Y. Choe (choey@usa.net)
Thu, 10 Jun 1999 02:16:20 -0700


(From the desk of Gunpra.org)

So you are new to Gunpra world, and want to know how to get started? Well,
follow these advice for happy modeling. They are relatively easy to build
for newcomers, with the exception of Master Grades and Perfect Grades. Some
time and effort are necessary, but then again, all projects require a bit of
time and effort.

For beginners, I'd recommend 1/144 kits, especially from the Gundam Wing/G
Gundam/Gundam X line. They are fairly well sized, and do not have
complicated assembly. Furthermore, they are usually the models that gets
people interested in Gundam in the first place.

Once you have some building experience, try your mettles with a 1/100 HG or
MG, if you can spare the cash of course.

On Bootlegs, avoid them if you must. The plastic for these kits are rather
crappy, and error-prone, especially with early generation kits. However, it
may be possible that you may find a certain bootleg you need for a kitbash.
Don't pay more than you need to for those however, if you must.

Supplies:
Glue, Brushes, and Paints (Testors for quick and dirty job. They can easily
be obtained at your local drug store such as Rite-Aid or Sav-ons).
File, sandpaper, and flush cutter (all easily and cheaply obtained at your
hardware store. Finer the grit for both the file and sandpaper, the
better).
X-Acto knives for fine cutting
Newspapers (for covering your delicates, such as carpet or table)
Plenty of Time, Love, and Caring.
A Model kit. For beginners, get yourselves several 1/144th Scale kits, as
they are cheap and easy to make.
Micron Sigma Pens and cloth for panel lines

Advanced supplies:
Airbrushes
Gundam Markers
Panel scribber.

1. Start off with the Gundam Wing/G Gundam/Gundam X kits (1/144th Scale).
They are not only easy, but requries you to paint them a bit. You can use
these kits to practice several skills without burning a large hole in your
pocket. I'd also recommend the original HG kits as well, but they are a tad
more difficult.

2. Block off a weekend. Cut off all contacts with outside world,
disconnect phone, internet connection. Find a large, nice open space and
prepare to find your Gunpra zen.

3. Read the instructions once, and read them again. They are nicely
illustrated, with little or no japanese skill required. At most, you'll
need to find several symbols for stickers and decals. but they are rather
easy to find. Most of these symbols are surrounded in circles, which makes
this easier.

4. MAke sure you have all the parts. I once had a kit with several missing
parts. In these cases, return them to your dealer of choice, and they will
either give you a new kit, or make sure that you get them parts. IF they
don't do that, it's not worth buying kits from them ever again.

5. Follow instructions carefully, but don't believe that you have to go
from step 1 to step 2 to step 3. One can easily build and paint the torso
first, then the limbs, then the face area.

I usually do the torso and the face area first, partly because they are
rather tough to paint at times.

6. Cut with Flush cutters, remove some trimming with Xacto, and sand it
down to a nice flat finish.

7. Once you have parts ready to be assembled, do the following, even for
snap-tite kits:
        Place all polycaps in their respective spots.
        Cut all male parts off (the ones without holes.
        dab the joining area with glue, and join.
        let dry,
        sand/file off excess.
        Repeat until kit is done.

8. Paint and detail. I'll let you figure a best stragety for that part.

Of all the supplies and items that I mentioned, the best that you can give
your kits is that time, love, and caring. A little TLC will go a long way
in your appreiciation of your Gunpras, now and into the future....

Gunpra.org is not dead, it's just taking an extended break.

Y. Choe

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