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Awesome Gundam 3 - Building the Master-Grade RX-78-3 (Part One)

Some key features of the kit and how I built it!
The Master-Grade RX-78-3 Gundam kit is one of the more recent Bandai products. It is very clean and simple in outward appearance, but features an extremely complex frame beneath the armor plates. The MobileSuit is generously equipped with 2 Beam Sabers, a Beam Rifle (with Super Napalm clip), a Hyper Bazooka, a Beam Javelin, a Gundam Hammer, and a Shield.

I'm using a very "clean" painting style based upon Future mixed with Pearl-Ex pigments. I had been unable to find Future for a while, but the product has resurfaced on the shelves being sold by a new owner and is now called "Pledge with FUTURE Shine Premium Floor Finish." It's still the same tough and adhesive acrylic that modelers have used for years.

I use the end of a popsickle stick to scoop 4-5 small scoops of Pearl-Ex powder to mix with an airbrush bottle full of Future. Always shake it thoroughly immediately before spraying. I also make sure the stem of the bottle is drained, or the first few blasts of paint will be clear because the pigment will settle out. Aside from the Future/Pearl-Ex mix, I also use Testors Enamel Steel mixed with Flat Black for the frame parts. It helps to have 2 airbrushes when using acrylics and enamels on one kit.

My preference is to start at the feet and work my way up, concentrating on the frame. Since the gold and blue parts are so few, I decided to paint them first.

The feet on this model are outstanding, having 2 joints!

The leg frames have incredibly flexible ankle and knee joints. Notice the sliding hydraulic cylinders in the ankles and knees.

The hip joints also have a great range of motion. The bare frame can do a full split. The skirt armors have a new system, also. I like how they overlap. On each side, only the front-side combination, or the rear-side combination can be hinged upwards. The third armor is locked down by the joint structure. It's very sturdy and functional.

By now I am not surprised that the shoulder joints are also complex and flexible. I can't wait to get this Gundam finished so I can try some extreme poses! Look at the sliding mechanism in the shoulders -

After some of the torso plates are added -

Next Part will show the Head, Arms and Weapons, and the Complete G3!
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