Thursday, August 8, 2013

HGUC Black Tri Star's Customized Zaku I Part 4

Different familiarity

From Keropla to Gunpla, next up for review is the final assembly of HGUC Black Tri Star's Customized Zaku I, another long-overdue Gunpla after HG 1-144 Ali al-Saachez's Customized AEU Enact Custom ^^ - half-a-year overdue to be exact. ^^;

(Actually, at this stage, every model kit I assemble is an overdue project. ^^;)

Originally released in late August 2006, this kit will be celebrating its 7th birthday by the end of this month. ^^

Starting the final assembly with all of its weapons:

Parts of the weapons.

Foil sticker is used for the 105mm Zaku Machine Gun's targeting sensor.

All the weapons are completed.

280mm Zaku Bazooka.
The design is significantly different than the more conventional type used by Zaku II, even though the bazooka round diameter is still set to 280mm.

The interior of the bazooka's tail is painted black in Part 2 to give it a sense of depth.

The 105mm Zaku Machine Gun.

As shown in the right image above, the "dot" on the magazine drum is used as a reference to the correct positioning of the part on the machine gun.

The targeting sensor and supporting handle are movable.

The magazine round is removable, but since there's nowhere to store the part on the model kit itself, not to mention the gap behind it is not very pleasant-looking, ^^; I don't think the magazine's gimmick is really necessary. ^^;

The Spike Shield.
Supposedly the predecessor to the standard shoulder shield used by Zaku II, the Spike Shield was used as a handheld defense/offense equipment all the way till UC0083 as seen used by Cima Garahau's Gelgoog Marine squadron.

Sturm Faust.
The red rocket head was painted red in Part 2.

Using a small clip part included, the Sturm Faust can be attached to the back of the shield.

There's even a small slot on the bottom plate to hold the launch tube in place. ^^

With two slots available on the shield, the Sturm Faust's position can be changed.
It would be nicer if two Sturm Fausts are included to fill up both slots. ^^

The one-piece Heat Hawk painted in Part 2.

A one-piece mount rack is included to hold the Heat Hawk and store it to the left skirt armor.

Length comparison between the weapons.

Parts of the arms.

A full 180-degree elbow bend is possible with the double hinge joint design.

An unconventional design by today's standards: ABS part enabling the upper arm's swivel.
The double hinge elbow joint and swivel joint are inherited from Hazel Custom, which was the first to introduce the two design points when combination of ABS parts and polycaps was a norm in HGUC Gunpla engineering. The designs didn't last very long actually, by mid 2007 when "Char's Counterattack" sub-series started in the HGUC line, it was back to the more usual polycap for elbow bend and upper arm swivel design for most kits, even though the usage of ABS parts and polycaps was still being maintained at that point.

Very nice color separation for the forearm parts. ^^

Assembling the five hand units is very simple since all the armor parts have the same type of connectors. ^^

Separable components of the arms before the final assembly.

Done for the two arms.

A little bit of reduction in terms of the elbow bend range caused by the protruding purple forearm parts. ^^;

A look at exposed joints behind the elbow.

Upper arm swivel.

(Left) Two types of trigger-hand units included. The one with bent wrist area is exclusively for holding the bazooka.
(Right) A very expressive spread palm meant to support the bazooka, but I'm sure it's handy in other action poses as well. ^^

Moving on to rest of the kit in the next posting. ^^

No comments: