After that light-up MS-06FZ was completed, it was time to tackle another federation mobile suit like my second kit. But instead of a Mass Production Guncannon, I had a cheaply made Gundam Ground-Type up for building. Rather than attempting to battle-scar it or anything like that, I gave it my first ever attempt at painting it completely to accentuate the existing color scheme.
Being a very unskilled hand brushing student, it took a few coats in certain detail areas to achieve the proper patterns. The most detailed sections were all wrong, and there was plenty of boundaries crossed by brush that were reminiscent of a child with a coloring book and no regard for the lines. It too was a flimsy kit, just like the first one, and quite a few parts almost disintegrated under the paint thinner used to attempt reversing my mistakes. Namely, the head underwent several coloration revisions, and took the most wear from the petroleum distillates that dissolved Testors enamel, to the point where it actually fell apart.
The finished kit felt like a step backwards when compared to the last two models, so once again turned my attention toward a Zaku II.
This time, it was a brand new, higher quality version of the first kit I had tried, with more detail and better base material used. Upon seeing it for the first time, I realized that the color was not to my liking at all. With that, I got to work to attempt completely painting a kit from top to bottom, this time with my own color scheme. I forgo-ed the battle damage once again, and opted to add other detail features to this one, like my own insignia. It took some time assembling and painting it, but the finished kit looked pretty good for an attempt at something new for me. I gave the left side of the chest an inverted yellow kite, and the right received a yellow bar. The left side of the head above one of the eye ports was adorned with yellow triangle as well. All three pieces of insignia were added with the assistance of masking tape to counteract my rather unsteady hand.
The finished kit was one of my best by far, with plenty of detail where it was needed, and an overall good coloration. The critique that I received from my model building counterpart was that Zakus didn't come in that color, and it was a non-canonical paint scheme that I was using, but it was my kit and I could do as I pleased. I didn't care, it was my kit, with my custom scheme, so it was going to look the way I had dictated.
It would be the final kit of my freshman year of college, and the last of my hand painted work. My parents didn't seem to care much about what I had built. The total kits completed in this time span were as follows (in order built):
MS-06F Zaku II (MSG: The 08th MS Team)
RX-77D Guncannon Mass Production (MSG 0080: War in the Pocket)
MS-06FZ Zaku II Kai (MSG 0080: War in the Pocket)
RX-79G Gundam Ground Type (MSG: The 08th MS Team)
MS-06(?) Zaku II (MSG Generic)