Should I break it to him?

Discussion in 'Replica Props' started by yakcam, Jan 20, 2006.

  1. yakcam

    yakcam Sr Member

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    Well, I need a little advice.

    I was about to purchase a Vader item on ebay and this guy sent me a mail saying that he has a helmet made by a guy who has moulds/molds made from the original Vader helmet and he's willing to do me a copy.

    Well I thought I'd send a message to see what he had, hoping for something good, well here's his email.....
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Hi Kraig,

    I'm sorry I couldn't send these pics sooner. I hope they are to your liking. My camera does not take the best pictures, but I think these show the helmet fairly well.

    The lenses appear very red due to the direct sunlight and a white towel behind the lenses to protect the helmet from the stand. The helmet in the pics is the one I originally bought.

    As described before, it comes from a mold that was taken directly from an original screen used helmet for the original Star Wars movie (E IV, ANH). I spent hundreds of dollars making very precise molds from my helmet, to ensure an exact copy.

    I purchased the helmet on eBay for $985.00 plus $50.00 shipping, from a well known prop maker (in the secretive prop community) called Underlord, who used to be an ILM insider during the original trilogy days. I felt that the price was way too high, but I didn't want to miss the opportunity to own something so close to the original.

    So my plan was, from the start, to buy the helmet, make molds and a copy for myself, then re-sell the original. I have since sold the original (for $795.00) and am preparing to ship it now. When I happened to come across the auction you were bidding on, I couldn't be silent and watch you pay too much.

    I hadn't planned on making copies for other people, but I knew I could get you the exact same thing, possibly better quality, for much less. I wanted to help. I felt like I might be butting into business where I didn't belong. I'm glad you were receptive to my message. I'm not sure how you plan to get out of the current auction (if you decide you want my helmet, that is). I know you can retract a bid, but I don't know what kind of consequences follow. I wouldn't want your reputation to be damaged.

    Let me know what you decide to do and I will help you out in any way that I can. Thanks for your interest and friendly communication. Take care, mate.

    Kind regards,

    xxxxxxxx

    P.S. I'm over in Milwauke, Oregon (very close to Portland, Oregon) USA

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Now I know what you're thinking, screw him he's a recaster. Well, I don't think he's a member of the RPF and I think he thinks he has a genuine item. I've had more than one email from this guy and he seems to be very nice.

    Now my options are, say....

    "No thanks, I already have one, which I do :unsure (I got it before I even knew the RPF existed)."

    "Well let me tell you a little I know about the origin of your helmet...."

    ...or just say "Thanks for your offer, but, no thanks"

    I just don't want to burst this guys bubble, I know how I felt when mine was burst :cry :eek:

    Any advice would be appreciated.

    Cheers,

    Kraig
     
  2. kell

    kell Well-Known Member

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    This is sad, and funny all in the same breath. Honesty is the best policy, just shoot him straight. I think what sells the spfx is the dome... The dome looks great. I know its been discussed a hundred times, and I am not trying to start a war, but who originally made the dome ? , and is it possible to buy just that dome ?


    Kell
     
  3. Fatherless One

    Fatherless One Well-Known Member

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  4. Star Wars Helmets

    Star Wars Helmets Sr Member

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    Kraig,

    It sounds like a lot of BS to me, especially the line

    it comes from a mold that was taken directly from an original screen used helmet for the original Star Wars movie (E IV, ANH).

    Has he sent you any pics so you know which helmet it is?

    Its hard to know if he's unaware or trying it on so imo you should tell him

    Cheers

    jez
     
  5. Stormtrooper

    Stormtrooper Well-Known Member

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    So isn't this bloke a recaster anyways?.

    Maybe I'm misunderstanding this, but from what he said in the email to you (see above) he has bought an ANH Vader helmet from spfx, made moulds from it, re-sold the original spfx helmet and is now planning on selling you a helmet which he's made himself from the moulds??..??..

    I know there has been some debate over where the spfx helmet came from, but "2 wrongs don't make a right".
    In my book this guy is a recaster and should be avoided like the plague. :angry
    Might also be an idea to let eBay know that he's trying to sell you something *outside* of eBay and get his membership cancelled?

    Just my 2 cents, of course...

    Cheers,
    John
     
  6. Apollo

    Apollo Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Sounds to me like he knows what hes doing.

    I would politely clue him in.
     
  7. KevVader

    KevVader Sr Member

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    ...sounds like he was fed a line himself......I'd clue him in....
     
  8. Darth Kahnt

    Darth Kahnt Sr Member

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    I'm with you on that Kev.
     
  9. jeezycreezy

    jeezycreezy Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like he's trawling eBay for buyers. Did he contact you through eBay...or how did that happen?

    While he does come across as amiable in his email, well, nice people aren't automatically honest people.

    Cheers.
    TJ
     
  10. Clutch

    Clutch Master Member

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    Yes, he's a recaster.

    "I hadn't planned on making copies for other people" I call bullsh#t.

    Yes, you might say it's ok because he's recasting SPFX's helmet, but that means that that many more people are gonna get burnt.

    And to be quite honest, I haven't seen any evidence that proves SPFX is a recaster. So I can't say anything for or against SPFX.
     
  11. KevVader

    KevVader Sr Member

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    ....agreed...after rereading his reply to you a couple of times....several warning bells are going off:

    1) recaster - by his own admission, he bought the helmet just to recast it

    2) trawling - good call TJ...that's exactly what he's doing....against ebay policy

    3) something about his style of writing/syntax suggests that he's not from Oregon.

    ...as stated, I'd educate him as to what he seems to be doing and then shoot ebay an FYI....then I'd ask the Mods if posting his ebay handle here is acceptable so others don't fall for this....
     
  12. Treadwell

    Treadwell Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    If he thought the helmet was screenused as he claims, then he wouldn't be a recaster, at least not intentionally, as this community has been defining it (screenused being fair game).

    Of course, if he's dishonest then he could be feigning that misconception to get around that.
     
  13. Clutch

    Clutch Master Member

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    he says:
    "it comes from a mold that was taken directly from an original screen used helmet "

    he doesn't say:
    "I have a screenused helmet."
     
  14. jeezycreezy

    jeezycreezy Well-Known Member

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    I disagree.

    The way I read it he says he bought a replica. The replica was supposedly second gen. from a screen used helmet.

    He made a copy of the replica for himself and sold the original.

    He is now making replicas of his replica of a replica, ergo recasting

    No way did he buy a screen used Vader helmet for $985 off eBay.

    Cheers.
    TJ
     
  15. Clutch

    Clutch Master Member

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    Also, why would he plunk down 1035 total for it, then spend a few hundred more for molds and THEN sell it for 795 if he had only intended on making a copy for himself?
     
  16. jeezycreezy

    jeezycreezy Well-Known Member

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    Furthermore, how much sense does it make for someone to buy a replica helmet and recreate a single copy only to sell it at a slight loss? That's just stupid.

    The amount of time and material that would go into recasting a single helmet would negate any financial savings; a sane person would have just kept the original.

    The only person who would do this is someone who wanted to make multiple copies. I think you would have to be more than a little naive to buy his * and bull story.

    It smacks of the sort of spiel I got from JB once upon a time.

    Cheers.
    TJ
     
  17. JRX

    JRX Well-Known Member

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    ... exactly what I thought and wanted to say - :thumbsup
     
  18. jeezycreezy

    jeezycreezy Well-Known Member

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    Stop beating me to the punch clutch. :lol
     
  19. franz bolo

    franz bolo Sr Member

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    It sounds like a scam to me. Why would he care about anyone paying to much other than to line his own pockets?

    He seems to be playing the nice guy who wants to help bit, but is hiding his own agenda.

    I might be wrong, but I don't trust him.

    FB
     
  20. Tyler Durden

    Tyler Durden Well-Known Member

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    ""it comes from a mold that was taken directly from an original screen used helmet ""

    Sounds like whoever told him that information "borrowed" the origin story of Darth Jones' helmet.
     
  21. SethB6025

    SethB6025 Well-Known Member

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    Honesty is the best policy. I'd break the bad news to him, although he may already know. If he's honest, he'll know the real score. If he's a crook, then he'll know the jig is up. Either way, he is openly comping to recasting a helmet. At least you could let him know that that is bad form.
     
  22. SithLord

    SithLord Sr Member

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    I would stay away from him, sounds like recasting a recaster's work :confused . He's just echoing what SPFX/Underlord/Phil has claimed about his helmet in regard to it coming from the original molds which is patently false. The faceplate is a 20th C recast and the dome is a GH dome recast. I have compared a GH dome and SPFX dome in person, side-by-side, and there's no question the SPFX dome originated from a GH dome. In fact, although otherwise identical, the SPFX dome was a bit smaller than a GH dome. The faceplate matches the dimensions of a 20th C faceplate. The SPFX helmet in question was his first ANH-ESB conversion long before he ever posted for sale ads on Ebay...

    :cheers,

    Thomas
     
  23. Treadwell

    Treadwell Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Ah, I see your point.
     
  24. Trallis

    Trallis Well-Known Member

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    sounds like a salesman alright.
    Unless there is truly something special about you and this guy just wants to save just you some money, he is sending these out to everyone else who bids on vader helmets.
    I want to see if anyone else will get any e-mails from him in the future
     
  25. kell

    kell Well-Known Member

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    After I posted my original post and slept on it.... just a crazy though, and once again no war starting here.. what if this guy is another Phil sock puppet ?

    Also just thinking about it , whenever a deal is too good to be true it usually is, it reminds me of the guys that drive around in vans and pull up to you in the grocery store parking lot, and try to pitch you on some leftover stereo speakers, or other consumer electronics at really super sweet discount price... The reason that their "product" is so cheap is because of something like "we had too many, these are the extra that wont be missed"... you get home and found you bought a "box" of rocks..... :lol :lol :lol


    Kell
     
  26. RKW

    RKW Sr Member

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    Well going by your logic in the SDS thread this guy is doing nothing wrong since neither Jeff, Fyberdyne, GH, JB, SPFX, PheonixVader, Cking etc own the rights to the Vader design :rolleyes
     
  27. Clutch

    Clutch Master Member

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    Didn't see that coming. lol.
     
  28. NakedMoleRat

    NakedMoleRat Sr Member

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    He paid with shipping $1,035.00 Spent hundreds on a mould. So that's what, $300.00? $400.00? Let's say $350.00? So now he's up to, $1,385.00. Sells it for $795.00. Then he makes another one, let's just round off the materials in glass, paint, sandpaper, etc, for $100.00. So he's now spent about $690.00 on the copy he made (All things considered) So he's only recovered $345.00 from what he spent origionally.
    He only recasted it to make one for himself. Sure.
    I just wouldn't even respond to the message.
     
  29. atacpdx

    atacpdx Well-Known Member

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    I'm in Portland and if it is the guy near Milwaukee that I think it is, it is a scam and you'll pay and get nothing in return. The guy I know that lives there and does that kind of @#$%. is a real welfare scumbag who cheats ebayers on props all the time and seems to just get away with it.

    Steer way clear.
     
  30. yakcam

    yakcam Sr Member

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    WOW...
    Thanks everyone for your input and pm's. I make a little post early in the evening see a couple of replies before I go to bed, I get up the next morning and it's 2 pages..WOW (mind you I am looking through rose coloured eyeballs and I have slight double vision, yep, big night, I'm probably looking at the wrong thread..lol).

    Well, it seems that sending him an email and setting him straight has the vote. I'll construct a polite and informative email and see if he gets nasty or doesn't reply at all.

    I wondered if it was Phil, so I made a Yahoo email account just for his emails. Phil should, however, recognise my name (Kraig with a K's not very common and one who lives in Melbourne, Australia, even less so) as we've had heated "words" in the past, of course he may have had a sharp blow to the head recently...lol.

    An odd thing is though, the helmet doesn't look like anything I recognise, it resembles an early JB, kind of. The face does look 20th C........

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Well, thanks again everyone. I'll let you know what his reply is if I get one.

    Cheers,

    Kraig
     
  31. SithLord

    SithLord Sr Member

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    Can you prove that AA doesn't have the original molds? I can prove that Phil didn't get his helmet from an original ANH helmet. So where did he get his helmet from? A GH dome and 20th C faceplate. He's admitted in an email that he used the 20th C faceplate for his helmet. Whether that is recasting or not in the eyes of the RPF, Phil has taken two different sources of Vader helmet, and copied them without the owner's permission. Phil has made over $50,000 easily selling Vader helmets with his bogus claims of authenticity and people here fall for it...
    And if you want to get into rights of ownership, the GH dome is an original from Don Post Studios...from THEIR MOLDS...not Lucasfilm's molds, just as the TE TK helmet is an original. GH got it from the source. TE got his from another owner. Who has more rights to recast his own helmet as he pleases then?

    :cheers,

    Thomas

    EDIT: It looks almost like a VM02...will look at it again later...
     
  32. RKW

    RKW Sr Member

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    I can prove AA is not using the original molds. Try replacing the name Phil with SDS in your above post. GH has no more right to make copies of the Vader helmet than any other member here. If you think he does then you had better explain because after your whole SDS defense I think we're all confused.
     
  33. kell

    kell Well-Known Member

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    Whoa. Horsey.

    It is becoming clear to me.

    Are these his pic ? If they are this helmet has been sold 3 or 4 times on ebay already. a few months ago when this guy was supposedly selling it for a "friend" I corresponded with him, he sent me a message tying to move it for between 375 to 450 bucks, sweet deal... I learned the origins of the helmut and had to pass. Nothing was said about recasting the said helmet at that time.

    Just one more thing, before I joined RPF I lurked here a long time, and don't remember the exact thread but someone had made a point that the spfx helmet is different now, (wider neck), perhaps why it doesnt look familiar... Hey I still like the dome...

    O.k. thats my last 2cents Im throwing in.



    Kell
     
  34. yakcam

    yakcam Sr Member

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    Hi Kell,

    Yes they are his pics, I assume anyway, unless of course they've been stolen from a member here.

    If it is a member here I'll be happy to out him/her/it or "other", by providing the name given at the end of the email, if it's real and their eBay ID.

    Cheers,

    Kraig
     
  35. yakcam

    yakcam Sr Member

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    Ok, this was the message I sent to the guy...

    "Hi Scott,

    Thanks for the pics, but I already have an SPFX.

    Please take this as information, not an attack or a slur on you, it's the last thing I intend to do.........

    Phil (a.k.a SPFX, Underlord, Apogee1, Sith Master, Dark Jedi Inc, Mr. Bones) is a well known recaster, which is frowned upon in the prop community.
    His claims that he's got molds taken from a real ANH Vader are VERY shady. I am a member of a prop builders forum who have some extremely prominent members who are well known in the TV and Movie industry (winners of Grammy's and movie writers for example).

    Well, it's been known for a while that Phil's spun a line that he worked for ILM on or around the making of Star Wars E IV, now I can't prove this bit, so don't take it as gospel but from information I've gained would've made Phil somewhere in his early teens, I just don't think George would've given someone of that age a job on SW. This information, however, is completely unsubstantiated, I have no proof.

    His history goes back a while, I could dig up info provided to me (and you, if you wish to visit the RPF - http://www.rpf.invisionzone.com/ and RPB - http://p083.ezboard.com/btheukpropparty forums and search for SPFX) but, it's obvious that he recast a Ghost Host dome (helmet) and also a 20th C faceplate, making adjustments here and there, but leaving tell tale signs of their origin (see this wonderful site for all your SW helmet needs - http://web.ukonline.co.uk/bingo275/index.htm )
    Also the SPFX helmet has gone through many changes through the last couple of years, why would he mess with THE helmet if it's an original? food for thought.

    Now, when you contacted me and I asked for pics, I was hoping for something that was an opportunity of a lifetime, but alas, no.

    I know how you feel, Phil spun me a line too, way before I knew what I know now. I was so deflated to know that I had been taken, I thought I had a one of a kind, I still have his emails too, just in case he tries to deny it.

    Lastly, even though the SPFX helmet is a recast of others work, I'd like to let you know that making casts, even from an already stolen and altered design is not a good thing, the prop community will do their best to come down on you if it's seen. My suggestion to you is to, like the rest of us in the prop collecting community is to enjoy what you've got, don't try and sell a recast of a recast to recover what you've already spent.

    OK, now all that being said, the SPFX is a nice helmet, so you've not lost there.

    I hope you take this in the intention that I was trying to inform you and NOT bash, insult or degrade you in ANY way.

    For more info on almost anything prop related, and to see threads on Phil/SPFX see the links above.

    Kind regards,

    Kraig"


    Cheers,

    Kraig
     
  36. TOSPHASER

    TOSPHASER Sr Member

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    Who here has a Grammy??? Hands?? :lol
     
  37. yakcam

    yakcam Sr Member

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    DOH. I meant Emmy. Man, I spent too much time in the music industry.......

    My apologies to the person I'm refering to, deep, DEEP apologies. :confused

    Cheers,

    Kraig
     
  38. TOSPHASER

    TOSPHASER Sr Member

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    I too am sorry. Just having some fun in all of this..........I live in Oregon and have heard of this guys work?.........I heard the same story of him buying the Helmet via ebay then molding it... this was a couple months ago..........I don't care who he got the helmet from. He is a recaster... :thumbsdown
     
  39. Ghost Host

    Ghost Host Sr Member

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    Yea, sounds like the guy's probably trying to rationalize recasting by making himself sound naive. Then again, if he isn't in the prop community he may not have given much thought to the issue of recasting before.

    But take note of Phil's continued lying about being "an ILM insider from way back"... Anyone care to remember the m.o. of Apogee1? Same person, same deal, different arena. Only back in those days he was modifying my GH helmet and trying to pass it off as a screen used helmet, itself. Not only was that admittted to by phil to me, but I later got that very helmet back from him to see exactly what he did to it. More than just being a recaster (which Phil is without a doubt) he is an incredible liar and always has been, at least regarding Vader stuff; particularly in the history category. Like Michael Jackson, Phil continues to morph his castings, and creates lies to back up his items. He's truly dispicable.


     
  40. RKW

    RKW Sr Member

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    Oh please.... Phil is no more a liar than the rest of the Vader community. I've haven't seen him say that his helmet is directly off the screen used helmet for ages. He should't have done it but its no bigger than any of the porkies told by either Jeff or you. Which of you is lying I can't be sure yet and what about JB with his prototype whopper.

    The simple fact is that his helmet IS currently the closest to an original ANH helmet and this continued jealousy of yours is getting old.
     
  41. Ghost Host

    Ghost Host Sr Member

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    Mouthpiece of Phil,
    I do not , have not and will not lie about my helmet's origins. I've probably been more upfront about my stuff and provided more info than anyone else around here, frankly. I take great offense to your comment, but perhaps I shouldn't, considering the source. :rolleyes

    Once more, I won't stab someone in the back and make up lies about them to better myself. Something your master can't seem to get away from. It's his mode of operation. ...right... sure, jealous. :lol Why then do I continue to get inquiries for my GH helmet? At least one or two a week, literally. I'm turning them away. I've gotten down to where I've even sold off or traded the bad ones sitting around... Your master has to keep reinventing the history of "his" helmets and bash other folks to make a sale.

     
  42. SithLord

    SithLord Sr Member

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    For ages? Ya right....



    :cheers,

    Thomas
     
  43. RKW

    RKW Sr Member

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    You may well not be lying GH if you're only reiterating what Jeff has told you. But we only have your word at the moment to corroborate the story. Considering Jeff's history and just how vastly different your helmet is to an original there is something fundamentally wrong with the claims of its origin.

    People will continue to buy your helmet because they either continue to buy into the propaganda or they're not interested in accuracy and want your helmet to complete a growing Vader collection. Your helmet served a purpose years ago as it was the best Vader helmet around at the time. But like anything in this hobby replicas improve and yours has been superseded.

    Considering the vilification he recieves from you and your mates it's a wonder he has sold a single helmet. But he does because his product stands up as a quality replica.
     
  44. RKW

    RKW Sr Member

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    Sithlord, like the SDS advertising that ebay ad could be construed as mis-leading as it isn't directly cast off the screen used helmet. But at some point the 20thC helmet was cast off either the original or a casting of the original.
     
  45. Ghost Host

    Ghost Host Sr Member

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    I think I tend to agree with most of what you have said here. People's tastes have changed in the past few years and they are looking at things differently and more educated, in many regards. While the GH helmet takes a departure from the final screen helmet in certain ways, there are some unusual similarities to the screen helmet, as well.

    But it is no wonder that phil sells these helmets...
    1. they look nice
    2. he continually makes up lies about his helmets to make them appealing
    3. he puts them on ebay frequently

    My problem with you here is primarily that you are defending a really bad guy (who is a banned member, btw) and a blatant liar; and then you lump me into the same category with phil. Sorry, I am many things but I am not a liar or a backstabber.



     
  46. RKW

    RKW Sr Member

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    Well that's your opinion of him and you're entitled to it. But I am sure he has plenty of satisfied customers & friends who would disagree with you. I just get so tired of the SPFX bashing by the same individuals. He was incompetition with you, tried to get clever using multiple accounts and paid the price by getting banned. But one thing I have learnt while being here is that pretty much everyone involved in Vader props has lied at some point. JB's done it and he's still a member here. Now you maybe the exception to the rule so until I hear differently from either Jeff or Jim then I'll have to give you the benefit of doubt.
     
  47. Too Much Garlic

    Too Much Garlic Master Member

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    Strange how quickly a recaster topic turns into a SPFX, JB & GH bashing thread. Why can't we all just get along?

    I don't care from where this guy got the helmet he recast from, he's a recaster and that's that.

    I will definitely stay clear of him - wouldn't wanna either buy from him or sell him anything, since there is no certainty that he won't scam and recast that as well. Why not keep the topic squarely on this guy and leave everybody else out of it? We've heard it all before and it gets tiresome very quickly. Who's right, who's not, who gives a hoot?

    Well, tbh, I know why these topics evolve and okay, I agree, it is good to know some back-story. At least I've learnt something.

    Have fun... and flame away...
     
  48. TOSPHASER

    TOSPHASER Sr Member

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    :thumbsup I whish we could all get along. :D
     

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