1 100 Bandai Super Sylph Yukikaze Step by Step Modeling Guide by WM Cheng

September 30, 2017 | Author: Patrick Fontaine | Category: Camouflage, Paint, Paintings, Nature
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1 100 Bandai Super Sylph Yukikaze Step by Step Modeling Guide by WM Cheng...


1/100 Bandai Super Sylph Yukikaze Step by step modeling guide by WM Cheng (July 7, 2003 – July 28, 2003)

Hey all, I found a small chunk of time so I'll finish off that Bandai Yukikaze SuperSylph I started back in the Winter. Its the version 1.0 I got it before I knew about 1.5, so it be a real paint chore. This goes to special thanks to Valkyrie who introduced me to this aircraft and series with his wonderful resin review of the 1/72 version - but its just too expensive for me especially when it isn't Macross (lets keep our priorities straight here ) Sorry if this is kind of off-topic here, but I visit this section often - feel free to move this to an appropriate section - just let me know. 1

Well on to the kit - what can I say, I'm not a big fan of Bandai - especially compared to Hasegawa. It is nowhere near the quality of Hasegawa kits. However, that being said - the general lines and proportions are pretty accurate to the line art. It is a really easy kit practically snap together, you can put it together in an afternoon. The key difficulties here are sanding the parts and painting. Bandai, has made no attempt to section the parts in any logical order - as a result, it is difficult to determine which parts to paint first, then attach and then sand and mend - leaving a lot of areas that will be very difficult to paint afterwards. Also the parting of the pieces don't follow any existing panel lines on the aircraft - so there is a lot of filling and re-scribing of the panel lines. Additionally, the version 1.0 of the kit has a really sparse decal set that is provided, I guess this will be a bit challenging for me to paint properly - all the strips and white sections of the aircraft need to be painted on. Unless anyone has a spare version 1.5 decal that they are willing to sell me? This first shot is a test fit of the various pieces after 1 hour of just cutting them out and dry fitting - as you can see, most of the plane is assembled. There is major filling on the wing roots, as they are smooth on the line art, and there is a nasty seam that doesn't follow any panel lines in the Bandai model. I do really love the shape/sleekness of the lines of these designs. Anyone with more material on this series (particularly the aircraft designs) please chime in and add to my pittiful collection.


Here's the intake assembly - I decided to paint the "fans" dark metallic grey with a flat black wash over them (similar to what I do for the Valkyries) before I glue the intake assembly to the fuselage. Afterwards would be really difficult to detail. I thought that I would leave the interior of the intakes the dark grey of the styrene. Then when I airbrush the light grey of the bottom of the aircraft, I would "feather" the light grey towards the back so that the back would be dark grey around the engine fans. I think its far enough back in the intake that it will just appear to go into darkness. I often paint the rear of the intakes on the atmospheric Valkyries a grey, and feather the white from the front to the back to grey - I think this gives the intake a sense of depth and scale. Its kind of like fake shadowing, since when ever you look down an aircraft's intake, you usually see it fall off to darkness, maybe just a glint of metal in the fans.


Here's a real bitch to paint - the TARPs array. I love this idea - kind of like a towed sonar array for the plane, but I love the extending wing. However, the way Bandai has designed it, you can't get to paint all the colours that need to be on the extendable wing if you assemble the entire thing first. My plan, is to paint the extendable wing first in white trailing edge through the three greys first, then assemble, mask off the painted wing, and sand and paint the rest of the assembly. I know its just begging for stuff to go wrong - but I can't think of any other way. I hear that the version 1.5 of this kit includes a decal for all the shades of grey on the wing, so that might solve the assembly order/paint issue here. But still, it will be hard to match the paint to the decal colours. Bandai should just design it so that the wings snaps on and off to facilitate painting.


Here is an example of stupid place to separate the parts, it follows no natural contours or designed panel lines - and its a poor fit to boot! You can see that I have puttied (Tamiya grey modelling putty) the dissimilar surfaces and have sanded them down. I am in the process of re-scribing the panel details with this Micro-saw that came from a photoetched sheet from Hasegawa - I first learned of these saws in a Hobby Japan issue talking about the first Hasegawa Valkyries.


This photo shows the two intake assemblies and how they attach to the aircraft fuselage. They slide across the wing surface to their final resting point! Why am I pissed you might ask (you'll find out when you build this kit)?? Well, this means that you cannot put glue on the intake pieces when you slide the piece into place - if you do, you'll get slide marks across the wing where the intakes have to scrape across (with the glue) to reach their final resting place. I guess its designed to be attached without glue (snap fit) and it does hold pretty tight without glue. But inherent will all snap-together models, there are large seams between the pieces - so I have to glue them and fill them like a real model. I guess the "snap-together" design comprimises the final appearance. Okay, I don't want all this bitching to discourage anyone, I think its pretty easy to get a descent model out of this kit - maybe "toy-like" that you'd spend an afternoon on and zoom around the house with. However, its amazingly difficult to put it together in such a way to get a really good replica model out of it. I don't know if I am making sense here - I hope you catch my drift. Anyways, time to leave it alone and let all the glue dry. Before the next really big step, sand the crap out of it to make every seam invisible - arrrgh (my least favourite step)


So after a day of sanding - here we are - not much as changed eh? The nose cone and the forward fuselage don't mate up to the exact same profile. You have to sand this area quite a bit to "shape" it so that the two parts blend into each other. Its also a little awkward there, since this is where the leading edge root starts - it needs to blend from a conical section to a rather sharp one where the forward wing roots start. This pictures shows what I hate, when the parts and panel lines don't match up. The light grey is the Tamiya putty filling in the seams...


It's good to hear others here are also into this kit - I was worried that it would be OT. Hey lets see some of your progress LTSO or Mechleader?? Once the sanding is done, I rise and wash it with dish-detergent (without lotion or conditioners). This is a good practice to get into since it usually washes away any oils from your fingerprints or any release agents in the mold (although less likely with injection kits than resin). I use a well worn toothbrush to srub it to get all the tiny sanding dust out of the fine panel lines.


Here's a beauty shot of the aircraft with the fins glued in place - awaiting drying before the first coat of light grey to see where I missed sanding it.


A shot from above. I thought I'd paint the whole thing first and detail the cockpit area later, since its molded in one piece anyways. This way I don't have to mask it out first. Also at 1/100 scale, there's not much you can do - the thickness of the clear plastic canopy will obscure most of the finest details anyways.


A rear shot with the original version 1.0 tail cones in place - I think they'd be fine once I do a wash on them. I'll detail the airbrushing the burnt black on them later for myersjesse - although I have always wanted to do that rainbow effect you see on metal that has been exposed to extreme heat. I sometimes see it on motorcycle exhaust. I haven't quite figured it out yet though...


Here is that dreaded extendable lower wing that is part of the TARPs array. I decided to go with these Tamiya colours straight out of the bottle. I think they'd give this bird a F-15 look (at least that is what I am trying for). I might consider dusting the undersurface with a pale green after the plane is finished to get it closer to the anime - but this will be a wait and see thing (closer to anime or closer to realism?) I know its a bit ass-backwards, but I decided to paint the dark grey areas of the wing first, working my way back to the white. I know its never a good I idea to work dark to light, but the masking of the shapes made more sense this way. Its easier to mask outside corners than inside corners. So wish me luck by the time I get to the white.


I am trying to drill out the gun port here. I am using a pin-vise, they can be bought at most local hobby/hardware stores - pictured below is a set of cheap (china made) pin-vise bits. They are really useful in drilling small holes for re-inforcement pins in resin models.


Here's the drilled out gun-port, I find that whatever openings such as grills and intakes can be opened up - even if its black beyond helps with adding a sense of scale and realism.


Here's a first light coat (kind of like primer - but I'm too lazy) concentrating in areas where I filled and sanded to see how smooth it came out. Unfortunately, the wing joint is still somewhat visible, but at least its even. It would take major work to completely flush over the wing root joints. The forward conards sanding worked out well.


The bottom, well the intakes which were the greatest problem turned out well as with the forward nosecone section - but being a so-so model, I didn't really have the heart in sanding (which I hate most) so I'll give the finish a B+ - which is good enough I guess. There are still some trouble spots such as inside the intakes, but I can't really get to it now. I have noticed a few sink depressions from the kit injection mold process now that I have painted it.


Another problem area is the engine joint, even after a ton of sanding, it still showed through in the first coat of paint. So what you see here is a few splots of Mr. Surfacer 500 applied to the problem joint, and I will sand it down later and re-paint and see. As you can see, there is a natural really deep crevice line curved beneath it that could of been a seam - but they chose to just arbitraily put it up top where it is very visable. And do we really need 3 seams to make up this one engine pylon?


Finally a semi-finished/painted TARPs extendable wing - as I had mentioned before, I had to paint this part before assembly - then mask it off while I paint the TARPs pod around it. Well here it is, it turned out okay - especially considering I painted dark to light (which is never a good idea) but the masking made it easier that way. I still need to touch up the dark grey since it got damaged/scratched during the subsequent masking stages (doesn't show up well in the photos - but trust me its there). Then I would clear-coat with ModelMaster semi-gloss laquer, and do a panel wash on it before assembling it into the TARPs pod. I will weather it later when I do the whole plane. I am told that the new version 1.5 has a giant decal for this wing with all the grey shades arrgh


Here's a shot of my masking for the grey sharp areas in the plane. To save tape, I held up a card when spraying the dorsal fin to help with the overspray.


To get that soft, feathered edge on the grey camoflauge - there are two ways that this is traditionally done. One way is to cut a paper or cardstock mask and hold it 1/4" to 1/2" away from the surface of the model and spray so that the edges are soft. After some experience I decided to do the quick and lazy method which is to "draw" the pattern on the plane with the airbrush and fill in the pattern afterwards. On the sheet in front of the plane, I did a bunch of test patterns first to get the right air pressure, consistency of the paint and width of line first. Since this is literally drawing, its essential to get the right consistency - additionally you would start the spray and end it right on the model (which is not the usual - one should always start the spray away from the model and spray onto the model then spray off the model before you end your spray stroke). This prevents any pooling or potential build up of paint at the beginning of the stroke. As you can see some of the little squigelles lines end in a slight "splatter" pattern, this is usually either too low of an air-pressure (20-25psi) or too thick of the paint (not enough thinner). I had to up my pressure to 30-35psi and thin down the paint to get a more even flow.


Here's the finished pattern. Unfortunately, the dark grey that came out of the Tamiya bottle is a bit dark - provided too contrasty of a scheme for the aircraft. So what I will do is tone it down by spraying a thin even overcoat of the underlying neutral grey colour later.


While I had some fine dark grey left in my airbrush, I'd decided to do a little weathering on the underside and do some post-shading on a few of the panel lines underneath.


So here's a process shot, I am in the progress of toning down the camoflauge (sp?) with the underlying base colour. Actually I am enjoying this stage. This was an un-intentional mistake (the dark grey was too dark) but it has allowed me to fine-tune the edge feathering of the dark grey with the light grey.


Here's a shot completed - there, that's a little bit more subtle - I hope it isn't too subtle. I can still post shade on top of it. I will seal this in with a clear coat laquer since I am satisfied with it - then any future mistakes will only take me back to this point (If I strip any paint off). On to the white highlights - I am think of doing a light pale green dusting at the end to pick up that wierd colour from the anime (what do you think? Grey military or anime?)


Thanks, the masking question - I always stick it down tight. I usually clear-coat the undercoat first, so that there is less chance of the tape lifting anything up. As you can see in this shot, I have already clear-coated the bird once I liked the camo scheme. There is a bit of gloss glinting in the light on the dorsal fin area - I work in semi-gloss or gloss now so the tape peels up better without lifting the undercoat and it works for the decals later on. I will give it a flat coat at the end of everything.


Here's a close up of the TARPs array for the underside of the aircraft with the masking removed. I tried to stay as tight to the masking as possible to prevent overspray and save myself some masking.


I wasn't sure about the leading edge white markings so I continued them onto the underside as well to give it a bit of interest. Here the TARPs is shown in the stowed position with the wing retracted back.


Here the TARPs is extended (or dropped) with the wing also extended. I guess I have to come up with some sort of stand soon.


Here's a side view, I guess the white really stands out right now. I will get toned down when I weather this baby just slightly and give it a pale green cast later on.


Here's a side view with the TARPs wing extended. I just love the profile of this bird!!!


I also had a tad overspray in some of the areas too - but since I clear-coated in the previous steps. I used a little bit of windex on a Q-tip and wiped away some excess overspary. I think I will clear-coat it again at this stage before I do a panel line wash or post-shading (just in case)


I use the Tamiya stuff - its a bit expensive, but its worth it - the edges are straight and the tack is good - it doesn't lift too much. I usually use the Tamiya stuff (dark yellow) to mask at the edges and spray away from me (never into the edge of the tape). For larger areas, I would just use regular stuff from the hardware store, but I first stick it to my jeans a few times to pick up some lint so that it reduces the tackiness, and I apply it over the Tamiya stuff - and try to gently lay it over other exposed areas. I never leave this stuff on for extended periods of time. In fact, I try to time it so that I only mask when I know I can complete the painting, so I remove the masking immediately after the paint is on. I screwed up - the panel post-shading turned out too dark and over-shadows the subtle grey camo - darn!! I'll have to re-darken the grey camo, and tone down the entire thing again with the neutral grey - wish me luck!


Now its back to where I like it, and the panel-post shading is still present, but just under the grey camo. Its time to seal it with a clear-coat now.


These are the colours I usually use for the tail cones. I use the metallic grey first as the undercoat. Here I decided to paint the extended petals in Gun Metal, without masking, so that there would be a bit of burnt bleed. I will airbrush the tips in flat black to make them look burnt later on. The dusting of flat black is delicate and can be scraped off accidentally through handling. So I usually wait till near the end when I can seal it in with an additional flat clear-coat. I haven't tried the rainbow effect here yet. This plane was already such a bitch to paint - I don't want to push my luck here.


Here's my coat-hanger making a comeback. Awaiting the clear-coat to dry tommorrow to start the panel wash. Oh, there are those two stripes down the back as well.


Overhead shots with the tailcones in place.


Here's a side profile shot with the TARPs array extended. Parting shot for tonight goodnight. Till tomorrow...


Yes, just experiment and practice to get a fine line - the only difficulty is filling the camo shape in afterwards. Because you are starting and stopping on the model, you will get a mottled effect, its very hard to get it even - like a long stroke past the model itself. This is where the second coat on top of the dark grey which is actually the medium/neutral grey to tone down the dark grey helps. Not only did it lighten the dark grey, it also tend to hide the flaws (start and stop pools) and evened the who thing out. When I did the mistake - I could of stripped the post-shading off - but I thought the original dark camo was a bit too faded anyways. So I re-darkened the dark grey camo on top of the post-shaded panel lines. Then I re-toned down the whole effect again with the undercoat medium/neutral grey - this way it toned down both the camo (although not as much as the first time around) and the panel lines - plus the white did not jump out as much. Here we go on the stripes... I cut the Tamiya yellow masking tape in half so that it could be bent and take the curves easier. Occasionally I cut some slots perpendicular to the longwise direction to relieve some tension when bending, it helps around tight curves. Then I added another strip on either side of the cut thinner tape to widen the mask area.


Now to be paranoid and cheap I added regular masking tape to either side to again widen the mask area. I pressed the masking tape to my pants first to lift up lint to reduce the tackiness of the tape first. Also I did not press it down firmly unlike the yellow Tamiya stuff which I did press down - because I wanted a straight clean line.


I sprayed a light even coat, then when in and lightened the areas that are not near the panel lines - kind of a reverse post-shading so the panels which cross the stripe are still darker slightly. Since it is a light coat, it almost dries on contact - you don't want to spray on wet, since there is a chance that the wet paint may seep underneath the tape. I immediately took off the regular masking tape.


Yaaah! It turned out pretty good (if I may say so myself) - I was worried about this one since it had to curve symetrically. The colour was mixed up with 50% white, 25% light grey and 25% army green. The tint is actually a tad bit greener than the photo - which I lucked out on.


The symetry isn't bad, I see the mistakes, but I already took a long time lining them up. Too bad there were no panel lines or any engraved details to go by - on some box art and photos I gleaned off the web. I think I will mask out the intake bleed vents on the top of the plane and paint those in a gun metal for some interest (I know its not anime line-art, but what do you think?).


I took the same pale green stripe colour and did a dusting to the undersurface and hit all the leading edges to give the belly that pale green tone. I think its more interesting than one tone of pale green with the sky grey showing underneath. I think the photo doesn't really show the subtlety in the green tint - it looks a bit grey - but trust me, its greener maybe not as green as the anime though. Its hard to balance realism with anime sometimes. I feel, if we are weathering it, then its sidiing more towards realism anyways.


The green dusting toned down all the white markings now too. Time to clear-coat and leave alone - no touchy for a bit - this is bad, I always play with it and get my fingerprints on it at this stage. Must do housework to keep the wife happy now... Looking forward to the panel wash in a few hours though.... Here's the panel wash complete with all the dab marks. Some of the panel engraved detail is really deep on this kit - and its not the ones you'd expect. I would expect the moveable surfaces to be deep, and just some of the regular access panels to be shallow - however, this is not the case. As a result, the deep panels recieve a lot of paint, and appear dark darker than the moveable surfaces (not what you want). Bandai sucks at molding kits (IMHO) well, at least it ain't ERTL?! I had to go in with some white and light grey to bring out (or lighten) some of the secondary panels, so the moveable surfaces remained darkest.


Here's a completed shot (sorry for the lack of depth of field on the rear portion of the aircraft). Pretty much ready for decals. I think I'll do the cockpit area last, so I can seal in the decals with a clear coat first - then flat coat, lastly the canopy goes on so I don't have to mask it or the cockpit from the flat-coat.


A shot of the underside. I was thinking of getting a red Gundam marker to outline the white sensor pods in that red ring - Bandai, neglected to provide the decals again. I also have to scrunge up some yellow caution stripes for the rear of the engine flairings before the tailcones too. I'm not sure, even after lightening up the panel lines, it still looks a bit dark - too exagerrated for this scale. I might lighten it some more in the morning. However, the photo does seem a bit on the dark contrasty side as well.


We see the tailcones on and the top intake bleed doors gets the metallic grey treatment with a dark wash to pick out the louvers. I think everything will lighten up slightly when I coat it with the flat finish in the end.


A quarter beauty shot - I just love that lower wing. Funny how the white still shows up really bright - its not that bright in real life.


I didn't know the Gundam Markers were transparent - damn, at least the white sensor humps will get the fine red ring - I'll figure something else up for the lower stabilizer fins. The F-14 stuff is a whole bunch of pictures, books, walkaround (Squardon publications F14 Tomcat Walkaround #3) and tones of web sites. I am trying to order a resin upgrade kit for the cockpit and seats by Verlinden. Just getting the right kit was a chore. I knew it had to be Hasegawa, but they have at least 3-4 toolings of the F-14 alone. The worst of which they release for Macross Zero (raised panel lines) - I think it was a non-japanese mold. I must highly recommend #00364:2600 F-14A Tomcat "Jolly Rogers" Limited Edition. This is the best tooling to date (unfortunately its not a F-14D). Lots of very fine engraved details - much more so than the Valk. However, the wings cannot be swept, it must be fixed in either the extended or swept positions. This is because the the forward slats and rear flaps are molded separately and allow it to be displayed extended. The VF84 squadron decals are by Cartograf of Germany, and it includes metal photo-etched cockpit details including canopy rails, hooks and mirrors as well as afterburner assembly. This is by far the best 1/72 scale kit of the F-14 I have found to date. Anyways, I digress another project for another time - I eventually would like to get a 1/72 scale flightline of F-14, VF-0, VF-1, VF2S, YF-19 kind of the cave man evolution thing If only I can figure out how to weather the F-14 properly - they seem to have a very distinct mottled apprearance on the top back surfaces, like lots of little watermarks or pools of different greys. I haven't quite figured it out how to replicate in 1/72 scale yet any suggestions or step by steps would be very much appreciated.


Hey Myersjessie, since the panel post-shading is done with the same Tamiya dark grey as the camo, if I darkened the camo so that it was more dark than the post-shading lines (which were done lightly) then when I spray on the lighter Neutral grey over top, it will keep the same difference between the camo and the post-shading (I don't know if this makes sense - its so much harder to explain). Yes the lighter Neutral Grey coat is sprayed on very lightly - I did thin it down more so than if I were to coat something in that colour, maybe a 65:35 thinner:paint ratio. This has a transparent effect (as long as you don't go over too many times) plus the thinner paint sprays on much finer, so there is no visible spray pattern. The end result, is that it doesn't look as though something is sprayed over top of it. I really like the way this mistake turned out - since I can tune the lightening process very carefully. I spray a fairly even but very light coat (avoiding the white areas but a bit of overspray is fine, since it tones down the white a bit). Then examine it in different lighting to determine if I need to lighten more. I repeat this process several times until I am satisfied with the subtlety of the grey camo. You want to becareful working the layers up - its better to under do than put too much paint on the first time around. I also took this opportunity to accent some of the shapes of the plane with the grey. I find the plane always more interesting to find lots of different colours (subtle shade differences) than to have large flat areas of a single colour. It help ties together the various other colours in the paint scheme - like the dusting of the pale green on the undersides - is more interesting when there are different greys as well rather than just a plane pale green straight paint job. I am almost doing a 3D painting where you are adding to some of the shadow areas, to give a exaggerated form - which is the idea behind post-shading. The painter in me comming out Great to hear your wife is an artist - we need more artist in this world (less accountants). And they do all look similar, its a Japanese asethetic that we all love here (how many times have I heard that before...) Anyways I hope that it helps more than it confuses. The best way is to try. I have never used this method before - it was to fix an original mistake of making the post-shading too dark. But I'll add it to my bag of tricks from now on... On to decals... Well, the decals that Bandai supplies...well, suck. OK maybe that's an exagerration - but I guess Hasegawa has spoiled me lately. The version 1.0 of this kit lack quite a lot of stencilling and stripes. Here's a small collection of a few extra decals I had lying around that will help out this bird. I kind of buy whatever is on sale when I am at a local hobby store - I look for lots of generic warning and caution stencils in various scales and colours. These are quite old, since I haven't really seen a large variety of aftermarket decals anymore. I mostly picked these up for $3.99 on sale. In the bottom corner is the original sheet that comes with the Bandai version 1.0 kit - I hear that version 1.5 is more complete. I got these great yellow stripes a long time ago - 10yrs maybe when I had to do stripes on olive drab bombs. These will come in handy for the yellow stripes around the tailcones.


Here they are after they are applied, I split them in half, to get the right thickness. Then they are pieced together form little straight segments. I tried to do each of the engines in two pieces, but the curves were too complicated to be taken by a straight piece - it can only curve so much before it folds. So I broke each tailcone up into 7-8 pieces, and had them start and end at a panel line. Overall I am quite please with the way they turned out.


Here's a side view awaiting further decals. Unfortunately, I could not find any red Gundam Markers in all of Toronto - well actually 3 stores that carries this stuff (none of the regular non-asian hobby stores carries this stuff). Damn! I guess I have to scrunge up some spare red decals, and cut them into really thin stripes - wish me luck.


Hey there, some was asking about decals, well I came across these sheets that I think are great for anime stuff. Two are Macross specific but the skull and cross-bones aren't really well rendered. The other two "X-Decal 1 & 2" are great for misc. stencilling. I got all of these through HLJ. Additionally the canopy thing - I use both techniques, depending on the complexity of the canopy frames. If its just the edges, I usually try a steady hand. If its just a single frame like the VF-1, I might mask that frame out with Tamiya masking tape, and then paint the edges by hand later. If its more complicated, then I would use the liquid mask, and cut out all the frames that needs to be painted. Just remember to spray very lightly, build up in even dry coats. Wet overspray will always find ways to seep in underneath whatever you mask with. I'd love to see pictures of that Fujimi model, especially the photo-etched parts and decals.


Back to the task at hand... I found this Sharpie, and since the underlying colour is relatively light, I though I'd give it a try.


The twin tips help, the fat end fills in the edges, while the thin end I use with a ruler to "draw" in the sides. Its actually thinner than most decals I've see - which look too "anime"


Here's a shot of those walkway lines on the wings. Not too bad, not really bright enough, but still definitely red. I thought this might be more fitting to a combat aircraft. Besides I find the Bandai version 1.5 decals make the red lines look too thick and promenent.


Here's a shot of the underside when the decalling was done.


Here's the top. I didn't use the Bandai "NO STEP" decals, since I find them severly out of scale - they were larger than the Hasegawa 1/72 Valks, so I dug around and used the Wave X-Decal "NO STEP" which are smaller and more in keeping with the scale. I also relocated a few warning decals so they made more sense and read in the proper direction for ground crew. Its obvious that Bandai has absolutely no idea how aircrafts work or are serviced by the way they chose the locations and directions for the decals!! Most of the other decals are scavenged from my other left overs from other kits or spare sheets. Unfortunately, the prominent refueling marker on the top rear of the plane is printed incorrectly, with the wrong shade of grey (plus a really ugly half-toning - too cheap to use spot colour I guess) and could not be used. Its such a distinct shape, I don't know what to do. Anyone with a spare 1/72 scale F-16 refueling decal that they could mail me?

Here's a top view - the two stripes are blending too much into the grey paint scheme - but at this point I'll have to live with it. I need to put a clear-coat over the decals to protect them.


Here's a side shot on the stand.


A shot from beneath.


Parting shot to let it dry. I am going to give it a light dusting of grey/pale green to tone down the decals a bit and tie in the colours together - and enhance that greenish cast. Then it gets a flat finish clear-coat before I work on the cockpit details and canopy. Lastly, I try the red sharpie on the forward white sensor nodules. Thats it till next week we are going camping with friends this weekend.

I decided to tint the canopies since there is a lack of detail in the Bandai kit cockpit, and at 1/100 scale, its hard to put the proper details necessary but still make it look in small enough scale. Also, it will look more like the Platz resin kit. I sprayed the canopy with Tamiya smoke (its a transparent colour).


I then took it off the tree but left the front and rear little injection pins on - these provides a good handle for the tweezers to hold the piece while I dunk it in Future floorwax to give it a bright polished acyrlic sheen.


Here's a shot of the plane with the proper final matte semi-gloss sheen on overall - to tie in the decals (and protect them). Additionally, I hand painted the cockpit interior and the black surrounds. If you get any excess (because I hand painted this part), I "gently" scraped the edge of the cockpit with an exacto knife to clean up the edge so there is a sharp line between the black of the cockpit surrounds and the start of the grey fuselage. I painted the instrument panels light grey in preparation for a fine tipped black marker to "draw" in some instruments.


Here's some "instruments" drawn in - I tried to stay somewhat accurate to line-art, but there isn't much reference, and its pretty hard to "draw" this stuff at 1/100 scale, so I gave up 1/2 way through and improvised.


Here's the painted pilots in place - I think these blobs are a poor excuse for sculpted pilots (esp. compared to Hasegawa pilots - but here are much smaller). They lay down too much - I might try to change their posture.


Again, the red sharpie marker comes to the rescue. There really should be decals for the missles, but Bandai chose to ignore this detail. So a little ruler and red pen goes a long way to detail the missles.


Here's a shot of the underside of the aircraft with the striped missles in place. The missles weren't weathered, I assume that they are usually new and used on sorties so they don't get much change to be weathered. I dabbed the camera ports on the lower TARPs pods in silver first, then I dabbed them in a Tamiya Blue Transparent colour - I will cover them in a MicroSet Kystal Keeler, which is kind of like a white glue, that dries like a clear lens over these five blue dots. I also paint the nav lights in a silver for now, and will paint over them in a red transparent colour so they have a little reflectivity and depth.


Here's a shot with the pilots and cockpit painted, just waiting for the canopy.


Here you see the little injection pin tab left so I can have a place for the tweezers to grab onto the part. As I have described earlier, where the edge frames are concerned, its easier to just paint them by hand. I usually use a larger brush, and sit the brush halfway on the frame and half on the bottom flat part of the canopy. This way, when I drag the brush across the canopy, the bottom part of the piece stabilizes the brush and helps me draw a line that is parallel with the bottom of the canopy.

I would avoid pressing down too hard on the clear - future floorwaxed surfaces when trying to install the canopy. I find that the future is still a bit soft, and may take an impression of your fingers or cloth. Unfortunately, the Bandai canopies actually don't sit perfectly flush with the fuselage - I should of test fit these parts first (but I get impatient around the end stages). I would suggest a test fit and then sand down to correct the fuselage mis-alignment. But since I have painted everything, and the press-fit is quite tight (I guess this is "snap-fit") I am afraid I might damage it by trying to pry it off again. I'll let it be for a few days and see if it bugs me more. Luckily, since I painted the inside of the cockpit black, the seam is black and the frame of the canopy is black, it all kind of bends together to hide the ugly gap.


Here's a few teasers until tommorrow, when I can get better light in my dining room. You can see here that the pilots seems kind of like they are lying down. The TARPs array is in the fully deployed position here.


A shot of the front view. It's so sleek!


A shot from behind. The version 1.0 tailcones aren't too bad once the black wash is done to them. The version 1.5 tailcones are much better though, much more delicate and thinner.

The nav lights show up pretty well, red clear paint over the silver backgound, they catch the light pretty good.


Finally an underside shot. That white thing underneath is actually the end of my coathanger stand with some masking tape wrapped around it to prevent it from scratching my paint-job. I was thinking of getting it dipped in that stuff you can get from a hardware store that puts a rubberized coating on it like some pliers or hand tools. Well, till I can get some decent photos of it.


Okay, we've got sun... here we go with the finished pictures.


A little fly-around


It still wasn't bright enough to get good depth of field - but it was better than my work bench.


It's very lightly weathered since this is really a recon aircraft and its not supposed to see much battle.


You can see how crisp the panelling details are on the Bandai kit, not up to Hasegawa par - mostly because they are all uniformly deep, where as it would be nice if there were varying depths. You can see I am still missing that refueling marking on the left (Bandai supplied one is the wrong colour and half-toned so it looks really bad). Anyone want to donate a 1/72 F-16 refueling decal (or even 1/144)?


A rear 3/4 shot - the no-step decals are from my collection, because the Bandai supplied ones are out of scale. Its tough to get 1/100 scale decals, most of the 1/72 stuff looks too big on it.


Here's a side view of this very sleek aircraft. I did a little weathering on the gun port. I'm glad I decided to paint the back intake bleed doors in a gun metal - its a bit of a relief for the back of the aircraft.


Here's a silouette - I love the lines. I have the TARPs array in the extended position. The kit allows you to remove a part that will tuck the array tight to the underside/belly of the plane and the wing and rotate up in line with the aircraft.


Here's a better lower angle showing the TARPs array. The red sharpie on the missles aren't bad - but I wish they were supplied decals. Even on the version 1.5 decals are omitted. The tough part was separating the lighter greenish pale under-belly colour with the darker grey colour at the nose fuselage area, it shouldn't be a straight edge, but should not feather too gradually. Just a soft distinct transition that can only be achieved free-hand with a mask.


Rear shot.


Front shot. Again, I wished I had more light so that I could increase the depth of field, then everything would be in focus - but its tough on such a small model.


The finished length is about the same as the Hasegawa VF-1 Valkyrie - but is a thinner aircraft so there's less bulk.


Top view.


Bottom view. Well that's about it. Overall, the Bandai kit is not the greatest - but still, its a Japanese kit, so they are better than any ERTL, Monogram or Revell type kits. The mold quality and crispness of engraved details are excellent. The worst parts are how its engineered to be assembled and the lack of decals. However, the version 1.5 of this kit is much improved with providing enough decals. I have just recieved the ver 1.5 of this plane - and I will be building that with the gears down (since they did address the chunky gears in this original version) - but its at the bottom of my long and ever-growing list of models to build. It is a very expensive kit for such a small model. But compared to the Platz resin model - its affordable. The lines of this model is very accurate to the line art of the anime. For those who truly love this design (as I do) this is a worthwhile endeavour (on a budget) but for those who can spend the dough, the Platz resin looks like the way to go. Well, I love this aircraft so much that I might be starting on the FRX-00 Mave the sister aircraft to this plane - also the slightly more affordable Bandai 1/100 scale. Where should I post any updates? Here or in the Model section? I won't go into detail on that one, unless there are any tricky situations, maybe just a bief few construction shots and the finished model - depending on my schedule.


That's it for now - thanks for tuning in...

Hey Powlus, here's that comparison shot with my 1/72 Hasegawa VF-1A and my brand spanking new 1/48 Yamato VF-1S. I did a light grey panel wash on the 1/48 Yamato too same technique as all my models with the thinned down oil paint (just becareful around the yellow - as the low-odour Varsol might pick up some of the yellow paint). The black portions in the chest plate area recieved a white panel wash - I might do the same to the wing strips and tail fins. I guess the missles need a wash too now. The thing looks naked come on Anatazi, I need those waterslide decals!!


Happy Modeling! (And wear a safety mask.)


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