Granted this latest Sazabi kit is pretty damn nice right out of the box, but there are a few things that bugged me or things that I wanted to do, so starting off, I decided to beef up the chest. As a starting point, I used a strip of styrene, and just glued down the center line of the chest. I just eye ball this. For you engineers out there, grab the ruler, some masking tape, and a pencil; then make the correct measurements and draw in the area where the strip should go. I for one, am usually too lazy to do that and I just eyeball it. The paper clips are used to keep the styrene in place. The styrene is the base structure for the mod here. I also added an additional piece of plastic rod down the center line of the chest piece.
Once the sytrene has cured overnight, I added on some light curing putty. This is so I could work fast, as the putty cures within minutes under my work lights. The basic reshape of the chest is down with the putty over the styrene structure. Sanding sticks are used to carve out the basic shape. More styrene is glued and more putty is added and resanded.
Next up, after some discussions on Facebook about the “Sleepy Dragon” face, I decided to make some mods. I drew out a hexagon on the edges of the chest slits, then glued in styrene strips into the slits. Once the glue cured, I clipped and sanded down everything.
Some metal meshing was glued to the back of the chest piece, and the whole things was primed again. Since the last picture in this set was taken, I’ve sanded and re-primed a couple more time. The sanding/priming/sanding is a cycle that repeats until the part is satisfactory.
The head didn’t escape modification. The first step was to add a little collar around the bare mono eye. I like this look on all my mono-eye kits. I didn’t have a metal collar that fit, so I grabbed a plastic collar from a wave set that fit and sanded down the Saz’s clear mono eye piece to fit. Once done, I tested the look with a green LED. Not to bad looking, I will have to paint the rest of the exposed clear piece to focus the light out of the mono eye only; but the painting stage is a ways off.
Styrene is glued to the antenna as the base structure for extension. I also glued styrene to the back of the Saz’s head. I want to elongate things. Sort of like making the back of the head similar to the Kampfer.
As with the chest, light curing putty, more styrene, priming and sanding are employed to get the desired shapes.
Sand, putty, repeat, and eventually, we get to the point where it’s just about ready, not quite, but the below picture should be a good enough distinction from the original kit.
Next up are the shoulders. Since I’m beefing up the chest every so slightly, I decided to extend the shoulders and have a little bit of flaring. The first step is the basic styrene structure from which everything else is built. A strip of styrene and some styrene rectangles glued together and clamped down with paper clips. Then cut, I have the individual pieces to glue onto the shoulder ends.
Once the styrene glued to the shoulders cured, epoxy putty is used to fill in most of the gaps.
I was actually quite surprised to see that the neck cables for this kit was a single piece. This part is big enough to warrant a complete overhaul in detail. The original cables are cut from the main cable pieces. The front and back parts are then drilled out.
I have several shapes and sizes of metal tubes, so I found one that most closely fit. A thin styrene rod is used as the base cable structure.
Over this base styrene rod structure, I wrapped the rod with 36 gauge magnet wire, effectively creating a custom spring. With the spring wrapped around the rod, the metal collar pieces are then glued into place spacing them slightly to show off the spring. This is a small and easy mod.
The waist cables are an even easier mod in comparison to the above mod. The original cables have molded details, but I didn’t like the fit and jiggle. Off they go.(I cannot believe I actually spent the time sanding the nubs off each of these damn cables) The original cables is kept. I found a metal collar that was only slightly larger than the originals. I used a piece of spruce from the kit and wrapped 28 gauge magnet wire around the spruce to create a larger spring. The spring was then sleeved over the original cable piece, and then the metal collars over the spring. Done. Amazingly simple.
At the end of the weekend, after several cycles of putty, sand, prime, and sand. The Saz is starting to look ever so slightly different from the out of box. I have more mods in progress, and a few more ideas floating in my head. I don’t want to over do things too much as I do like the look of this design; just personalizing it a bit. Here’s the kit’s progression so far.