The Battle Cougar, produced by Hasbro and affectionately dubbed "McCougar" due to it's semi awful color scheme, is a Zoid that grew on me. I really never appreciated the unit until later on in the collection. Originally part of the Grade Up line, Battle Cougar was later released as part of the Techno Zoids, and then re-released in the NAR series. The Helic republic used Battle Cougar alongside God Kaiser and King Barron to invade the Guylos empire. As I was creating Dead Tiger I thought it may be interesting to create a Republic Dark Zoid. Having a look at some spare kits I decided that Battle Cougar would make an esoteric choice. Thus began work on "Dark Cougar".
Pictured below: Preparation for the custom.
When I think of Dark Zoids I think: hoses. Rummaging through my Darth Bin, I could not find anything of sufficient length to do the piece justice which resulted in scouring eBay for something that would work. I found some pneumatic hose that looked perfect for the job. I picked up a few feet and started working on some mock ups of the unit.
Pictured below: Paint work.
Being a vintage Dark Zoid I wanted to make sure and use the available Grade Up port. I also wanted massive firepower, so I decided on a large cannon to fill the port and incorporate hoses into the existing dual shoulder mounted cannons forming somewhat of a super triple cannon system where the hoses from each shoulder gun (if necessary) would feed the large back mounted cannon. Adding to the realism, I wanted to incorporate a heat shield that would assist in dispersing the massive heat generated by rapid fire.
Pictured below: Cannon work.
Dark Cougar took approx. 35-40 hours to from start to finish. Although not "storyline accurate," I find the piece to be most pleasing. I truly enjoy doing Dark Zoids, and it's fun to look back a few years ago at my first custom which was also a Dark Zoid. After paint, the cannon was attached and hoses were ran. Stickers were applied and the unit was finished.
Below are some shots of the finished piece. I used two different lighting methods and could not decide which one I like better, so I am posting both. I am proud to present the finished product: Dark Cougar
Below: A few comparison shots.
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