Discoloration - a.k.a. "prototypes and variations"

HWR

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Re: Discoloration - a.k.a. \"prototypes and variati

Hope some of you guys can help me with pictures of these three discolored Boba Fett figures.

- Olive torso (same as posted by Martijn, but need a picture of one with less discolored painted areas and intact rocket)

- Light faded limbs

-Pink limbs
 
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Re: Discoloration - a.k.a. \"prototypes and variati

hi,

i have found this in the old toy box ( sorry for my english)
i think an original, but you can help me for identify this please
 
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Re: Discoloration - a.k.a. \"prototypes and variati

its a fake and nothing to do with deterioration,more to do with dye.
 
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Re: Discoloration - a.k.a. \"prototypes and variati

but the dressmaking is brown,
 
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Re: Discoloration - a.k.a. \"prototypes and variati

Here is my mouldy ewok MOC!



Tis a shame as the card and blister are mint.
 
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Re: Discoloration - a.k.a. \"prototypes and variati

jawa57 said:
but the dressmaking is brown,
The thread (dressmaking) will not absorb the red dye. The brown thread is the easiest way to identify that the cape is a fake.

The only authentic red-caped figures have come directly from Kenner sources are are extremely rare. Conversely, fakes have been made since the early 1990's and have spread worldwide since.

-chris
 
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Re: Discoloration - a.k.a. \"prototypes and variati

I'm surprised the "green hair/pouch" variations have not landed in this thread yet.
 
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Re: Discoloration - a.k.a. \"prototypes and variati

This thread is always an interesting re-read, especially considering the last few days...
 
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Re: Discoloration - a.k.a. \"prototypes and variati

Boba with three discolored limbs.

 
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Old but awesome thread alert, had to bump this with some pictures of a few figures that were just listed on ebay:







I think these figures all went on holiday to the Sun! Love that AT-ST Driver haha!
 
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This thread scares me as I dread that happening to any of my figures,is it just the sunlight that causes this discoloration?
 
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Hey, JRock;

No, sunlight is not the only thing that will cause discolouration. Sunlight is particularly bad, because it tends to warm the plastic, and it's usually unfiltered, so contains U/V light.

Heat is bad because (so far as I know...) no one quite knows the composition of the plastics in the figures--some plastics (like polyvinylchloride - PVC) are inherently unstable, and break down (which is what the discolouration is--they'll eventually get more brittle, too) due to chemical degradation. Just about all chemical processes are sped up with heat, whether the heat is from direct sunlight, or completely sealed off from light in a hot attic.

U/V light is bad because of its short wavelength--shorter wavelength = more intensive bombardment of light particles on the figure in a given time frame. But, even non-U/V light will eventually cause the same damage, even if it's so gradual you don't notice over the span of years (even if there is no noticeable discolouration in the 30+ years since these things were made).

The best thing you can do is store your figures in a non-acidic (an acidic environment, such as in a corrugated cardboard box, will also contribute to the chemical break-down of the plastic), light-proof container in a steady, cool environment (ie., not cold like in a fridge or freezer, where you'll be subjecting the figures to radical temperature fluctuations when you remove them, or the power goes out, etc.), and displaying them under non-U/V generating artifical light (far enough from any incandescent lighting to ensure the incandescents are not heating up the figure), with the lights on only when you're viewing your collection, and in darkness most of the time.
 
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Chris,

Absolutely wonderful topic!!! This is becoming a serious issue even with packaged figures, playsets, and vehicles. I got a great photo to share later of a Wampa I opened up from a sealed box, and this thing was a serious POS! I've never seen such discoloration right from a factory sealed box!



Notice the discoloring done by the cardboard insert along the top of the head on the ears!
Hang on a minute - I just saw this and it has me seriously worried! Is this for real? Cardboard inserts causing discolouration?!

Please somebody SAY IT AINT SO.


ps. that super tanned mom a few posts above has me worried too. Just not as much as the inserts thing.
 
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Hang on a minute - I just saw this and it has me seriously worried! Is this for real? Cardboard inserts causing discolouration?!

Please somebody SAY IT AINT SO.


ps. that super tanned mom a few posts above has me worried too. Just not as much as the inserts thing.
So does that mean my AFA 90 Wampa is yellow in the box????.....scary stuff!!!!

And that poor mahogany lady above is terrifying!!!....I will stick to factor 30 thank you very much!!!YIKES!!!

Darren
 
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Sorry to say it, B_T_E--but yup; chances are your MISB pieces are deteriorating. They've been in intimate contact ("intimate" here meaning "close/touching"--not that other kind of "intimate") with acidic cardboard for 30-odd years, with very little air circulation to sweep out accumulating acidic off-gassing from the cardboard (and possibly the figure as well, if it contains PVC). That packaging was intended to move the product off the shelf, not as a long-term storage solution.

If you've got stuff MIB in open boxes, take the toys out, or wrap them in acid-free tissue inside the box, and commit to changing the tissue every year or so (the tissue will absorb much of the volatile compounds that would otherwise be damaging the toy). I'm still guilty of leaving instructions, etc. inside original boxes (something I've been meaning to do something about...)--but I won't leave the toys themselves in there.

If you collect MISB stuff; well--not much you can do, other than keep it in a cool, stable environment (I'd say a dry environment too, which would be best to slow the discolouration of plastic--but that's likely to do bad things to the tape that's sealed the box; 45-55% RH is probably best). The important thing there is that the box is still sealed, so does the condition of a toy that no one's going to see really matter that much anyway?
 
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Tim, you're painting a depressing picture!

In all my MIB items I do keep the instructions, sticker sheets and catalogs in mylar baggies to help preserve them... but I really didn't know that the cardboard inserts were a problem and in spite of what you've said i'm finding that a bit hard to believe.

Looking at that discoloured Wampa it looks like the problems are along the seams, could that yellowing be caused by glue seepage rather than by the inserts? You often see similar yellow patches on the white TIE Fighter.
 
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I don't mean to be depressing, and I don't mean to be alarmist, either--it's not like anybody has to open their MISBs immediately or they'll all fall to dust by the end of the week. My background is in archaeology, so I tend to have a longer-term view on materials preservation than a lot of people (it drives me a little bit nuts when I see comments like "it's been in my display room for 10 years and I haven't noticed any yellowing" or "it's been that way for 30 years and it still looks fine"--sorry, folks, but 30 years isn't a long time in the lives of things, and by the time you're aware of the damage, it's too late). I'm the Collections Manager for a social history museum (as in, I look after our artefact collections--I don't go around trying to collect unpaid loans!), and materials preservation is part of what I do. In that regard, anything that can contribute to the break-down of historic material is something I do my best to avoid--and intimate contact with an acidic or otherwise volatile material is one of those things, even if the Wampa damage is due to glue seepage. That you keep catalogues, instructions, etc. in baggies is good--any food-grade plastic bag will be archivally sound, and makes a good barrier between the collection piece and the acidic cardboard. But, if you've still got them inside the box, then the immediate environment the baggies are in will be acidic from the cardboard off-gassing. It's not a level of acidity that's going to burn your eyes or anything, but over time the effects will build up, and once the damage is done, there's nothing that can be done about it.

I'm not preaching to change anyone's collecting, storage or display habits--if you're comfortable keeping your collections secured in acidic cardboard inserts inside acidic boxes, that's up to you. Same for anyone who displays MOCs in full sunlight. But, my education, professional training and 20+ years' experience tells me it's not the best course of action for long term preservation, and as such, it isn't the way I store my own collection. When discussions like this come up, offering my informed opinion on it is one of the few ways I'm able to contribute to this community! Still, I know of many museums that can't, or choose not to, apply best practices to their preservation efforts; many collectors can't or don't as well (I've still got my instructions in my boxes...and not in baggies!) More information is better than less (or none), so that people can at least be aware of what consequences their decisions might have, and make their decisions accordingly.
 
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Tim, you obviously know what you are talking about... and you'll be pleased to hear as a result of your advice I have just ordered 50X large sheets of acid-free tissue paper. It could be the best £2.89 i've ever spent!

I won't be changing the wrapping every year - that's probably further than i'm willing to go - but it'll be a nice excuse for me to 'get my toys out' of storage. Although if they're anything like those toys in TOY STORY 2 then they've probably all gone insane in their boxes by now and will try to murder me in my sleep.

 
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I don't mean to be depressing, and I don't mean to be alarmist, either--it's not like anybody has to open their MISBs immediately or they'll all fall to dust by the end of the week. My background is in archaeology, so I tend to have a longer-term view on materials preservation than a lot of people (it drives me a little bit nuts when I see comments like "it's been in my display room for 10 years and I haven't noticed any yellowing" or "it's been that way for 30 years and it still looks fine"--sorry, folks, but 30 years isn't a long time in the lives of things, and by the time you're aware of the damage, it's too late). I'm the Collections Manager for a social history museum (as in, I look after our artefact collections--I don't go around trying to collect unpaid loans!), and materials preservation is part of what I do. In that regard, anything that can contribute to the break-down of historic material is something I do my best to avoid--and intimate contact with an acidic or otherwise volatile material is one of those things, even if the Wampa damage is due to glue seepage. That you keep catalogues, instructions, etc. in baggies is good--any food-grade plastic bag will be archivally sound, and makes a good barrier between the collection piece and the acidic cardboard. But, if you've still got them inside the box, then the immediate environment the baggies are in will be acidic from the cardboard off-gassing. It's not a level of acidity that's going to burn your eyes or anything, but over time the effects will build up, and once the damage is done, there's nothing that can be done about it.

I'm not preaching to change anyone's collecting, storage or display habits--if you're comfortable keeping your collections secured in acidic cardboard inserts inside acidic boxes, that's up to you. Same for anyone who displays MOCs in full sunlight. But, my education, professional training and 20+ years' experience tells me it's not the best course of action for long term preservation, and as such, it isn't the way I store my own collection. When discussions like this come up, offering my informed opinion on it is one of the few ways I'm able to contribute to this community! Still, I know of many museums that can't, or choose not to, apply best practices to their preservation efforts; many collectors can't or don't as well (I've still got my instructions in my boxes...and not in baggies!) More information is better than less (or none), so that people can at least be aware of what consequences their decisions might have, and make their decisions accordingly.
Great to "read" someone that actually knows what he is talking! I myself (a restorer of art) even used acid free boxes and only acid free paper for the moving of my collection....not one baggy! :D The collection was stored away for two or three month only, but it was worth it ;)

Afa cases and baggys is the worst you can do to your figures in my own opinion!

Cheers

Wolff
 
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Ent, at £2.89 for 50 sheets of acid-free tissue, you're getting a much better deal on it than we do in Canada!

Wolff, I understand you're concerns about AFA cases and baggies, because they both will restrict air circulation and contribute to the settling of acidic vapours on collections pieces. But, when the only storage alternative involves an acidic environment (such as acidic cardboard boxes), baggies, AFA and Star cases do provide something of a barrier against that off-gassing. In a similar vein, for about 10 years my museum had large textiles (flags, quilts, etc.) stored rolled onto acidic cardboard sonotubes. The only alternative was to fold the pieces for storage, and we deemed that to be a greater concern than the acidity of the cardboard (folds put stress on fabrics that will weaken the fibres over time). But, we were able to mitigate the off-gassing of the cardboard by sealing it somewhat with a barrier--in that case, we used tinfoil. The impermeable tinfoil re-channelled the off-gassing to the interior of the sonotube, and away from the textiles. We now have our textiles rolled onto powder-coated steel rollers--no off-gassing issues anymore.

I've run a Collections Management workshop for the Alberta Museums Association for the past few years, for a lot of volunteer-run museums that can't afford the bells and whistles to look after their collections in the best possible manner. I stress the point to them that there's the ideal, and then there's reality--but at least being aware of the issues, even if you can't do anything about it right now, is a big step in the right direction to preserving a collection.
 
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Wolff, I understand you're concerns about AFA cases and baggies, because they both will restrict air circulation and contribute to the settling of acidic vapours on collections pieces. But, when the only storage alternative involves an acidic environment (such as acidic cardboard boxes), baggies, AFA and Star cases do provide something of a barrier against that off-gassing. ...
Tim, I hear you, but IMO the gasing from the figures itself are mostly more worse then "enviroment" (flexibilzers etc). And sunlight is even worse on a figure when "encased".

I agree that best solution isn't found yet (talking of art/archaeological stuff right now). If you want to exhibit stuff you always risk "flaws".

If encasing stuff into acrylics would be the best solution the "Mona Lisa" would be in an Afa case nowadays. It isnt...you can guess why?? (not pointed at you Tim...I know you know ;) )
 
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Ent, at £2.89 for 50 sheets of acid-free tissue, you're getting a much better deal on it than we do in Canada!
Mr McShane only my mother calls me 'Ent', I prefer Bonsai! :grin:


Seemed to be lots of cheap acid-free tissue paper on Ebay, I just went for this one: 50 SHEETS OF WHITE ACID FREE TISSUE PAPER 550x750mm | eBay

I've got some very nice china white X-Wings and others in boxes and if this tissue paper helps keep them that way as the years tick by then it will be well worth it and I shall owe you my thanks!
 
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Turquoise body blue snags?

What is the general consensus on the turquoise body blue snags? Personally I don't mind, In fact I think it looks quite good. What I guess I'm asking is, is a turquoise bodied snag perceived to be worth less?
 
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I would say so, because the body should be the same color as the limbs.
 
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I think a discolored figure will always be worth less than a proper colored one
 
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Certainly wouldnt say its worthless, heaps sell on ebay each week, but i think its safe to ay most collectors are looking for uniformity when it comes to colour on figures, anything thats degraded/faded has lost some value to many collectors.
 

HWR

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A discolored figure will always be worth less than a mint one, as will figures with paint loss. spesking of a blue Snaggletooth, it will still be woth someting, as the demand for da blue guy is there and it always sell for relative high prices. So it can not be compared with a green limb Chewbacca or a yellow limb/torso Stormtrooper, which is next to worthless.
 

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This thread is an oldie, but goodie and already listed in the "Useful Threads & Resources" thread, but I'm bumping and stickying it since we've had interest as of late in discoloration/degradation topics. I'll be closing and directing users to this thread for the time being to free up forum space for other topics.

Mike
 
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Can someone tell me if the turquoise Snagg is a case of colour degredation or if it is a true varient?
 
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Can someone tell me if the turquoise Snagg is a case of colour degredation or if it is a true varient?
Its just plastic degredation on the hard plastic torso, the torso and arms are made of different plastics, the harder plastics of the torso fades or changes colours on many old figures
cheers
 
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man I gotta say finding a jawa with torso that matches limbs is getting to be hard. given the cloth cape hides this, but holy smokes trying to find big eyes right coo, not beat up, not discolored ... worse part is flash from cameras will hide the discoloration on many found on ebay. finally found one that is just a shade or two darker than limbs ... good enough for now. I can't help but wonder if the dyes in the cape might have helped with this issue on some level, but I guess the limbs would be more likely to suck up the color than the torso. I Know Mego figures at times will have body parts discolored from the suits.
 
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Hi All, I apologise in advance if this has been covered elsewhere - But can anyone advise on a method to "clean up" a clear blister on a carded figure?? Ive got a really clean card and blister , but there faint "smears" on the blister and i was thinkiing of trying Plastic Polish or similar with a soft cloth of course??? Or is the risk of damage too great??

Regards, Andrew B
 
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man I gotta say finding a jawa with torso that matches limbs is getting to be hard. given the cloth cape hides this, but holy smokes trying to find big eyes right coo, not beat up, not discolored ... worse part is flash from cameras will hide the discoloration on many found on ebay. finally found one that is just a shade or two darker than limbs ... good enough for now. I can't help but wonder if the dyes in the cape might have helped with this issue on some level, but I guess the limbs would be more likely to suck up the color than the torso.
I had recently a similar question. Last Saturday I was taken a look at some vintage figures. I don't think the colour difference is due to the cape, be it vinyl or cloth. It just seems the plastic used for the different limbs was not the same.
Sorry for the bad quality of the pic; the light was very low and I had no tripod with me.

 
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Has anyone ever seen a green bagged Chewbacca that also has green arms and legs?

I am posting this reply as I wonder if my figure is rare and possibly valuable? Can anyone help or give me any advice on this?

I only collect loose figures and have a complete set, including many variations: i.e. 8 x different Luke Skywalker Bespin fatigues, so any help you could give will be greatly appreciated.

Thank you.

New member Paul
 
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Most collectors here appear to think that that "green limb variation" is just simple discolouration and that the figure is not specially valuable.
 
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