Ah yes, it’s time for one of those kitbashes I’ve wanted to do for years.
Back in 2008, I made a huge order from HobbyLinkJapan of old Gundam kits. I went for two Dodais, three Ball sets (this was before the HGUC), two Core Boosters, three Magella Attack tanks, the Full Armor Gundam, the GM Sniper Custom, the Zaku Minelayer, and Ridden’s Gelgoog. Unfortunately, they weren’t able to fill all of my orders, so I only ended up with the Zaku, the Gundam, the Core Boosters, the Magellas, and the Dodais. I got the Balls in HGUC form two years later, and I managed to get the GM Sniper a year later, but for whatever reason, the Gelgoog eluded me.
It’s strange, too. There really isn’t much to this kit. It’s the same base kit as the old Gelgoog Cannon and the ReGelg from the Gundam ZZ line, but this one tends to fly off shelves. The only notable differences between this kit and those two are the inclusion of the high mobility backpack and a few guns. I guess Johnny Ridden really is popular on both sides of the ocean.
This is what I would consider an entry-level kitbash. Little to no cutting or remolding is needed on this project. Pretty much the entire project is just building the backpack and sticking it on the base kit. Anything else you need to do is purely optional.
One thing I found very disappointing about the Ridden’s Gelgoog kit was the lack of decals. While it came with the 010 decals, it was completely lacking both the Special Forces emblem AND Johnny’s personal emblem! Thankfully, I had spares left over from one of my High Mobility Zakus.
I did encounter a problem with Johnny’s emblem, however. The emblem is supposed to be placed on the right forearm, but a hole for the shield is in the way. I filled the hole and sanded it down to give adequate space for the decal, and it fit like a glove.
A more specific issue I had with mine was with the hands. Somehow, the pinky finger on its right trigger hand completely sheared off and disappeared into the oblivion of my basement floor. I had to find a replacement, so I took a pair of hands from an old MG Zaku II. They work well enough and hold the gun perfectly. I did find a set of replacement hands, so I might make those later on.
For whatever reason, I had the worst time painting this. Red is generally a difficult color to work with, but it was especially bad here. I should have primed this one beforehand, and I certainly will do so with the second one I make.
The only weapon I made for this project was the small bazooka. The Dom’s bazooka is also included with this kit, but I haven’t made that yet.
I recommend using the Gelgoog Cannon HGUC for this project, only because that’s the only kit that comes with the proper holder for the beam naginata. Char’s version doesn’t have the one for the skirt armor.
In spite of my frustrations with the overall project, I highly recommend doing this. While the HGUC Gelgoog’s mold gates were designed to allow for an HGUC High Mobility Gelgoog, but it doesn’t look like we’ll be getting one any time soon. Because of that, I’d say this is a good way to get started on kitbashing. FPNYC frequently has Ridden’s Gelgoog, so make sure to get yours there!