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Bandai B-Wing Starfighter 1/72

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  • Member since
    January 2015
  • From: Katy, TX
Bandai B-Wing Starfighter 1/72
Posted by Aggieman on Thursday, August 27, 2020 1:39 PM

My latest build is Bandai's B-Wing Starfighter as seen in Return of the Jedi (very briefly) and later in The Rise of Skywalker.  When I was a kid, I primarily built Monogram and Revell WWII aircraft, or Aurora monsters and dinosaurs, until 1977 came along and I was dragged (yes, dragged) to see this movie that I thought was going to be about the dumbest thing ever, Star Wars.  Seriously, the previews I'd seen of the original movie just looked awful to my then-9-year-old eyes.  I was one who's exposure to science fiction and fantasy by that time had been limited to movies like The Planet of the Apes series or the Ray Harryhausen-animated Sinbad movies, or TV series like Star Trek.

Star Wars blew me away by the time I finally did see it as a 10-year-old (the movie came out in May 1977, my birthday was less than a month later, so some time in either June or July I first saw it).  I remember coming home from the theater and setting about locating all the cardboard I could find, plus some scissors and tape, and soon thereafter, I had a couple of really crude X-Wings and TIE Fighters.  Some time in 1978, I discovered the MPC model kits of the X-Wing and Darth Vader's TIE Fighter, plus the droids, and built them all.  Science fiction kits soon became pretty much all I built for a time, from those original Star Wars releases to MPC's lighted Millennium Falcon to the U.S.S. Cygnus and robots of The Black Hole and a Klingon warship and Vulcan transport from Star Trek: The Motion Picture.  I would then move on to the Snowspeeder, Slave One, and Star Destroyer from The Empire Strikes Back, and then some smaller scale releases after Return of the Jedi to include the X-Wing, TIE Interceptor, A-Wing, and B-Wing.  Then, I not only quit building Star Wars/sci-fi kits, I largely quit building everything, as I was in high school, baseball and girls were far more interesting.

Maybe about a decade ago, I started acquiring all of the Fine Molds releases, of which I have built only the Jedi Starfighter.  Eventually I'll get to all of them, including that massive 1/72 Millennium Falcon.  Then along comes Bandai, who I believe got the contract from LucasFilm for these kits, and I did their Boba Fett and Sandtrooper figures before embarking on their 1/48 moveable edition X-Wing, right before the release of Rogue One in 2016.  I liked that X-Wing so much that I went out and grabbed an A-Wing and then, this special edition release of their B-Wing (special because it came with the little lighting unit).

I was really trying to hold out even starting this until September, as it has been quite hot here in the Houston area, but last weekend, the temperature was a bit more bearable than usual, and I launched into it.  And with the hurricane came some more tolerable temperature, so I was able to get right through this build.  Thankfully for me the hurricane turned away from Houston, although it would be nice if it had just never formed; having been through a number of hurricanes in my life, most recently Harvey in 2017, I know that the people of Louisiana are dealing with some awful realities right now.

This kit is simple.  It is technically a snap-together kit, but I did use a bit of liquid cement in a few places to ensure some surfaces stayed together.  Paint is a mix of AK Interactive Real Colors, MIG, PollyScale, Tamiya, and Vallejo.  First round of paint was AK dunklegrau sprayed as a mist coat prime, then did a pre-shade of the various panel lines.  Once that dried, I mixed up PollyScale light gull gray with Vallejo white 1:1 and put that down on all the exterior surfaces.  I let that sit overnight, then came back with a mixture of AK barley grey, Vallejo white, and Tamiya clear 1:2:1.  Following that, I masked off a few random panels, mixed up an equal ratio of Tamiya deck tan, Vallejo white, and Tamiya clear, and sprayed those panels.

Bandai provides decals and stickers for all the markings, including the blue stripes and panels, but I opted to paint the blue.  That was a mix of AK light blue, Tamiya medium blue, and Vallejo white 6:1:1.  The final painting was a mist coat of AK barley grey, Vallejo white, and Tamiya clear 6:1:3.  Note that this painting direction was one I found online of another modeler who had done this kit, so I didn't come up with all of this.  I also cut circle masks and painted the hinomarus, for lack of a better word, with MIG Pigments orange paint; I used some liquid masking agent to effect the chipped look of these markings.

I weathered with AK Interactive streaking grime applied directly with a fine-tipped brush, then feathered in with white spirits, and followed with some ground up charcoal pastels.

Finally, with the engine nozzles, I painted the interior chrome silver in the hope that it would reflect the engine lights, which I think it does to a certain extent.

And then this one photo of the placard I made for this build.  I recently did this for all the builds I have displayed around my house so that my wife can know what each model actually represents.

That's it for me with Star Wars for the time being.  It's likely that my next build from a galaxy far, far away will be Revell's big Republic Cruiser, but as with that one and any other Star Wars kits I have to build, I will need to acquire lights for them, and then for many, figure out exactly how to wire them.

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: SW Virginia
Posted by Gamera on Thursday, August 27, 2020 9:17 PM

Oh that looks great! Love the paint work and the engine lights.

Always thought the B-Wing was kinda cool with the rotating cockpit. Although since there's no up and down in space I'm not sure it makes a whole lot of sense. But I still like it.

"I dream in fire but work in clay." -Arthur Machen

 

  • Member since
    January 2015
  • From: Katy, TX
Posted by Aggieman on Friday, September 11, 2020 7:41 AM

Gamera

Oh that looks great! Love the paint work and the engine lights.

Always thought the B-Wing was kinda cool with the rotating cockpit. Although since there's no up and down in space I'm not sure it makes a whole lot of sense. But I still like it.

 

Thank you Gamera for your kind words!  This was a fun build (which is what this hobby should be).  Wish the B-Wing had more appearances in Return of the Jedi, but it was difficult to film against the blue screen with its very thin features.

  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: Fort Knox
Posted by Rob Gronovius on Saturday, September 12, 2020 8:58 PM

The B-Wing was my favorite fighter of Return of the Jedi.

I got most of the Fine Molds kits, even two of the Slave 1 kits in 1/72 scale, both the Jenga and Boba versions, the later coming with an exclusive Hans frozen in carbonite figure.

I built one of the X-Wings and the Jedi Fighter. I think the Jedi fighter is my favorite of the prequel fighters.

I've bought a few of the new Bandai kits. The first order TIE fighters, Luke in stormtrooper and the R2/BB-8 combo.

The quailty of these kits is light years beyond the original MPC kits. I had and built all of those.

  • Member since
    January 2015
  • From: Katy, TX
Posted by Aggieman on Monday, September 14, 2020 8:58 PM

I also have the majority of the Fine Molds kits, but I've only built the Jedi Starfighter thus far.  I only have the Boba Fett with the Han Solo carbonite figure Slave 1, never got the Jango Fett version.  I also have the Millennium Falcon, which I figure will be my grand finale for these kits.

For Bandai, I've done a sandtrooper and Boba Fett, the 1/48th scale movable edition X-Wing, and now this B-Wing.  I have the 1/72nd scale A-Wing in my stash. I'd like to get a few other of their kits, but the scale are all over the map.  The Blockade Runner is so small (from photos I've seen) that it fits in the palm of your hand.  I'd love to grab the Super Star Destroyer, not sure how big that one is.  Of course, with the size of the ships, the scales do lend themselves to smaller kits.

I also have a Revell Republic Cruiser; I really want to get that 1/2700 scale Imperial Star Destroyer.

Back in the late 70s and into the early 80s, I built all of the MPC kits that were offered - the X-Wing, Darth Vader's TIE Fighter, R2-D2, C-3P0, Darth Vader, Millennium Falcon, Slave 1, Snowspeeder, AT-AT, and then by the time of Return of the Jedi, when I had largely lost my interest in modeling, I did grab those smaller scale kits of the X-Wing, TIE Interceptor, A-Wing, and B-Wing.  Never got their AT-ST or Y-Wing.

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