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This is a project I’ve been quietly working on (and off) in the background over the past year.

 

It’s a sort of chance meeting on an operating table between a sewing machine and an umbrella, or in this case, between a 1:35 scale Hitachi Zaxis excavator and a couple of Gundam kits. It’s based on a model that I saw on a Japanese social media site a couple of years ago by a modeler called “Surume0407”. You can see his work here:  <https://twoucan.com/profile/surume0407>

 

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I really liked it and wanted to try to make my own version, but while the use of the Hasegawa excavator kit was obvious, I had no idea what kits were used for the robot bits. I bought the excavator kit, figuring it would be fun to build regardless if I attempted the kit bash or not. Some time later, while looking at pictures of other people’s models on the web (a hobby in itself), I recognized some of the major bits in a photo of a Gundam ‘Graze’ figure. And with that, I was off to the races.

 

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This will be a fast one, so I’ll let the pictures do the talking. Hang on, there's a years worth of work squished into one post. 

 

The chassis was 3D printed out of polystyrene. It took a few tries to get proportions that I liked. This shows the underside. The white tubes are attachment points for the rear legs.

 

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The feet are 1:35 tank wheels and some styrene tube. 5/32” is close enough to 4mm that it seems to work ok with the Gundam poly-caps. I had to add some Tamiya putty in some cases to tune the fit.

 

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Leg armour squared off with epoxy putty to somewhat reduce their ‘gundamosity’.

 

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The extension for the counterweight was modeled in Fusion 360 and printed in polystyrene.

 

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I was unable to identify several of the armour pieces, so I decided to make my own. Here's the prototype sheet styrene knee armour and the printed final.

 

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Scratchbuilt a new piece for the top of the shear to match the size of the one on the claw and to make room for the Gundam ball attachment.

 

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The manipulators were made from a combination of the 1/144 scale leg and arm parts.

 

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The main Gundam torso was glued to a printed stryrene bar that fit into a groove in the chassis

 

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I busied up the sides of the chassis with some kit parts.

 

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So here are most of the parts laid out. All that needs to be done at this point is prime and assemble.

 

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Primer

 

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 A lot of the original Hitachi parts are not glued to make painting easier, so everything is a bit precarious at this stage. All of the Gundam points of articulation are still functional, making posing this thing rather difficult (Much respect to Mr. Ray Harryhausen).

 

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Phew! So this is where things stand as of today. There are a lot of detail bits still to attach and the possibility of a driver, we'll see.

Next up final assembly, paint, decals, and weathering. Stay tuned and thanks for following along.

 

Oh, I also have another sci-fi build in progress in the diorama section, if anyone's interested. Thanks!

-Peter

Edited by Photon
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looks badass so far! I have a hard enough time figuring out instructions sometimes, couldn't imagine trying to mash multiple kits together. Curious to see what you plan for the paint!

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Love it, can't wait to see how this turns out.  Its looking great just in primer so far.  Nice work on the custom 3D printing too, the knee armour turned out nice.

 

I've always wanted to try something like this, but the thought of sacrificing one of my Gundam kits upsets me :) I might have to trawl Ebay for some spares or repair Gundams, or assembled gubbins kits that I can throw in the spares box for a project like this.

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I think it's very impressive indeed. A great melange of kit and printed parts. Well worth the time it took.

I'm looking forward to the paint and final details.

And, I found this for you....

https://64.media.tumblr.com/2d158165edb5ba81713ee9e05e945f89/73f879bd4cb3c87c-fe/s640x960/9d1e3059c59992f3c5ff917b5e4f610032d209f3.jpg

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Thanks everyone, I appreciate it.
 

I managed to get everything base coated and chipped. The chips are out of scale in some cases, but overall I’m pleased. I had a really hard time getting the orange laid down with any opacity. I had this problem before with another brands of orange and I’m starting to think orange acrylic might be one of those problem colors. In both cases, Vallejo Model Air, and now Mission Models orange spray very thin with poor coverage. My experience with Mission paint up until now has been very positive. In any case, I’m going to let everything sit for a few days to cure, then start decals and weathering.
 

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Edited by Photon
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Yup Orange is a difficult colour to lay down. I usually base coat with red or white first depending on the shade of orange required. I've built the excavator and its a fun little build but this takes it to a new level, looking great so far!

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Thanks for the encouragement, guys. I’m almost done.  A couple more bits to glue on and a final weathering pass. 

I might build a small base for this as it’s a bit vulnerable as is.

 

thanks for the tips about spraying orange paint. As least I know it’s not my ineptitude.

 


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That's a very credible WHIF and it definitely needs some kind of industrial style base to finish it off - the only thing I can't work out is how your driver is going to get in and out though ?

 

 

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Thanks everyone! 

I will be making a small base. It would be nice to scatter some debris around. I was thinking maybe some broken concrete and rusted scrap metal among the weeds. At 1/35 scale there’s no shortage of oil drums and other accessories available, but I don’t want it to get too crowded. 
 

 

 


 

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Use Florists wire for reebar. It's soft so bends nicely and you can make a mesh with it. Then Plaster of Paris as concrete?

Ask at the Florists if you can buy a dollars worth. It has no end of uses.

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You're very welcome. I've been using it for years. I thought other people already knew about it.

As for driver access. Use some florists wire* to make steps/handholds up the left rear leg and across the cab left bottom side.

As it's metal, there's no need to weather it!

 

*Or staples, as I did on my Falke build.

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Just went through this whole thread again. It's such a neat project and feels really familiar as I see diggers from this family all over Wellington. Yet to see one with legs though!

 

Will

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NB: For ultimate rebar, take a piece of the florist's wire and wind a length of ~0.1mm copper wire stripped from an electrical cable around the outside. The real thing (often, always?) has a spiral flute, I assume to help anchor it to the concrete. Wound guitar strings might work too but I think the open home-made flute looks better.

This is ~1/8 scale so much bigger wire and I filled in the flutes with CA, I think in 1/35 that might be overkill:


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W

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13 hours ago, Photon said:


Those concrete blocks look extremely realistic. Are they made from plaster?

 


Thanks! They're florist's foam, which I wouldn't recommend as it's a) carcinogenic and b) extremely porous and crumbly. I think I remember it taking 3 coats of gesso to seal all the pores in the surface.

There's some step-by-step partway through this ancient thread: 

Cheers,

 

Will

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  • 4 weeks later...

This is one of my favourite recent builds Photon - amazing! I'd love to see it in an urban/ future Tokyo type dio. I can see this mining an orbiting asteroid or maintaining a larger craft even. Cab would need to be airtight though probably. Will's Drone Sniper is the best I've seen that model done and another favourite of mine on BM

 

q

 

 

 

 

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