There’s the pile. Of course, it’s not just an arm. There are arms, hands, shoulders and more! It looks like Strike Freedom’s arms are going to take up quite a bit of time, just like the legs, but when you think about it, aren’t arms pretty much a shorter set of legs with different attachments at the end?
Here’s where you start. These pieces go together to form the upper part of the arm and shoulder joint.
It’s pretty straight-forward for sure, but that’s not a bad thing. This however…
This is the top of the arm and you can see Bandai has gone ahead and used one of the lame gold pieces instead of the coated or darker gold. As this piece will be able to be viewed when the kit is posed this choice of color is questionable.
Completed shoulder joint:
Working our way down the arm the next step is to assemble the joint section from the shoulder to the elbow.
You can see Bandai finally brings out the coated gold on the arm, but is it really enough considering what will be showing once it is assembled with its armor?
Here is the lower part of the arm where the wrist joint will be. See that sliding actuator? Remember this piece. You’ll see why in a bit.
Working from the wrist towards the elbow. The position of the arrows in the instruction manual amuse me. It’s like they’re pointing right at the frame piece I am going to attach.
Once these sub-sections are completed the armor is applied.
I like the detail on these armor pieces as the armor for the arms seems more lined than those of the legs, which I thought were rather barren and might need extra lines to break things up.
Remember that picture I told you to remember? Compare it to this picture. What do you see? Yup, the actuator I specifically mentioned was assembled backwards by yours truly and I only discovered it because I was unable to attach the last piece of armor on the arm. I had to take everything back apart and flip it over to get things correctly placed.
These perfect grade kits are time-consuming to assemble and difficult to disassemble.
There is some gaps in the armor once it is fully assembled and I have to think this is by design considering these kits are designed by PC these days down to the micro millimeter.
Flexibility is pretty good.
Now the fun part. The hands. Woohoo!
This whole runner is molded in my favorite Strike Freedom gold of the bunch and is entirely for the hands. Everything you need to make the hands, save the white armor piece and the wrist joint connector are here and the method of assembly is very novel and interesting.
First step is to cut off the two parts that make up the thumb.
Here’s where things get interesting. As you can see in the manual, you attach the thumb and other pieces to the main hand frame part while the part is still on the runner. (!?)
Now for the fingers. The runner is laid out so that the first and last joint of each finger are a certain width apart.
Bandai’s amazing runner design is done this way so that you only need to cut out the middle section of the finger and attach it to the first and last joint before removing it from the runner.
This is genius! For anyone who has ever had to chase finger pieces from a Master Grade kit around, you will share my appreciation for this excellent design.
Then you just repeat the process three more times to complete one hand.
Awesome! it looks like something out of Terminator. Having only done HG and MG kits before this is my first experience with a PG hand and I am loving it.
After that it’s just a matter of adding the armor pieces.
The top of the hand even moves allowing the hand to curl in the entire way so he can ball his hands into a fist. ya!
The section that holds the shield
(for lack of a better term)
Add a tiny moving piece. You can see where this is going.
One full arm completed, sir.
I haven’t yet taken the shield out of the plastic bag it came in so unfortunately there are no pics.
If you’ve assembled any gundam kit (yes, I’m generalizing) then you’ve put together shoulder like this, only the PG shoulders have a couple of additions.
You can see that there are two pieces which pivot allowing the top of the shoulder frame pieces to slide.
And the underside of the shoulder is well done, too. First you put on the blue parts…
then the cool gold parts are inserted inside. It actually took me quite a bit of effort to get the gold parts aligned properly and pushed into place. I think it took me four attempts.
Once that is done you’re finished! Well, finished the arms, at least.
Our PG Strike Freedom so far.
I’m enjoying leaving half of it unarmored. It gives the viewer a lot of stuff to look at and consider.