Wow. This is the pinnacle of Gundam achievement. I've built smaller scale and lower grade Zeta's, including the Master Grade and an HGUC, and there is absolutely nothing that even comes close to this. I spent well over 6 months on this one, and I'm sure I should have spent more time on it.
Ok, the head is just the beginning of this amazing piece. The head is built by first inserting the metal circuit connectors and the switch, then the eyes/main camera faceplate (clear) with the LED, then screwed together. This is the base of the head, with little detailing all over. The battery case for the CR1220 battery (not incl.) is then inserted and screwed in. Then, the internal detail is built up even more with the vulcan guns. The outer armor on the head is attached, most of which is hinged so as to be able to expose the internal detailing. The V-Crest of course folds for transformation.
Where to begin...The cockpit has a seat with a scale figure, seated
with a clear display panel. There is a blast shield cover that
can retract over the opening, and also the red canopy cover that
lifts up. The pilot can be swiveled from upright (MS mode) to
forward (for wave rider mode, thus always being "up"). The cockpit is attached with a screw to the main chest piece, with much internal detailing and lifting panels to expose said nifty-ness. The chest piece is attached to the back of the torso via hinges and "pistons." The shoulder plates are also attached with pistons and hinges. The neck has a ball socket for the head and also for where it attaches to the neck plate, giving it a huge range of motion. This is attached to the main body strut in a slot with a spring, so as to be able to make it hold it's MS up-position well. The main white side panels are attached to a piece which snaps in and locks the sides up or pushes them down. The leg attachment plates are much like on the Master Grade, with a post connecting to the main body and a turning post to attach to the leg. However, the bottom of the torso has a locking plate which secures both legs very well in MS mode. The front skirt armor is hinged and pistoned, as is the rear skirt armor (with locking tabs, these'll come in later). Numerous locations are screwed in.
The shoulder has a rotating section, separate from the shoulder
vernier (with internal exhaust detailing) and from the arm attachment.
Then, standard post attachment to upper arm, which has detailing
and piston attachment to the elbow. The lower arm has actual piston-type
movement for the wrist, as well as the sliding docking port for
the grenades (with opening door at the wrist) or hole for the
shield (or beam rifle). The hands are amazing, with pre-formed
fingers that bend at every joint and slots for securing weapons.
Screws at a few locations.
These were a little complicated. Pistoned knee and knee cover, spring-loaded power cabling at the back of the knee, and folding plate at the back of the upper leg to allow for transformation of leg. The foot has pistons for folding, a folding in heel, and a socket for the ankle, as well as 4 pistons arranged around said ball joint. The ankle attaches here with a spring mounted ball with the four pistons supporting it. Very neat shock absorbers. The thruster at the back of the leg is tracked move automatically when the leg is transformed by a neat pin/slot arrangement around the knee. The sides of the lower legs have a large amount of internal detail, as well as moving baffles on the side thrusters, allowing from fully open to fully closed. There is a side panel hinged to expose details on the outside of the leg. The knee joint cover is pistoned and can swivel to remain in place during transformation of the leg. The side armor/beam saber holders are built a little later, but I'll include them here. Built with 5 degrees of freedom for the attachment to the leg, it'll go just about wherever you put it and then some. Of course it opens and stored beam sabers securely, and tabs into the main body when transformed.
Weapons and Accessories
Wings/Tail- The tail holds another CR1220 battery (Also not incl.) with the circuit connectors, switch, and LED. There are clear pieces to light up both sides of the end of the tail. This connects to the second joint which has locking tabs for the wings in MS mode. This joint connects to the main joint, which attaches to the body in the back. The Wings are just amazing. Numerous metal connections to the wires which run in pre-cut grooves along the body of the wing, these wires actually run out to the end of the wing tips with the LEDs, keeping the connection in whatever state of transformation it happens to be in. The wings have a main casing, a main wing in that, and the extending wing tip. They also contain a removable piece where the die-cast landing struts may be inserted for resting in WR mode. The side of the wing contains a locking tab for connecting to the tail in MS mode to keep them from flopping around and also a connection that plugs into the side of the shield in WR mode to power the LEDs. They use a somewhat similar folding strut to connect it to the body as well as to extend the wing around the body for WR mode.
Weapons- AAh, weapons. The Grenade Packs are fairly simple in design, a case around a bunch of grenades (which are actually inside the casing). The beam sabers are also fairly straightforward, two sided casing with top and bottom cap; however, it includes a folding out tab to lock securely into the hand. The Lighting beam saber is similar in design, but instead of the tab folding out, the battery is inside the handle itself, and the "blade" is actually a long LED that locks into the handle, so a separate piece is included to clamp the saber and tab into the hand. The beam rifle is just neat. It has the folding handle, sight, and tab for wave rider mode, compressing barrel, and removable energy clip like the MG. However, it contains a spring and locking mechanism wherein when the handle is folded up, sight folded down, and barrel pushed in (ie: WR mode) it is locked in place. When the handle is pulled back down, however, the springs are released and the sight pops back up and the barrel back out. It also contains a tab to tab into the hand. The Shield is a real piece of work. The nose contains the batteries (2xLR44, not incl.) and the LED with a switch. The Cockpit display panel (remember?) when swiveled down for WR mode actually protrudes from the bottom of the cockpit, docking more securely in WR mode and fitting neatly into the socket for the LED to illuminate through the display panel the whole of the cockpit. There are two docking ports on the side to plug the wings into for both support and for connections to the batteries for lighting the wing-tips. The lower half can be raised and lowered, as can the strut to attach to the arm. There are two hinged struts, so that as it changes to WR mode, the shield doesn't actually ever come off Zeta's arm, then also secures into the opposite arm.
The transformation on this model is so incredible, I can hardly even begin. The head crest folds up, then the head and neck move into the body as the chest and cockpit fold out/up. Locking into the body, the side panels also fold up and lock in. The front skirt armor folds out for a moment as the locking tab on the legs also is opened. The leg-attachment-panels swing out and up, posting into the rear skirt armor. The legs fold back at the knee, compressing the leg. The side of the leg contains a slot for the tab that folds out of the rear armor to lock it into place also. The foot folds up, as does the heel. The arms fold in at the shoulder plates and are actually out of the way. The support struts on the shield now fold out and bridge the two arms, as the cockpit docks into the nose of the shield. The wings fold out, the struts swing around, and then they lock into the shield, both at the light connection and at the connection that had tabbed it into the tail previously. The Shield and Wings all have plates that can be removed to be replaced with the diecast landing struts. The gun folds up as mentioned earlier and tabs into the tail joint. The beam saber holders swing around and tab into the torso. The shield switch can be thrown, lighting the cockpit and wingtips, and the tail switch can light up the lights at the end of the tail.
Whew!! I think that's it... This is without a doubt, the best model I have ever built. Period. It is complex beyond imagination, and just plain awesome. It is the most solid Zeta Gundam I have ever come across. Also the heaviest, at 827 grams in full loadout.