Panel-Lining the Bandai Millennium Falcon 1/144
For my first few posts, I'll be backtracking on some builds that I had already completed, most recent of which is the Bandai Millennium Falcon 1/144 The Force Awakens version.
My dad insisted that I pick up this kit when we were in Japan in 2016. I had built the 1/72 Resistance X-Wing the previous year, so I knew the quality to expect. And for 4000 yen, it wasn't a hard choice. And this was before I knew I hated Disney Star Wars. But that's another story altogether.
The kit got shelved for a couple of years as life got in the way. But as I mentioned in the intro, the quarantine hit, and I was able to get back into building again.
To prepare for the build, I watched several builds on YouTube. It seemed similar enough to the usual Bandai snap-fit Gunpla, except that weathering was definitely needed to make it look like it's supposed to. I hadn't done any serious weathering before, so I knew I'd have to learn some new skills. But wanting to do it the easy way, I thought to just go straight to panel liner. That's one of the things I saw from a few other builders, and their results seemed acceptable.
For panel liner, I knew I'd be using enamel-based Tamiya Panel Line Accent Color, which is known to be dangerous on bare plastic. To mitigate this, I thought to coat all the parts in Pledge (aka Future) first. So after overnight curing, onto panel lining I went.
I know the details aren't screen-accurate. I painted the chairs later on.
Gray panel liner
Black panel liner
Note the crack on the right side of the saucer near the ramp
The results weren't bad, especially the gray panel liner. Surely enough though, I still got a few cracks in some parts despite the Pledge coating. But worse is that I regretted putting black on some other parts. It looked too unsubtle and I couldn't completely clean it off no matter how much I tried. And because I couldn't stand the look of the black panel lines, I decided to put this kit on hold until I could finally put together an airbrushing setup.
I had always wanted to airbrush, but it took this kit to finally get me to pull the trigger.