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Macross Aria - Apollo Squad VF-1S Unassembled Unpainted Yamato Kit


Hikuro
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Last week I won an auctioned on Yamato's 1/60 V2 Unpainted Unassmbled VF-1S. The goal to this is to try and recreate Chillyche's VF-1 paint scheme for his character Rafe Townsend (Who I voiced) for his in developed Macross Aria webseries.

vf1bApollocolors.jpg

To achieve this I've gone all out on studying Tamiya's paint charts that will work on ABS Plastic.

I carefully considered my options on what Che set his RGB scales for the 3D model render to what Tamiya had available without having to do paint mixing of any kind.

Essentially I'm using TS-81 Royal Light Gray, TS-57 Blue Violet, TS-14 Black, and XF-83 Medium Sea Gray, along with a few other color choies like Silver for the turbines, and Nato Black for the color around the main body and Cockpit Green for the seats.

Stage 1: Cleaning the parts; involved washing the parts in dish soap and warm water then rinsed with cold and left to air dry over night.

Stage 2 BODY PAINT:

This was the first few coats of Royal Light Gray which produced a some what odd look I wasn't expecting. It doesn't really look like it matches that close to the 3D Render, but hopefully with the Nato Black and Blue Violet this will really stand out and blend well with the rest.

Sadly, I've completely ran out of the Gray, and I still got a lot of parts left to color and then STILL touch up after some assembly.

INTERIOR PAINT: I'm sticking to the original part models for the feet and mechanics, seeing how they're pretty much the same color mold as the production figure. I did however have to paint the seat cockpit green which is a pretty close match to the production figure, and silver on the turbine blades which look fantastic!

Stage 3 Assembling:

I've assembled the left and right foot which was an interesting task. Seeing how the instructions are no way clear on what to do. The only option I was able to find was using this link http://www.collectio..._optional_parts which provided me a translated guide on what I safely need to do to assemble. So THANK YOU to collectiondx.com for this!

SIDE NOTE: Incase anyone is reading this, the pilot figure provided for this was a TV style pilot suit. If anyone has a DYRL type to donate for the project, or know where there's a recasted version in existence please let me know. Aria is more schemed towards the events after DYRL versus the TV series, and I need to repaint the figure to match something close to the 3D Render che did of Rafe.

Edited by Hikuro
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Hmmm under better lighting, the TS-81 Royal blue really isn't all that great I think. It's a bit to light and sandy looking, nothing like the cap of the can would suggest. Looks more like a desert color to me.

I think I need more of a normal gray.

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So far, so good! I've found if you're having trouble with paint colors, use natural sunlight to check them. Sounds "dah!" simple, but sometime I forget the difference with the two lights when picking colors. - MT

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While running errands for work I managed to score a new can of royal light gray and blue violet which looks cool!

I'll be able to finish the main trim of colors tonight then start figuring out how I'll get the secondary blue violet trim as The stripes in the wings and legs. The chest area will be a huge challenge! But the most difficult of all the paint application.

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Most of the blue striping is done. The nose of the plane is still outside drying before I call it a night. The stripes on the wings and legs will need some touching up of gray once they've dried. I'll need to re-primer those areas then lightly touch up with royal gray once it's dried. You can kind of see where I tried to touch it up already and it came out a lil grayish purple.

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The black for the chest portion came out really well, and very pleased. Next step is to let it cure over night and then tape that area up nice and snug so I can get the blue on the final portion.

After that I'll have the lower leg wings, and tail to go which is under another coat of black right at this time and will have to all it quits for the night, done or not.

Edited by Hikuro
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image7.jpg There was a ton of touching up. Painters tape was not my friend through any of this venture. It's a little hard to see it, but if you focus on some areas of the parts you'll see lil marks that I had to touch up with royal light gray to fix the over spill of paint into portions of the panel lines.

Still, none the less the paint job did turn out good, and I think the color mix is excellent.

One thing does bug me, the right thigh didn't want to snap correctly and is leaving a gap. Anyone had any slight gap or odd part fits with their kits?

I was able to design the Apollo logo on Illustrator andn have it cut on my machine at work. However I didn't size it correctly and it's way to big. I'll need to measure the black area of the rear wings this time and hope the machine will cut that small. It was VERY difficult to get it cut the size I had already. So chances are I may need to scout for someone to make special decals or something. Any suggestions?

Edited by Hikuro
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Very interesting colors. I tried to do one of these customs in Tamiya, and for me, it just got scratched up when transforming it, so you'll need to be very careful. Lacquer paint seems to be much more durable, but I used much more of it having to spray in more, but much lighter coats. Can't wait to see this thing when it's done. Looking great so far.

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Paint is holding up really nicely. I've been doing a scratch "test" with my finger nails and what not. If I leave it alone for a day or two, it cures nicely. Which is why you don't see much of anything unless it's internal being assembled.

I built the head as my final bit for the day, I feel like it could use a little blue violet or something on it instead of 2 shades of gray for the turrets and head unit itself. There's a very faint clear green on the visor, but just enough to make it stand out as something was there. That bit came out nicely.

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Ugh so lame. so the parts that have to do with the inside of the shoulders seem to flake off paint no matter how much paint I try to put on. That's real damn lame!

Is there anyway to sand it down so that the paint added will hold? I remember having the same issue there, but by that time, I gave up trying to do full on color changes. If they're not going to do the Alaska base version, I'm going to make my own custom version out of the 1A unassembled version.
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I'll have to try to take the right arm apart again to do it. I also made a really big mistake where I accidentally put the right hand together palm flipped backwards and stuck the pin in. I gotta find a way to get that pin out to fix it.

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Sanding and Primer seemed to of helped for nwo, gotta let it cure over night.

These hinge pins are REALLY pissing me off. Why couldn't Yamato just put these in according to their size? I mean the tree thing with nothing labeled and bits and pieces everywhere, that's annoying, but these pins are even worse.

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Lost the piece where the head needs to connect to the rear of the fuselage. It's around, I just got to find it. Did anyone ever have any trouble in getting the 1.5mm pin thru the part? Mine wants to not fit or just go downward thru the gap the plastic piece has.

But both legs are assembled, and the right arm is done, and so is the head unit. Those are major deals right there.

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im just finishing my 1-s i had some trouble with the same head part and actually used the wrong pin in it. using pliers to push pins in seems to work well as long as you dont go in at an angle, i found a toothpick cut to sizemakes a good replacementpin for the 2mm haha

i remember seeing an alternative instructions on the net telling you to use alternate pins to the translated instructions not sure where found them but might be of some use.

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Is there anyway to sand it down so that the paint added will hold? I remember having the same issue there, but by that time, I gave up trying to do full on color changes. If they're not going to do the Alaska base version, I'm going to make my own custom version out of the 1A unassembled version.

Are they not going to? Haven't they been showing a 1A at a lot of trade shows in that color recently?

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im just finishing my 1-s i had some trouble with the same head part and actually used the wrong pin in it. using pliers to push pins in seems to work well as long as you dont go in at an angle, i found a toothpick cut to sizemakes a good replacementpin for the 2mm haha

i remember seeing an alternative instructions on the net telling you to use alternate pins to the translated instructions not sure where found them but might be of some use.

I can't figure out the pins at all. I got to many different sizes so I'm not picking the right ones or something.

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Are they not going to? Haven't they been showing a 1A at a lot of trade shows in that color recently?

they showed it as an example of what you can do with the new unpainted kits with option parts that they are now offering. Honestly I rather have the blank kits.

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Still having big issues with those pins. I tried to compare with my other figures but some aren't as consistent as others. The pins on the collar area that connect to the back side don't go fully inside on my max vf1a. I also think I put the wrong pin on the right thigh.

How can one get a pin out from smaller areas that go thru evenly versus stuck out?

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So which is the width and which is the length? Kind of hard to measure these things with a ruler to me when they're so tiny.

In either case, I still can't find the missing neck piece I need. I thought it just went behind my desk on the carpet but I moved everything around to get to that area and it's not there. Spent a good 2 hours cleaning that area up from Decal pieces coming from other projects only to find nothing.

I think I'd have a better chance at buying some kind of a scrapped junker valk or something than finding this missing piece.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well I decided it wouldn't be fair to show you guys what was done, so here it is. It's a test fit so nothing holds together. I ended up screwing it up big time for something that to me should of seemed just so straight forward.

So lemme give you guys a lil advice. becareful with the hinges, I couldn't figure out which hinge went where cause they're all different shapes and sizes. You might think one second you got the right one, but then you realize it might not of been. These instructions were just a big ass joke and I think Yamato outta go back to the drawing board on that.

it's also easy to miss a ton of parts. I was going to trade pilot figures but sadly I lost the main body but got the limbs and arms, I'm so damn embarassed after putting in so much effort into it.

I also lost the neck piece to attach the head unit, and I screwed up the left hand by doing it in reverse and didn't even realize it till it was to late.

All in all, if I could of assembled it, and made corrections, it would of been a real nice completed kit.

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Looks good. The off white/grey came out well. As far as the pins are concerned, I had to take every pin, and divide them up into matching batches, then place them in the correct size categories. That's how I was able to get all mine to fit properly. It's kinda a pain that they aren't separated at first.

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Well how can you tell which ones you need? There are some with lil weird ends on them, and then there are the ones that are completely smooth and even.

After I finally found out what my mistake was, I now need to know how the hell to get these pins out?

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Ok, I looked it up and I feel dumb. So I went to the local hardware store before it closed for the night and got myself a Pin Puncher, smallest you can get. I fixed 90% of the hand issue. Not ONLY did I find out the fingers were in reverse, but they were the wrong set. So I fixed that, rebuilt it, sadly it wont have a thumb cause I glued the back hand plate on. But the other hand is fully built and I've got a better understanding to the pin system now. For example, if it's suppose to flip or move, use a smooth pin. If it's stationary or a joint, use the sun star looking pins.

I also looked at the thigh parts, and did come to the conclusion that the right thigh was the incorrect pin and should infact be the one for the neck piece. NOW if I can find the neck piece that SHOULD BE somewhere in my closet, I feel confident enough to finish the damn kit.

To finish the night, I also completely built the back pack piece, screwed in and works pretty well. And got the Diecast metal piece that's apart of the chest and where the legs connect in Fighter mode primed and I will leave it in it's primer state, it's close enough and I don't want it to be to thick. I however decided to NOT prime the T-bar as it wont really ever be in view compared to the other parts.

I think this weekend my girlfriend and I are going to need to go over this closet with a fine tooth comb, then I'm sure I will find this missing neck piece. It couldn't of gone anywhere but in the closet where I work on my projects.

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final update for the night. I did another test fit, determined that you should NEVER paint the diecast part that's between the main body and intake legs. NEVER EVER EVER, never saw so much paint scrapping off in my life time!

I have 4 pins left, 2 go on a set of little swing bars inside the chest piece that helps it swing into locking position. These tiny lil 6mm pins will NOT go into the diecast piece part. They got the little crowns on them, and they're the only ones that seem like they'd fit, so I dunno why they wont. I've even taken pliers to them but they just wont budge.

The other 2 pins, I think they're 11's are doing the same thing. They connect the two square pieces that bridge the front and rear portions of the plane that form the torso as well. The pins will go into the bridge portions, but that same damn diecast piece wont let them slide into position. if I can get these four pieces into their position then this damn VF-1 will be mostly finished minor superficial stuff like the neck joint, and repainting and priming the shoulder bits and leg square that plug into the intakes.

Any advise?

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  • 2 weeks later...

So over the weekend my girlfriend helped me clean up (Mostly cause I'm prepping for my delivery of a 46 inch 3D tv) and helped look for the missing neck piece I need for my Valk to finish. Sadly though we couldn't find the missing piece so this project is almost scrapped and that's a big bummer! It'd be great if I could find a broken valk no one wants and strip it for parts but I don't see that happening anytime soon.

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  • 2 weeks later...

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