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It was a warm Saturday evening in a small city just outside Boston. The blinding and suffocating smoke, contrasted with the aroma of sizzling beef, filled the back patio as the economy burgers pooled with grease. The one we call Meijin was tending to the grill, demonstrating his adroit culinary finesse. It was nice to get away from the majority of the social banter, soak in the late spring sun, and forget about the work and study in the week ahead.
On the last hour of the sun, the cozy atmosphere was interrupted with a text message: it was Gunplaworks,
I'd like to commission a paint job for you.
Commission? Paint job? He just finished his Red Frame Astray with a Candy Red, whereas I am just starting my first full paint job with the Jegan Sniper Type. What could he possibly want me to paint? Curious but occupied, I told him to email me the details, since I do not use my phone nearly as much.
Apparently Gunplaworks had just finished the SD Kshatriya and was not satisfied with the colors, or lack thereof, on the SD Loto that was included with the kit. With Morgenroete Munitions' painted Zaku I Sniper Type and Ground Gundam, He knew that we had a small variety of military earthen colors.
I am not nearly confident enough to start taking commissions at this point: I still have a lot to learn. Neverthless, this is barely a kit. In fact, its merely an accessory for the SD Kshatriya. Let us hope that I do not screw up one of my favorite Mobile Suits in the franchise.
I find it strange that one of the larger SD kits holds bonus plastic. The SD Kshatriya, like the HGUC Kshatriya, is a monster! Why would Bandai throw in a Loto with it? Whatever the case, it exists and I have a chance to give a quick look before I ruin paint it.
The SD Loto is composed of six pieces - three for the body, one machine gun, and twin cannons. The main body is composed of two halves which create a hinge for the legs and twin cannons. The hinge on the legs allow the SD Loto to "transform" into its super cute sitting tank mode.
In mobile suit mode, the SD Loto has a weight issues: Because the treads in the back stick out, the Loto is prone to fall backwards. The best solution would be to keep the Loto in "tank mode."
Overall an interesting accessory for the Kshatriya. No complaints, no praises: it is a mere accessory.
I decided I did not want to attempt seam line removal on this kit just because each piece is a relatively large piece and priming would be a pain with the whole thing assembled. Even with the pieces separated, I was quite worried I would miss some of the crevices while priming.
After quickly sanding down the pieces, sprayed down the pieces using Krylon Colormaster gray primer. Even with the odd shapes, I did not have too much trouble covering every surface.
For the overall color, I used Tamiya Acrylics XF-49 Khaki and XF-1 Flat Black. and the weapons I used Testors Enamel Flat Gunmetal. Accent colors include Tamiya Acrylic XF-54 Dark Sea Gray, Enamel XF-62 Olive Drab, Testors Enamel Brass, and a mixture of unknown proportions of red, orange, and gold Gunze Sangyo Acrylics. On top of the paint job, I used a 1/16 drill bit to carve out a small hole on the cannon barrel ends to give it a hollow look to it.
I finished up with a matte top coat using Rust-oleum's Matte Finish. I have been using this top coat for the past couple kits. Though it is much cheaper, I want something with a smaller particulate, similar to Testors' Dull Cote.
There was a very long period the SD Loto was on the back burner, primed, and still in pieces: one, maybe two months. I do not know why I decided to wait so long. Maybe I thought I would get a chance to air brush base coats of khaki before putting in the details. Or am I just lazy? Either way, I am glad I waited: I was tempted to put the orange sticker back on early on at one point.
Will I do more commissions in the future? I guess we'll see. I know I do not feel nearly good enough to take any...