1:144 Geara Doga
Yutaka Izubuchi, mecha designer of Gundam: Char's Counterattack and War in the Pocket, made an appearance at Anime Expo 2006. Naturally I was delighted at the chance to meet him. Since I was going to the con I also made plans to enter the model competition there: by this time my Wing Zero model had made the rounds to various model contests, but I also felt I'd rather bring a model of an Izubuchi design. Not having a lot of time before the con I decided against my HGUC GM Command that was already in-progress, as it was too complicated, and my HGUC Gelgoog Jager due to mishaps involving its antenna - looking over my options I decided on an old 1:144 Geara Doga I'd started years earlier. I resolved to do a quick build and get it done on time.
As it turned out, I didn't get it done on time for Anime Expo, Otakon, or Granitecon, and so as a result I haven't had contest entries for any model contests this year, not since Tekkoshocon anyway. I did succeed in getting quite a lot done - most of the structural work, including a LED monoeye, new details on the forearms and knees, installation of replacement hands by Kotobukiya, etc. I had also started work on filling in the back-side of the large, folding shield, but because time was running out I decided to save that project for after the con. By the time AX rolled around the model (minus the folding shield) was ready to paint - but for me painting is generally a time-consuming process and I failed to take that into account.
This project is the first I've given a proper base: the base serves a practical purpose as a battery holder but additionally I think this particular kit looks much better in a flight pose, and so I think the base is very important. I also feel that the base improves the overall presentation, and so I want to start including bases with most of my projects from now on.
This project is, by my standards, close to "out-of-box". I made the following alterations as part of the construction:
Various things gave me some trouble on this project. The antenna broke off five or six times, I screwed up the paint job in various ways, and various parts that I dull-coated wound up transferring once they came in contact with the parts they're supposed to come in contact with. I was very un-careful with the wash and rushed through the decals. I even had some detailing mishaps result in a few areas of paint getting chipped away - those I just had to patch as well as I could. I also had bouts of indecision about just what kind of weathering or finishing work I'd be doing - early on the plan was for dry-brushed faded edges and pastel weathering. Toward the end I finally did the dry-brushing (not too gracefully, either) but by the time it was ready for pastels I was ready to move on to other things, so I decided to leave it be after the last dullcoat was on and the wiring was done.
With the completion of this project I was inspired to paint my Nintendo DS in the same color scheme. I'm very happy with how it turned out.