Oh, come on. Did you think I was serious about not doing a guidestravaganza?
Welcome back to Part 3 and Step 1 of Let’s Get Ready to RUMBRAWL!
As per the usual, here’s where the actual content starts. Today’s step is a guide unto itself, fixing a problem that’s really bothered me about Brawl.
LEADER BRAWL FEET FIX ANKLE MOD GUIDE, ACTIVATE!
If you’re not familiar with Leader Brawl, there is a great review over at OAFE.net. I’ve been a regular reader there for years and they’re always informative! Be careful, though, as that’s the review that really made me want to buy the toy. (Though I still much prefer the Deep Desert version.)
As mentioned in the review, Brawl stands pretty securely, but he does so on the sides of his feet. The way his legs are designed, his feet don’t sit flat on the ground.
It’s kind of like movie Ironhide, really. The feet don’t sit flat because of the legs, but he stands okay and he’s badass, so it’s not such a problem.
Except it is.
It’s infuriating, because where Ironhide has an automorph system that you’d pretty much have to get rid of in order to articulate his ankles, Brawl’s ankles are just on a hinge. It’s a pivot point, and to make it even more infuriating, the ankles have a great range of movement in the opposite direction.
His ankles are such that his feet have to stand on the edges, and only move in such a way as to make it worse.
It was taunting me.
But, he does stand okay enough, if a bit wobbly. It just looks unsightly.
So, I just stood him in the back of the group and tried to not let it bother me.
That was a few months ago, and I was cleaning things up today when I saw his feet again. Grabbing my screwdriver, some blades, and a fresh box of bandaids, I forged on ahead and fixed him.
I googled around for a while to see if anyone had tried anything like this, but didn’t find anything. This figure’s been out for a while, so if anybody has a guide that did this first, let me know and I’ll at least put a link up.
As it is, what I did manage to find was people wondering if you could just switch the feet, and the occasional person telling them that wouldn’t work.
So, here we go!
Leader Brawl Feet Mod Ankle Fix Guide, Substep 1
First examine why Brawl’s feet have a problem. Not just why they won’t sit flat, but what keeps them from swiveling into a useful position. Once you understand this, the next substep will be much easier.
Switching the feet won’t fix it, as each half of the foot is pretty much symmetrical. The pivot point of the internal ankle is just that, a pivot point.
The problem actually is that the design of the lower leg causes the inner top of the foot to be restricted. Cutting the leg isn’t practical, so we’re left with cutting the feet.
Look closely and you can see how not only does the joint need a bit more cut away from the middle rounded part, but the two cylinders on the sides of it also cause a problem.
The feet form a pair of canisters at the back of the tank in alt mode, and this mod cuts the feet so this probably causes a minimum of visible change to the back end of the alt mode. If you’re concerned that somehow the awesome of your badass tank is going to be distracted by a couple of missing chunks of plastic on a pair of plain canisters on the far back of all that kickass, then skip this part.
In fact, go back and study yesterday’s post more carefully.
But really, this step does alter a part of the alt mode, even if it’s very slight. I try to be careful of that, but it’s hardly a bad thing here and very much worth the bot mode improvement.
(Now that I think about it, I’m not sure if the cut part is visible in tank mode. Next time I transform him I’ll take a look.)
Leader Brawl Feet Fix Ankle Mod Guide, Substep 2
Now that the why has been found, on to the what to do about it.
Two of Brawl’s toes are held onto his foot with a pin joint, and that would need to come off before each foot can be taken apart.
It’s good then, that you can leave the foot on for this mod!
So grab a pair of flush cutters for the initial chunks and a sharp blade to smooth out the rest, because all that stands between you and a Brawl that actually stands is just some easy to cut plastic.
All you have to do is cut a bit of an angle on these sections of the foot.
The canister on the right is a sold piece, but the one on the left is actually a hollow bit where a screw goes in. Don’t worry, this does not effect the screw at all, as the part that you’re cutting is before it even gets to the screw.
Here’s another angle of the cuts to the side canisters. I figure the middle piece should be pretty obvious, so no extra diagrams for that.
To minimize the cut plastic, I did it at kind of an angle.
And that circled area is a small part that I cut an angled piece out of just to help give a bit more clearance, but you may not even need to cut it.
Leader Brawl Feet Mod Ankle Fix Guide, Substep 3
Cut the plastic.
What, you want more of a description? Use the flush cutters to get the bigger chunks out of the way and then take a very sharp blade to trim up the rest.
The red areas in the pictures of the previous step are where you need to cut.
And here’s a shot of it from the back, really showing off the curve that now gives the foot more clearance to tilt inward (or, for this picture, to the right.)
Leader Brawl Feet Mod Ankle Fix Guide, Substep 4
Come back tomorrow for Part 4!