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Mystery of the Non-MUSCLE Sculpts


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#26 General Veers

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 01:30 PM

I think I’m typing this solely to process my thoughts.

Part 21
Ok, I can buy into your thinking except for one point. New Ashurman doesn’t seem fragile, or at least any more fragile than other MUSCLE figures. Just like Bombay, he must have been dropped for balance reasons.

We also need to consider SHA’s and BHS’ pieces. Were there other figures with similar pieces? If Bandai/Mattel didn’t make these other figures from the start, why would they have started with these figures? Was Part 21 the absolute first wave of figures made? There’s still something with SHA and BHS I’m not 100% comfortable with…

Part 22
Ok, we’ve got a Nazi – so this is a red flag group. But I don’t think there is anything fragile here. It strikes me as a pretty hardy group. With only one each of these SR’s we struggle to have any real information. Could this have been a 1988 wave? A second flesh wave before colors are introduced? This group might operate outside the fragile/plug theory.

Part 24
Another Nazi (“I hate Nazis.”), plus some figures that look very out of place compared to the rest of the line. There are also a lot of figures with detachable pieces. I’m surprised anything from this Part makes it to production.

What about this? The production of different color patterns and confirmation from Bandai prove different factories produced the figures. I think Part 22 and 24 were at a different factory from Part 23. The MUSCLE figures aren’t made past 21.

At some point, based on the prototype poster picture, more than ~230 figures are going to be made. Factory A and B know the parts and figures to be plugged. Factory A, with Part 23, follows the procedure. Factory B has parts 22 and 24, follows the plugging guidelines – but accidentally goes one production cycle too far before finding out 22 and 24 won’t be made.

So were left with “Plugging/Balance” SR’s and “Production” SR’s. Maybe?

And then the color SR’s…
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#27 Tortle

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 01:51 PM

I think I’m typing this solely to process my thoughts.

Part 21
Ok, I can buy into your thinking except for one point. New Ashurman doesn’t seem fragile, or at least any more fragile than other MUSCLE figures. Just like Bombay, he must have been dropped for balance reasons.


Yeah, could be. I was thinking he was fragile because of his thin bladed hand. But Soupie's idea regarding MUSCLE plastic having problems injecting into the molds could be the issue there, too.

Part 22
Ok, we’ve got a Nazi – so this is a red flag group. But I don’t think there is anything fragile here. It strikes me as a pretty hardy group. With only one each of these SR’s we struggle to have any real information. Could this have been a 1988 wave? A second flesh wave before colors are introduced? This group might operate outside the fragile/plug theory.


I was thinking that Ramenman C and D could have been considered fragile because of their hair. But I agree that might be a stretch.

At some point, based on the prototype poster picture, more than ~230 figures are going to be made. Factory A and B know the parts and figures to be plugged. Factory A, with Part 23, follows the procedure. Factory B has parts 22 and 24, follows the plugging guidelines – but accidentally goes one production cycle too far before finding out 22 and 24 won’t be made.

So were left with “Plugging/Balance” SR’s and “Production” SR’s. Maybe?

And then the color SR’s…


Moving along with your production SR theory, I think the color SRs might have been because of miscommunication between the factories. So, one factory doesn't get the memo that certain figures shouldn't be made and runs a batch of them before they realize what's going on.

So, I think the Fragile/Plugging/Balance Super-Rares are most likely BHS, SHA, Drunken Master, Dr. Bonbe, King Robin Mask (if he exists), and the Part 24 M11s. Satan Cross, too.

The Production Super-Rares might be the Part 22 M11s. But they might have been Fragile/Plugging/Balance Super-Rares, too.
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#28 Soupie

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 01:52 PM

Personally I don't think we have enough info about the production of parts 22-24 to begin to speculate about which sculpts were or were not included/produced. Just because jkaris happened to find those particular 11 figures doesn't mean they were the only ones produced and it certainly doesn't mean other sculpts weren't produced or going to be produced.

On the other hand, we can speak with a little more assurance about the NMS and SRs in parts 1-21 because literally thousands of these sculpts were produced and released retail.

But of course this is coming from a person who has 3,000+ posts, half of which are about MUSCLE production speculation.

:D
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#29 Tortle

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 02:00 PM

On the other hand, we can speak with a little more assurance about the NMS and SRs in parts 1-21 because literally thousands of these sculpts were produced and released retail.


Yeah, I'd agree with that. I feel more comfortable with the Fragile/Plugging/Balancing theory with the first 21 parts than with 22 and 24.
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#30 jkaris

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 04:04 PM

I don't believe that Part 22+ were ever part of, or intended to be part of the original MUSCLE line.
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#31 dankingery

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 10:53 AM

i think soupie and nate are correct in assuming the mold wouldn't allow the m.u.s.c.l.e. type plastic to flow through the entire mold. i deal with pvc pipe at work alot and we end up heating it up and letting it settle in new shapes. plastic sets up really quickly, and the smaller it is the faster it sets. in the un-spoiled versions of BHS and SHA where the removable parts are still attached there is a thin spru-line that connects the plug or head to the rest of the figure. it could have been that the thicker u.s. plastic would often clog and they'd get a bad mold and have to discard the crappy figure, and the few that did mold properly were sent out, but were never official just like SC.

another concideration would be the small loose parts that little kids could choke on may have been further reason to not ship them stateside where our laws are a little more strict than other countries.

also, i'm sure mattel did study-groups with kids before releasing anything over here and found out that 9 out of 10 kids didn't like pretzel man and all of the female characters. it shouldn't be a suprise that a toy being marketed to boys didn't contain female characters. just look at she-ra the he-man spin-off. sure, her villans were cool as hell, but i'll bet they out sold her figure 100 to 1. that toyline did not last long. anyway, if i've reiterated what someone else has already said, please don't grind my face off with a disc grinder and serve it at your next cocktail party as pate.
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#32 Soupie

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 11:18 AM

i deal with pvc pipe at work alot and we end up heating it up and letting it settle in new shapes. plastic sets up really quickly, and the smaller it is the faster it sets. in the un-spoiled versions of BHS and SHA where the removable parts are still attached there is a thin spru-line that connects the plug or head to the rest of the figure. it could have been that the thicker u.s. plastic would often clog and they'd get a bad mold and have to discard the crappy figure, and the few that did mold properly were sent out, but were never official just like SC.

Thanks for sharing!

This is precisely the type of scenario I had in mind. Like I said, I think even a "thin" sculpt such as the pretzel man might pose problems. If we could just find one individual from Mattel/Bandai who could confirm "yes, we had some problems transitioning to the new MUSCLE plastic." :thumbsup: Maybe some day!
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#33 arforbes

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 11:37 AM

What about the tiny wire on VCR Man #168? That I think is the smallest muscle piece I have seen on a figure. Yet it works fine and is often not broken. :thumbsup:
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#34 Soupie

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 11:55 AM

Good point, arforbes, but where the sculpt is positioned in the family mold is also a consideration. It could be that VCR man was located close to where the liquid plastic entered the mold and thus never had problems filling... whereas sculpts furthest from where the liquid plastic entered experienced more problems.

As I've noted before, there does seem to be a slight pattern of 1,2, and 3 sculpts missing from each part. (But there are several exceptions as well.)
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#35 Bokkire Jin

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 12:12 PM

after looking at the 45, i've got a bootleg of the first one of part six(w/skull on his head). its rather a poor bootleg, looks like the 2 halves are off center. also got a bootleg of the 1st one of part 11(w/long chain)i'll find and scan em. those are cool sculpts in that collection!

Edited by Bokkire Jin, 05 February 2008 - 01:02 PM.

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#36 General Veers

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 01:39 PM

another concideration would be the small loose parts that little kids could choke on may have been further reason to not ship them stateside where our laws are a little more strict than other countries.

No.
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#37 Bokkire Jin

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 09:39 PM

here they are;
bootleg SRs

Edited by Bokkire Jin, 12 February 2008 - 11:52 AM.

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#38 Universal Ruler Supreme

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 10:17 PM

Hey guys! I thought I would finally chime in and just offer my 2 cents!


....So who wants my 2 cents? -_-
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#39 arforbes

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 09:41 AM

Hey guys! I thought I would finally chime in and just offer my 2 cents!


....So who wants my 2 cents? :)



Let's hear your 2 cents! :lol: :lol:

Edited by arforbes, 06 February 2008 - 09:41 AM.

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#40 Universal Ruler Supreme

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 11:05 AM

Well, using the Color combination info on the Trees and so forth we have already discovered that a few Part Trees were, oddly enough, actually part of a different part tree. For instance 161 was discovered to have been made on a tree from a different part that he belonged to, where originally it was believed that he was infact part of his own separate tree.

So I think that the same case holds true with most of the Non Muscle sculpt figures. Where they infact belonged to a tree of other Nonmuscle sculpts from a different Part entirely. In such instances, these tree molds could easily have been either pulled, lost, or broken. Resulting in different quantities of available Super Rares.

For instance. They may have even appeared in this format....Although this is highly speculation of course.

NonM sculpts from Parts 1, 2, and 3 could have been on one tree. 5 sculpts

NonM sculpts from part 5 had it's own tree. 6 sculpts

NonM sculpts from parts 6 and 7. 4 sculpts

NonM sculpts from part 8. 6 sculpts

NonM sculpts from part 9. 4 sculpts

NonM sculpts from parts 10, and 11. 4 sculpts

NonM sculpts from Parts 13, 14, and 15. 6 sculpts

NonM sculpts from parts 17, 18, 19, and 20. 5 sculpts

NonM sculpts from part 21. 6 sculpts


Again this is just speculation, and I hope nobody already said this, cause well, my eyes went cross after 5 minutes of trying to read through this thread. :)

Notice how my layout has either 4, 5, or 6 sculpts per tree. It kind of fits with the exception of SC, I'm wanting to think that he was either on a different tree from part 21 than the other Nonmuscle sculpts. But his availability doesn't match with the other figures from that part. This may have been an issue at the factory. If his legs were attached to his body the factory may have been in such a rush that they would discard half of the SC sculpts with the runner instead of cutting two sprues....which really wouldn't make too much sense. Really, until another Uncut Runner is found from one of the Nonmuscle sculpt parts, we may very well, never know.
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#41 dankingery

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 05:35 PM

after looking at the 45, i've got a bootleg of the first one of part six(w/skull on his head). its rather a poor bootleg, looks like the 2 halves are off center. also got a bootleg of the 1st one of part 11(w/long chain)i'll find and scan em. those are cool sculpts in that collection!


does your bootleg say hong kong on the back?..



edit> nevermind i just read your next post..

Edited by dankingery, 06 February 2008 - 07:32 PM.

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#42 Soupie

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 01:10 PM

URS, that's certainly an interesting theory.

If this were the case, however, wouldn't we expect to see the other part 21 non-MUSCLE sculpts with the same, relatively high frequency that we see BHS and SHA?

Edited by Soupie, 10 February 2008 - 01:11 PM.

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#43 Universal Ruler Supreme

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 03:43 PM

I covered that in my post Soupie. I think....sorta. :)
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#44 Soupie

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 03:56 PM

I covered that in my post Soupie. I think....sorta. :)

No, you just talked about Satan Cross. There are 3 other non-MUSCLE sculpts in part 21 besides BHS, SHA, and SC.

If your theory is correct, that perhaps this "non-MUSCLE sculpt, part 21 tree" exists and was made in a limited run, we should see the following three sulpts as "frequently" as we have seen BHS and SHA.

Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image

The reason being that because they were all theoretically on the same "tree" they should all have the same availability.
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#45 Universal Ruler Supreme

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 07:37 PM

OH sorry. I misread your post. :D I thought you were asking about SC.

Theoretically if the part 21 Nonmuscles were on the same tree, then there should be the same amount of each of them out there. That doesn't mean we would necessarily see them in the same quantities though. Cause well, they are Rare! I think it may just be chance that BHS and SHA have been found and documented most commonly. Also they are frankly the coolest ones! what kid would burn or cut up the cool Muscles that have removable parts? :p Remember we have reason to believe that we have discovered another Doctor Bombe on Craigslist, as well as a possible Robinmasks father sculpt. I think given time we should find more of these same sculpts. However if we continue to find BHS and SHA figs then the odds would be even more stacked against my theory. I'm almost expecting the next Super Rare to be found will either be Part 15's Black Menrui, or Part 21's New Ashuraman sculpts. That's what I would like to see anyway.
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#46 Soupie

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 06:44 AM

I'm really starting to like this theory. :D To confirm it, I believe all we need is to find one frame (tree) with several of the figures still attached, like arforbes' example, that all happen to be non-MUSCLE sculpts from the same part. Or, a picture of a frame or a picture or schematic of the mold. (Duh.) But, if we find one, I think we can then assume that the same is the case for all the non-MUSCLE sculpts. That is, that they're all on the same trees as you suggest. (I know I'm basically just repeating what you said. ;) )

Either way you look at it, I think we're on the right track, though it is all still speculation.

(1) I think we can be fairly certain there is a non-arbitrary reason the non-MUSCLE sculpts were not included in the MUSCLE line.

(2) I think we can make a good case why one or two of these sculpts from each part would not be included, mostly having to do with their offensive nature.

(3) When these sculpts were removed from the line, they were forced to take several others out as well.

(4) Was it because they had to "balance" the molds, or because these offensive sculpts were part of the same family mold as the other non-MUSCLE sculpts in the part?

I think we are on the verge of figuring out the non-MUSCLE sculpts! I think there has to be other complete frames (trees) out there, schematics/blueprints of the molds, or pictures of the molds.

Edited by Soupie, 11 February 2008 - 07:25 AM.

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#47 Soupie

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 06:51 AM

Is it possible, if part 21 SC was indeed two completely separate molds, that SC legs were in the same family mold as the part 21 non-MUSCLE sculpts...

So since the non-MUSCLE sculpt tree was not made, that would explain why SC's legs were not made either.

;)
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#48 Soupie

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 07:31 AM

Either way, I think our current knowledge of how MUSCLE molds were arranged, our knowledge of the injection molding process, the non-MUSCLE sculpts, and the oddity that is SC puts us on the fricking verge of figuring this all out!

How can we make sense of SC? A multi-part sculpt that apparently was not meant to be released (not on poster) that was however released only in flesh (first wave) without his extra part.

How would it be possible for SC to be so easily included in the flesh wave, and then so easily left out of the color wave(s)?

I don't believe SC was on his own mold -- though it's possible. I think the SC phenomena points to individual sculpts being either (1) blocked within the mold, or (2) being picked from the frame and recycled. (Of the two, I lean toward the first as the second just seems totally inefficient.)

This seems to weaken the "non-MUSCLE" sculpt mold theory.

Edited by Soupie, 11 February 2008 - 07:34 AM.

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#49 Soupie

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 07:43 AM

Last post, I swear!

Or SC could be a totally unique case altogether.

If his 2nd legs were part of a family mold that consisted of all non-MUSCLE sculpts, and SC's body was part of a separate family mold with other MUSCLE figures, I could see Mattel/Bandai saying "we can't produce this figure because he wouldn't be complete."

So SC is scratched from the list of sculpts scheduled to be made as MUSCLEs. However, once production begins, SC is mistakenly made, while his 2nd legs along with the other part 21 non-MUSCLE sculpts, are not.

Therefore, once color production begins, SC, and SC alone, is either blocked in the mold or picked from the frame after the fact -- while the non-MUSCLE sculpt molds, as during the flesh wave, are not produced.

I think a weird situation with SC -- his body being in one family mold and his 2nd legs in another family mold -- is just the type of weird scenario that could have caused him to be left off the poster, but made in flesh and not in color.

Edited by Soupie, 11 February 2008 - 07:43 AM.

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#50 Soupie

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 08:14 AM

Okay, so I lied... but this is a good one, I promise!

You may be saying: What's wrong with just producing SC's body and leaving off his legs? Since Mattel didn't care about the Kinnikuman story, they probably wouldn't have cared about SC missing his 2nd legs. But Mattel probably wouldn't have known that part 21 SC was two separate molds (if indeed he was).

Let's take a look:

(1) Mattel looks over images or even samples of all the kinkeshi, picking and choosing those that will be included and those that will be excluded.

(2) Obviously, the offensive sculpts were excluded. I think there is a good chance the multi-part sculpts were excluded from the get-go as well, not because of choking fears per se, but just for the sake of keeping things simple. There was no need to have 3-4 multi-part figures.

(3) After Mattel chooses which sculpts will be included and which will be excluded, someone at Bandai therefore is tasked with looking over the molds and determining which sculpts, in total, would be left out of the line and which would be included. As we said, those other, perfectly fine sculpts that happened to be in the same family mold as the "to be excluded" sculpts would have also been excluded.

(4) Based on the sculpts they chose to exclude, and the info from Bandai on what other sculpts would have to therefore be left out, Mattel created the poster, which didn't have a picture of SC.

(4) When production begins, all the family molds with the "unacceptable" sculpts are excluded, including the mold with SC's 2nd legs.

(5) However, the family mold that has SC body is produced at regular capacity and everyone is happy.

(6) Someone at Mattel or Bandai discovers, "hey, why is this figure that's not on the poster being made? Oh, because this family mold and that family mold, yada yada yada. Well, when we make them in color, he can't be made."

(7) The end of SC.

;)
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