Gaijin Gunpla

I’ve built a fair number of kits in my relatively short time being involved with Gunpla, but the Perfect Grade is to me, like it is to many modelers, a rarity. Contributing factors are, of course, the price as well as the sheer amount of space they take up, but the biggest reason I haven’t built the 1/60 Perfect Grade Gundam Astray Red Frame yet? It’s rarely available. Perfect Grade kits aren’t restocked as often as their MG and HG counterparts, which is understandable when you consider just how much plastic there is to produce, and so each time I thought of picking up this bad boy he was sold out. Even when restocks arrived they usually were already spoken for. Well, luckily for me (and anyone else who was waiting hoping to get the kit) after restocks arrived this past week there were some available. So I made sure I grabbed one. My experiences so far with the Perfect Grade line are only the limited clear armor version of the Aile Strike and the Strike Freedom which became Courage. It’s been a while but I’m back in the PG saddle. That saddle is quite large.

Having waited this long to get my hands on this kit you can imagine my eagerness to get started but, unfortunately (or not), I had other things to take care of like painting the Aile Strike RM (just markings left!), assembling a kit I haven’t shown anyone yet (you’ll find out soon), and other responsibilities (like parenting) which kept me from starting the actual construction. I did however find a few moments to take some pictures so I’ll post those here to show just what is inside the box and allow people to share their experiences/insights/working knowledge when it comes to this kit.

At 1/60 scale everything about the Perfect Grade line is big and that includes the presentation. The PG is the epitome of Bandai’s model engineering or at least it was back when they released the first Perfect Grade Gundam model, the Perfect Grade Gundam RX-78-2, back in 1998. That statement may no longer be true when you consider what Bandai has done with their Real Grade line and their latest Master Grade kits. Even so, just cracking open a box this big gets my side-cutter-operating fingers tingling.

I think one of the things I like about the PG presentation is the use of the actual kit on the images on the box. Other lines have artist renderings but the PG kits (starting with the Strike, I think) use the kit itself and that’s because the kits look fantastic. It’s worth noting that the Real Grade also does this when it comes to their box art.

Ya. It looks badass.

And then you open the box.

There’s so much stuff packed in here and I know it’s going to take me some time to put it all together even with all my Gunpla experience. It’s worth noting that the Red Frame box pales in comparison to that of the likes of the GP01, 00 Raiser, and Strike Freedom.

(love this picture for some reason.)

And check out this katana! The nihonto fan in me is excited.

Even though I knew I couldn’t get started I still couldn’t resist the urge to assess just how much building I had ahead of me.

That’s a lot of parts.

And metal things.

And die-cast parts.

And plated parts.

And effect parts?

And special adhesives for the feet to make them grip surfaces better.

And PG hands.

And markings.

And enormous pieces of molded plastic.

Once I cleared all the plastic out of the box I was able to get to the manuals that were on the bottom.

Praise should go to Bandai for making a Perfect Grade build all the more special thanks to the inclusion of a second manual. Here’s a look at the marking guide.

Now it’s just a matter of clearing time in my schedule, clearing off a large surface area on which to work, and getting started.

Categories: Astray Red Frame, Builds, PG

4 Responses so far.

  1. Syd, you’ll enjoy every bit of this kit. This is a very well designed kit adapting the PG Strike’s inner frame.

  2. GNParticles says:

    Trickiest part for me was the light gimmick. I still can’t get it to work reliably and I hate how you have to remove parts of the head to access the on-off switch. And then, to me, the eyes are not “that” visible when lit to really make it worth it. That’s all in comparison to the PH Zaku II I’m working on now, where although a little painful to assemble the light gimmick, it works very well and has an exposed switch for ease of use, and it’s also super-bright!

    One thing I’ve not seen on another PG that is excellent on the red frame is the use of traction pads on the feet. They’re excellent feet to begin with – sturdy, stiff and articulated, not to mention a really good looking design, but the pads add an extra touch that shows this is a PG.

    The hands runner, with the pieces moulded in two colours together really impressed me. They’re a bit of a pain to cut out with all the sections needing a snip, but the ease of assembly of the finished hand was worth it.

    It’s a superb looking kit you’re going to have bags of fun with for sure.

  3. Hypnos says:

    men…PG are like the final frontier to me …not because they are difficult to build, but because it´s literally impossible to buy one and ship it to my country without paying almost 4 times it´s value…

  4. solowing666 says:

    My friend asked me to have it snap-fitted for him since I have experience on PG Strike.
    It’s a very nice kit with really awesome appearance, but compared to Strike, its articulation is less awesome.
    The gate marks on its gold-plated parts are real eyesore too. Some of it could’ve used undergate.
    Also watch out for very huge gate on the rounded edge of its shoulders. They may be very hard to remove while keeping the contour smooth.

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