Monday, September 27, 2010

The Chimera Borne Part VI


I've finished the Lion Claws and have begun sanding the parts. This is also the first time I've employed wet sanding with 2000 grit paper and I'm quite amazed how it actually helps smooth the plastic, giving it back its factory shine.

I've only one minor modification to do, and it's painting time, during which, I will do a major scratch build that will complete the Chimera. I intentionally made it the last build of the project since the Chimera can stand without it, just in case I ran out of time while doing the diorama.

Carbonized. I've done the "carbon metal" look with the Jinx and was quite satisfied with how it turned out, so I decided to employ this on the frame of the Chimera, as well as the weapons.

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To achieve this, I used my all-around paint of choice Bosny Flat Black. This paint is rather versatile since I can use it both as a primer and base coat. I'm not too fond of glossy or semi-glossy blacks anyways, so this one is a mainstay in my armory. I then used the magic powder Kosutte Gin San, which I believe if highly refined graphite. The stuff is rather sticky to the touch, but gives most anything that metallic silvery look or mirror-like finish, depending on the surface you're working on.

Applied lightly over flat black with a cotton swab, the powder gives a cast-metal/carbon metal effect without polishing. I tried this technique with the Ram Daggers with a bit of polishing.

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The result is good enough for me, with that textured metal, but, I felt I needed to enhance the blade a bit further, like so.

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I've given the "sharpened" edge a mirror-like finish in contrast with the textured metal look. I'll keep this technique a secret for the meantime and post it after the BAKWC, though I believe there are guys out there who probably have an idea how this was done.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Chimera Borne Part V


Rammed. It's been bugging me that I needed to have a Ram head somewhere. Looking at the shield gave me a rather nice idea (then it was later confirmed by someone else), to place the Ram on the shield. The holes does make it seem there's a face there somewhere, and all it really took was adding a couple of horns and voila!

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I've also modified the Shield attachment for a hand-held look.

Clawed. I actually had this idea after the Lion head modification, but wasn't quite sure if it would work at all. I've seen some claw modifications elsewhere, and I didn't really want to spend too much time trying to figure out how it would look like or how I'll execute it because I wanted something retractable without making it overly huge.

Again, with plaplate sandwich magic, I made claws arranged in a way that it should just cover the back of the Chimera's hand. I've also modified the hand plate to reduce the thickness I have to contend with. It's a good thing that the pegs are also secured to the side of the hand plate, making it easy to maintain connectivity and stability of the pegs.

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Test fit.





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Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Chimera Borne Part IV


Locked and Loaded. I used pieces of styrene to lock the legs into Destroy Mode by inserting them into the sliding mechanism.

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Ive also scratch-built rather simple weapons for the Chimera; A long sword (Dragon Blade) and a couple of daggers (Ram Daggers).

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I've modified the shield connector so it mounts vertically straight to the backpack, but still allows for rotational motion. I will custom-build a hand mount for the shield later on.

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like I mentioned earlier, I've incorporated some elements of the mythological chimera itself. I believe with the double Vfin, it can pass off as a dragon head, while I modified the chest to make it look like a lion. I'm not really particular with having a goat head anywhere, hence the Ram Daggers.

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Test fit.

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Only a couple more minor mods and a major scratch build to go, and the Chimera will soon fly...

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Chimera Borne Part III

 
Elbow Grease. With the pose I was planning I found it difficult if not impossible to position the arms in a sweeping motion because of how the saber stock was placed on the forearms. Much like some of the mods I've done for the Chimera, I was trying to avoid this modification as much as possible (since joints are trickier to modify owing to the fact that they are high stress points, and a poorly done modification can cause more problems than it solves). The OCness won in the end, and I proceeded in hacking lower elbow joint in two to turn the forearm 90 degrees so that the saber stock is behind the arm.

Much like the Knee modification, this one required a little bit of foresight to determine the maximum area I needed to cut to maintain the joint's overall integrity. I sawed the joint portion down 1mm below the base using the slide lock of the ABS frame as a depth guide.

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The resulting parts are rebuilt over one another through a series of overlapping pieces of cut plaplates shaped to fit the resulting crevices. The plaplates provided enough hold area, fitting snugly within the modified part that it holds even without cementing the parts together yet.

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Test fit (after only 5 hours of curing).

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I've also thickened the collar further with additional shaped plaplates to compliment the layered armor look as well as enhance the overall balance of the shoulders.

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Saturday, September 18, 2010

The Chimera Borne Part II



Misplacement mishap. I spent the better half of my evening yesterday when I discovered the top chest armor (collar armor) was missing from the rubble of plaplates on my workstation. I was pretty sure I didn't remove it since I was making test fits for the head and the waist, so I turned my parts containers upside down, literally, looking for the part, as well as underneath my couch which I spend a lot of my time whittling away on plastic, and my cutting table. I had a mild panic because it was a semi-critical part that I might have swept at one point when I was tidying up, but I wasn't too worried because I had another unbuilt kit stashed under my bed. I was also considering rebuilding the thing, since I was basically going to make modifications anyways.

I had a sudden burst of realization that it might be somewhere near my computer, so I did a rough search. I breathed a sigh of relief when I found it lying innocently amidst dust and dirt just a few inches outside the lower shelf of my computer stand.

Moral of the story: always keep note of what you are working on.

Anyways, Another "cascade" flaw I discovered and fixed is the front skirt not having enough allowance to flip upwards when the Chimera is in kneeling position. I made modifications on the connections themselves by extending the ball joint and shaving a little from the top of the socket. I also cut about 2mm from the top part of the skirt and rebuilt it with 0.5mm plaplate to maximize the angle it can flip upwards.

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Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Chimera Borne

I decided to convert my "Tutorial in Progress" Unicorn project (otherwise known as "The Itch") into my BAKWC entry this November.

The Chimera is a mythological creature that Has the head of a Lion, the body of a Goat and the tail of a Dragon/Serpent, and is sometimes depicted by artists as having 3 heads (Lion, Goat and Dragon) and wings like that of a bat or dragon. I chose the Chimera more for its mythological meaning rather than the visual, though I might take a few elements of the mythos into the build

I've had additional modifications made on the Vfin assembly to make it stable and "thicker" on the forehead. The modifications have a secondary purpose.

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Anyways, the flaws of the Unicorn continue to reveal themselves the further I dwell into the project. For an MG, it's quite strange that the Unicorn does not have crystal eye (the NG RF Astray had one, and so did the older 1/100 HG Wing mechas). The eyes are cut from the H-runner which is made of ABS, and thus prevent any "easy" LED modifications to be made. I wasn't planning on using the Destroy mode's face anyways so it wasn't much of an issue. With that I opted to give the Chimera a monoeye LED.

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The modification is rather a simple one. I used a 1X2 surface mount LED, this one had rather small contact points that I crimped a little to be able to mount the 0.5mm koto springs I used for contact points.

I wanted a Red Monoeye, but the only color available with that size is green, so I cut a piece of transparent red runner, shaped it to fit the internal mask assembly and glued it directly over the LED. The resulting color was a bright orange, so I hand painted it with several coats Tamiya Clear Red (with 30 minutes of drying time in between for maximum adherence) and top coated it with Semco clear acrylic.

The result is actually very favorable. Will fix the light leaks, of course, as soon as I start painting.


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Also, I missed my HLJ/Tomopop Prize delivery yesterday.  It was a Saturday after all.  The Delivery guy left the receipt with my neighbor who gave it to me this morning.  Will be getting it hopeful on Monday.








Monday, September 6, 2010

Now THAT is one hell of a Unicorn...

I'm not easily impressed, but there are rare occasions that makes me just say "Sh!t, now THAT is a modification."

This is one of those occasions.  Like I have mentioned a few times too many, I don't like the Unicorn, but this is something Special.



More here  http://bbs.xhood.net/thread-12371-1-1.html

And These Came in the Mail

Rather, I had these sent to my school since I was on an off-site training.  Bosny Philippines has once again graciously sent me free...