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1/55's revisited


kanata67
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On 10/17/2021 at 6:40 PM, masarujasu said:

I messed up and triple submitted the above reply. I'll use this real estate to ask another question.

In May 2019, some 'prototypes' appeared on YAJ. I saved all the auction photos, bought a few for myself, for illustration purposes I've added some pics below. I also submitted all the auctions to web archive for posterity at the time, thinking they may be significant.

In all, 12 specimens. New head sculpts, painted, with a painted pilot in the cockpit. Base figure is 2001 China.

I wanted to know if anyone had seen the specimens that xstoys brought to the MWCon in 2004, in person. Those figures appeared to have unpainted heads, but no close ups were ever shared. Even though I certainly thought I could see some key indicators from the convention photos, they are extremely small and not definitive. Can anyone corroborate whether these look like they are related to those unpainted prototypes?

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i-img900x675-1557571054hqgvfs1029881.jpg

These appear to be the same as the Bandai prototypes XsToys displayed year ago.

 

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On 10/20/2021 at 2:21 AM, nightmareB4macross said:

This is the first time I have ever seen this combination. It’s very hard to say it didn’t happen as stranger things have been found. It just seems odd to find a 1990 box with 1984-85 figure inside.

Have you ever pulled the item from the packaging? Might be good to document this.

I slid a mirror under to view the stamp because I am reluctant to break the seal and remove the figure. It's a standard earlier undated BANDAI.

20211022_184846.jpg

20211022_184909.jpg

Edited by masarujasu
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  • 2 weeks later...
On 1/1/2021 at 10:10 AM, TheLoneWolf said:

I have no idea, I've wondered about that myself.

On a somewhat related note, here's an article about a Jetfire was used in Hasbro's photoshoots. I expected it to be a cousin to my Matsushiro Super VF-1S and be a Matsushiro Jetfire, but it's actually a Bandai branded Jetfire, as evidenced by the unlined canopy and the Bandai branded backplate! And it's legitimate because it came directly from Hasbro with a certificate of authenticity. I had always assumed that the Matsushiro branded Jetfires were the first releases of Jetfire, with the Bandai branded ones being manufactured afterwards, but this photoshoot Jetfire turns that notion on its head.

The only explanations I can think of are these:

  • That Jetfire was used in later photoshoots, with a Matsushiro branded Jetfire being used in earlier photoshoots. I can't imagine Hasbro requiring multiple photoshoots at different time periods for the same children's toy, but maybe?
  • Bandai was manufacturing both Matsushiro and Bandai branded Jetfires alongside each other at the same time in their factory, which would make aging these toys incredibly difficult for collectors.

Collecting and/or writing about Jetfire involves going down an insanely deep rabbit hole, complete with loops, twists, and turns :wacko:

That's an interesting question, I wonder if anyone has done the research on that one before.

Anyways, Happy New Year everyone!

I am inclined to agree with the first scenario.

There is evidence of multiple shoots for Jetfire at different times, with specimens prepared by Hasbro.

The first being the toy and transformation photography on the packaging, that uses a Takatoku base figure with ridged antenna, sharp nosecone, lined canopy (painted black), painted leg fins, and even a missile in the gun. But the key points are the ovular 'openings' on the nosecone the circular 'openings' on the the hip beside the main intake. They are painted red. I say 'opening' because I am unsure if these are nozzles/thrusters/intakes/sensors in the Macross canon.

Next, the 1985 pre toy fair catalog uses two typical Matsushiros (one boxed) with painted red opening on the nosecone. The one near the intake is unclear. http://obscuretf.com/hhk/images/full/USPRETF1985f.jpg

After that, the pack-in 1985 catalog, the specimens (2) used here are a Matsu/Bandai transitional figure. Clear striped canopy, smooth antenna, stubbed nosecone, Matsu sprue legs, pre-rubsign, (probably Bandai undated stamp). Again, the two openings are painted(?) red. https://tfarchive.com/toys/catalogues/generationone_catalogue/85a_catalog.jpg

The specimen showcased on the TFSource article is not any of the above. The red openings on the nosecone is a sticker that has been applied, so assume the same of the red openings near the intake. This may indicate that on previous examples this was a sticker as well. https://tfsource.com/blog/2018/09/14/collector-interview-72-jeremy-kaufmann/

In the 1985 Sears catalog, https://www.battlegrip.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/sears1985.jpg the Jetfire looks to be photography prepared by Hasbro as the openings are again red and the figure is fully decaled. But this is a different specimen with unlined canopy and a rubsign. Contrast that with the JCPenney catalog that looks like they did their own photography without applying any decals or enhancements. https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EUHx0U1X0AUlW-m?format=jpg&name=4096x4096

My conclusion is that when preparing a figure for a shoot, there are some tweaks done by Hasbro to improve the visual appeal of the figure, I.e. the red details. This is consistent with the authenticated figure from the TFSource article, although it is unclear which specific paperwork this specimen ended up on. And, Jetfire has been photographed multiple times, using the available figure variants at the time.

Edited by masarujasu
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  • 3 weeks later...
On 10/31/2021 at 9:10 AM, masarujasu said:

I am inclined to agree with the first scenario.

There is evidence of multiple shoots for Jetfire at different times, with specimens prepared by Hasbro.

The first being the toy and transformation photography on the packaging, that uses a Takatoku base figure with ridged antenna, sharp nosecone, lined canopy (painted black), painted leg fins, and even a missile in the gun. But the key points are the ovular 'openings' on the nosecone the circular 'openings' on the the hip beside the main intake. They are painted red. I say 'opening' because I am unsure if these are nozzles/thrusters/intakes/sensors in the Macross canon.

Next, the 1985 pre toy fair catalog uses two typical Matsushiros (one boxed) with painted red opening on the nosecone. The one near the intake is unclear. http://obscuretf.com/hhk/images/full/USPRETF1985f.jpg

After that, the pack-in 1985 catalog, the specimens (2) used here are a Matsu/Bandai transitional figure. Clear striped canopy, smooth antenna, stubbed nosecone, Matsu sprue legs, pre-rubsign, (probably Bandai undated stamp). Again, the two openings are painted(?) red. https://tfarchive.com/toys/catalogues/generationone_catalogue/85a_catalog.jpg

The specimen showcased on the TFSource article is not any of the above. The red openings on the nosecone is a sticker that has been applied, so assume the same of the red openings near the intake. This may indicate that on previous examples this was a sticker as well. https://tfsource.com/blog/2018/09/14/collector-interview-72-jeremy-kaufmann/

In the 1985 Sears catalog, https://www.battlegrip.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/sears1985.jpg the Jetfire looks to be photography prepared by Hasbro as the openings are again red and the figure is fully decaled. But this is a different specimen with unlined canopy and a rubsign. Contrast that with the JCPenney catalog that looks like they did their own photography without applying any decals or enhancements. https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EUHx0U1X0AUlW-m?format=jpg&name=4096x4096

My conclusion is that when preparing a figure for a shoot, there are some tweaks done by Hasbro to improve the visual appeal of the figure, I.e. the red details. This is consistent with the authenticated figure from the TFSource article, although it is unclear which specific paperwork this specimen ended up on. And, Jetfire has been photographed multiple times, using the available figure variants at the time.

Amazing, you've done fantastic research into this! I completely agree with your assessment that there were multiple photo shoots for Jetfire taking place at different times.

And thank you for providing sources to back up your theory; it's hard to argue with dated pictures. Have you ever considered doing a comprehensive write-up of all your findings? G1 Jetfire's history is one of the most complicated around and it'd be nice to find everything in one (long) article.

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On 11/19/2021 at 2:40 AM, TheLoneWolf said:

Amazing, you've done fantastic research into this! I completely agree with your assessment that there were multiple photo shoots for Jetfire taking place at different times.

And thank you for providing sources to back up your theory; it's hard to argue with dated pictures. Have you ever considered doing a comprehensive write-up of all your findings? G1 Jetfire's history is one of the most complicated around and it'd be nice to find everything in one (long) article.

Yes! I have considered it. I've just written a massive essay on Shockwave which was essentially Jetfire's Christmas '84 nemesis, and researching the former has uncovered a lot for me about the latter. I think it would be fitting to do the same for Jetfire.

One thing I dropped the ball on re: the photoshoot discussion - Jetfire actually does come with little red decals (2 ovals/2 circles), but they are really badly cut and the Kaufmann specimen looks to have a cleaner and fuller set used for whatever shoot it was involved in. I photographed a freshly applied decal from a spare sheet below to illustrate how bad it looks.

So that raises a doubt on whether the Sears photo shoot was with Hasbro-supplied photography or done in-house, because any retailer can apply these decals if they are fastidious enough. Though many are not, for example, Argos catalogs missing key decals on Jetfire, as well as erroneous toy configurations on other figures:

So to fill the gap we really can only look at other Hasbro issued documentation, this time the 1985 European catalog, where Jetfire is actually the Autobot leader (due to Optimus Prime's rights sitting with another company at the time). https://www.battlegrip.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/transformers.jpg 

This is different photography from the 1985 US catalog. An easy tell is the missing stickers on the dorsal fast packs. This photoshoot took place at the same location that Hasbro used for the 1984 toy-fair catalog. So it's a different shoot - but not due to geography - it's still at USA HQ. 

So to summarize known shoots:

  • Packaging
  • 1985 pre toy fair
  • 1985 US catalog (same as 1986)
  • 1985 Euro catalog

 

Jetfire decal.png

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  • 4 months later...
On 11/23/2021 at 6:03 AM, masarujasu said:

Yes! I have considered it. I've just written a massive essay on Shockwave which was essentially Jetfire's Christmas '84 nemesis, and researching the former has uncovered a lot for me about the latter. I think it would be fitting to do the same for Jetfire.

One thing I dropped the ball on re: the photoshoot discussion - Jetfire actually does come with little red decals (2 ovals/2 circles), but they are really badly cut and the Kaufmann specimen looks to have a cleaner and fuller set used for whatever shoot it was involved in. I photographed a freshly applied decal from a spare sheet below to illustrate how bad it looks.

So that raises a doubt on whether the Sears photo shoot was with Hasbro-supplied photography or done in-house, because any retailer can apply these decals if they are fastidious enough. Though many are not, for example, Argos catalogs missing key decals on Jetfire, as well as erroneous toy configurations on other figures:

So to fill the gap we really can only look at other Hasbro issued documentation, this time the 1985 European catalog, where Jetfire is actually the Autobot leader (due to Optimus Prime's rights sitting with another company at the time). https://www.battlegrip.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/transformers.jpg 

This is different photography from the 1985 US catalog. An easy tell is the missing stickers on the dorsal fast packs. This photoshoot took place at the same location that Hasbro used for the 1984 toy-fair catalog. So it's a different shoot - but not due to geography - it's still at USA HQ. 

So to summarize known shoots:

  • Packaging
  • 1985 pre toy fair
  • 1985 US catalog (same as 1986)
  • 1985 Euro catalog

 

Jetfire decal.png

Very comprehensive research. So much fun to read.  Are you still working on or planning on writing an article of all your findings?

When referring to the European version are you talking about the Milton Bradley Jetfire produced in Macau?

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On 4/14/2022 at 5:20 AM, nightmareB4macross said:

Very comprehensive research. So much fun to read.  Are you still working on or planning on writing an article of all your findings?

When referring to the European version are you talking about the Milton Bradley Jetfire produced in Macau?

Yeah, still on my to do list. I'm not aware of a Jetfire release made in Macau. Can you elaborate on that?

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17 hours ago, nightmareB4macross said:

https://20thcenturytoycollector.com/posts/category/transformers/page/2/
 

There is a ton a of great information found here.

The 'made in Macau' bit is a heading under the Ultra Magnus blog entry, those figures were also available in the US distribution. The Jetfire blog entry is separate and links to a full article where the author writes that the 1985 (MB) and 1986 (Hasbro) branded figures are the same Bandai toys. I don't think I've ever heard of Jetfire being made in Macau, although it's well known in the Transformers community that Takara was sending/sourcing TF molds all over the place for different reasons (Taiwan, Korea, Macau, China, France, Mexico, South America etc.), I don't think Bandai necessarily followed suit.

https://20thcenturytoycollector.com/posts/2012/05/12/transformers-jetfire/

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16 hours ago, Slave IV said:

I’ve been playing with these toys for 35+ years and never did I realize there was a 4th transformation mode. 

C035B24D-7BAE-4612-852A-2606251C3525.jpeg.2c233b7f7422b7359b7f30d9c3096087.jpeg

My kid figured out this “roller mode” after 15 minutes of playing with them.

Nice!!!! I miss my old 1/55's. one of these days when I have more expendable funds I'm going to get some. Jetfire was my very first Valkyrie ever.

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9 minutes ago, 505thAirborne said:

Nice!!!! I miss my old 1/55's. one of these days when I have more expendable funds I'm going to get some. Jetfire was my very first Valkyrie ever.

Some of them can be found for quite reasonable prices if you search with patience. You definitely need to get some if you don’t have them anymore because they really are the best transforming toys ever made. 

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20 minutes ago, Slave IV said:

Some of them can be found for quite reasonable prices if you search with patience. You definitely need to get some if you don’t have them anymore because they really are the best transforming toys ever made. 

Agreed, these are a lot of fun to transform & really were built to last. One day I'd love to have a small squadron of 1A Cannon Fodders all with Fast Packs. Every so often I check with Mandarake for a good deal. B))

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4 hours ago, masarujasu said:

The 'made in Macau' bit is a heading under the Ultra Magnus blog entry, those figures were also available in the US distribution. The Jetfire blog entry is separate and links to a full article where the author writes that the 1985 (MB) and 1986 (Hasbro) branded figures are the same Bandai toys. I don't think I've ever heard of Jetfire being made in Macau, although it's well known in the Transformers community that Takara was sending/sourcing TF molds all over the place for different reasons (Taiwan, Korea, Macau, China, France, Mexico, South America etc.), I don't think Bandai necessarily followed suit.

https://20thcenturytoycollector.com/posts/2012/05/12/transformers-jetfire/

 

5 hours ago, masarujasu said:

The 'made in Macau' bit is a heading under the Ultra Magnus blog entry, those figures were also available in the US distribution. The Jetfire blog entry is separate and links to a full article where the author writes that the 1985 (MB) and 1986 (Hasbro) branded figures are the same Bandai toys. I don't think I've ever heard of Jetfire being made in Macau, although it's well known in the Transformers community that Takara was sending/sourcing TF molds all over the place for different reasons (Taiwan, Korea, Macau, China, France, Mexico, South America etc.), I don't think Bandai necessarily followed suit.

https://20thcenturytoycollector.com/posts/2012/05/12/transformers-jetfire/

It does tie in well with the release of the Hergoss Walkyrie produced by Savie in Macau.  If MB was producing Jetfire in Macau it would be easy send off or sell old molds for Savie to touch up and reuse.

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22 hours ago, Slave IV said:

I’ve been playing with these toys for 35+ years and never did I realize there was a 4th transformation mode. 

C035B24D-7BAE-4612-852A-2606251C3525.jpeg.2c233b7f7422b7359b7f30d9c3096087.jpeg

My kid figured out this “roller mode” after 15 minutes of playing with them.

Is that the "Rolling Surrender" mode?:unknw::D

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33 minutes ago, sqidd said:

Is that the "Rolling Surrender" mode?:unknw::D

Haha, could be. To a 5 year old kid (or anyone), imagination is king. These toys are just great however you look at it. He said, “these are the best transforming toys ever!”. Which is what I’ve always said on these forums so after 35 years and another generation, they still hold up. 

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