One of the coolest things about toy collecting in recent years is the rise of fan creations that can be used to better our collections. There has surely been customizing as long as there has been toys, but the last few years have been a golden age of sorts thanks to technology that has brought online collectors closer and closer together.
I think one of the very first times I ran into a supplemental fan creation was for the MO2K line nearly ten years ago. I was able to pick up a custom-made Fisto sword for the MO2K figure. It was sweet. In the years since, I’ve picked up quite a few hand-casted items from various customizers or third party companies, but mostly for other toy lines: extra accessories for my Joes, Shapeways add-ons for my Transformers, sometimes even whole original toylines. Turns out, there’s some really good stuff out there not coming from the handful of big companies.
But I haven’t added much to MOTU Classics and for MOTUC Week, I wanted to highlight two particular items that I simple love. The first of those may seem deceptively simple, but as soon as I saw it – I knew I had to have it. It’s a Manhole Cover for Castle Grayskull.
If you’ve got any interest in the Castle, you probably know exactly why I think this is brilliant, but if not, allow me to explain. For whatever reason, the powers that be at Mattel or the 4H or maybe just Toy Guru himself want you to be able to fly the Wind Raider or the Jet Sled inside Castle Grayskull. I don’t really get it, but hey, an extra feature is an extra feature, right?
Well, sorta. What this means for the Castle is that there’s a big ol’ unsightly hole in the floor. You might think, well, I’ll at least have the flight stand post to plug in there, but no, that’s not included. To make this feature work, you have to have the flight stand and not want to use the base included with the flight stand. Whatevs.
Enter BadVermin over at He-Man.Org. He’s put together this great piece, a dual-sided manhole cover to, literally, fill the void. I he piece is handmade and hand-painted and it looks gorgeous as a result. I don’t have the Castle to place it properly yet, but that’s okay because I might need to time to pick a favorite side. The rusted metal side is great and makes perfect sense, but the worn wood side is so very well done. I imagine this piece will get flipped over a lot when the Castle eventually arrives. And, just in case you’re worried that it might not fit, as you can see in the pics, the manhole is perfectly sized to fit in the base of the flight stand, which unless Mattel screws up should be the exact same size as the port in the Castle’s floor. Let’s cross our fingers on that one, Matty.
Either way, I’m super excited to have gotten in on this piece. It was $10 plus shipping and not having that giant hole in the middle of my Castle will be well worth the ten bucks. The manholes are made to order and are still available as of this writing, but you will need to be a He-Man.Org member to get a hold of BadVermin and place an order.
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MOTU Classics Collector’s Guide.