I have worked quite a bit on this kit since the last update. Time consuming paint chipping process with several colors and techniques, the same I usually do for armor. The interior is almost done too but I don’t like it too much, I was hoping to achieve the distressed leather couch look but it didn’t work too well. Next up is painting and then the pilot’s head, which will be the most challenging.
Some progress on the Prowler. The thrusters were replaced for aluminum ones, since the plastic ones have a really bad seam in the middle. Did some welds with epoxy putty but I think they are a bit overscale, but not too bad. I primed it after the pics and found a few flaws that need fixing. I almost put myself on a deadline again, but no, if this can’t be finished for the Seattle IPMS Spring Show, then so be it.
I have finally become one of those modelers that can’t work on a single project at a time, it took me a while but I am finally there. After finishing the Hellhound I felt a bit burnt out, it had to do with the fact that for the first time I gave myself a deadline and finished the helo for a show at the Museum of Flight. Big mistake. This is a hobby, not a job, it killed the fun and I didn’t touch the workbench for about 2 weeks. While on workbench break I kept going through my MaK. modeling book, of which sadly I can’t read a thing since it’s all in japanese. I have been a fan of MaK. for a while, since it mixes my two favorite subjects in modeling, sci-fi and WWII armor. The kits are somewhat hard to find, given that they have been OOP for a while, which makes them quite pricey for what you actually get. Hopefully with Hasegawa picking up the line the flow of kits will be more steady, I wish they re release most of the old stuff, but I had an original Nitto 1/20 scale release of one of the suits in the MaK. world, the Prowler, which I got for $10 at an IPMS meeting back in Brooklyn. I went back to the workbench and started to build it (later found out this kit is worth about $60, or so I read). The mold shows it age with less than perfect fit (I have been spoiled by Dragon and Bandai), so there’s some filling and sanding. Building is close to being completed since this is a small kit, if I don’t get any crazy ideas and build it out of the box. Then the fun can start with painting.
This is the first time I have chosen to make such an statement through a model. I was born and raised in Colombia, that country famous for producing 80% of the world’s cocaine. A defining circumstance in my life was to grow up living a set of policies known as the war on drugs. This set of policies were initiated by Nixon in 1971, long before I was born, and comprise both foreign and domestic U.S. policy related to the production, possession and consumption of substances that have been declared illegal.
Why some drugs are illegal while others like tobacco and alcohol aren’t is the subject of another, lengthy debate, but to shorten my statement I will just say that it is my belief that the war on drugs is a waste of time and resources. After 38 years not only has it failed at reducing consumption of illegal drugs in the U.S., it has also failed at reducing the production of such substances in countries like mine. What it hasn’t failed at is at making a bunch of people really rich, from drug dealers to government agencies.
This is what this model is about. I decided to model the AH Hellhound from Patlabor 2 as a helicopter in service with the Colombian Air Force. Being a futuristic science fiction design I decided to make it a commemorative model for the 50th anniversary of the war on drugs, implicitly making the statement that this “war on drugs” is never going to end.
Now, the model:
After a few months of wait I received my Colombian Air Force markings for the Hellhound. I managed, with my impatience, to mess one of the decals on one side, which meant I had to lift the other one up. After that I could wait another few months to get replacements (unlikely since the decals are OOP) or use some decal paper I had lying around and print my own. I went with plan B and it turned out ok, even though the replacement decals are a bit thicker than the originals. Now I have left some detail painting, finish the cockpit and the canopy. I hope to finish this by next weekend to be able to show it at the Museum of Flight exhibit.
Construction of the tank is done for the most part, I decided not to paint until I build the half-track and the trailer. The half-track kit is very nice but sometimes overly complex, for example the track, which has two parts per link and is not link and length but all individual links, very time consuming to assemble given that every link needs to be cleaned. Good thing they include a jig to aid assembly.