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What's going on with vintage NIB prices

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10 hours ago, markbt73 said:

But I guess my central question remains: not "why do you have so many," but "would you be willing to help someone else starting a smaller collection, by selling them one of your many, for a fair price, and if not, why not?"

Sure, everything's for sale, show me the money!! :P 

These are just doodads of life, finding/building/owning a toy does make me happy but there's also happiness to be found by introducing others & getting them hooked too. ;) 

Never did "get" RC10s though... ok they're tough but pretty basic in design/materials IMHO. Ok they're worlds winningmost RC perhaps... but is that just because they're lucky to be in right place (USA!) at right time (RC heyday, not much direct competition)? We raced an RC300 & RC12e but skipped RC10, never had a Goldpan. So yeah, that dusty wreck still looks like a dingy old RC10, without the nostalgia. 

 

 

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9 hours ago, WillyChang said:

Never did "get" RC10s though... ok they're tough but pretty basic in design/materials IMHO. Ok they're worlds winningmost RC perhaps... but is that just because they're lucky to be in right place (USA!) at right time (RC heyday, not much direct competition)? We raced an RC300 & RC12e but skipped RC10, never had a Goldpan. So yeah, that dusty wreck still looks like a dingy old RC10, without the nostalgia.

There's a definite American-ness to them: Take a basic design that works and just keep chipping away at it, smoothing off the rough edges, but never changing the underlying structure. And expect that the end-user is going to want to change things around, so make it modular and easy to tinker with. Make it strong and able to handle anything, and don't worry too much about refinement.

It works for us. Look at our pickup trucks: even now, they're body-on-frame, with a solid axle on leaf springs in the back and a cast-iron pushrod engine in front. 100-year-old technology, but they still outsell everything else. Keep it simple, throw horsepower at it, learn to work around its inherent flaws, and (as much as I hate the phrase) git 'er done.

Of course, it's also what makes us so reluctant to change, as in the whole carbs vs fuel injection thing...

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15 hours ago, WillyChang said:

Never did "get" RC10s though... ok they're tough but pretty basic in design/materials IMHO. Ok they're worlds winningmost RC perhaps... but is that just because they're lucky to be in right place (USA!) at right time (RC heyday, not much direct competition)?

I grew to like RC10s later in life. There is a definite durability about them that period Tamiyas lack. I will give a nod to the designers (basically, Roger Curtis) though. The RC10 didn't luck into being the most winningest RC. There was purpose and forethought put into most aspects of the buggy and it succeeded because of it. A lot of the nifty yet somewhat untested quirks were stripped away leaving a clean, purposeful design. That's not to say Kyosho wouldn't have come up with the Ultima on their own, because I think they would have, regardless if the RC10 was introduced or not. Even basic Hot Shot architecture that inspired the Fox was moving away from more older designs like the Frog.

I will agree, I'm surprised about the content (RC10Talk for instance) that can be generated about one buggy. Yes, it evolved and there are idiosyncrasies involved within that evolution. But once you've seen a dozen RC10s from given era it gets repetitive. Granted there was a ton of options for the car which adds to a diverse end product.  

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Yeah, I never saw the RC10 as a "collector's" piece. It's too purposeful. My interest in it is kinetic; as a static display object, it's not nearly as interesting as Tamiya or the other Japanese brands.

What's funny, circling back around to vintage collections and prices, is that a few years ago, I had as many as 8 or 9 RC10s all at once. I bought two big lots, and sold off all the nice ones: new-built Championship Editions and early RC10Ts, a very low-use all-original World's car, and a new-in-package RPM World's suspension conversion kit, among other cool stuff. The trouble is that once all that was sold (for a tidy profit, which I blew on scaler/crawler parts), I was left with all the old junky scratched-up parts, which is what I built my two current runners out of. I kind of wish I had kept one or two of the new-builts for myself, but I'd probably just be scared to drive them, and they'd end up sitting there...

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Completely agree with @Saito2

The RC10 was well designed ... but also to iterate - which it did (deeply and quickly) leading to the success everyone knows.

For me, it’s a blast to run (the variability vs track conditions is frankly superb) but also sterile / boring to collect - sorry RC10 crowd - compared to period Tamiya or Kyosho. 

IMO the 10 was the first - and big - step toward homogenised buggy racing ... which is broadly when / why I first fell out of the hobby back in the day.

So ... bringing it back to this thread, how do RC10 prices fare these days ? 

My guess is Worlds success gives some kits a valuable halo - but it probably doesn’t run deep because of the inherent variability to build the same success ?

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2 hours ago, markbt73 said:

Yeah, I never saw the RC10 as a "collector's" piece. It's too purposeful. My interest in it is kinetic; as a static display object, it's not nearly as interesting as Tamiya or the other Japanese brands.

While I totally agree with you guys that the RC10 introduced a family of homgenous, purposeful racing designs that evolved in a fairly linear fashion, I do disagree on the collector aspect... 

I see the RC10 as super collectible. But here’s the catch - I only really feel that way about the original RC10, while pretty much ignoring the rest in the series. 

The reason is because as a “collector” (we are all collectors to some degree - including you Daz! :D @RETRO R/C ).... I view the first RC10 in the context of all the buggies that were on the market at that time. When viewed this way, the RC10 was wildly different to everything else that had come before - thus making it another cornerstone in what I see as the “glorious variety” of that time. 

When you collect vintage RC buggies across brands, no collection is complete without an original RC10. And having an RC10 lets you go “hey, look at the vast difference between this, the Marui Hunter, or the Kyosho Progress... etc... all of which were released the same year!”

The relatively contiguous later evolution of the RC10 is exemplified in the mere name of the thing - how many models have they released with “RC10” in the name :D That has been an approach I find boring from a collector standpoint  

But the FIRST RC10 - ah, that was a thing of eclectic 1980s wonder. Put it on then shelf next to all the other wildly different 80s designs, and it exemplifies that wonder as much as they all do. It’s a collective appeal.

And that to me is the whole appeal of 80s R/C collecting - the variety. And in many cases where the racing buggies are concerned, the joy comes from owning just the first model they released - due to the later homogeny of their other releases.

Another thing to point out - often the first model released by the more purely “racing oriented” brands, was more beholden to what we could call the Tamiya Aesthetic, than the later ones. Case in point, RC10 had great box art, design, and realism touches - lights, driver, decals, wheels/tyres - and these elements would later be watered down or eschewed entirely, once a racing market became focused solely on winning.

But at first, even the racing market was focused on catching the eye of kids in the hobby shop. Some races even required driver figures to be used. And the aesthetic of 1984 was still “some level of real scale buggy looks”. I wish this had stayed in fashion forever.

Same applies to the Yokomo YZ-834B Dog Fighter. It’s body was more the beginning of the late 80s “space age” era (which is incredibly given its inception in 1983). But it’s cool fat tyres, yellow wheels, and chunky bathtub design with shocks, was unable to get wholly away from Tamiya’s crowd pleasing (somewhat “toy-like” - and I do not consider that derogatory) aesthetics, even though it was another pure racing design. Which makes it also the first and most interesting of it’s series IMHO, and another great buggy in that 80s family of vintage RC eclecticism.

As for collector value. An original NIB RC10 is generally around US$1000+. 

The remake of course, caused a dip, as it had been heading further north of that value. But since the remake has now been discontinued also, its price is also climbing. So both are headed upward now. Or there is at least “upward pressure” - which is what always happens in vintage RC (and vintage remakes) once all production is fully ceased.

IMHO, RC10 has multiple reasons for collecting - both vintage looks and appeal in the context of early 80s buggies (as I have just mentioned), but also - racing history/provenance. Making it an essential ☺️

Cheers,

H.

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Apologies for the typos above, I wrote that one on my phone :P Great thread though. I actually had no idea a more racer-oriented enthusiast like @WillyChang might be lukewarm on the RC10 - had always assumed the RC10 was considered "God" to those who primarily like to tinker and tune.

But it just goes to show how we all come to this hobby with different motivations.

I totally admire the guys who build, restore, modify - and their extensive knowledge of performance, tuning, etc. But personally that takes a backseat for my hobbying, as I cannot stand building anything non-original :D A huge part of the fun for me, is this "curating" tendency I have. I should probably work for a museum or something.

The curating, and appreciation of kits therefore, is where I come from when I post in threads like this - I see all the vintage kits as special, unique pieces of toy design from an era when "nothing had been figured out" and all the companies were experimenting. As such, I love to preserve each one as it's own unique piece of creativity. Art, if you will.

Another aspect which relates to this - I absolutely love the international flavour of 1980s R/C kits. Today's R/C market is appalling in this regard - a whole heap of boringly designed junk made in China, is how I view most of it :wacko:.

Whereas, in the 1980s, you had the RC10 proudly made in the USA. Schumacher proudly British. A huge contingent of pure, crazy, experimetnal Japanese innovation. And efforts from France, Italy, Germany and more. Each of these not only reflected the vast creativity of the time - in many cases, the designs somewhat reflect the nationality of their manufacture. In the case of the RC10 - quite a robust rethink of the architecture of an R/C car, for performance, with a california look and a bit of bling thrown in with the anodized gold tub! Contrast that with the fiddly and precise approach of Schumacher, or the anime inspired efforts from Japan, or the quirky versatility of SG/Tag from Italy. There are definite threads of unique culture in each company's output.

Most of that "culture", is now kinda lost. Today's R/C market reflects almost none of it, really. Designs are more homogenous. Almost everything that "could" be figured out, has been figured out, with regard to performance. The cars are fast, but samey. And low-paid Chinese workers manufacture almost all of it - with Tamiya being the only real exception left, AFAIK.

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17 hours ago, Hibernaculum said:

Today's R/C market is appalling in this regard - a whole heap of boringly designed junk made in China, is how I view most of it :wacko:.

That's how I view most consumer goods these days, actually.

I'm absolutely with you on the regional/international "flavors" missing. And it's a real shame, because that flavor explained the designs, to some degree. The Japanese seem to love endless tiny variations of glossy flashy things, and encourage a sort of "Collect em all!" mentality, whereas the American "hot rodder" mentality is better reflected in the Associated and Bolink and early Losi "hardware store" feel, which encouraged all the conversion kits and home-built specials.

What's cool to me about the RC10 is that, if you really dive into it, the "cottage industry" that sprung up around it is actually more interesting than a NIB 6010 kit or a perfectly-restored Edinger-era shelf queen. An Ascot sprint car conversion uses a lot of the same parts as a JG monster truck conversion, and both are about 80% Associated parts, but they are completely different vehicles. And then there are the aftermarket gearboxes (MIP, Hyperdrive, J-Car, all completely different designs) and the trailing arm suspension conversions and wide-track front end kits and the long-arm World's kits, and on and on... and that's before you even get into the chassis that the local guy at the track made out of a "No Parking" sign and some wood blocks that somehow blew everyone's doors off one weekend.

And all of them celebrate that idea that (for good or ill) engineering doesn't stop at the factory doors, which is the American hot-rodding sprit in a nutshell. I think you'll always see new-in-box or stock new-built RC10s appreciated for what they are, just like there are still completely stock '32 Fords and '55 Chevys around. But like those two, it asks, screams even, to be tinkered with, and made your own. And like those, I start to wonder if we'll see the value tables turn, when a really nice clean custom car with some rare go-fast parts is actually worth more than a 100% stock one.

Just another perspective from the other side of the really big pond...

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Wholly aligned with @Hibernaculum curating 😂

If it’s not original there’s an itch I can’t scratch ...

And I also mourn the loss of cultural innovation - although I’m hopeful a rapid drip-down of space industry materials may offer the next surge in design ... ironically probably lead by China ?

In terms of market uniqueness, I can see why the 834 Dogfighter and early 6000 ish RC10s have some collecting appeal - but, here’s the thing ... 

For me, the first 834 was ugly, disjointed and soulless - with abysmal handling from appalling rear shocks, a front uni-mess and an unforgiving chassis. It also had looks only its mother could love ...

The early 6000s def fared better out of the box on all counts - but genius design (too) quickly got morphed into avid tinkering and collectible ‘uniqueness’ got drowned in a sea of variability / repetition ... making yearning for the first almost like Heinz saluting the first baked bean in a can !

To be fair, you can flip both points of view into reasons to collect either car regardless - if only to note and admire how things first started then evolved. 

You can also make a case for owing both given the strong ties between Yokomo and Associated back in the day - if only to showcase a shared design journey.

The thing is, unless you’ve already got a fairly full collection, I’d personally prioritise pieces like the first edition Scorpion and Optima - purely because, at their times, they were more pivotal. 

The early 834 and 6010 achieved some competitive success - but neither became pivotal w/o years of, what felt like, grudging evolution ... taking me back to both being a more homogenised collectible and, for me, therefore less attractive ?

I guess this may be a marmite debate gents - you’re either one way or the other 😂

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1 hour ago, markbt73 said:

whereas the American "hot rodder" mentality is better reflected in the Associated and Bolink and early Losi "hardware store" feel, which encouraged all the conversion kits and home-built specials.

Even the clips from old Winning Edge video that show the production facility have that cool old machine shop vibe. I worked in places like that (that seemed stuck in the 80's). I wish I could have worked for Associated back then.

1 hour ago, markbt73 said:

And like those, I start to wonder if we'll see the value tables turn, when a really nice clean custom car with some rare go-fast parts is actually worth more than a 100% stock one.

This is a good question. Certain sought-after aftermarket parts bring good money and in the land of vintage RC, I could see this possibly being the case. However (and I'm completely unsure if there is a correlation), in the land of 1:1 cars, customs and street rods can be tough to unload because they are unique and done to the owner's taste. That seller may have loved the metallic purple paint with lake pipes and Centerline wheels, etc. they installed but potential buyers may not. So the seller thinks its worth x amount because that's what they invested but buyers don't care because it's not done to their taste.

Even when I get a modified RC, I'm happy to have the rare aftermarket parts, but I'm also minimally planning on changing the body/paint and some other odds and ends to make it "mine". Just some thoughts but in the RC10 world its these modifications that make the buggy interesting so who's to say. A ton of boxart RC10s get redundant after awhile.

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I think while the aftermarket parts definitely appreciate in value too... the simplicity of an original stock kit is just a more universally recognisable collectible to most people. It’s also still the platform needed for whatever you ultimately intend to do - from keep it stock, to heavily modify. Hence, everybody needs it. And everybody wants it. To some degree. 

Can’t top that sort of demand.

I probably wouldn’t know what to do with a heavily modified custom build :D I never buy them. I’d probably strip it right down to get the few bits I wanted. 

1 hour ago, SuperChamp82 said:

For me, the first 834 was ugly, disjointed and soulless - with abysmal handling from appalling rear shocks, a front uni-mess and an unforgiving chassis. It also had looks only its mother could love ...

:D 

I agree with much of what you wrote. Though I would tend to disagree there... not on the handling, but the looks at least. I think for it’s time, it was pretty great. I mean it was first produced in 1983 - making it the first electric 4WD kit buggy in the whole world (correct me if I’m wrong). 

This thread needs more pics too. And I think this pic is awesome...

Yokomo-YZ-834B-Dog-Fighter-Action.jpg

I have next to no interest in Yokomo beyond this car. But I love this car, in box art. I am also stunned that, body design wise, this car was 4-5 years ahead of it’s time, with its sleek looks. I prefer window nets and roll cages, but as sleek designs go I think this was alright. The roll bar is cool too.

I have the kit, and the 05R motor which was pictured on the box, but never included in the kit... I think the NIP motor alone cost me $300. :blink: 

The kit presentation itself is a wonderful mix of partial Tamiya Aesthetic, and complete confusion. For the time (a simple age in which most prospective consumers would have expected the motor to be included), the kit should have included the motor... so they tried to make up for it with a picture of the motor :D 

On the one hand, it also had illustrated box art like a Tamiya. On the other, the headline title isn’t even the name of the car - it’s a directive about what you should do...

“Enter Exciting 4WD Dimension”

Yokomo completely lacked Tamiya’s marketing finesse, but were clearly reaching for it as best they could with this product. Wonderful collision of purpose, toy marketing, and racing aspirations.

The kit I have takes pride of place in my little museum currently... ;)

img_6273.jpg

H.

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Poor Hudson... we have completely, totally, and irrevocably derailed his thread...

I'm not sure it's quite Marmite, because I can appreciate a good NIB or bone-stock build, and for some cars, that's what I would prefer. My dream is still to one day have, and many years later build, a NIB original Kyosho Javelin, because that's the one I really longed for in the Tower Hobbies catalogs of my youth. (I have a nice restored mostly stock Optima to tide me over until then.) And a couple of others (Icarus, and a Tamiya Lancia Rally) would be awesome to have NIB (to be built eventually) as well. Whereas Marmite... ew.

But an unbuilt RC10, with its total lack of box presentation (unless you have a thing for plastic bags) is not something I could leave in that state for any length of time. I built my RC10 Classic remake (totally with you on that term for these, H, because China) and then put it back in the box, because that way I can open the box and look at a shiny new car and spin the gears and squish the suspension up and down. But I'm much less interested in running it than I am my two old "bitsa" originals.

As for the Yokomo, I think I'd most like having one of those in "pre-raced" condition. There's something about the early race cars, and the weird little mods and tweaks that people made in the quest for speed, that's fascinating to me. The idea of a scratched, beat-up time capsule from 1985 is just too cool. The trouble is that, much like a NIB, an old RC car is in that condition exactly once: when it's found in that box in the attic or basement. If you want it in that condition, you have to buy it in that condition, because a beat-up former race car is much more likely to get torn apart and restored before changing hands again than a NIB kit is to get built.

But I am incredibly thankful for those of you who are the curators and historians. If nothing else, the reference photos you generate are invaluable... it's nice to see how it's "supposed" to be built, even if I choose to ignore it and do it my way. ;)

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Do me a favor, all of you, will you? 

SLOW DOWN! 

I need to read all this, because this is one of the most interesting threads ever, but at the rate you're all going, I can't keep up. Too much spare time, all of you, obviously :P

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11 hours ago, markbt73 said:

Poor Hudson... we have completely, totally, and irrevocably derailed his thread

^_^ True.

To refer back...

On 3/18/2019 at 2:45 AM, Hudson said:

on the rare occasion that a nice NIB turns up on an 'auction' format I don't feel that it gets close to the 'Buy it now' prices I'm seeing.  There's a discrepancy between the price sellers are asking and the price people are prepared to pay, at least that's my view, but maybe I'm wrong

My 2 cents on this specifically: Buy it now prices are always higher than auction prices. This is normal. As eBay has evolved, collectible items have tended to charge a premium for the convenience of being able to buy something rare, on the spot. As opposed to fighting for it in live bidding. There is also a tendency for auction bidders to want to get a bargain and get things for the lowest amount possible. So there's actually a motivation pushing in both directions - Upward for But It Now prices. Downward for auctions. So it's no surprise if there's a (sometimes large) disparity.

With that said, not all buy it now prices are as understandable as others. A buy it now price which is roughly inside 150% of the last auction price, is not at all unusual. Above that though, and it's getting a bit silly.

US$1300 for a Hotshot II is a bit unrealistic IMHO. But I've also seen way worse. I recently saw a Nikko model get listed for something like $100,000. :mellow: (And the seller was stroppy, when confronted about it).

11 hours ago, markbt73 said:

I built my RC10 Classic remake (totally with you on that term for these, H, because China)

Much appreciated ^_^

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The RC10 is not the prettiest girl at the party, but if you happen to take her out, she will not disappoint! :D

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Go on then @Hibernaculum - that’s a great 834 pic ! 

And you’re spot on re it being the first commercially available 4WD. 

Yokomo box art still makes me twitch though 😂 It’s the kind of thing I’d optimistically spend hours / days drawing (and repeatedly erasing ...) when I was 9 - only to find the scale ended up drifting / uneven, the detail inconsistent and colouring basic 🙄 In short, nowhere near as satisfying to look at - and trace over ... - as Tamiya.

@Saito2 launched a separate thread on Tamiya box art which neatly sums things up if anyone hasn’t found it yet ? 

To be fair, the 834 box interior was also much better from memory ? Well laid out with a partially built factory chassis I think ... although @Hibernaculum is (again) bang on about the missing motor. And I’m not surprised at the replacement cost. 

I guess I can see why you and @markbt73 would consider a NIB or boxed / first built 834 collectible but - to go back @Hudson questions on value and why we do all this - it would:

(a) have to stay on the shelf because (unlike the RC10) it needed c. £125 in old money parts to make it fun / competitive - like those lovely alloy rear suspension arms, belt tightener and the front Delta kit ? 

(b) apparently cost c. $1500 for the NIB alone these days if current eBay prices are a guide - so, likely nearer $1800 if you sourced vintage hop ups ?

Now - all that, for me, would either irritate my curating / originality urge 😂 or make for a v expensive shelf only collectible vs NIB prices for kits you could admire and one day build / have fun running out of the box ?

Which oddly would include a 6000 RC10 in its purest form - and at a cheaper run rate if c $1000 is a good guide ?

Ironically, the first RC10 release date and its NIB money broadly takes up back to the Hotshot and @Hudson originally testing a $1300 NIB price ... which I agree is inflated / opportunistic.

So we got there in the end gents 😂😂

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On 4/27/2019 at 9:22 AM, markbt73 said:

But an unbuilt RC10, with its total lack of box presentation (unless you have a thing for plastic bags) is not something I could leave in that state for any length of time.

Aw :D...

Sorry to recycle my own content. Yes alright, I know it's a box full of plastic bags on the inside, and that's nowhere near as fun as what the Japanese kit makers did.

But this is one of the truly greatest box art cars ever, and one of the greatest box art photos ever taken. And this comes back exactly to what I was saying about the Yokomo YZ-834B Dog Fighter... the first buggy released by some of the non-Tamiya, performance oriented brands, was usually quite beholden to the prevailing Tamiya fashion of the day. That is, scale realism in the buggy design, and an effort to make a big splash with the box image and marketing... which made them all fun to look at...

teamassociatedrc100011.jpg?resize=519,31

The box sides of the RC10 box are also great - using that trend you often saw on 80s products of using a plain white background, inset pictures, and explaining lots of detail about the product. Old computers and video game systems (e.g. Sega Master System) often did it the same way. It was very effective.

teamassociatedrc10003.jpg?resize=519,254

As @RETRO R/C said, a lot of the fun is in the "potential" of the NIB kit too. It's that feeling of knowing you have a rare, brand new one. And that you could build a brand new car from it in one fell swoop - no need to hunt for the parts. And it's the preservation and bottling of that sense of joy we all felt when we first held a NIB kit in our hands. The new-ness, the smell, all the pristine, clean parts, and the imminent fun of putting it all together.

Those who still wonder at the attraction of vintage NIB, may never have quite felt that way about a new kit earlier in life - perhaps they saw it as a chore, like "oh god, I just want to get this build over and done with", etc. For me, when I got my first NIB Tamiyas as a kid... I remember just lying on the floor looking at the kits for hours and hours, taking the parts out, looking at the manual, decals, internal box pictures, etc... and really getting to know the entire package, before actually opening a single part of it. :D 

To this day, I treat all of it with such "reverence" - whether restoring or opening a NIP original part. You guys would laugh if you knew. But a lot of that patience and appreciation comes from a childhood in which my family really couldn't afford any of this stuff. The first time I ever got a set of NIB Sand Scorcher tyres, when I was about 15 or so, I think I kept it on the table beside my bed for ages. Just thinking how cool it was that they even sold spare tyres in a coloured box with box art of its own.

tamiyasandscorchertyre1.jpg?resize=519,3

B)

6 hours ago, SuperChamp82 said:

To be fair, the 834 box interior was also much better from memory ? Well laid out with a partially built factory chassis I think

Yes, it was. A mostly assembled chassis. With wheels, tyres, and additional parts and body separate, and laid out with some cardboard and ties. But no blister pack. And yes, market price for original Yokomo YZ-834B kit is now around US$1500 at a minimum. A modern remake had been touted at one point, but never materialized.

6 hours ago, SuperChamp82 said:

Which oddly would include a 6000 RC10 in its purest form - and at a cheaper run rate if c $1000 is a good guide ?

I always liked the #6010 "complete kit" variant of the RC10. The #6000 "Basic kit" variant, despite having seemingly the "first" number in the sequence, lacked the electrical components (to allow racers to accessorize their own). Whereas the #6010 was the more "Tamiya equipment level" kit variant.

But you're right - the NIB of a #6000 may be smidge cheaper for that very reason. Some years ago, I wrote a brief summary of the variants, if interested.

The most valuable RC10 would I think, be one of the kits without missing bits, and "Edinger" address on the side (denoting the earlier factory location of Team Associated). If it's not sealed, then the internal parts may also be a factor in final value - diehards will mostly likely fight harder for the earliest kit they can get. But to be honest, to me, any RC10 NIB kit is a huge piece of history to own.

The one I pictured above, is a pretty much perfect #6010 RC10  and is still sealed. I had great luck in finding that one. I don't normally care about sealed kits, but this is one kit I will never open -_-

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Hi all,

 

Just wanted to say that although i have noticed the increasing prices for the vintage kits, occasionally you can find a bargain or two. I just bought this collection from someone who lived not far from me, and i paid less than the value of just the four early body sets for the whole lot. He wanted the money for other projects, and so wanted a quick sale.

A good day indeed...

J

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15 hours ago, Hibernaculum said:

The box sides of the RC10 box are also great - using that trend you often saw on 80s products of using a plain white background, inset pictures, and explaining lots of detail about the product. Old computers and video game systems (e.g. Sega Master System) often did it the same way. It was very effective.

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As @RETRO R/C said, a lot of the fun is in the "potential" of the NIB kit too. It's that feeling of knowing you have a rare, brand new one. And that you could build a brand new car from it in one fell swoop - no need to hunt for the parts. And it's the preservation and bottling of that sense of joy we all felt when we first held a NIB kit in our hands. The new-ness, the smell, all the pristine, clean parts, and the imminent fun of putting it all together.

Those who still wonder at the attraction of vintage NIB, may never have quite felt that way about a new kit earlier in life - perhaps they saw it as a chore, like "oh god, I just want to get this build over and done with", etc. For me, when I got my first NIB Tamiyas as a kid... I remember just lying on the floor looking at the kits for hours and hours, taking the parts out, looking at the manual, decals, internal box pictures, etc... and really getting to know the entire package, before actually opening a single part of it. :D 

Monogram static models from the era have a similar aesthetic, which is one of the reasons I like them...

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Clean, simple, and instantly recognizable. I can see why they have gone back to something close to this box design in recent years; it's their best era. (And yes, this is part of my collection, and yes, it is unbuilt. But I un-sealed it, as I do all my kits, just so I can look inside...)

And you're probably right about someone's childhood informing how they interact with their chosen hobbies. My early exposure to cars in general was through my dad and his friends, who all seemed to have classic sports cars, and not a one of them was a pristine show car. One guy restored '50s Jaguars, to show, but also to race. A neighbor was building a Chevy Nova to drag race; it was a beautiful car, but that wasn't the point of it. Nothing was too precious to use; it was all treated with respect, but it all had to earn its keep.

So when I got into model cars, and later slot cars and RC, there was never a thought that a package wouldn't get opened and its contents put into immediate use. Tires are worn out? Buy new ones and keep driving. Sure, some come in a fancy box, and some only come in a plastic bag, but whatever; which ones work best? I'll take those. No one was savoring the packaging of an SU fuel pump or an Edelbrock intake; they were bolting them into the cars and seeing what they could do. It honestly never would have occurred to me to do any different with my Grasshopper, or any of the things I bought for it.

It's only recently that I have started appreciating the idea of a new-old model still in its box. But so far I can only do it with static kits; if it can move onve it's assembled, then it needs to be assembled...

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This is really interesting... Seems like both Associated and Monogram (and possibly the aforementioned video game companies) took some styling cues from world's largest advertisers, their contemporary US 1:1 passenger car industry. The RC10 box - which I think is absolutely stunning - would be "period correct" for a lot of eighties Big Three magazine and newspaper ads, while monogram went for the fifties dealer brochure look around the sides, whereas the main pic has a late eighties enthusiast magazine foto shoot flair to it... That's how classic cars were presented when the Tri-Chevy first rose to superstardom. 

Compared to these, the Tamiya look is... shall I say timeless? Ageless? Stand alone? Maybe that's what makes Tamiya box art so special - it didn't mirror the times, didn't take cues from anyone, didn't change with the times, not for almost 25 years. 

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Got to admit the RC10 scored on box art too - agree with @Hibernaculum ... it was utterly iconic for its time and massively exciting in the way it broke the mold !

The pics below show how Kyosho / the Optima fared - which is still stunning ... esp the photography and box side details .... but nowhere near as dynamic. 

As an aside, what does everyone think about the Marui’s - both re quality, performance and collectibility ?

Ive attached some of their period box art to refresh memories :) 

For me, they were (perhaps a little harshly) seen as cheap copies - using weak plastic to keep costs down ... which inevitably broke or degraded way too quickly.

A fairer view might consider that everyone ‘took inspiration’ from (copied ...) everybody else back then ... and whilst you can clearly see Wild Willy, Frog, Javelin and Optima in Marui’s first 6 kits they actually also had a few moments of inspiration.

Examples ? How about the Hunter being the first to use double front wishbones vs trailing arms in 84 ... which modern racing still hasn’t bettered ?

Or their Datsun Big Bear being the first ‘fat tyre’ Monster truck ?

Even the Samurai had a chain drive that ,in some respects, was better than the Optima if only it hadn’t been a glass canon ? 

The Ninja body also ended up being the design anchor for aero buggies 5 - 6 years ahead despite being labelled a toy at the time ?

Maybe I’m getting sentimental in my old age but these days I sort of feel sorry for Marui - and with a bit of luck they might still be an RC car powerhouse vs a French wheelie relic ☹️

Whether they’re collectible I guess depends a huge amount on your personal take on the above - but fwiw they seem comparatively great value in terms of cost ?

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Here's one for you guys, as far as box presentation goes... the idea that the kit should look pretty before it's assembled trickled down to the static models, and was in no way limited to Tamiya. This is a Gunze Sangyo 1/24 scale kit of a Maserati Merak SS. I can't find a date on it, but the Merak SS was built from 1975-83, and the other cars in this series of kits are contemporaries of it, so I think late 70s-early 80s is a good guess. Note the "stats" for the 1:1 car on the box lid:

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The level of detail is right up there, as well. Note the pop-up headlights. There are instructions for installing tiny light bulbs as well.

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And inside: look at that, a divider! The parts are all bagged, but the bags are all stapled to the side of the box to keep them from sliding around.

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This kit can be motorized as well, which seems to be a common theme with the Japanese 1/24 kits. I have a Testors/Fujimi Mercedes Benz 190E kit that can also be motorized (neither one includes the motor, though) and I know Tamiya and Marui both put out lots of motorized 1/24 kits. Most of them run on one AA battery. I often wonder if kits like this led to the Mini 4WD craze...

But mostly, I just wanted to prove that I can have nice things and keep them in the box. ;)

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11 hours ago, markbt73 said:

But so far I can only do it with static kits; if it can move once it's assembled, then it needs to be assembled...

It's really interesting to hear your approach to this Mark.

It actually makes me think you're on the road to appreciating (more) the NIB working model kit, as much as you do the NIB plastic model kit ^_^  Essentially because the 1970s/1980s era of Japanese kits was full of crossover between the two. Kyosho and Yokomo and a few others may have been more singularly R/C focused (or at least, did not have plastic model lines), but the rest of the Japanese companies essentially saw an R/C kit as a "premium" level plastic model kit. The plastic model world and R/C world, were pretty much... one world.

We saw that a lot obviously from Tamiya in the beginning of their R/C product line - i.e. Porsche 934 & 935 literally being upgraded 1/12 plastic model kits. But the same was true for many other brands. Notably Fujimi, Otaki, Marui, Nichimo, Eidai Grip and others. In some cases, motorized plastic models were made which looked to me like they were "potential" R/C cars... but their scale was never quite increased large enough to make it to the R/C league. These sub-R/C kits included ones like the 1/16 off roaders from Marui which like little R/C  models... without the R/C ability...

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9 hours ago, SuperChamp82 said:

As an aside, what does everyone think about the Marui’s - both re quality, performance and collectibility ? For me, they were (perhaps a little harshly) seen as cheap copies - using weak plastic to keep costs down ... which inevitably broke or degraded way too quickly. A fairer view might consider that everyone ‘took inspiration’ from (copied ...) everybody else back then ... and whilst you can clearly see Wild Willy, Frog, Javelin and Optima in Marui’s first 6 kits they actually also had a few moments of inspiration. Examples ? How about the Hunter being the first to use double front wishbones vs trailing arms in 84 ... which modern racing still hasn’t bettered ? Or their Datsun Big Bear being the first ‘fat tyre’ Monster truck ?

Marui kits are outstanding.

And while yes, you can see similarities between some Marui cars and Tamiya cars. And of course, Marui copied the box art style...  that is actually where the similarities end. Marui cars were innovative in many ways. And when you often hear people compare say, the Marui Hunter with the Tamiya Frog - well actually, those two cars could not be more different to one another. They are completely unique from one another.

Marui kit presentation was also outstanding. The Hunter kit is actually a lot nicer inside the box, than the Frog kit. And I do love both... but Marui made really beautiful kits.

Honestly, I cannot say enough nice things about Marui. As for the collectibility, it is getting right up there now - the Shogun and the Samurai in particular, have been nudging and topping US$1000 for a while now. These kits will never undergo remakes either.

15 hours ago, junkmunki said:

Just wanted to say that although i have noticed the increasing prices for the vintage kits, occasionally you can find a bargain or two. I just bought this collection from someone who lived not far from me, and i paid less than the value of just the four early body sets for the whole lot. He wanted the money for other projects, and so wanted a quick sale.

A good day indeed... 

:o:o:o:o

That is absolutely INSANE. The find of the year, or maybe the last 5 years? Well done sir. That is $5000 worth of kits for I'm guessing, $500. Incredible find.

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Also re: Marui...

9 hours ago, SuperChamp82 said:

but fwiw they seem comparatively great value in terms of cost

Yes, they are still a bit cheaper. But they have caught up to Tamiya somewhat, over the years. I remember back in the late 1990s on eBay, Marui NIB R/C kits were going for an absolute song - AU$200 for a Hunter? Now they're around 3 times those early internet values.

In those early days, the lesser known R/C brands often slipped under the radar. In the early 2000s, a NIB Sand Scorcher was already getting around US$1000... but that price quickly climbed over the years that followed. However, many other brands stayed low for longer, partly because many buyers were not as familiar with them. I know I picked up one particular kit for just $60 NIB :blink: which nowadays goes for $500-$1000.

Things have changed though. And it's actually great to see (even with this thread) those other brands getting the attention they deserve.

Kyosho...

Big fan of Kyosho also of course, and while the box art was always a photo... there is something just as iconic about those early product photo style boxes too. I mean, we all loved the Tamiya catalogue images, right? Kyosho's boxes were like catalogue images, and I grew to appreciate them. Even if the kits made it difficult to reproduce those images exactly, especially when it came to the decals.

Box internals of Kyosho kits were also pretty cool... but a little different to Tamiya and Marui. Some Kyosho NIB kits are incredibly rare now - rarer than NIB examples of either Tamiya or Marui kits. When was the last time anyone saw a truly NIB Kyosho Beetle (original)? Not the Graupner/Kyosho one, just the plain Kyosho branded one.

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Thanks for the comment Hibernaculum, It would be the first time and most likely the only time i will ever be that lucky.....

Going with the topic of  Marui and kyosho prices, a friend of mine when we were kids had a Marui Galaxy which i thought was great, but at the time i thought that the early kyosho stuff was quite clunky and un realistic, which might explain why they are so valuable now, as they didn't sell in great numbers compared to Tamiya stuff. I have to say though, when the Optima and the likes came out, Kyosho wiped out the opposition when it came to racing.

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