Hiatus gonna Hiate (147 days to SCGMC)

A long time ago I build the Hasegawa VF-1 Battroid, a mecha kit so well-proportioned and nicely detailed that, at the time, I dubbed it “the greatest injection-molded mecha kit of all time, space, and alternate dimensions”. These days there are maybe a few other kits I’d rate higher, but it’s still one of my all-time favorite kits. Earlier this month I was trying to decide what to work on at my model club meeting and I decided it was time to build another one, this time the “Strike” version with added fuel tanks, missiles, etc. With SCGMC only a few months away I’m a bit worried that I haven’t got more done already, but this is a project I’d be really happy to have there.

I started out with a little bit of basic clean-up, some ejector pin marks in a mostly difficult-to-see location, but I still wanted to fix it properly:

While I love this kit it does have its shortcomings. These parts from the knee didn’t align quite right when I assembled them. It’s easy enough to fix by removing the snap-fit pegs and aligning it manually.

One of the distinctive design elements of the Valkyrie is the round thrusters scattered around the surface of the craft, with the bracer-bars in front of the openings. On this kit the thrusters are flat and shallow, really just meant to be painted black. I’ve always wanted to do a little better with these details but never got around to actually trying it. I decided to experiment with a spare part, try drilling them out and then recreating the bracer bar with styrene strip. It looks promising so far..

Finally, I’ve spent a lot of time on this seam on the chest. Unfortunately the construction of this part is one aspect of the kit I’m not really happy with. Hasegawa chose to make the top section of the front of the chest a different part. On a lot of common Valkyrie color schemes this area is painted with stripes, and the part is colored to match one of these colors from one of these schemes, and it has an etched line marking the boundary of the stripes… I don’t like that. The etched lines shouldn’t be there and the seam goes straight through some fine detail in a very prominently visible area of the model. I took my time to align the two parts as carefully as I could to minimize the damage as I sanded down the seam. Unfortunately some panel lines were lost and I’ve had to rescribe them. It’s a challenge but one of the things that I love about this kit is that it has these kinds of fine details in the first place.

I guess I kind of lost steam on the Zakus I’d been working on, but I’m excited to be working on another Hasegawa Battroid. SCGMC is looming, and there’s a lot I want to get done for the show, so I really have to get crackin’.

2 Comment(s)

  1. Looks nice! What’s the status today?

    Lenny | 2023-07-31 | Reply

  2. Back on hold, I’ve been finding it hard to follow through on these projects lately, ’cause I’ve been getting real wrapped up in Apple II programming projects. At this point I’m kind of regrouping to focus on the Zaku and maybe a couple related projects. I’m concerned about time steadily running out.

    tetsujin | 2023-07-31 | Reply

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