Will TF's return to die-cast?

Discussion in 'Transformers General Discussion' started by Rodimus Pie, Apr 9, 2008.

  1. Rodimus Pie

    Rodimus Pie Imagineer

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    So apparently Hasbro is raising the wholesale price of G.I.Joe single figures by 25%. It's not too much of a reach to say it probably (in part) has to do with the rising cost of petroleum.

    My question is.... do you think there will be a point where it will be just as - if not more - cost effective for Hasbro to return to partial die-cast metal for most TF's?

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Sol Fury

    Sol Fury The British Butcher Administrator News Staff

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    Incredibly unlikely. As the Titanium series demonstrated, there are lots of issues with working with metal that you don't get with plastic. War Within Prime is a floppy thing in metal, the same thing in plastic would probably be not nearly as bad.

    Also, another issue with working with metal is that it needs to be painted. You can't mold metal in different colours like you can with plastic. The end result is that a lot of the money saved on plastics would in theory go into paints, with a low net gain. Not to mention the possible quality control issues, like paint chipping, poor paint adhesion to the metal, even the type of paint. Paint that works on plastic may not work the same on metal.
     
  3. Greyryder

    Greyryder Kitbashed

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    I doubt it. I think most metal prices are on the rise, too. I'm sure they won't forget about the failure of the six inch Titaniums, even though that had nothing to do with die cast content, and everything to do with lackluster engineering, and poor distrobution.
     
  4. Optimus Prime

    Optimus Prime Roll out! TFW2005 Supporter

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    Yeah, given the relative unpopularity of 6" Titanums, I doubt we'd see a line similar to Titaniums again. However, the possibility of partial diecast, like some of the G1 figures, Binaltech figures, and Masterpiece Transformers, could be an option. Still, I think that they'll remain mostly plastic, and if this is affected by the rising oil prices, perhaps we'll start seeing higher price tags on Transformers in the near future.
     
  5. Rodimus Pie

    Rodimus Pie Imagineer

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    Yeah, Titaniums definitely had some issues. I also hear Sol Fury on the paint issue. I'm not even suggesting a return to Titanium-level die-cast. Closer to early G1 where a few parts per figure are die-cast, like on the '86 combiners.
     
  6. G.B. Blackrock

    G.B. Blackrock Autobot Ally

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    Nothing to do with die cast content? The post right above you demonstrates that there were real issues with the die cast in at least that one Titanium that likely would not have occured in plastic.

    Could the engineering have been better? Sure, it's possible. But die cast causes limitations that engineers have to work around that don't exist in plastic, so the fact that engineers have to work harder itself should account for something (and, indeed, goes right back to having "something" to do with die cast content).

    Poor distribution was also a real issue. I can only guess at the problem here. I'd be willing to bet at least part of that was caused by the higher prices which are, again, caused by being die cast. But I fully admit that this one's speculation.
     
  7. Smokescreen

    Smokescreen The Ultimate Gambler TFW2005 Supporter

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    You most likely won't see a return to die-cast. Like has been previously stated, there are more benefits to using plastic than metal. However, the Binaltech line looks like it will continue to utilize a good deal of metal in it's upcoming figs, and I'm sure any future Masterpiece toys will have metal parts, as well.
     
  8. Takeshi357

    Takeshi357 "Research"

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    Count me as a die cast un-fan. It chips, it lints and then it looks ugly.

    Die cast should really only be used for balancing; a top-heavy figure stops being so one it's feet or legs are made of metal. It can also be used in places that might be very prone to breaking if made in plastic.
     
  9. Geminii

    Geminii Toyetic multiformophile

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    There's a point, yes, but it's probably not one that we're anywhere near being close to. Maybe if petroleum prices jumped another couple of hundred percent...
     
  10. Grimlock_13

    Grimlock_13 Reformed Geewunner

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    God I hope not. I prefer plastic in every way. I would be EXTREMELY happy if die cast and vaccum metalized pieces never saw the light of day on TFs again.
     
  11. Renidragon

    Renidragon Toys on my table!

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    Aw, too bad. I like die-cast. I like the weight, and how it's cool to the touch when it... uhh... is cool. Just feels good to me. I don't mind paint chips on it too much either, though I'm not too wild about the paint chips on my BT Tracks. Those are nice pieces (just like my MP King Exkaiser)... but I don't mind the chipping on my Reissue Jazz... now THAT'S what battle damage proper looks like!

    The death of the Titanium transformers is a pity to me... I liked those guys.
     
  12. MaikeruSan

    MaikeruSan KnightStalker

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    The reason metal worked well in the g1 line is becuase the toys were bricks.
     
  13. Greyryder

    Greyryder Kitbashed

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    It didn't really demonstrate, anything. The material it was made out of had nothing to do with the joint pieces being made to the wrong sizes. Someone really screwed up the tolerances on that figure. Had WWI Prime been made in plastic with all the parts the same dimensions, it would have had the same problems. It probably would be worse, since I imagine that a lot of the parts were made to allow for the thickness of the paint that plastic wouldn't need. Loose joints will be loose, no matter what the material is. It was a first attempt by a team that had never designed TFs, before. Material choices were not that toy's problem.
     
  14. G1Wheeljack

    G1Wheeljack Well-Known Member

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    I'd like it, but I highly doubt it(really want WW Prowl & Grimlock)
     
  15. rizuan76

    rizuan76 Banned

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    Agreed. it should be used but only sparingly.
     
  16. Fit For natalie

    Fit For natalie tfwiki nerd

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    There is the issue of balance though. If the figure has die cast content, particularly in the upper torso area, then the robot mode had to be designed to deal with the weight and so it is able to keep its balance.
     
  17. Geminii

    Geminii Toyetic multiformophile

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    I wouldn't mind a smaller figure precision-molded in, say, brass. The parts could be more delicate/detailed as they'd be more robust (although less likely to flex when hit with something). I'm just trying to figure out how snap-into-place movements would be doable without the flexibility of plastic for tabs, pegs and holes, eight-position joints etc, and how to balance friction joints oh-so-delicately between sticking and far too loose. Perhaps a series of cunningly contrived springs...

    Meh. They'd be a fun display, shelf or desk piece, but it wouldn't sell in the kids market and the materials and engineering would make it expensive enough as it was.
     

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