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1:144 Custom U-Wing (and landing platform too)

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Did some panel washing last night - mostly with Flory's clay-based washes, augmented by Citadel shades in a few spots. Here's a quick look, next to my previous U-wing build, after that step:




Then this morning I did some basic paint chipping around the edges, using the torn makeup sponge method. 




It does manage to look more warn in closeup - at a normal viewing distance for a palm-sized model is does look a little more subtle, at least to my eyes. In case you were wondering, I haven't finished applying decals to the engines, hence why there's no weathering on them yet. Next up is some more controlled chipping with a brush and Vallejo Duraluminum metallic. 

Edited by monsterpartyhat

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I got another session of detailing in - I added yet more decals to the top side, decaled the underside and the engines, and did a lot more weathering. It's nearly done. 


Here's a few pics of the evolution of the back end, from painted but un-weathered:



After this shot I decided to paint the middle deck metallic. 


Decaled but no weathering:




With panel washes:




And the current state, with some decal additions, paint chipping, and additional wash details (notably fuel leaks, using Seraphim Sepia):




Wide shot:




And from the side:



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I did one final paint chipping step last night - I wanted some subtle variations in the red and dark grey sections. I mixed up a slightly darker red and a slightly lighter grey. I may have gotten *too* subtle on some of it. 


Here's a couple of exemplars of the grey:






(and of course I forgot about the red panels on the bottom 🙄)


Red end bits before:




And after:




Since even just a couple of drops of mixed paint was waaaaaaay more than I needed, I pulled out a bunch of my other primarily red ships to add some dark red chipping to, like my 1:144 Tycho Celchu "Bacta War" X-wing:




I also added some to my previous U-Wing, and my custom half-plated "Consular Escort" Y-wing. 


And here's the overall top view - I also added some minor streaking with Tamiya Weathering Master "soot". 




I'm calling this done. I'll take some proper glamor shots the next time I set up my desktop photo studio. I'm going to start on a proper landing pad diorama for this as well - I just have to decide on snow planet or sand planet :)

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1 hour ago, monsterpartyhat said:

I just have to decide on snow planet or sand planet :)

What about a landing pad over water ? With connecting bridges to other pads and structures. 

Edited by Corsairfoxfouruncle

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Mostly because I've never modeled water before, and that's a whoooole new set of materials and skills to work with. Snow and sand over rocks I've got down pretty well :)

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I haven't taken finished gallery photos yet, because instead I immediately started work on the landing platform, which is as much fun as the ship was. 


Started with a basic frame out of square styrene tubing. It's sized to match 2 Bandai large bases, which is the same footprint as two Bandai Death Star tiles, and still fits inside a Vehicle Model box for storage. 




Add some I-beam bracing:




And some interior cross-bars, and then I started greebling the underside, mostly with leftover pieces of sprue as pipes:




Cut a sheet for the top:



I had this idea to cut a familiar Star Wars pattern out of the top to view the greeblies through:




But when I cut it out, it wasn't nearly straight enough for me, so I went another direction. 


Just cut the offending portion off:




And instead I'm using some micro-mesh:






I skipped a couple of steps without photos - cutting out notches in the end and cementing the off-cuts onto the side, as well as scribing panel lines into both sides. 


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So this is the top with mesh laid on top of the greeblied frame:




Like the Gundam decals I used on the U-Wing, I applied a few Gundam photo-etched aluminum after market detail parts - circular exhausts here:




I also used some brass photo-etch from the Green Strawberry 1:144 Millennium Falcon detail set, with some pre-cut copper tubing from the craft section of a local art supply store:




On the underside, I'm finally implementing something I've been thinking about trying for a long time -- this is a steel plate; the support legs will have neodymium magnets on them, allowing the platform to be removed easily for storage (or re-configuration; if it works well I plan to build more platforms with the same mounting style). 



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Getting caught up, here's the overall look so far:




The small detail near the notch on the right side is another Gundam detail part. 


Greeblies through the mesh:




I started experimenting with molding parts recently. I'm using several casts of half of a Jedi Starfighter engine on the underside:




And it's a tight fit, but the modified U-Wing does fit. This landing pad is for a rough field outpost - not a lot of extra room or equipment available for safety!





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I'm keeping the top and the base separate until they're painted, as I won't be able to paint the greeblies visible through the mesh once the top is attached. Now I'm facing the WORST decision -- what base color to use?

I've used primer grey (visible here), Imperial TIE fighter Haze Grey (seen here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/aalpern/37806952855/in/album-72157689721575254/) and Gunship Gray (seen here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/aalpern/25101775297/in/album-72157688265980483/) as base colors for similar structures before. 

I'm leaning to Haze Grey, as the U-Wing features Gunship Gray prominently already. 

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Back when I started my first box-scale dioramas, I embedded little neodymium magnets in a bunch of crates and stuff. It turns out they're just strong enough to attach to a steel plate under a .020" styrene sheet, so I added steel strips to the underside of the top in a few places. If I'd thought about it sooner I'd have done the whole thing. 


Here's the full underside pre-priming:




Then I primed, and painted in Haze Grey:




I painted all the pipes that will be visible through the mesh before putting the top on:




It was at this point that I realized painting the under structure Haze Grey was a mistake - the whole thing needs more contrast. The answer to "Haze Grey or Gunship Grey?" was actually "Both". 


So...some careful masking:






Yeah, much better:






I also ended up replacing the mesh, because it had accumulated too much paint and gotten a bit damaged - I was over-eager actually gluing it in place so early :)


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1 hour ago, monsterpartyhat said:

Yeah, much better:

I concur. Hats off to you, sir!

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Yesterday I got the time to decal and panel-line the landing pad. My process for that is the same as I've worked out for ships:


* After base and accent color painting, I apply decals directly to the paint. I don't bother with a gloss coat prior to decals. At 1:144 scale I do try to minimize the number of layers of spray paint, especially since I don't have an airbrush. 

* Seal the decals in with gloss coat, which also preps for the panel lining. 

* Panel line with Flory's clay washes. So easy to use. With the gloss coat and cleanup using a slightly moistened cotton bud, you can really get the wash only in the panel lines. 

* Seal the panel washing with a flat clear coat. 


Things like dry-brushing edge highlights and adding fuel/oil leakage washes I do after the flat clear-coat. 




Continuing with the theme of the U-Wing's decals, the majority of the landing pad decals are from Gundam sets. I did use a couple of the 1:72 decals from the Rogue Leader X-Wing 2-pack that I never used because I fully painted my 1:72 X-Wing. 









Edited by monsterpartyhat

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Almost forgot these shots with the ship! Can't decide which angle I like best, so you get both. 





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Just realized I never linked to the finished gallery from here -- just in case anyone comes across this thread later and wonders where the glamour shots are -- 


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I saw this evolving on Flickr so I've been a bit slack about posting here, but it's lovely work. The "playset" aspect of the magnetised diorama makes it even more appealing somehow :)



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