Views regarding props made of authentic items?

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Well-Known Member
Seeing recent sales threads in the Junkyard got me thinking.
Almost all found items are now being replicated so faithfully that the authentic ones are sliding down in its market value.
I know to some, it doesnt matter if an item is authentic as long as it is replicated faithfully right down to the closest nanometer. These replicas do not cost as much as the authentic ones and are virtually indistinguishable next to the real ones thanks to the huge talent in this forum.
To the others, nothing beats the feeling of holding onto an authentic item (example: graflex, MPP..etc). Someone used to mention the feeling of holding onto the 'soul' of the prop which is only present if it is made of real parts.
I used to belong to the latter group which is insistent on using nothing but authentic parts in building my props. Like mentioned above however, replicas that are readily available are just as good and in much better condition (of course, its brand new) than the real ones.
The fetching price these authentic parts are so stunningly low that it got me wondering if there is no more demand for authentic parts. Is there anyone else who belong to the hardcore group that uses only authentic parts?

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Well-Known Member
i like the chase even more than what i end up making.. so having the real parts is pretty cool

7-11 Jedi

Well-Known Member
I totally agree. Props made from the real thing are pretty darn sweet. I remember my first graflex that I ever got, I bought converted with a Yodashouse kit off of eBay from a member here, which drew me to the RPF back in '00. Coincidentally, Prometheus, I later sold that graflex to you. I think you remember which one :p

As I was saying, I remember holding that graflex and feeling like I was holding a real lightsaber. I've owned a few different replicas over the years, including a parks and a larbel, and it just wasn't the same thing. They were great representations of the prop, but nowhere near the same feeling, or "soul" as you described it, that the real thing had.

That being said, I just bought a replica graflex from someone in the junkyard. But it's for a gift, so I'm not a hypocrite, I swear. :lol




Well-Known Member
I think i remember which one, Mike. :D
That being said, so it looks like authentic parts still appeal to some. The smell of used batteries in the flash tubes and the natural rust covering the frag bodies of a grenade is hard to replicate and i think makes up the 'soul' of a prop. It brings you a few steps closer to the movie.
Sad to see that authentic parts that embody these 'soul' are slowly having its market cornered by very well made replicas. No wonder the price on these have gone down so quickly.

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Sr Member
Gone but not forgotten.
I have both and enjoy both...
remember this though, that even a prop made from the real parts is still a replica prop...unless it's screen used.

I would guess that those who insist on real parts only, have smaller collections that those who can enjoy a replica just as much.

In some cases such as a Graflex, if you really want a real one, they're pretty available....but for example, the ANH Obi...those parts are much harder to come by.

I love em all...I love em both.


Sr Member
I have seen replica Graflex clamps with plastic levers - whilst they look good from a distance they just don't look or feel right upon up-close examination.
I try to use original parts if I can afford them, as their look and feel is, well, authentic.
A good example - although just a small part for the Luke and Obi ANH sabers - is the calc bubble strip. To date, I've not found a replica out there that matches the clarity and shape of this original part, again upon up-close examination.
I just need a grenade now that matches the screen used one for my Obi - then I may tackle an orginal MPP.
I have a replica which is superb, but there's always that tiny niggle that it is just a replica.
I agree with Bill. I guess those who have all original parts have smaller collections - I know I have.

Howard. :)


Well-Known Member
Bill and Howard are right..
Those with authentic parts in most cases have a smaller collection.
But on the other hand, doesnt the lack of variety eat at you sometimes? Do you find yourself thinking that you can enjoy more props if you sold that particular 'flagship' prop item?
For example: if i sold my authentic grenade and booster, i can free up $$ to fund other props which brings a different experience and connection to the movies.
This is what i have been thinking a lot lately..


Sr Member
I have thought of selling a flagship item as you mentioned.
I could sell a few of the original Obi ANH saber parts I have, then use those funds for the superb replicas Serafino will produce later, and have considerable cash left over for other items.
But, when they're gone they're gone - and it took years to find the correct AS tap.
So, I tend to focus my collection to particular items, rather than try to collect every prop from a film / T.V show.
As an example my ANH prop collection is:

Luke, (Original mint Graflex, original calc strip)
Obi, (Original AS tap, booster, clamp, calc strip, Chen grenade, original Derwent balance pipe)
Vader, (replica MPP)

Obviously there's still key items to make the above sabers 100%. But that's what I'm working toward.
Then there's a few parts for Luke's ANH macros, and a full Trooper suit and the ultimate Vader helmet which I hope will appear soon...

I only want a couple of items to represent my other favourite films / T.V. shows, but I won't sell any of the above to fund these items.
The problem is putting one particular item on top priority. You can wait around for ages for a particular part then another will pop up and the funds end up there.
That's why I decided a long time ago to make a list and stick to it.
Saying that, I have the MR TOS Trek Phaser and Communicator - but would love an unmade MM kit Phaser.
From Blade Runner I have the Hartford and the silver Marushin COP, although I'd love an all metal PKD, but would want it built to my specs / materials / finish.
My list isn't that long, perhaps 20 or so items, but at times waiting to cross a piece off that list takes years.



Sr Member
I think it really depends upon the rarity of the "original" item. If having the original piece means that I may search for years and finally find the piece only to have to pay 10 times the true worth of it just to have an original? I'll go for the replica and keep my eyes open for an original when I might be able to procure it for a reasonable price.

I agree that the hunt is part of the satisfaction of having an original piece used to make a prop but it's nice to have a replica, as long as it's a well done replica. Doesn't mean I won't stop looking for the authentic piece. ;)

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Well-Known Member
I like both, but I can tell you trooping with a real MG34 is not easy :eek
that 26 lbs gets to you fast :(


Well-Known Member
I fall into both categories. I have a replica graflex, but I would like to replace it with a real one, mainly because the replica is all nice and new and shiny. I've owned a bunch of real ones, back when they were a lot harder to come by (well, not harder, just more expensive). A few marks here and there, a scratch, a all adds to the authenticity of a prop, IMO.

That said...some props just don't look right when they're dinged up. Case in point, my Vader saber. It's an MR, and will remain an MR. I don't like the way the grips flare out at the base of a real MPP, and the chrome just doesn't look right with scratches and other wear and tear.

The Obi-wan ANH...well, they're easy enough to weather pretty well...but nothing beats a real grenade. The rest of the saber can be a fake as a £3 note, but if you have a real grenade on it with a few dings, and real age behind it...well, I'm not so bothered if it isn't 'exactly' the right one as per screenshots. That one part makes that saber.

So there you go. For me, some things need to be authentic. Other things can be replicas. I guess it depends how important I feel it is to the look and feel of the prop. And thats why I've been hanging onto an M38 scope for nearly 4 years without actually buying a sterling to put it on. Sterlings are two a penny here in the UK. M38's, weathered just the way mine is, I didn't dare sell it in case I couldn't find another one I liked this much. :lol


Well-Known Member
Well, yeah,
To me, original parts are always better to get, but when You have a house, girlfriend,bills and other things in life that cost $$, you just can't go spend $600+ on a original MPP etc.etc..
Unless, you save up :rolleyes but, by the time you have the money, they aren't around (gone in 60 seconds :confused )and you wait & wait and nothing. Then you see some good dealsfor some nice sabers &,buy,buy,,,,then, bye bye$$$ and BAM you see an original MPP f/s as soon as your broke. :cry :angry

So, if I know I can't afford the original parts, I buy or make the most accurate replicas I can and love it just as much, as if it were THE original.:love
Kinda like adopting a kid. j/k But ofcoarse if I get my hands on an original, the other one is up f/s. (the prop, not the kid,) :angel


Active Member
I've got feet planted in both camps, myself. I have a Graflex and an MPP, and am slowly building up my OWK...

But my grenade is not 100% accurate, and so far, I have to make do with a modern AS handwheel, and there's no emitter at all... yet. My MPP has little inaccuracies, too.

Even so, I have room in my collection and my budget for super-accurate versions, too. They fill different needs/desires. The "found" versions don't have to be the "ultimate" versions, IMO.



Sr Member
I agree that original parts are best, but I generally don't have the time to track them down and often don't have the money to buy them on the rare occasion when I do come accross them. The replica parts are the reason I am able to participate in this hobby.

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