Ball Joints Have Revolutionized Transformers

Discussion in 'Transformers Toy Discussion' started by TFPrime, May 6, 2011.

  1. TFPrime

    TFPrime TFW2005 Supporter

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    Looking back at G1, with all their nice die cast and rubber and stickers etc--Wonderful toys really. But some were rather restricted in movements because being bound my screws, springs and what not. But now days, look at almost all the various new lines from official to 3rd parties, and almost all the different sizes from Legend, Scout to Leader and they now all have ball joints allowing for movement from necks, shoulders, elbow, wrist, knee, hip, ankle etc etc. It kinda just makes me wonder what G1 would have been like had ball joints been used back then.

    Do ball joints cheapen the design of a figure? Is it a cheat? Or a really awesome idea that has revolutionized the toys we collect now days?
     
  2. Gepard

    Gepard Well-Known Member

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    Totally awesome. There's so much they can do with them that wasn't possible at a toy pricepoint before. And they're often critical to getting armor or other parts out of the way for the ├╝ber-complex transformations of the movie toys, which are my absolute favorites for that reason.
     
  3. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP Dry built

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    I'm not sure how anybody could come to these conclusions.
     
  4. Goldlock

    Goldlock and don't call me Shirley

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    Oh someone will manage it! :lol 
     
  5. exomega255

    exomega255 Emerald Green

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    if they can use Revoltech joints, maybe the articulation could be even better
     
  6. jtscribe

    jtscribe Well-Known Member

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    It's one of the reason the only G1 figure I have in my collection is Jetfire. And even he seems stiff compared to some of the newer guys which are now definitely in the realm of "action figures."
     
  7. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP Dry built

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    I'm not sure how anyone could logically come to those conclusions.
     
  8. Transbot90210

    Transbot90210 Banned

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    Sorry to shit on this thread but...

    Weren't ball joints introduced with G2 like 20 years ago?

    Yes they did revolutionize TFs but paying them this much homage after 20 years is like boasting about cars revolutionizing society as if it happened a year or two ago.
     
  9. Soundwave9

    Soundwave9 Decepticon

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    It's a awesome idea that started in 1986! :) 

    G1 Blast Off and Wreck-Gar have ball joints in their arms. I wish Takara continued using them. We had to wait 8 years for their return in the G2 Laser Rods series.
     
  10. Goldlock

    Goldlock and don't call me Shirley

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    Me neither, but have you seen certain arguments in some of these threads!

    And yeah, i'd say they revolutionised transformers. The cyberjets are still just as fun now. :p 
     
  11. Kraken

    Kraken Is a vegiesaurus, Lex. Veteran

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    Hallelujah! Praise the ball joint!

    I think you only have to look at the classics lines to see what would have been possible if ball joints had been around back then. Heck, even look at the difference in articulation between G1 and G2 when ball joints were just starting to make an appearence. The designers weren't any less ingenious in those days, some of them are still around, just limited with the materials they had to work with.
     
  12. Edgewise

    Edgewise updated homage

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    I think Whirl was the first Transformer toy with ball joints.
     
  13. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP Dry built

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    They did. But you know, it's just nice to talk about it. G2 brought them in, then Beast Wars made them widespread. Nowadays we just sorta take it for granted.
     
  14. Transbot90210

    Transbot90210 Banned

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    I agree they are taken for granted. You don;t hear peopel praising them becaus ethey are always there. But if they aren't, alla Hotshots shoulders, you have everyone in a rage.

    Ball joints are awesome, just look how much movement they allow something as tiny as a PE figure to be.
     
  15. Auto Morph

    Auto Morph Gimmick Bot

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    Ball joints are great and all, but when you get a loose one... *shakes fist*

    Yeah I know there are various fixes for them, but it still grinds my gears having to sit there and go through so many figures with a tube of superglue.

    On the glass half full side of things, I wouldn't be without them. :D 
     
  16. TFPrime

    TFPrime TFW2005 Supporter

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    I meant where as before structurally they were held together with pins, or spring and screw etc. They were better made, last longer and so on. Ball joints can snap pretty easy now, or get weak and loose. That's what I meant by cheat.
     
  17. process

    process Hanlon's razor Veteran TFW2005 Supporter

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    I don't want to put that much effort into making my figures stand up. :lol 
     
  18. UnicronFTW

    UnicronFTW Don't blink.

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    Ahem. Yes. I enjoy balls.
     
  19. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP Dry built

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    Not really. Non-ball joints can get weak as well. In fact on many of my old BW figures have relatively tight balljoints, but the swivles are all floppy.

    However balljoint undeniably make for better toys. They can be removed without breaking, they offer far more range of motion, don't take as many pieces to create and don't cost as much. (meaning funds can be distributed elsewhere on the toy) they may wear out after years but they last as long as they need to for kids, and for collectors it's piss-easy to strengthen them.

    Okay there's a lot wrong here so I'll try my best to be coherant.

    "Cheat" first of all, is a cheap word that doesn't even make sense in this context. It's not a cheat, it's practical. Second, yes they'll weaken, but as I said so can 'conventional' joints. Regular pin/screw swivels are also friction-based, and even springs can loose their spring over time. Hell my Encore Jazz is already pretty floppy, likewise my old bookbox reissue Megatron. And again, they are used on toys for kids. Kids won't care because a toy's lifetime for a kid is much shorter for an adult. And as I said, adults shouldn't be bothered since they can fix them easy.

    And while ball joints can break once in a while if you pull them off enough, swivels will break and be unusable the first time. (Unless it's pinless swivels, which were also introduced alongside balljoints after G1 and have the same properties) That is one of the points about ball joints, they pop off and back on. They make the toy harder to break, increasingly it's life-span. Ball joints pop back one. Regular spring and screw swivels do not.

    Overall ball joints are more durable, cost-effective and offer more play value than pin/screw swivels.
     
  20. Auto Morph

    Auto Morph Gimmick Bot

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    ^ Without ball joints, TFs would be a lot more expensive than they are right now.
     

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