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Out2gtcha

Aratech Repulsor 74-Z Military Speeder Bike - FINISHED!

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Well gents,

After working with pretty much all short run resin kits lately, and my last resin kit being one I had to prep for the US Nationals, I really needed something that would go together well and that was a fun IM kit to build that I wouldn't have to take too seriously. I also wanted something different to maybe help get the modeling juices flowing well before diving back into my HpH Tigercat and/or another aircraft side build.

 

I was initially thinking starting my Revell P-51, but that too has some AM additions I wanted to add, and was probably going to be taken a bit more logically and seriously than I wanted.

Having just got finished with my little Extra 330 SC, I wanted something on the complete opposite side of the spectrum, and I was also hunting around for something in my stash that ticked all of these boxes:

 

- an IM kit

- one that assembles/builds well with no complications

- no AM really needed

- nothing for competiion

- something small that I could just have fun with

- something different/unusual

 

After scouring my stash, the GF suggested taking a look at the several Bandai Star Wars kits I have in the stash, including an AT-ST, a Snow Speeder, and this little guy, a Military Speeder bike + Scout Trooper in 1/12th scale.   Perfect! It really fit the bill.................something different, easy to assemble, and something I could have some fun with in re: to paint and detailing that I wouldn't have to think too hard on.

Most all of these Bandai kits have a stellar reputation for excellent detail, and super duper buildability.    \

 

I really dig this kit, and the trooper they give you has a lot of cool features to him, including the ability to pose him standing beside the bike, or on the bike posed with a blaster in hand.  Bandai also gives you two separate stands, one for a standing trooper, and a base with a partial tree on it, for an "in flight" mode display.

 

Lets get into the kit shall we?

It really is a neat little kit, and should be a refreshing break from the norm.............

 

The box is decently sized and top opening with great box art on the cover, and a multitude of pics on the side of the various options to display the kit, including a couple pics from Episode VI:

 

20180812_183232-XL.jpg

 

20180812_183319-XL.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

The Bandai instructions are really nice, and have exploded views of all the assembly steps, as wel as options to pose the bike and trooper when finished:

 

20180812_185318-XL.jpg

 

20180812_183459-XL.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

The way Bandai has molded things is also very interesting.......................some sprue trees have multiple colors molded on the same sprue. A good example of this is the all white sprue for the trooper, that also contains a small section of tinted sprue with the troopers eye piece/goggle section.

VERY professionally molded IMHO:

 

20180812_191626-XL.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

These mulit-colored sprues are kinda strange looking, but all the sprue trees are very well molded with no flash, and really smooth texture. Some parts are more plastic like, and some are more rubber like, mostly the black joining parts where the trooper has to move/flex. These are suplemented by the white sprue that has most of the trooper exterior armor on it, and a 2nd smaller tan sprue section on the white sprue tree that contains the troopers souls for his boots:

 

20180812_190452-XL.jpg

 

20180812_191623-XL.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

The base I intend to use is the "in flight" display with a mossy/forest style base with a partial tree section that gives the impression that the bike is in repulsor mode hovering. Its simple, but quite well done, and will give me an opportunity to play around with some diorama base scenery stuff, and really weather it up good with some moss, weeds and dirt and some vines:

 

20180812_183427-XL.jpg

 

20180812_183445-XL.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

I have also thought about having some real fun with this kit...............I thought about the Empires Scout Troopers armor, and how Wookipidia (lol!) says that generally any of the  "Clone" Scout Troopers that were sent to forested planets or the like were issued camo style armor instead of the all white issued armor the normal Empire Scout Troopers had.

Something like this:

 

CloneScouts-M.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

I got to thinking about how easy/hard it may be to reproduce a really neat/well done camo on my Trooper, so I invested in some 1/16th scale "Digital Camo" decals from CrossDelta. Ive heard people swear by these, and then heard people not be able to use them to save their soul. So Im going to invest in some Mr Mark softner/setter and probably engage Bill Cross who has had experience using these types of decals. I thought the camo was pretty cool looking and would add a lot of visual interest to the Trooper (and make a LOT more sense to me as a camouflage in a forested area like on Endor). I plan on painting the white parts of the troopers armor a light OD color, then apply a gloss (if needed) and then the decals per some vids IVe seen, and/or any tips Bill can give me :

 

cxdmil16001-XL.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

Ive also picked out a nice selection of appropriate colors in my MRP range that would accent the decals well, and that I could use oils with to highlight some of the areas that are supposed to be flexible or fabric areas on the trooper as well:

 

\20180812_185356-XL.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

Bandai has done a really nice job with these kits, and if you ever want to try something off the beaten path, they might be just the thing to kick start some modelling MoJo!

Ive already made a small start on the trooper by coloring his goggle area with some Tamiya clear green, and tonight Ill probably move onto attempting to smooth out some of the seams on the trooper himeself, and work toward getting some OD color on him till my camo decals arrive.

 

Cheers till later! 

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Just had a nice PM w/Bill who laid down some good advice on the decals. I've sprayed the goggle area already w/clear green and will hopefully tonight get some of the lighter OD base color on.

 

Cheers,

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That looks wonderful!

 

I WAS planning on initially getting rid of the OOB stand, and custom making my own, but I think Ill keep mine OOB for now and just play around with the paint job, decals and base landscaping.

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Nice choice for a relaxing build Brian!

 

If you're going to weather it with enamel based washes etc, be careful as many people have had the plastic crumble after an application. 

 

Mine have been fine so far but I generally don't weather my builds too heavily

 

 

Carl

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I look forward to you doing your magic on this one. I am currently using the Crossdelta camo decals on the figures I plan to install in my MH-47G and they are responding extremely well to the Microsol and Microset combo. It is very tedious work in 1/35, but it looks very convincing. The decals look like they are very opaque but to avoid any surprise I painted the figures with a base color close to the camo then coated in future. The storm trooper should look stunning with the camo decals.

 

Cheers,

 

David

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Cool project, Brian! Bandai engineering is top notch. I have done most of their Star Trek snap together lit kits and they are amazing. Also helped my daughter with a Gundam kit - remarkable!

Anyway, if you want some forest scenery in a bottle...

Dark_Adir_Item.jpg

Available from Scenic Express.

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Thanks gents!    Some great advice there too................

 

8 hours ago, spacewolf said:

The Bandai kits are jewels... putting them together is a dream they are so easy. Seams vanish with little or no filler.... the real challenge is painting them.

 

Thanks Vaughn................... 
I think I'm going to hit up the trooper with a figure style paint job with acrylics from MRP and some oil colors for high and low lights.  Im going to really go to town on the weathering on this one, in the completely opposite direction as my last build. 

 

 

 

 

 

8 hours ago, BloorwestSiR said:

Nice choice for a relaxing build Brian!

 

If you're going to weather it with enamel based washes etc, be careful as many people have had the plastic crumble after an application. 

 

Mine have been fine so far but I generally don't weather my builds too heavily

 

 

Carl

 

Thanks for the heads up Carl. I will keep that in mind for sure. I actually was planning on sealing both the trooper and the speeder bike, so Im hoping that will keep the plastic from being effected. Im going to weather the hell out of this one, so Im hoping the sealing works! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8 hours ago, Dukie99 said:

I look forward to you doing your magic on this one. I am currently using the Crossdelta camo decals on the figures I plan to install in my MH-47G and they are responding extremely well to the Microsol and Microset combo. It is very tedious work in 1/35, but it looks very convincing. The decals look like they are very opaque but to avoid any surprise I painted the figures with a base color close to the camo then coated in future. The storm trooper should look stunning with the camo decals.

 

Cheers,

 

David

 

Wow, that great to know David thank you! I have been discussing decal softeners with Bill, and he recommended the Mr Mark stuff (green and blue) but had not even tried the MS sol and set combo which I already have, and are much more chemically cool.   Ill still probably pick some of the Mr Mark stuff up, but will give the cooler MS stuff a go first. 

 

 

 

 

 

7 hours ago, LSP_Ray said:

Cool project, Brian! Bandai engineering is top notch. I have done most of their Star Trek snap together lit kits and they are amazing. Also helped my daughter with a Gundam kit - remarkable!

Anyway, if you want some forest scenery in a bottle...

Dark_Adir_Item.jpg

Available from Scenic Express.

 

 

NICE ,thanks Ray!    I have a lot of flock and turf style ground effects work, but not that stuff, and it looks about perfect for what I want to do on the base.  Ill definitely grab some of that stuff, as I already have some stuff to simulate moss and weeds/flowers. 

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43 minutes ago, spacewolf said:

I found I had to prime the plastic ... acrylics just lifted off after they dried without priming. I used Mr. Surfacer 1000 on my Yamato 2199 decks. Had no issues.

 

 

I found the same normally too Vaughn.   Ive done a bit of experimenting on some of the Bandai sprues and the  advantage I seem to have with the MRP stuff, is although it is acrylic, its suspended in a very chemically potent lacquer medium, and really seems to bite into the plastic after its finished sanded a bit. 

Ill be doing more experimentation however, especially to get rid of the high shine the white plastic seems to have.  So far, 1200 to 2000 grit finishing paper, then to 3200 seems to take off the shine enough for the MRP to bite into it. 

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Ooooh I´m gonna follow this. Ordered some of the Bandai Star Wars stuff from USA Gundam store the other day but this speeder bike was out of stock at the moment. Shipment fees to Sweden was a killer but these models are way too cool to stay away from. And I haven´t found them anywhere close to Sweden anyway.

/Stoffe

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you're gonna have a great time with this

definitely wash the kit and use primer

The fit of pieces is so precise that paint will effect fitment, so keep that in mind.

Liquid glue works great on this plastic

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Thanks guys!   Some great tips in there for sure.

 

I have indeed found so far, that Tamiya extra thin cement works really well on almost all the types of plastic in the kit, and the seams just sort of disappear. Ive also been experimenting with primer and no primer and have found that normal acrylics dont seem to stick too well without primer, but the acrylic lacquer stuff seems to bite into the Bandai plastic pretty well as long as its clean and even finished sanded a bit. 

Im looking forward to getting the decals, and hopefully will even have something pic worthy to show soon.............

 

Cheers,

 

  

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Just a small warning, I have always used acrylics on my Bandais, but I have heard that the soft flexible plastic can crack and get brittle when a thinner or enamel is applied to it, not sure about lacquer, but thinner based paints and washes affect it. 

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