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Thread: eFX Ralph McQuarrie Vader Helmet Question

  1. #1

    eFX Ralph McQuarrie Vader Helmet Question

    Hey everyone,


    Been a long time follower of these threads and decided to finally make an account as I’ve gotten back into collecting recently. I also wanted to share my first new piece in years with y’all: the EFX Ralph McQuarrie Vader helmet.


    I’ve wanted this piece ever since it first came out but couldn’t afford it at the time. I was incredibly lucky and a couple weeks ago found one (photos included!). The price was good and considering how much these are going for now I couldn’t say no. The piece is in great shape and I’m getting a custom acrylic display cover for its future display.


    I do have a question for folks who own the mask though. When I opened it up I noticed a few specks of what seems like missing paint or smudge marks around the edge of the dome. I’ve attached a photo for reference. Now, you can only really see and notice it when you shine a bright light on the area. The photo makes it look worse than it does in person, as you really need to angle the light right. Otherwise, you can’t really see it. There’s also a tiny bit of glue from the factory that you can see around one of the boxes that connect to the wires but that’s another matter. Has anyone reported similar issues with their piece when they first received them? Again, not a huge issue, but I’m just curious. Otherwise, still an incredible piece.


    Thanks for reading!
    Last edited by LordNyx; 08-16-2019 at 10:22 AM.

  2. #2
    Congratulations on your new acquisition! I also have returned to collecting Star Wars ephemerals after taking two-three year break from collecting other things; mainly antiquarian and rare books and artworks!

    The signature on McQuarrie helmet is stunning as well. I bet there are only very few props, let alone, items, left that still retain RMQís signature. Amongst all my previous purchases, this is the one that I love the most as well, along with EFXís Legend Darth Vader helmet. As my wife is not fond of having these displayed, I have kept em all in storage, but when I can dig through the storage, I will let you know whether similar smudge or glue marks are present, although I believe there wernít any. Although disheartening it is to have smudges, you should consider yourself lucky because upon half of the listings that I have seen listed on Ebay, they came with major defects, the most prominent one being the cracking of collar! Once I used to go crazy about all my editioned props being flawless, but after collecting rare limited edition books, I realized that the condition standards that prop replicas collectors abide by, is super lapse compared to those who collect rare and fine books. Those smudges and glue marks are nuisance in my opinion, and you shouldnít worry about them.

    Display it with pride!
    Last edited by The_Antiquarian; 08-16-2019 at 12:44 AM.

  3. #3
    Thank you! The signature is definitely a huge part of the piece. The fact McQuarrie was willing to sign these pieces in the first place is amazing. It was another reason I wanted the piece. There’s something so amazing about seeing a concept drawing brought to life in this way. And I agree. The marks are just parts of the piece and it really should be looked at as a whole. I can just be overly critical. If you do get a chance to look at your piece please let me know.

  4. #4
    I forgot to ask. Did you ever attach yours with the neck piece? The neck piece I got is in mint condition and is not cracked or broken. Just wondering if it’s worth the risk of trying to attach or better to keep in the box.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by LordNyx View Post
    I forgot to ask. Did you ever attach yours with the neck piece? The neck piece I got is in mint condition and is not cracked or broken. Just wondering if itís worth the risk of trying to attach or better to keep in the box.
    When I first received my helmet, I did assemble all the pieces and displayed it for weeks. When I dissembled the helmet and placed it back in the box, I did not have any issues including breakage, scratches, and etc. When I talked to those who were selling the ones with broken collars, they all claimed that the cracking was preexistent, prior to opening the box (but who knows!). If you already have it displayed, I suppose it's better if you keep them as is. The polished surface of McVader helmet makes scratches more visible and as such, do try to minimize physical contacts

    As I collect modern and contemporary artworks as well, I am currently in the process of upgrading frames and glasses/acrylics to better conserve the paintings. If you believe the helmet will be exposed to sunlights/non-LED lightings constantly, MAYBE you should look into plexiglass instead, as they provide 99% UV protection.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by The_Antiquarian View Post
    When I first received my helmet, I did assemble all the pieces and displayed it for weeks. When I dissembled the helmet and placed it back in the box, I did not have any issues including breakage, scratches, and etc. When I talked to those who were selling the ones with broken collars, they all claimed that the cracking was preexistent, prior to opening the box (but who knows!). If you already have it displayed, I suppose it's better if you keep them as is. The polished surface of McVader helmet makes scratches more visible and as such, do try to minimize physical contacts

    As I collect modern and contemporary artworks as well, I am currently in the process of upgrading frames and glasses/acrylics to better conserve the paintings. If you believe the helmet will be exposed to sunlights/non-LED lightings constantly, MAYBE you should look into plexiglass instead, as they provide 99% UV protection.
    Thanks for the info! I haven’t attached it so maybe I’ll jusy leave it as is. You can’t really see the neck piece anyways. If the tiny smudge marks from the dome bother me so much I don’t want to risk actually breaking a part of the helmet. Will take into consideration the plexiglass, but where I plan to display it has pretty little light.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by LordNyx View Post
    I forgot to ask. Did you ever attach yours with the neck piece? The neck piece I got is in mint condition and is not cracked or broken. Just wondering if it’s worth the risk of trying to attach or better to keep in the box.

    Welcome to the thread!
    i double checked mine. And there’s no paint flaking...I wonder if it had caught the edge of something else....

    as as far as the collar. I doubt they were factory issues. I remember most people saying they had difficulty getting the collar to line up. Which is probably the reason for cracking. As I mentioned to you mine fits, but the little greeblies itself bent to accommodate the alignment. On of my greeblies simply developed a split and I simply used cyanoacrylate to put the piece back together ....

  8. #8
    Yeah, that’s what I’m wondering too. It’s such a strange spot for the paint to flake though - you’d really have had to bang it against something. Oh well, nothing that can be done.
    Quote Originally Posted by demorathis View Post
    Welcome to the thread!
    i double checked mine. And there’s no paint flaking...I wonder if it had caught the edge of something else....

    as as far as the collar. I doubt they were factory issues. I remember most people saying they had difficulty getting the collar to line up. Which is probably the reason for cracking. As I mentioned to you mine fits, but the little greeblies itself bent to accommodate the alignment. On of my greeblies simply developed a split and I simply used cyanoacrylate to put the piece back together ....

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by LordNyx View Post
    Yeah, thatís what Iím wondering too. Itís such a strange spot for the paint to flake though - youíd really have had to bang it against something. Oh well, nothing that can be done.
    At least you got it for a steal! And itís so minor, Iíd hardly call it a defect.

    there are just so few of these as it is, and again none of the. Are 100 percent perfect by virtue of the fact that they are all hand assembled, there are bound to be things thatís just go wonky over time...or normal wear and tear since every time you dust it itíll take some dirt scuffs here and there....

    the point if you got one one of these bad boys and they are unique and a special addition to any Star Wars collection.

  10. #10
    You’re definitely right. I still feel lucky to own one of these beauties. I’m glad I now know what everyone was so amazed by years ago. Definitely lives up to its holy grail status.
    Quote Originally Posted by demorathis View Post
    At least you got it for a steal! And it’s so minor, I’d hardly call it a defect.

    there are just so few of these as it is, and again none of the. Are 100 percent perfect by virtue of the fact that they are all hand assembled, there are bound to be things that’s just go wonky over time...or normal wear and tear since every time you dust it it’ll take some dirt scuffs here and there....

    the point if you got one one of these bad boys and they are unique and a special addition to any Star Wars collection.

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