they could to match the parts separation to the paint schemes, but with such a variety of schemes, there was no way any single mold would be able to accommodate all of them well. It also introduces problems with seam and panel lines, and despite the parts fitting together like a glove, there are now new crevices that paint from a panel wash can seep where the parts come together.

That said, best of luck finishing it up. I'm too intimidated by the extra work I'd have want to put into it to do anything beyond snapping it together. Not even decals/stickers. :D

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Thanks!

I'm totally with you on the chore that is decalling/stickering these things up, but I just can't leave it bare.  It looks way too plain without some markings on it.  As I learned with the VF-25G kit I did years ago, sometimes just painting the bigger stripes and major markings is actually easier than using the stickers/decals.  I've got that in mind for a good portion of it and will only use the stickers or decals where I know they're going to be easier or just make sense.  The little symbols and insignias are one area that they'll definitely get the (probably) water slide decal treatment.  Bandai's adhesive backed stickers are surprisingly good (very thin, stretch reasonably well) but I'm not game to try them unless there's some really good reason for using them over the water slide decals.

I've experimented a bit with the two "silver" metal paints I have in my possession (Mr Metal "Stainless" and "Chrome Silver"). I found the Chrome Silver wasn't grey enough to match the stickers and the Stainless is a bit on the brown side for my liking.  But, when applied over the bare plastic, the silver moulded parts look great with either and the green seems to do best with Stainless as well.  So stainless is what I'm using for parts that I'll be attempting to paint up without the help of any stickers or decals.

I've got pics but they're pretty boring. And my flouro overhead lights are causing me all sorts of grief with yellow bars across all my images...

Edited by mickyg
fixed some wording
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Strange colour bands notwithstanding, I thought I'd illustrate with some pictures, what it is I'm trying to achieve, and a little bit of the process.

First, I try to get a good match for the parts in the same way they came out of the factory.  The decals are designed to match the plastic as well so it's a good place to start.  Here's my typical approach in painting up some areas of the sprue that I don't care about.  The silver and green sprues get the same treatment. Stainless and Chrome silver.  The 18 on the silver sprue is stainless and the 17 is Chrome Silver.  Left for Chrome and right for Stainless on the green one.

IMG_20170823_092305.jpg

Once I'm happy with the match (in this case, Stainless was "close enough") I paint a part. The right is painted, the left is straight off the sprue. I'm going for two things here: a more realistic metal sheen, and an attempt to hide the swirl lines that come from the injection process of making the parts.

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Same with the vents. You can see the swirl marks still but they're much less obvious.

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Here's how it goes on, strangely enough. I start with a slightly "wet" brushload of metal paint and apply it quickly.  The brush strokes are pretty obvious here.

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But after rubbing the surface with the paintbrush in a "dry brushing" action, it evens out and looks much nicer. It's not uncalled for to need more than one coat but sometimes I get lucky.

IMG_20170824_120728.jpg

I'm undecided about whether I'll apply any decals to this "shin" insert. I may be able to paint the dark grey and red highlights, given their relative simplicity (just a line on the flat parts and a red ring inside the depression.

Edited by mickyg
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So here's one area that was just begging for some attention: the Gunpod.

With the exception of the front silver part, everything else is moulded in green.  So some quick and dirty masking and metal painting with Chrome Silver and Gold, and we're in business.

Chrome laid down on the flat bar sections on top and bottom, then masked off using Tamiya tape and a sharp hobby knife.

IMG_20170828_112416.jpg

Gold applied and unmasked (NOT my best work by a long shot):

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And everything assembled:

IMG_20170828_121239.jpg

Better. But those sprue marks are killing me! And my decision not to paint the green is definitely beginning to make me wonder...

 

Edited by mickyg
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Funny you should bring that up because I was just about to update my post and describe it a bit more in depth.  It's a technique I learned from some modelling forum I visited years ago (can't remember where now...).  For the silver paints from Mr Metal Color, it works really, really well.  The Gold, notsomuch.

For it to work, you lay down a thin coat while it's still wet and let it sort of bite into the plastic (or primer, or undercoat of black, depending on how you want to do it). And then before it's totally dry, you dry brush it, creating sort of a polishing effect. Technically speaking, I think it works by using the metal powder in the paint to actually buff against itself.  The brush sort of spreads it around.  You can come along and buff again with a soft cloth afterward but it's not completely necessary.

The downside is that the paint is pretty fragile. It's also very reactive with the oils from my fingers, I've discovered. It can come off even days later.  So sealing it or handling very carefully, is a good idea.

Now the Gold, I don't know what it is but it does not behave like the silver. It's almost sticky and it just won't go down the way the silver colours do (that includes iron). So you just lay it down while wet, making sure the brush strokes are not too bad before leaving it to dry.  It levels reasonably well and then you can come along and do the dry brush thing after it's dried.

If you want a durable coat, no doubt the best method is to just use it like it's intended and air brush it.  But this method is great for quick and dirty sessions.

Sorry, I should add another comment regarding durability. I believe that letting the coat go on wet, ads a lot to the overall durability. I went this way with the feet, for instance and they've shown pretty strong resilience so far. Where it's not durable, is when you rush it and either don't let it set long enough, or you put it on too dry. The binder in these metallic paints seems to be very delicate and if you put the paint on too "dry" it almost seems to evaporate completely, leaving nothing but metal dust behind. So yes, traditional airbrushing, along with using multiple coats, will likely get you a more durable finish, but brush painting can work too.

Edited by mickyg
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Definitely reminds me of the process I used when I did my VF-25F years back.  I didn't want to deal with stickers or decals, so I hand-painted the entire thing, only masking some select bits, since most of the paint was along existing panel lines.

The red stripes were just an absolute nightmare to get smooth, but the process that eventually yielded an almost stroke-free coat was to pretty much soak my brush in water, and then let the paint "float" in the water as it evaporated, leaving a smooth coating.  It just took quite a few coats that way.  I also laid a full base coat of black under all of the red so I wouldn't have to put white under the red on the tails, and it wound up giving me a really nice deep crimson color. :)

Far as the Ba kit goes though.. ugh.  Yeah, that gunpod was one of the worst offenses.  There was no reason whatsoever for them not to mold that in color after the entire gun was done that way on the Hs.  I actually prefer the silver to the gold anyway... though I'm actually not sure which is shown in the show?  I almost want to say the gunpods on the Ba model should be silver, but I can't find a screenshot to back that up at the moment.

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Yeah, admittedly, I went straight to the pictures in the instruction manual for painting the gunpod.  I didn't consult anything else at all.  And after comparing that to the Hs DX gunpod, they're very, very different.  Though, my Ba kit now looks decidedly more realistic than that horrible thing that ships with the DX... <_<

Your red paint method sounds intriguing. I might have to try that. It's funny because I actually have a wonderful airbrush and really enjoy using it, but sometimes it's still more convenient to just grab the paint brushes instead.

Edited by mickyg
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So, if you have an airbrush ready and waiting, I can't recommend hand painting the red like I did. :lol:  It was an exercise in frustration, because at the time, I was using some old Citadel paints meant for 40k miniatures, because I got them on sale.  They're not bad, but they tend to turn into rubbery goop as they age.

The process of getting smooth red stripes on the tails far longer than it should have, and would have been much faster if I'd been able to just airbrush it.  It really was a matter of flooding the paint with so much water that it made a shallow puddle, and then letting it evaporate down into a smooth coat.  Also, was heavily dependent on my dry climate, since I live in the desert.

On the flip side, that dry climate may also be why normal brushing on some other paints is so painful.  They dry so quickly, that by the time you dip the brush a second time, the paint has already dried enough that the second stroke pulls up the paint you just put on.  Adding copious amounts of water to the brush was the only thing that kept the paint blend-able.

Edited by Chronocidal
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Totally understood. I tend to use a drop of dish soap for my acrylic painting sessions, for that added levelling property the glycerine (I think that's what's responsible) adds. But I'm also in a pretty moderate climate, very similar to San Francisco, actually.

With the VF-25G DX Super Packs I did up as Alto's, I actually mixed the Tamiya Red acrylic paint with Mr Levelling Thinner (lacquer) and was very impressed with the results. That'll be my go-to for any future painting endeavours, where durability and quality need to match each other.

Unfortunately my experience with the Mr Metal line is still somewhat disappointing.  I got one of the chromed foot parts out and did a simple finger touch test, to see if the paint is sealed and properly set. The result: silver on my finger. So I think it's safe to say this method will need a sealer coat in order to lock the paint down. It's possible airbrushing several coats would yield a different result but my only experience there is with a single coat on the tiny Mecha Colle kits and that was as bad or worse than what I'm seeing with my brush painting efforts.

Oh well...

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I had a look today and saw nothing at all sale related. Guessing that's because it starts tomorrow. I can't see anything in your link but maybe that's intentional?

Spent a few hours tonight on the kit and before I knew it, I'd "finished" it!

Fun little kit. Looking forward to painting it now. Had some success in using future to cover over the metal paint that I've been concerned about. Also experimented a bit more with putting the metal coat on a bit wet. Seems much more durable this way so maybe I've got an option there. 

I'm looking at all the areas where markings go and trying to think where the adhesive stickers make sense. The back of the legs is one spot. Anywhere else where scraping might happen is another. I'm considering the shoulder undersides with the red accents for example. The decals would look nicer but I'm concerned they'll get scratched. 

Decals on the shield are about the only way I think it'll still close. I can't see the stickers being thin enough to not interfere. @Chronocidal do you concur?

IMG_20170831_201637.thumb.jpg.5f69d1f4701764232f783d7bff0cbd43.jpgIMG_20170831_201723.thumb.jpg.7c8088f05053383e29a0197513be0fb6.jpgIMG_20170831_201705.thumb.jpg.b527dc7837553347fac68093f2147a76.jpg

 

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5 hours ago, mickyg said:

I had a look today and saw nothing at all sale related. Guessing that's because it starts tomorrow. I can't see anything in your link but maybe that's intentional?

Spent a few hours tonight on the kit and before I knew it, I'd "finished" it!

Fun little kit. Looking forward to painting it now. Had some success in using future to cover over the metal paint that I've been concerned about. Also experimented a bit more with putting the metal coat on a bit wet. Seems much more durable this way so maybe I've got an option there. 

I'm looking at all the areas where markings go and trying to think where the adhesive stickers make sense. The back of the legs is one spot. Anywhere else where scraping might happen is another. I'm considering the shoulder undersides with the red accents for example. The decals would look nicer but I'm concerned they'll get scratched. 

Decals on the shield are about the only way I think it'll still close. I can't see the stickers being thin enough to not interfere. @Chronocidal do you concur?

IMG_20170831_201637.thumb.jpg.5f69d1f4701764232f783d7bff0cbd43.jpgIMG_20170831_201723.thumb.jpg.7c8088f05053383e29a0197513be0fb6.jpgIMG_20170831_201705.thumb.jpg.b527dc7837553347fac68093f2147a76.jpg

 

These photos.... make me realize just how thick the trailing edges are on the wings of these Bandai kits.

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7 hours ago, mickyg said:

I had a look today and saw nothing at all sale related. Guessing that's because it starts tomorrow. I can't see anything in your link but maybe that's intentional?

Spent a few hours tonight on the kit and before I knew it, I'd "finished" it!

Fun little kit. Looking forward to painting it now. Had some success in using future to cover over the metal paint that I've been concerned about. Also experimented a bit more with putting the metal coat on a bit wet. Seems much more durable this way so maybe I've got an option there. 

I'm looking at all the areas where markings go and trying to think where the adhesive stickers make sense. The back of the legs is one spot. Anywhere else where scraping might happen is another. I'm considering the shoulder undersides with the red accents for example. The decals would look nicer but I'm concerned they'll get scratched. 

Decals on the shield are about the only way I think it'll still close. I can't see the stickers being thin enough to not interfere. @Chronocidal do you concur?

So, I'll be completely honest, I haven't even given half a thought to how to paint or decal any of the 262 kits. :lol:  I've actually been more concerned with working out the weak points in the plastic to reinforce.  The transformation of the kit is just so much more intuitive and simple than the DX, I find myself going back and forth between battroid and fighter fairly regularly with the kits, while the DX sits in permanent fighter display.  Doing that has definitely caused a few stress marks to pop up though, as I mentioned in a previous post.

What I'd really love to do is find a way to stash a set of smaller hands in the kit's fighter mode, and rework the legs to lock together without the removable bracket, to make it an actual perfect transformation.

As far as the shield closing, I think there's a bit more play in the hinges than you might think.  If you get the stickers flat enough, you might be perfectly fine using them.  It'd be easy to test without using the actual stickers though, just cut out a section of the unused space on the sticker sheet, and apply a patch to both tails, and see if they close.

One of these days I might actually just start slapping the stickers on one, and see how it goes.  The joy I get out of these is really just from the building process, and figuring out the mechanisms, so even if they turn out terrible, I don't imagine it'll be hard to get more to build.

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8 hours ago, mickyg said:

I had a look today and saw nothing at all sale related. Guessing that's because it starts tomorrow. I can't see anything in your link but maybe that's intentional?

Yeah, that was just to get awareness out there for folks. Once the sale starts I'll post a link to the sale proper in that thread (or spacemanoeuvres will).

1 hour ago, Chronocidal said:

What I'd really love to do is find a way to stash a set of smaller hands in the kit's fighter mode, and rework the legs to lock together without the removable bracket, to make it an actual perfect transformation.

I do really hate that the hands are oversized for these kits. The SV-262 looks alright since it has the bulk in the arms to go with it, but the hands especially stand out on the VF-31s. Its saluting/storage hands are the right size, which only exacerbates the problem. I wonder if the smaller 1/100 Gundam kits' hands would look better on these or not.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 9/6/2017 at 8:18 AM, Itachizero said:

Just wanna ask, if i get vf31j deculture version+ the super siegfried, i'll have enough decals and parts to build the anime accurate final episode mech+ a super siegfried but with freya stickers? Im noob at this so sorry.

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You are correct. However, you could save some money and just buy the super parts kit instead and save a little unless you want two super siegfried's to display. 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Warning: the decals are absolute MURDER on the Delta valkyries. Huge number, and you need to trim the edges, plus they get scraped off super easy without a topcoat, which needs to be applied in all 3 forms and partway in-between to cover everything. Oh, you'll also need to transform it while applying decals.

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