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1/72 Hasegawa VF-1 + Booster step-by-step...


wm cheng
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Hi all,

With some free time on my hands, I've decided to start a new project - another VF-1 for the incredible resin Atmospheric Booster that John sculpted and Rob & Jesse has brought to our light of day! I thank them for their efforts - this is one of my favourite mechs of all time. With the launch rail on the way, I thought, I should finish something for the launch rail to support.

I will breeze through the VF-1 construction (as its old news now - and won't bore most of you who followed along my initial VF-1 step-by-step that's trapped on the old boards now). I'll just highlight some of the key things to look out for on the kit for reference and hopefully answer some of the questions I've been getting on basic construction techniques and seam filling.

OT - who is the moderator for this particular group? I've been trying to ask someone who has the power to pin - to please pin up my "Links to Step-by-step..." post - which I'll update whenever I start a new project. I spend half of my time answering PMs by just pointing to one of my older threads. PLEASE, what do I have to do to get something pinned around here?! (ok, enough rant... onto the model)

I have choosen the VF-1S - I intend to do Hikaru after he took over Roy's VF-1S - which I believe is canon. However, I might modify the booster colours, as I don't think white would be all that interesting.

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As most of you probably know, sprue cutters are pretty invaluable to model building, and is as important to me as my x-acto knife. I keep the flat end of the cutters towards the model side and try to cut with as much excess plastic as I can away from the part.

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The extra plastic sprue ensures that you don't accidentally nip away at the actual piece itself. Its always easier to trim away excess than to fill in a hole or depression.

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I then use a really sharp x-acto knife to gentlely cut away the excess sprue - go over the piece a few times is better than cutting it in one hard press - it makes a cleaner cut. Place the edge right on the cutting mat so that it can't bend backwards or down and break off - you want a clean cut.

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Edited by wm cheng
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Now I guk up the entire area with some Tamiya putty, there are some injector pin circular depressions and seams all around that must be made smooth as this area will be seen when the wings are swept forward. I'll let the putty dry for tomorrow and glue a few of the parts from the next steps together - and call it a night.

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Wow, watching this is like Christmas present to myself.

Its that GREAT! :D

Here we go again. post-25-1100728275.gif

WOW! I getting excited! :o Awesome!

Btw, I was looking at your old thread showing the links for all of your 1/72 Step by Step building and painting but the link if I understand goes to the old boards so it's "dead" :(

Do you have another site that has all your Step-by-step build-ups? I hope so...

Gian7675 :)

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Wow, watching this is like Christmas present to myself.

Its that GREAT! :D

Here we go again. post-25-1100728275.gif

WOW! I getting excited! :o Awesome!

Btw, I was looking at your old thread showing the links for all of your 1/72 Step by Step building and painting but the link if I understand goes to the old boards so it's "dead" :(

Do you have another site that has all your Step-by-step build-ups? I hope so...

Gian7675 :)

you can check some of master cheng's work at robthingies.com, click cheng's place.

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Yes, the first few items on the links list (the ones with an star beside them) are on the old boards - currently unavailable (however, Shawn may be able to retrieve them at some point). Unfortunately, I have no back up of them - so they are lost to me too.

Here's one side sanded down - yes, I might of over done it on the putty, but I rather over do it than find out that I missed some spot. When I am done, you can see there isn't a lot of putty left, just enough to fill the cracks and circular injection pin depression. You don't have to pay too much attention near the pivots as the gear mechanism hides most of this area.

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My sanding tools: a tub of water (extremely important as this acts as a lubricant so the tiny plastic particles don't gum up your sandpaper), the red is 600grit and the grey is 200grit wet/dry sandpaper on a plastic sheet backing, a old toothbrush to work away any trapped sanding debris from the fine engraved details, and a few rubber holders (they come in various profiles that help hold the sandpaper to get into tight places - like sanding blocks, I got these at a fine woodworking/hardware store).

I start with the 200grit to get rid of most of the putty, and work up to the 600grit as a finishing paper before its ready for paint. The 200grit might be a bit rough for the Hasegawa plastic - its quite soft, and takes scratches easily - you might want to start higher at 400 in light orbital motion to avoid lines.

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Here's a close up of the affected area. That piece in front of the pivot is pretty important and damn near impossible to get to after assembly. THe biggest thing that ruins these types of swing wing aircraft models is looking into the wing cavity and seeing the hollow plastic.

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This is probably the most sanding you have to do on this kit. This piece is fairly finished now, I will add some fences inside one I determine that my wing sweep angles are with the booster attached.

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Getting back to my fuselage - you will notice that I use the testors orange tube cement on major seams - and I apply liberally so that the "melted" plastic/glue mixture actually oozes through when you press the pieces together. This ensures that you get a good bond, and that if there are any little cracks in the seam - its filled in with this glue/plastic ooze. This is one of my ways to reduce the seams to fill afterwards. Often, this is enough for me to let dry, shave down with an x-actor knive the excess - sand, and apply a bead of Mr. Surfacer 500 to the seam, let dry and sand again - and with luck, that should be enough work to completely eliminate the seam. I will have to let this dry before I can do anything else.

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I've started to paint the seat and pilot as I require the cockpit to be fully completed and sealed in before I start sanding away at the fuselage (otherwise all the wet sanding particles will get inside and ruin the detail of the cockpit. The interior and seat is painted Tamiya dark grey, while the seat cushion is dark green and the head rest is tan (from the Perfect Memory marker sketch) and the pilot I've chosen to leave the white the plastic as the finished color, and added the black under the helmut and shoulder pads (the decals do not cover these) and neutral grey for the backpack and front suit controls. Once dried, I will paint silver in the visor, followed by a clear coat of Tamiya transparent green - it gives the visor a bit of shine when it catches the light and more depth looking at it than just the black decal strip. The pilot still needs a dark oil wash, with some details such as the black stripes picked out with a fine tipped gundam marker. Oops, you can see I forgot to eliminate the seam running up the inside of the leg - I did elminate the seam everywhere else with a x-actor knife, lightly scraping along the seam.

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Hey LTSO, how thick is the pro-weld, I am already using the Tamiya liquid cement - which I think is great, but I want a thicker gel like glue that doesn't evapourate so quickly as liquid cement.

This will be Hikaru's VF-1S (actually Roy's Skull Leader, but he died, so Hikaru took it over) at least that's what I believe is the proper timeframe when they take Max & Miria's baby up to Britai? Please correct me if I'm wrong. I think it will be Skull 001 with the yellow & black markings but with Hikaru's name in the pilots stencil on the canopy. I think I will do the boosters in shades of grey/blue kind of like the fast packs but lighter.

This pictures shows the modifications required to make the Hasegawa kit with the gears up. Notice I used some sheet styrene to bind together the gear doors (the edges of the gear doors just aren't enough area for the glue to get a proper bond). Additionally, I added stripes to the inside of the gear wells to act as a shelf to support the gear doors when laid in. Luckily the gear doors, when glued together is just a hair larger than the opening, when the glue dries, I will sand down the edges to get a perfect fit.

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I have just completed a VF-1A Super as well as a VE-1 with wheels up. I stole WM's idea if reinforcing the doors with a bit of styrene on the back (see above post). The next step I stole off someone else on these forums (thanks whomever you are) and used two balls of epoxy putty (Milliput) in the wheel wells and pushed down until everything sat flush. After waiting for the putty to harden, I used some surfacer (a-la WM's method), sanded, and viola! The good thing is the doors stick to the Milliput so there is no glue squeezing out of the gaps to make a mess.

Couldn't be easier.

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I have just completed a VF-1A Super as well as a VE-1 with wheels up. I stole WM's idea if reinforcing the doors with a bit of styrene on the back (see above post). The next step I stole off someone else on these forums (thanks whomever you are) and used two balls of epoxy putty (Milliput) in the wheel wells and pushed down until everything sat flush. After waiting for the putty to harden, I used some surfacer (a-la WM's method), sanded, and viola! The good thing is the doors stick to the Milliput so there is no glue squeezing out of the gaps to make a mess.

Couldn't be easier.

You're welcome :D

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Sorry everybody - this thread is definitely on the back-burner for a while.

I just got a job (thank God!) so it will be a day here and there maybe on the weekends.

If anyone else wants to start a thread of their build - I would be most interested (hint, hint... Jesse)

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it doesnt have to go on the back burner so to speak. youd be surprised what 10 to 15 minutes of work a night could do. thats about all i have to devote besides weekends and sometimes i dont even have weekends. by the way what is your new job?

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  • 3 weeks later...
Here's one side sanded down - yes, I might of over done it on the putty, but I rather over do it than find out that I missed some spot.  When I am done, you can see there isn't a lot of putty left, just enough to fill the cracks and circular injection pin depression.  You don't have to pay too much attention near the pivots as the gear mechanism hides most of this area.

I made a Hasegawa F-18E not too long ago. I used a lot of Tamiya putty in one area and found that it did some nasty things to the plastic. It made some parts really gummy and made little pits in other places. Does this problem sound familiar, or did I do something wrong?

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Hi all,

I'm currently home sick - nasty cough - trying to do some work at home though. Haven't found the time to work on this kit yet - with all this Christmas stuff going on. Hopefully I might get a few hours in during the Christmas break. Although, everytime I walk past the work bench, its calling out to me. :p

Sorry to hear about the pits Mule, yes excessive putty can damage your kit, I haven't ran across this problem in years. I mostly ran across this a long time ago, when I tried to sculpt something out of the putty, but as long as you try to keep the layer of putty thin, and allow it to dry before adding another layer, it shouldn't be a problem. Sometimes, when you leave the putty in the tube a while, a whitish ooze separates from the grey putty - this is exactly like styrene cement - this is the putty's solvent, and this is the stuff that will attack your plastic if its not properly vented and allowed to dry. If it separates, try to mix it back into the grey putty. I've also found that if the putty is too dry, you can use liquid cement and that will "thin" out the putty as well - almost to the consistency of Mr. Surfacer. But treat it like solvent cement, don't apply too thick a coat, or it will eat away at the plastic before it can properly cure. I applied a liberal amount of putty to certain parts of the valk, but they are relatively thin layers, just spread over a larger area - and I haven't had any "melting" problems yet (knock on wood... :D )

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