Designation: ZAFT Mass Production Heavy Assault Mobile Suit
#CircuitBreakerBacklogChallenge Build #3 - a very refreshing change of scenery!
I tend to just straight build Master Grades as a way to decompress from all the painting and customising. The part count of Master Grade model kits also somewhat discourages me from painting them, although there are exceptions. However, I do apply some small mods - which you will read about below - to my straight built Master Grades to make them look that little bit nicer on my shelf.
This is one of the easiest and most commonly applied mod: replacement of the monoeye sticker (or sensor, optic part) with a metallic gem or rhinestone. These are considered nail art and can be found in any enterprise that sells girly stuff. Using these in lieu of the bundled stickers results in a more three-dimensional look for the monoeye or sensor, along with giving it a nice metallic finish.
The other mod applied to the MG 1/100 Gunner ZAKU Warrior is the replacement of the standard bendy wire with a premium aluminum one sourced from hardware stores. The wire that came with the kit also included a mesh sleeve which doesn't really cover the full length of the wire: the sleeve just moves kinda sits on the black connector bits without any form of permanence. Using a solid piece of aluminium wire strengthens the look of the entire assemblage and also gives the model kit some metallic elements.
The Bandai MG 1/100 Gunner ZAKU Warrior (Lunamaria Hawke Custom) is such a fun, enjoyable straight build. The parts are well separated and there's enough variety to keep the build interesting. The classic Zaku-inspired weapons are also a very nice touch!
Although its inner frame is not as complex as other Master Grades, the simplicity translates to superior sturdiness and stability (the model kit fell off my work chair but not a single part came loose). But the finished product does feel a little hollow and some of the joints can use a little tightening. Overall, this is one excellent Master Grade.