Earthrise Seeker Elite 2-pack: Ramjet and Dirge

Discussion in 'Transformers Feedback & Reviews' started by ziltama, Aug 16, 2020.

  1. mx-01 archon

    mx-01 archon Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2003
    Posts:
    35,606
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    412
    Likes:
    +45,483
    There's no person at the end of the assembly line, doing a fine-point inspection for absolutely every figure coming out of the factory. That's an insane amount of labour, and not cost-effective in the least. The job is instead to play the odds that the manufacturing process is going smoothly. Easier just to do a random sampling, and if the items coming off the line are "acceptable" on a regular basis, then the assembly line is working smoothly and the odds are that everything coming out is "good enough". If instead you start finding a string of duds, then something's gone wrong on the line. Any duds that make it out of the factory are within the realm of "acceptable losses". Easier to deal with the financial consequences of a few odd returns (and unless something has really gone wrong, resulting in the need for a product recall, that burden is on the retailer, not the manufacturer), than pay the tens of thousands of man hours in labour to make sure absolutely everything is flawless. Not for items of such low importance as toys.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Napalm

    Napalm Drinking About Robots TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    Posts:
    18,022
    News Credits:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    367
    Likes:
    +111,025
    Decided to just throw a couple of stickers on Ramjet's knees to compensate for the paint app mishaps. Looks decent, I can dig it.

    [​IMG]
     
    • Like Like x 2
  3. HunterRose

    HunterRose Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2006
    Posts:
    873
    Trophy Points:
    262
    Likes:
    +1,922
    Yikes. I would agree with CHL. The behavior described here is beyond petty and gross.

    In other news, I finally got a-hold of a set of these guys.
    This seeker mold is cool and all but I can't get over how overly and unnecessarily complicated it is for no reason.
    Nothing hinges where it should. WTF is going on with the arms? What's with the tiny tab inside the arm that is always in the way of the transformation no matter what you do?

    Why does the back hinge but the front doesn't? Why do they have turtlenecks?

    Every time I transform this mold (or the original ER seeker mold) I feel like I have to re-invent the wheel, because nothing is intuitive...

    I mean they're fine, I guess, and I have the NONEF replacement missiles (I wouldn't want these without correct missiles), but the design is frustrating.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2020
    • Like Like x 5
  4. Wespy

    Wespy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2019
    Posts:
    144
    Trophy Points:
    122
    Likes:
    +635
    I pre-ordered mine through amazon Canada in July when they were announced along with prowl and hide. I still haven’t received either set and amazon Canada has no idea when I might even get them.

    anyone else in my camp with these?
     
  5. roboyzdroidz

    roboyzdroidz Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2019
    Posts:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    42
    Location:
    Burnaby, B.C.
    Likes:
    +23
    I'm totally in your camp. been waiting for months on these :( 
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. TFPSoundwave

    TFPSoundwave Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2012
    Posts:
    233
    Trophy Points:
    137
    Likes:
    +174
    Does anyone know why these are so rare? You would think an Amazon exclusive would have been more readily available.
     
  7. Moos Crew

    Moos Crew I make stuff

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2020
    Posts:
    1,785
    Trophy Points:
    207
    Likes:
    +5,392
    They also had a lot of QC issues...
     
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Skavatar

    Skavatar Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2020
    Posts:
    586
    Trophy Points:
    172
    Location:
    TX, USA
    Likes:
    +1,133
    they're probably not any rarer than the Skywarp/Thundercracker 2 pack, its just that they were available only online, so everyone and anyone could order unlimited numbers. and the scalpers are now charging over $200 on ebay. i ordered 1 b/c I was never a fan of the Coneheads, but since they were prominent in G1 cartoon, I had to atleast have 1 set.
     
  9. TFPSoundwave

    TFPSoundwave Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2012
    Posts:
    233
    Trophy Points:
    137
    Likes:
    +174
    The preorders were sold out on Amazon before I ever had a chance to order a set. I would have loved to get a set but definitely not enough to drop eBay prices for one.
     
    • Like Like x 3
  10. SmokescreenSWE

    SmokescreenSWE Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2004
    Posts:
    669
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    207
    Likes:
    +34
    I happened across these guys on preorder on the fairly new national branch of Amazon in december, and I assumed it was just a generic listing that would never be fulfilled. But lo and behold, they finally got some stock in, so I got these guys shipped to me for roughly $40. I'm keeping Ramjet in the box for now since I just wanted Dirge, but so far he seems fine. Minor scratches on the wing paint, but solid joints. Head was very stiff but could be moved. I haven't transformed him yet or looked at the shoulder joints so he might still end up busted. Still, pretty happy that I actually found these guys at retail price.
     
  11. Autoboty

    Autoboty Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2015
    Posts:
    2,752
    News Credits:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    222
    Likes:
    +1,581
    After a long hunt online and an even longer wait on global shipping, I finally have Dirge and Ramjet in my collection. Fortunately enough, I was able to sidestep most of the scalping and the QC issues plaguing the Hasbro version by preordering the Takara version. Yes, it was still a bit overcharged, but it still was far less than what I would have paid for if I had gotten a Hasbro version from eBay.

    20210417_182436.jpg

    Before I look at Dirge and Ramjet individually, I want to point out some things they have in common, for better or for worse. First, both of them have wings that are completely painted over in yellow and red, respectively. This is a choice I can't even pretend to understand, since it would obviously be cheaper for Hasbro to mold the wings in their original color instead of overspending on covering them with paint. I heard it also makes them susceptible to scratching and paint errors, though there were no noticable errors on mine. (Takara's QC is undeniably superior compared to Hasbro's.) Second, they have longer knee pads compared to Starscream, which means the knees now go over the crotch flap instead of under. This also means that the knee pieces touch the ground in jet mode, increasing risk of paint damage. Third, the 'chest bridges' in jet mode are also painted blue and white respectively. These parts also touch the ground in jet mode, also increasing the risk of scratching the paint while moving the jet around. Fourth, neither of them have newly tooled weapons, instead coming with null-rays that are unchanged from Starscream's.

    However, both of them also have newly retooled wings and heads that match their character models perfectly. I don't even mind that it's not formed from the jet nosecone since that would have resulted in restricted head articulation and a visible face on the underside of the jet mode. They also inherit all the impressive articulation of their mold progenitor Starscream, which means they don't have wrists and waists but have a generous ankle tilt. The wings are now mounted on the legs, but they can still hinge backwards. An added bonus is that the tailfins are no longer attached to the feet due to the slightly altered wing transformation.

    20210417_184116.jpg 20210417_184239.jpg

    Dirge seems to be the angrier between the two, as his newly molded conehead has a yelling expression on the face. Unlike Skywarp's squarer mouth, Dirge's is seemingly slightly rounder - at the very least, it's not a tooling reuse. He has his G1-accurate delta wings, which have Decepticon insignias on both the topside and underside of the wings.

    20210417_190400.jpg 20210417_190615.jpg 20210417_191330.jpg

    Ramjet has a more stoic expression, which to my knowledge is the same as Thrust (which I don't have yet). His wings are unique in that the swivel joint that lets them fold backwards isn't on the seam where the wings meet the fuselage, but integrated into the two cylindrical engines prominent on his vehicle mode. The vertical stabilizers, which are angled inwards slightly, cannot move at all. He too has Decepticon insignias on both sides of his wings, and some small white details on his vertical stabilizers. He actually poses slightly better than Dirge, because he doesn't have the front canards that slightly obstruct Dirge's backward shoulder movement.

    20210417_192732.jpg 20210418_012946.jpg 20210418_013559.jpg

    I still haven't gotten my hands on a Thrust, so I'll post more pictures when I get him and have all three Coneheads together. This is an amazing set with very important characters that's sadly too hard to get due to its exclusivity - pick up the Takara version when you can, and your Seeker collection will be one step closer to completion without having to worry about paint issues and QC errors.
     
    • Like Like x 3
  12. DNME

    DNME Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2013
    Posts:
    180
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    162
    Likes:
    +542
    It is cheaper if you don't paint them, but it also looks cheaper.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  13. Autoboty

    Autoboty Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2015
    Posts:
    2,752
    News Credits:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    222
    Likes:
    +1,581
    Ah, that is true. Upon closer inspection I also noticed the (unintentional?) panel lining effect they did on the wings by painting over black plastic, which looks awesome, so I do agree it looks a lot better.
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2021
    • Like Like x 1
  14. chaingunsofdoom

    chaingunsofdoom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2007
    Posts:
    414
    News Credits:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    212
    Location:
    YYC
    Likes:
    +122
    Amazon.ca mass canceled orders for Canadians after over a year of waiting. Total failure all around.

    I have emailed Hasbro customer service to ask for a proper release/re-release and encourage everyone to do the same.
     
    • Like Like x 5
  15. Destron23

    Destron23 Vehicon

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2008
    Posts:
    933
    Trophy Points:
    237
    Likes:
    +179
    Twitter:
    Instagram:
    Tumblr:
    As a Canadian was finally able to acquire the Earthrise Coneheads via CMDStore since Amazon cancelled all of their preorders. To my disappointment though when the package came in I discovered that I couldn’t tab in Ramjet’s legs in alt mode. As far as I can tell, the tab on the right leg is pointing downwards instead of being at a 90 degree angle. Is there any sort of fix to this kind of problem? Has it even been reported before? Would super appreciate any advice!

    EDIT: Got some advice on another forum to heat it up using a hair dryer and it worked like a charm! There even seemed to be a stress mark above the tab that vanished after heating and bending. Separated the leg as best I could to be as far as possible from the body, undid the leg covers to separate that bit of plastic and took a towel to cover the areas I didn't want to be heated. Took the hairdryer on its hottest setting to the area for about 40-50 secs and then took the edge of some safety scissors and bent the piece into place. Also happened to have a tower fan and exposed the plastic to it so the tab could cool in place. Was able to fully tab the vehicle mode together afterwards! :) 
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Aug 31, 2021
    • Like Like x 2
  16. Lazerwave

    Lazerwave My Most Prized Treasure

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Posts:
    64,630
    News Credits:
    116
    Trophy Points:
    457
    Likes:
    +154,958
    coneheads poster.jpg
     
    • Like Like x 1
  17. DubV

    DubV Lighten up, Francis.

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2021
    Posts:
    5,242
    News Credits:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    237
    Location:
    Runway 2, Emerald International Airport
    Likes:
    +15,757
    Indeed they are that high…still… I got “lucky” to get these 2 and Thrust for $230 off of Ebay just this week. I loathe paying those prices, but I have a collection to complete and they don’t appear to be in a rush to make any more of these. Hadn’t even considered QC until I saw this thread. Sigh
     
  18. ziltama

    ziltama Mods, molds, and casts. Also full of hot gas.

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2019
    Posts:
    11,821
    News Credits:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    277
    Location:
    Planet Unicron
    Likes:
    +56,803
    Sheesh, this set was a such a supply disaster, looking back.

    ZX makes these great G1-esque add-ons, but didn't like the colors chosen. These also store on bot mode back.
    [​IMG]

    Repainted them: Gray to matte black for Dirge, painted back half matte black and finished red part with flat clear for Thrust, and gunmetal to matte black for Ramjet (the gunmetal works fine on Sandstorm).
    [​IMG]

    Tim Heada sets are still totally hit or miss, but he did make great transformable null ray sets. One of the options is black, which then could be used on any Conehead:

    Bot mode. Also shows how the ZX accessories store on the back.
    thzx2.jpg

    Alt mode. Plugged the TH null rays into the main body while the ZX accessories are plugged into the wings. The tip rotates to become a 'missile'.
    thzx1.jpg
     
    • Like Like x 4
  19. MilanX3

    MilanX3 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2017
    Posts:
    432
    Trophy Points:
    122
    Likes:
    +151
    Anyone get the Japanese Takara version of these, EX-19 in the Takara series, and have similar QC issues?