I was very surprised to find that this was essentially a ‘clip fit’ kit, with parts designed to be removed and replaced at will – the wheel wells, especially. However, I’d glued some key components together by the time this became apparent to me, so my version of the kit is not in flight mode. I like this notion, especially as Kotobukiya has managed the concept of glue-less assembly very well.
Although internal detailing is almost non-existent (indeed, there are no flight crew figures supplied), external detail is exceptional. The fuselage is especially fine, being covered with well-managed rivet wells and panel lines.
Much the same can be said for the engine pods: simple, but covered in an impressive amount of detail.
As with the previous ‘Conan’ kit, I decided to try a little pre-shading on this VTOL, combing white undercoat and a black lining with a 3/1 thinner to Citadel Space Wolf Grey mix, almost like thin milk. I then masked off and did the darker panels in Tamiya field grey.
Finally, using a rusting compound, I went over the lines again to provide greater wear.
Kotobukiya does not provide masking in this kit, but that was soon taken care of with some tape and a cocktail stick.
As you can see, the kit is missing some decals, and this is the one negative point I have to mention. I may just have acquired a lemon, but I discovered that the decals were so incredibly fragile that my usual method of softening (mixing acetic acid and water 50/50), a thing which normally works very well, proved positively disastrous. Several decals simply disintegrated on their sheet. However, once I had recognized the failing, and I can confirm that in water alone the decals respond as expected – though requiring nearly ten minutes to loosen enough to apply. I hope to be able to acquire another sheet and try again, as much to determine these decals are generally too frail for softeners as to finish the kit properly.
Still, all told, I cannot be upset even by the decaling disaster, as this kit has proved to be an excellent project for a quiet weekend. It fills a niche in the Eva modeling shelf and it makes me wonder if its success will lead Kotobukiya to put out other Evangelion kits.
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