Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Been a while...

Well there's a lot to say but let's just start with this.

All Christmas gifts.  This is what's coming.  No I haven't given up making models but now that I've finished Skyrim maybe you'll be seeing me blogging a bit more.  I'm already starting the process of getting back into it.  If you're still around and reading this... thanks for your support.  Things certainly got a bit crazy in September.  The same day the Gauntlet finished I got a new job and couple that with exhaustion from that project and some awesome games (Uncharted 1,2 and 3, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, Modern Warfare 3, Skyrim and I tossed Heavenly Sword in there just to check it out, quite good actually)... took me away from modelling until Gaigun's GMII came in the mail and that kind of stoked the plastic fire under me to get back into things. 

Time's up I guess.

Oh I also can't forget the new paints I got as well (also a Christmas gift)!  A new hobby shop opened up down the street from me (providence?!) and they sell all my old paints I used in Japan plus some other stuff that I couldn't get there.

So some new stuff to look forward to in 2012.  There's also a lot going on my fb page so if you haven't checked it out yet get on it and you can start to fill in the blanks.  While I've been away from blogging I haven't been away from Gundam and fb was just so fast and easy so that's what I gravitated toward.  Check the link on the sidebar.

Anyway... more to come!  Hope you'll continue with me on this journey. 

Merry Christmas and Happy New year to you all!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Just Talking - Early October 2011

Fall has come.

The days of summer lightning have long passed. I feel like I've been away for a while.

Not necessarily away from Gundam but away from this blog. That was intentional. I decided to force myself to focus on other things in my life. It was something that needed to be done. And I'll have to do it again this month.

I don't want to leave this hobby behind. And I won't but I'm in a transitional phase in my life right now and I have to focus on whats happening now. If September is any indication then October will also be a very busy time for me. It's funny. I picked up this hobby during the most stable time in my life. And I haven't really been able to shake it.

If I was still in Japan I'd still be buying kits like crazy, just because of accessibility and honestly because of habit. I am addicted. Let the title of this blog remain forever as a reminder of that.

But like any addict when you've been forced away from your 'trigger' you find a way to make do and I guess I've done that.

But the longing...

Thursday, September 8, 2011

RGM-96X Jesta

If there's a day that I regret not living in Japan anymore it's today.

I must have it. I MUST have it!

Monday, September 5, 2011

July Gundam Pics

9 by Busterbeam
9, a photo by Busterbeam on Flickr.
Long over due but here's the file dump! Check it out!

Gauntlet - Epilogue 1

I will be posting the same message on my blog and at GAF as well just so that everyone is on the same page.


Time for the text wall.
An overdue post but a necessary one.  I put off writing it until I had the time to do so.  My life became a lot busier on the last day of August with new job orientation and starting work the very next day on Sept.1.  Couple that with plans for the long weekend and you have me out of commission for a while.
I want to thank all of you for your patience.  I know I haven’t been much of a leader for this as I don’t post nearly as much as some others do but I have to admit that this GB has been a thoroughly enjoyable experience even though I left everything for the last minute and severely under estimated the amount of time it would take.
I tried a lot of new techniques on this build.  Namely all the masking work using tape and masking solution (which worked surprisingly well).  This was also the first time that I tried using a gradient paint scheme and also doing some mods with pla-plate to reshape and essentially shorten a few select pieces.
I enjoyed tackling such a huge project and I will be the first to admit that I’m quite pleased with the end result… while at the same time admitting that there is still a lot of work left to be done on this to get it to my own personal standard of excellence in gunpla! Haha.  Still though I count this as completed as the essential parts are done.  It’s definitely battle ready.
However I must admit, if I am to be strict to the rules, I failed this test.  I didn't complete everything.  Some touch ups need to be done, I didn't do enough decals, and finally as complete assembly approached I decided to repaint some sections and change the scheme.  So I have to say... to be honest with myself and to take responsibility as leader, I'm not sure if my Gundam should be in the same ranks as the others.  But since this is my show I'm giving myself a PASS because of one thing alone.  The feeling of PURE satisfaction I felt when it was totally assembled and ready to sortie!  This is why I make models!  That feeling!  Pride?  Maybe.  But that is something that all of us as modellers earn and can own!  I'll will own that.  There's nothing wrong with taking pride in your work!  *okay need to relax. getting too excited*
There’s so much to say so I should probably just break it up into sections of what I’d like to address:
1.       The GB itself and how it started.
2.       The participants and what they’ve made
3.       The concept of “Theta +” / Design notes – Original concept / “The Gauntlet”
4.       Connection with Strike and Red Frame
5.       Technical issues of the build process and the kit itself
6.       Final comments
I will respond to each of these things in time.  Call me verbose but you don’t have to read it.  I, on the other hand, feel compelled to write about it since this blog is a chronicle of my experiences with this hobby.  If I don’t mention it here it will never be mentioned at all.  Let it rest in the digital archives.
I know that over time enthusiasm for projects can diminish quite quickly.  I’m sure a lot of us are eager to jump into our new projects.  I know lupes is already hard at work on the PG Wing and Gaigun is working on any number of kits simultaneously… it’s hard to know what he’s going to focus his attention on next!  ASM will probably be concentrating on his new son.  We certainly did miss his presence in this GB but seriously… priorities.
Anyway this whole GB started in early May with me coming home after a night of drinking and looking on the internet at lupes PG Strike Freedom.  I remembered talking to ASM and Gaigun about ours a couple of months earlier when we’d met in January and it got me to thinking about the Sinanju GB that we did during the “Evil Cow” days.  So I sent a message to all of them + Sonar at GAF asking what they thought and low and behold here we are now.  Sonar brought a tremendous amount of talent and resources to table.  Not to mention the forum itself!  A key player in all of these so major props to you brother!
Now for those of you who may be wondering what this whole Apocalypse thing is, it started last year when myself, ASM, GaiGun and Gundam Guy all went to see the 1/1 Gundam together in Shizuoka.  I can’t remember who coined the phrase (GaiGun I think) but it stuck.  That said GG has never done a GB with us but lupes has so he becomes the fourth in that situation I guess.  I liken it to Voltron when Lance had to step out of being pilot for the Red Lion and Sven came in.  At least I think that’s how it went! haha
Anyway, ASM commented on how I threw down the gauntlet to all of them and somehow we started joking about the Gauntlet of the Apocalypse and there you have it.  Humble beginnings… but I’m so extremely proud of what it’s become, with the banners and the videos and the support and so many others jumping in and building along with us.  Your names will never be forgotten except for… what’s his name again?  You know… that guy.  That did the thing? J
I thought that having a deadline would be important because if it was left open ended who knows when we’d finish.  Motivation can be lost, people can get side tracked.  Life happens.  It happened to some of us during the process of this GB and some had to bow out because of it.  A mixture of happy and sad news... My issues weren’t familial but more concerned with my career.  Still though I managed to push through it and make the time to get it done.  Because of the deadline and when I actually committed myself to working on the PGSF steadily… I was basically forced to streamline my build process.  I became a lot more efficient and by the end of it, doing a full Perfect Grade kit with paint job seems like something I can manage relatively well now.  This was my first time to ever try and complete such a task.  And I’m proud of that and the results so I’m glad that this GB gave me that experience and consequent skill upgrade.  The lesson I learned from that was; “Intimidating tasks can be overcome with steady progress.”
Anyway, even though this GB is officially over, I’d like to leave this topic open for future modellers who wish to try their hand at the PGSF or to any of the participants who completed it but may eventually feel the need to go back and do some touch ups later.  Just because the deadline has passed doesn’t mean that we have to stop learning from each other or helping others who come in late.  So now I’d like to openly invite ANYONE who has ever finished a PGSF or is working on one to post their work in the topic at GAF so we can all help each other and see what type of creativity is out there.  I’d love to see some more custom schemes.  If this topic is any indication I’m sure there are still some great ones out there waiting to be discovered.  Or created.
I’ll just leave it there for now… I’m a completionist so I do intend on mentioning all the things above in due course but I know how intimidating a giant wall of text can be so… like I’m building a model it will be done in incremental steps until it’s all finished.
Thanks again everyone.  None of this would have been possible without you.  You are all key players in this and I thank you all for your time, support, dedication and enthusiasm!
Finished but we move ever onward!
Theta is the 8th letter of Greek alphabet.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Theta +

That's what I'm calling it.  And I think it is the most insane Gundam I have ever made.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The time has come...

I started this guy a long time ago. About 9 months. Early-Mid December 2010 is when I first got him and first did the unboxing ceremony with all my PG's present, saluting what would be their new leader. The most advanced, newest and most majestic Perfect Grade amongst them... The one called "Strike Freedom". That time in my life and now seem like polar opposites. So much can change in less than a year! Complete life upheaval in my case. And these poor guys were taken along for the ride. Caught in the great Tohoku earthquake, beaten and battered by tsunami waves, never mind the regular rigors of international transport across half the planet...

But they survived.  WE survived.  The family is all together again.  So as it began... so shall it end! Honour Guard!!! Salute!!!

Mark II.  My first PG ever.  Bought him in my first year in Japan so he's a Chiba/Tokyo kid through and through.  This guy has had the **** kicked out of him over the years but he's still standing and still looking good!  I've always been so proud of him.

Zeta. Hand was lost to the Great Tohoku Earthquake of this year. But he made it home basically in one piece but a bit broken.  Had to do some repair work to get him to this stage.  Bought him during my 2nd stage in Japan and finished him in my 3rd.  Started in Kasugai, Saitama - finished in Matsusaka, Mie.

Red was in the most amount of pieces but he's almost completely intact minus some minor breakage in the ankle area.  Bought in the place that would become my 2nd home in Japan, Nagoya - Aichi at Bic Camera during the "heyday" of my time in Gunpla.  4th stage of my life in Japan.

Strike.  Almost as good as the day I first bought him.  He's been waiting a long time for "Big Bro" to arrive.  Bought in Matsusaka, Mie and finished there.  He's the country boy or 田舎物 (inakamono) of the group.  He would get an upgrade later when his twin brother Red stepped into the picture.

The Throne.  Made for he that I would acquire during my 5th and final life in Japan or my 2nd life in Nagoya.  Completed during the transitional phase back into Canadian life.
Indeed... The Gauntlet has finally come to it's conclusion...  Time truly does wait for no man.  All of these mechs mirror parts of my lives.  I can see my whole time in Japan by looking at each of them.  8 years worth of experience and memories.  It's not just about building robots for me...  It's about the memories associated with them... so I just want to take this time right now to thank all the participants of this group build for helping me forge new memories in my new/old home.

One day left!  ONWARD!!!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Late August - Moving hard on the PGSF

Time's running out but I think I can really do this provided my commitment stays as it's been recently.

But this is kind of the best part! I can see it now! And I want to see it ALL. This is when it gets kind of crazy for me. The big pushes, working through the night. Not because of deadlines but because of excitement. It's one of the things I love about this hobby. All that patience. All that time. Never really knowing what it's going to look like in the end when you cut that first piece from the gate! What am I making? And somehow it comes together in all of it's complexity. And creativity.

Anyways to cut it all short... I'm ****ing stoked about this thing now!

He will be a welcome addition to the family!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Just Talking - Mid-late Aug 2011 - PGSF

This blog needs an update but I'm so busy working on stuff that I don't have time to update really. But I'll tell you this... 3 painted suits in 6 months is kind of a record for me. It's nice getting into a pattern while learning new stuff along the way.  My biggest issue right now is finding what type of thinner works with what brand of paint.

To be honest with you... I'm thinning a lot of this with water and naptha based lighter fuel.  I can get it in bulk and it's cheap. Relatively. I mean compared to the brand name thinners.  If you got your chemistry right you can save a lot of money.  I have to run a series of paint tests with 4 different solvents before I can start spraying.  Sometimes the chemistry actually works out and I can get a decent... atomization?

Here's where I am now.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

This is the Gauntlet.

3 more weeks to go?  Gotta push this.  Still working out the scheme.  This one is going to be crazy folks.  Just a warning.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Countdown Begins!

What an awesome video by Kjasi!  Great job man!

Whoo! Getting really excited for this!

Monday, July 25, 2011

HGUC Jesta

Oh yes. Finally. Must have. Hell I might even get two or three of them!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

MG Exia - 2nd Stage - Complete


No I'm not done with it yet... but I'm done for now. There's a certain Gauntlet I have to take care of.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

MG Exia - WIP 6 - Painting

Lotta pics so I'm just going to let them do the talking. You can probably figure it out.  Will talk about the paints I used and the painting process in a bit more detail in the coming posts.



Good old hockey stick!

Getting close to the assembly stage... But of course there are still a lot of little details to do... and then natural extension of that is choosing which ones are a worth the effort. Gonna start with the decals soon.