Gundam as a Passion

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Gundam is more than just a popular anime series. It is a passion and a hobby for many people around the world. Building Gundam models, also known as Gunpla, has become a favorite pastime for those who enjoy creating and collecting these iconic mecha figures.

Understanding Gundam is the first step towards starting a Gunpla hobby. The Gundam franchise has a rich history that spans over four decades and includes numerous anime series, movies, and manga. Each series features unique Gundam designs that have become popular among fans. Building a Gundam model allows enthusiasts to recreate these iconic mecha figures in their own unique way.

Starting a Gundam hobby is easy and accessible to anyone who is interested. Building techniques and tips can be found online or through various Gunpla communities. The benefits of Gundam as a hobby range from stress relief to the satisfaction of creating something with your own hands. As enthusiasts progress in their hobby, they may even choose to advance their building techniques and create custom designs.

Key Takeaways

  • Gundam is more than just an anime series, it is a passion and hobby for many.
  • Understanding Gundam is important for starting a Gunpla hobby.
  • Building Gunpla offers a range of benefits and opportunities for advancement.

Understanding Gundam

Gundam is a Japanese science fiction media franchise that features giant robots called “mobile suits” in a militaristic setting. It was created by Yoshiyuki Tomino and Sunrise, and it first appeared in 1979 with the anime series Mobile Suit Gundam. Since then, the franchise has expanded to include numerous anime series, manga, novels, video games, and model kits.

History of Gundam

Mobile Suit Gundam was created as a response to the popularity of the Super Robot genre, which featured robots with superhuman abilities. The creators of Gundam wanted to create a more realistic portrayal of robots in combat, and they drew inspiration from the Vietnam War and World War II.

The original anime series was not initially successful, but it gained a cult following and spawned a franchise that has continued to this day. The franchise has explored various themes, including war, politics, and the human condition.

Types of Gundam Models

One of the most popular aspects of the Gundam franchise is the model kits, which are known as Gunpla. Gunpla are plastic model kits that allow fans to build their own Gundam mobile suits.

There are several types of Gunpla kits, including:

  • High Grade (HG): These are the most basic and affordable kits, and they are recommended for beginners.
  • Real Grade (RG): These kits are more detailed and complex than HG kits, and they feature a frame that allows for greater poseability.
  • Master Grade (MG): These kits are larger and more detailed than HG and RG kits, and they feature more advanced engineering and articulation.
  • Perfect Grade (PG): These are the largest and most detailed Gunpla kits, and they feature intricate internal frames and LED lighting.

In conclusion, understanding the history and types of Gundam is essential for anyone interested in the franchise. The Gundam franchise has a rich history and has been a popular hobby for many fans around the world.

Starting Your Gundam Hobby

If you’re interested in starting your own Gundam hobby, there are a few things you need to know before getting started. In this section, we’ll cover the basics of choosing your first Gundam model, as well as the essential tools and materials you’ll need.

Choosing Your First Gundam Model

When choosing your first Gundam model, it’s important to consider your skill level and budget. For beginners, 1/144 scale High-Grade kits are a great starting point. They’re affordable, easy to assemble, and surprisingly detailed. If you’re looking for something a bit more challenging, you may want to consider a Real-Grade or Master-Grade kit.

It’s also important to consider your personal preferences when choosing a Gundam model. Do you prefer the classic RX-78-2 Gundam, or are you more interested in the newer designs? Do you want a model that can be posed in a variety of ways, or one that’s more static? Take some time to research different models and find one that speaks to you.

Essential Tools and Materials

Before you start building your Gundam model, you’ll need to gather some essential tools and materials. Here are some of the most important things you’ll need:

  • Side Cutters: These are used to remove parts from the plastic runners. Be sure to use a good quality pair that won’t damage the parts.
  • Hobby Knife: This is used to remove excess plastic from the parts and to clean up any rough edges. A sharp blade is essential for this task.
  • Sandpaper or Sanding Sticks: These are used to smooth out any rough edges or nubs left behind after cutting the parts from the runners.
  • Paints and Brushes: While not strictly necessary, painting your Gundam model can add a lot of detail and make it look more realistic. Acrylic paints are a good choice for beginners, as they’re easy to work with and clean up with water.
  • Panel Line Marker: This is used to add detail to the model by filling in the panel lines with ink. It’s an easy way to add depth and dimension to your Gundam model.

By gathering these tools and materials, you’ll be well on your way to building your first Gundam model. With a bit of patience and practice, you’ll soon be creating your own custom designs and joining the ranks of Gundam hobbyists around the world.

Building Techniques

When it comes to building Gundam models, there are several techniques that can help you achieve a more polished and professional-looking result. In this section, we’ll cover two essential building techniques: assembling the model and painting/customizing.

Assembling the Model

Assembling the model is the most critical part of building a Gundam model. It’s essential to follow the instructions carefully and take your time to ensure that all the parts fit together correctly. Here are some tips to help you assemble your model:

  • Use a good pair of clippers to remove the parts from the sprue. A smooth cut will make it easier to remove any excess plastic and sand down the edges.
  • Sand the edges of the parts to remove any excess plastic and create a smooth surface for the parts to fit together.
  • Use a small file or sandpaper to sand down any rough spots on the parts.
  • Test fit the parts before gluing them together to ensure that they fit correctly.
  • Use a small amount of plastic glue to hold the parts together. Be careful not to use too much glue, or it may seep out and ruin the finish.

Painting and Customizing

Once you’ve assembled your model, you can start to customize it by painting and adding decals. Here are some tips to help you paint and customize your model:

  • Use a primer to create a smooth surface for the paint to adhere to.
  • Use a variety of paintbrushes to apply the paint. A small brush will help you get into tight spaces, while a larger brush will help you cover larger areas.
  • Use a variety of colors to create a more dynamic and interesting look.
  • Use masking tape to create clean lines and prevent paint from getting on areas you don’t want it to.
  • Apply decals carefully, following the instructions provided with the kit.
  • Use a topcoat to protect the paint and decals and give your model a more finished look.

By following these building techniques, you can create a Gundam model that looks polished and professional. Remember to take your time, follow the instructions carefully, and have fun!

Gundam Community

Gundam is not just a hobby, it is a community. There are many ways to connect with other Gundam enthusiasts, including joining clubs and forums, attending events, and participating in competitions.

Joining Gundam Clubs and Forums

One of the best ways to connect with other Gundam fans is to join a club or forum. These communities offer a place to share tips and tricks, ask for advice, and showcase your work. Some popular forums include r/Gunpla and r/Gundam on Reddit, as well as the Gundam Eclipse and Gundam Kits Collection websites.

In addition to online communities, there are also many local clubs that meet in person. These clubs often host build nights, where members can work on their models together and share their progress. They may also organize trips to conventions and other events.

Gundam Competitions

For those who want to take their hobby to the next level, Gundam competitions offer a chance to showcase their skills and compete against other builders. There are many different types of competitions, from local contests to international events.

One of the most well-known competitions is the Gunpla Builders World Cup, which is held annually in Japan. This competition draws builders from around the world and offers cash prizes and other rewards.

In addition to the GBWC, there are also many other competitions held at conventions and other events. These may include categories for different skill levels, as well as specific themes or challenges.

Overall, the Gundam community is a welcoming and supportive group of people who share a passion for this amazing hobby. Whether you are just starting out or have been building for years, there is always something new to learn and discover.

Benefits of Gundam as a Hobby

Gundam modeling, or Gunpla, has become a popular hobby for many people around the world. Here are some of the benefits of pursuing this hobby:

1. Develops Creativity and Patience

Building a Gundam model requires a lot of creativity and patience. Assembling the parts and making sure they fit together perfectly takes time and attention to detail. This hobby can help improve one’s patience and problem-solving skills.

2. Enhances Fine Motor Skills

Gundam modeling involves working with small parts and tools, which can help improve one’s fine motor skills. This hobby requires precision and accuracy in handling the parts, which can be beneficial in other areas of life.

3. Provides a Sense of Accomplishment

Completing a Gundam model can provide a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. The finished product is a tangible representation of the time and effort put into the hobby. It can also be a source of pride and joy for the modeler.

4. Encourages Attention to Detail

Gundam models are known for their intricate details and designs. Building these models requires a keen eye for detail and precision. This hobby can help develop one’s attention to detail, which can be beneficial in other areas of life.

5. Offers a Creative Outlet

Gundam modeling can be a creative outlet for those who enjoy building and designing things. This hobby allows for customization and personalization of the models, providing a unique and creative experience for each modeler.

6. Fosters a Sense of Community

The Gundam modeling community is a tight-knit group of individuals who share a passion for the hobby. Joining this community can provide a sense of belonging and camaraderie, as well as opportunities to learn from and collaborate with other modelers.

Overall, Gundam modeling can be a rewarding and fulfilling hobby for those who enjoy building and designing things. It offers a range of benefits, from developing creativity and patience to fostering a sense of community.

Advanced Gundam Building

For those who have already mastered the basics of building Gundam models, there are a variety of advanced techniques and skills to explore. This section will cover two popular areas of advanced Gundam building: creating dioramas and scratch building.

Creating Dioramas

Dioramas are a great way to showcase your Gundam models in a dynamic and engaging way. They allow you to create a scene or setting for your model to inhabit, adding depth and context to your build.

To create a diorama, you will need to consider a few key elements:

  • Setting: Decide on the location and environment for your diorama. This could be a cityscape, a forest, or even a space battle.
  • Scale: Determine the size and scale of your diorama based on the size of your Gundam model.
  • Materials: Choose the appropriate materials for your diorama, such as foam board, paint, and miniature trees or buildings.
  • Lighting: Consider adding lighting to your diorama to create a more dramatic effect.

Once you have all the necessary materials, you can start building your diorama. Start by sketching out your design and layout, then begin constructing the terrain and adding details such as buildings, foliage, and other props. Finally, place your Gundam model in the diorama and add any finishing touches.

Scratch Building

Scratch building is the process of creating custom parts or modifications for your Gundam models using materials that are not included in the original kit. This can include using plastic sheets, metal rods, or even household items like toothpicks or paper clips.

To start scratch building, you will need to have a clear idea of what you want to create. This could be anything from a custom weapon to an entirely new Gundam design. Once you have your idea, you can begin gathering materials and sketching out your design.

The key to successful scratch building is precision and attention to detail. Take your time when cutting and shaping your materials, and be sure to test fit each piece before gluing or attaching it to your model.

Overall, advanced Gundam building techniques like creating dioramas and scratch building can add a new level of creativity and challenge to your hobby. With practice and patience, you can create truly unique and impressive builds that showcase your passion for Gundam.

Maintaining Your Gundam Collection

Once you have assembled your Gundam models, it is important to maintain them properly to keep them in good condition. Here are some tips for maintaining your Gundam collection:

  • Dust regularly: Dust can accumulate on your Gundam models and make them look dull. Use a soft-bristled brush or a can of compressed air to remove dust from your models regularly. Avoid using water or cleaning solutions, as they can damage the models.

  • Store carefully: When not on display, store your Gundam models in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. Moisture and heat can cause the plastic to warp or discolor, so avoid storing your models in the attic or basement.

  • Avoid touching: Fingerprints and oils from your skin can damage the paint and plastic of your Gundam models. Handle them as little as possible, and avoid touching the painted areas.

  • Repair carefully: If your Gundam models are damaged, it is important to repair them carefully. Use plastic cement or super glue to fix broken parts, and touch up any scratches or chips with paint. Be careful not to use too much glue or paint, as it can affect the appearance of the model.

  • Display creatively: Finally, have fun displaying your Gundam models creatively! Use shelves, cases, or dioramas to showcase your collection. Consider adding lighting or other effects to enhance the display.

By following these tips, you can maintain your Gundam collection and keep it looking great for years to come.

Conclusion

Gundam is more than just a hobby; it is a passion that brings people together and allows them to express themselves creatively. Building and collecting Gundam models can be a fun and rewarding experience for enthusiasts of all ages. The Gundam series is based on giant robot mobile suits in a war drama, with a cockpit where the human controller sits. The series depicts real-life interactions between regular people and realistic machinery.

One of the best things about Gundam as a hobby is the sense of community it fosters. Enthusiasts can connect with each other online or in person at conventions and events. They can share tips and tricks for building and painting models, and showcase their finished creations to others who appreciate the art form.

Another great aspect of Gundam as a hobby is the opportunity for creativity. Building and customizing models allows enthusiasts to express their individuality and showcase their unique style. They can experiment with different color schemes, add custom decals and markings, and even create dioramas to display their models in action.

Overall, Gundam is a hobby that offers a lot of benefits to those who pursue it. It allows enthusiasts to connect with others, express their creativity, and develop new skills. Whether someone is a seasoned collector or just starting out, Gundam is a hobby that is sure to provide hours of fun and enjoyment.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Gundam

Is it hard to get started with Gundam?

Getting started with Gundam can seem overwhelming at first due to the vast amount of series, models, and lore, but with some research and guidance, it can be an enjoyable and rewarding experience.

Is Gundam a hobby?

Yes, Gundam can be considered a hobby for many enthusiasts who enjoy building model kits, watching the anime series, collecting merchandise, and engaging in the community.

Why do people love Gundam?

People love Gundam for its compelling storytelling, complex characters, futuristic mecha designs, and thought-provoking themes that often explore war, politics, and human nature.

What are the different types of Gundam models?

Gundam models, also known as Gunpla, come in various grades such as High Grade (HG), Master Grade (MG), Perfect Grade (PG), and more, each offering different levels of detail and complexity for builders.

Where can I watch Gundam anime?

Gundam anime series can be watched on streaming platforms like Crunchyroll, Hulu, and Netflix, as well as purchased on Blu-ray and DVD for physical collections.

 


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