Thursday, December 12, 2013

BB Senshi Sangokuden Asurao Moukaku Gundam, Syukuyuu Gundam, Kyoshin Elephant Set Part 13

Mugen gattai!

After the introduction of its beast mode in the previous posting, the tank mode of Kyoshin Elephant from BB Senshi Sangokuden Asurao Moukaku Gundam, Syukuyuu Gundam, and Kyoshin Elephant Set is the focus this time. ^^

Kyoshin Elephant needs to be dismantled first for the mode change.
The head and hind legs are completely taken apart. ^^

The lower front leg is bent upward at knee level. The upper leg is bent to the front (or in other words, the connector arm is tilted outward until the tabs are separated from the upper leg).

Both front legs are transformed.

The upper hind legs are hinged to the back for 90 degrees.
Funnily, the rear end of Kyoshin Elephant will form the front part of Kongou Tank (金剛戦車). ^^

The front legs are reconnected to the underside of the body plate, but using a different pair of pegs.

The bent lower legs are now the rear end of Kongou Tank. ^^

Totally "Mugenbine"-styled part-swapping to form the front tracks of Kongou Tank, where the components are formed through repositioning of the rear feet, caterpillar blocks, and top covers.

(Left) The peg in front of each caterpillar block is inserted into a dedicated slot behind the feet.
(Right) The top covers are attached to a pair of square tabs above the caterpillar blocks to complete the tracks.

The track components are slid onto the hock joints.

Due to the size of the hind legs, the caterpillar blocks cannot be positioned to "touch down" upon the surface after they are attached to the hock joints. The tiny gap between the parts and the surface gives the impression that the tracks are floating above the ground. ^^;

The upper pair of slots behind the larger caterpillar pieces are used to bind the front and rear legs.
The purpose of the caterpillar pieces is identical to that when they are on the beast mode, but a different set of slots are used for the connection, and the shorter "tip" of the tracks now faces the front.

As the bottom side of the part is connected to the surface, the caterpillars do look genuine as tank tracks. ^^

The trunk is straightened to form the tank turret.

The tusks are attached to a pair of slots near the turret's muzzle.

The ear pieces are repositioned on the top part to form a pair of protective plates of some sort around the turret.

Like this.

The rear peg is used to connect the top part to the face/cannon turret. With the new lower position from that connection, the forehead area effectively hides Kyoshin Elephant's eyes.

The entire cannon turret is completed.

The top plate is flipped to the front.

The cannon turret is pegged onto the same connector that holds the top plate to the back of Kyoshin Elephant's body.

Transformation from Beast mode to Kongou Tank is done. ^^

More images of Kongou Tank:

Closeups on the details:

Bottom view:

I do like the look of Kongou Tank very much. With the Gundam face and elephant legs hidden, it does resemble a tank. ^^ Then again, I would agree with those who think that the cannon turret is too thin. ^^; It's an unfortunate trade-off between a more natural look for that component as an elephant trunk in beast mode, and of course a cannon turret in tank mode. ^^; Still, the overall look is not bad at all in my opinion. ^^ The issue of hollowness with the body as seen on the beast mode is still there, but since "animal anatomy" doesn't apply to the tank's design, areas like the blank spots beneath the body, hollow spots in the middle of the tank that allows one to see through all the way to the surface where the tank is on don't really bother me at all. ^^

The part-swapping process for Kongou Tank's transformation is simple, predictable, but still fun I would say. ^^ The creativity behind some of the part-swapping sequences is certainly very impressive. Take the three hind leg components that form the front tracks for example, the top covers (feet for the Kongou Ashura Armor (金剛阿修羅鎧) configuration) are connected to the top of the caterpillars in beast mode via a pair of straight pegs; in this Kongou Tank mode, the top covers are still attached to the caterpillars, but their position has shifted to the front, with a different set of tabs and slots to connect between the parts. The same versatile design can be seen on the front legs, where different sets of pegs are used to connect them to the body plate in different configurations. Even more impressively, like the beast mode, most of the idle pegs and slots are still pretty well hidden on Kongou Tank, and that gives Kongou Tank a nice, genuine vehicle look as mentioned above. ^^

A few noteworthy features of Kyoshin Elephant in tank mode:

A massive model in BB Senshi Sangokuden scale it is, the tanks is 18cm in length. ^^

Thanks to the straight peg that connects it to the body, the turret can actually be rotated to either side of the body.

The turret's horizontal movement is blocked by the collision between the back of its protective plates (ears) and the body.

Kongou Tank with its turret adjusted to a different position.

Using the hinge joint that connects it to the face, the turret can be lifted upward. ^^

Kongou Tank with its turret lifted.

With Moukaku Gundam.

Unlike the beast mode, the space behind the tank is limited to accommodate just one average BB Senshi character in tank mode. ^^

With the ability to adjust the turret's horizontal and vertical positions, Kongou Tank not only looks like a tank, it functions like one too. ^^

A look at the Kongou Ashura Armor configuration next. ^^

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