My very first resin figure was attempted within 6 months of starting modeling altogether, and I’m still probably not ready to work on resin figures. However, I enjoy them! To start off, this was a model I grabbed off of eBay.com for around $25 including shipping – pretty cheap from what I can tell for resin figures. As such, the quality isn’t perfect and there was quite a bit of clean up involved, but I was still quite pleasantly surprised. It looks like a recast of a model at e2046, which can be found here.
I did a poor job photographing the build of this model as I had no idea what I was doing and just wanted to get it to look somewhat like Cagalli – as such there is no WIP. Initially, there was a lot of extra resin that needed to be cleaned up so that the parts would fit together. This was the hardest part of the build for me, because I had no idea what I was doing and had never seen a resin figure before except on the internet. You cannot simply glue the pieces together as they come, at least with these cheaper kits. They just don’t fit together!
What makes it hard is it can be difficult to know what should stay and what should go. Is this resin supposed to be here or is it extra? Do I need to sand this arm down or take some off of the torso? We see a lot of talk about removing excess flash from kits on the internet, but to be honest I found it difficult to know what was flash and what was not on this kit.
In the end, I just did some work until the pieces kind of fit together. However, after the build I realized that I should have spent even more time on this stage, because it makes a huge difference when you actually glue the pieces together. They really need to fit perfectly or else it makes things difficult. In this case, after everything was put together, I noticed that there was not enough room between the arm and hip for a gun holster on her right side, so I had to leave it off. I had actually sanded off too much from the shoulder area I believe, causing the angle of the arm to be different than it should have been.
Pinning resin figures is also important, but can also be difficult. Cheaper kits like this one don’t provide much guidance for where the holes go, and since I had not properly cleaned up the parts before trying to fit them together, pinning was more difficult than it should have been. But hey, that’s what the first model is for! Learning.
I highly advise doing some very good pinning, and putting the figure together (without glue) to see how everything fits before gluing and painting. I did not do this. Instead, I did the pinning and kind of made sure each part fit together like it should, although it would not stand on it’s own nor stay together (at all) simply with pins. The end result was a fragile figure that ended up breaking as shown below.
Months later, I decided to reglue these pieces together again and give her an actual base, which I had also neglected to do (I eventually got her standing without a base, but I guess she fell over too easily). I just made a simple base using a spare sheet of plastic and ever since she has been more stable. However, I did not end up going back to resand and repaint the new seams as I did not keep track of paints used and didn’t think it was worth the effort at this point. Final images below.
- Spend a lot of time making sure that the cleaning and pinning is done properly. You want the figure to basically stay together simply with pins and look like it should look (unpainted). The glue should NOT be the primary way the figure stays together. The pins should do the job. The glue is simply there to secure it. My original thinking was that the glue held the parts together, and the pins simply provided a little extra help (but not much). I think going about it this way causes the builder to place little emphasis on the pins when they should be done with more care. By doing pins properly and testing before gluing, you ensure that it was done properly. This model would hardly stand up after being glued because the balance was off. If I had tested it before gluing (which would have required better pins so it would stand on it’s own without glue), I would have been able to adjust the balance. Also, because I had not test fit everything before gluing, I found out that the gun holster on her right hip would not fit – the arm was too close to the body. This was due to improper cleaning and extra mold on the arm so it wasn’t quite angled properly. The arm looked fine (after filling a gap in the back) but did not leave room for the gun.
- During the build, try to stay organized and keep the workspace clean; Afterwards, put models in a safe place. I was pretty disorganized during and after the build. I did not put the model in a safe place and it easily got knocked over. The first fall killed Cagalli. Head popped off, leg broke off (neither place was a pinned / glued area). Completed models should be put someplace where they should not fall over.A little sad to see her break, but to be honest I’m probably not going to try to fix this one. It was my first build and had flaws from the very beginning of the build with cleaning and pinning. I’m glad it was this first one that fell over and broke rather than one that was better built. I’ve learned my lesson about storing models now.