A glimpse into my scale modeling hobby

Posts tagged “star wars prequels

Customizable Clones

IMG_1941I keep coming back to these Bandai figure kits because they are just awesome. They are quick and make a great side project during a more prolonged or difficult model project.

One of the fun things about the Clone Trooper kit was that there were so many options for how to paint and weather this guy. Stormtroopers are fairly uniform, but thanks to the Clone Wars TV series and even some brief glimpses in the prequels, clone troopers had a lot of different markings, not to mention they weathered a lot more and their armor showed it.

IMG_1940When I first started assembling the clone trooper I was undecided about what sort of paint scheme I wanted to use, if any at all. Over the course of the build, I settled on the 212th Battalion color scheme because I have always loved Obi-Wan Kenobi and these were his troops on Utapau. I did a little googling to find a quality picture of the paint scheme and then jumped right in.

Two regrets about the way I went about painting this kit, which will influence future projects. First, I had already assembled the trooper so I had to do some difficult masking in hard to access places, which could have been eased by masking before I assembled. Second, because I did not want to mask the entire trooper, I hand painted the spots that needed markings. Both of these regrets left me wishing I had masked and airbrushed all the markings before assembling the parts. Lesson learned for next time.

IMG_1942Because I painted directly on the plastic, I was able to easily do some chipping with a toothpick and xacto knife. These gave a nice worn effect to the battalion markings. Then, to top the painting off, I did some panel line washing in a few spots and added some weathering pastels also. I finished the kit with a semi-gloss lacquer because the clone troopers were never quite as shiny as the stormtroopers.

Overall, I am pretty proud of my first real customized paint job, notwithstanding the usual weathering effects. I really like the result, and if I had endless supplies of money (haha!) I would probably try to customize several different clone varieties. Lessons learned and a good-looking figure make a great success. As a bonus, you can switch out the heads to be either a Phase 1 or Phase 2 trooper. As you can see from the photos, I preferred the Phase 2.

This is a great kit that will look even better when displayed next to my eventual Battle Droid and STAP kit.

Summer Project

Normally I would be much more ambitious than trying to finish only one model over the summer, but my building speed is considerably hindered these days. Between a five-month old baby and some other house projects, I have my hands quite full this year. In addition, I am trying something new on the next kit: fiber optic lighting!

This summer I will be working on the Republic-era Star Destroyer made by Revell. This is the only Revell Star Wars kit I know of that is not snap fit, and so far I am happy with the quality. I know that Revell makes quality non-Star Wars kits, but many of the snap kits are cheap looking, so I was not sure what to expect.

I bought a lighting kit from Madman Lighting with great directions and photos to help with assembly. I am still a little nervous about lighting, but I will be posting along the way for anyone else who wants to undertake such a project. Whether I finish by the end of summer or not, I will definitely stay busy!


Initial Bridge towers. Actual bridge must be installed after lighting.


A Saturday Afternoon Diversion

The first snap kit I have done in ages

A couple weeks ago Amazon had a deal on select model kits, so I picked up a Republic Star Destroyer (the kit I most wanted) and this Republic Gunship Kit from Revell. I normally don’t snatch up pre-painted snap kits, but I had heard good things about this particular kit and the price was pretty good with the deal.

Surprising amount of parts and detail for a beginner snap kit

On a Saturday three or four weeks ago I wanted to work on a model kit, and I had just finished the Corporate Alliance Droid, but did not want to start a huge new project yet. Conveniently, I had this nice little kit sitting right on top of the pile and decided to go for it.

I will start with some general thoughts about the kit. The entire assembly took about 2-3 hours to completion. I debated doing some extra weathering or painting, but decided I didn’t want to invest that much in this particular kit. Maybe some day. The overall quality of the kit is pretty good. The parts are solid, and they fit snugly for the most part. The gun turrets were a little flimsy, and I had to glue one that was snapping, but otherwise there were no problems.

One of the cooler things about this kit is the sliding doors on the sides. I decided to leave one side closed and the other open in order to display the clone troopers standing inside. The clone troopers are made out of a different material, which is rubbery, and they slide into holes in the ships’ deck. The fit was a little loose for my liking so I glued the troopers in.

You can see a few of the troopers standing inside as well as two in the cockpit.

The pre-painted weathering effects are ok, but they do look pre-painted. Again, I just didn’t feel like investing more into this kit than the one day. I think there could be some great potential if you really wanted to accurize this ship to its fullest extent. There is no scale label on the box, but based on the size of the troopers, I would guess it is around 1/72. This is the perfect scale to fit with many of my other Star Wars ships from FineMolds.

Overall, this was a great minimal commitment, diversion kit. I do not feel nearly the sense of pride about this kit as I do about the others that I have assembled, painted, welded, and dedicated hours and weeks to building, but it’s a cool little display piece nonetheless. I don’t see myself picking up too many snap kits in the future, but since there wasn’t a regular kit for this ship, I decided it was worth a day’s work.

Here are a few more shots of the finished kit.

Side with doors closed