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Thread: Action Man

  1. Default Action Man

    Action Man was a multi-jointed action figure who came with a whole range of cool weapons, vehicles and other accessories. The basic figure comprised a man with a fuzzy short haircut (real fuzz not painted on), a pair of y-fronts and a pair of eyes that you could move left and right with a little lever sticking out the back of his head.There were various different incarnations of Action Man, some of the earlier models had rubber hands which perished quite easily and the fingers dropped off. Some had bigger muscles than others, some had scars, some were blonde and some had voiceboxes with a pull string.You can still get Action Man figures today but they don't bear much resemblance to the early figures.

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  2. #2

    Default Re: Action Man

    Still got my origonal one from the 70's complete with box and the standard accessories. The box is a little 'aged' and tha Action Man himself need new gripping hands as the fingers have broken off with the rubber perishing with age.
    I WANT ONE NOW!!!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Weybridge
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    12

    Smile Re: Action Man

    Heres a link to a few seconds of nostalgia....Action Man 'Transport Command' TV ad - 30 sec advert

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Stockport
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    Default Re: Action Man

    Me & my brother had a few between us, one thing we found that their heads were stuck on with glue that would loosed when soaked for too long in warm water. This was when we were trying out the seaplane in the bath & one fell in.

    Our Mum tried to glue the head back on, but it was never the same again.
    The Trickster On The Roof

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    7,880

    Default Re: Action Man

    Was that an early AM? all mine had the heads on a sort of ridged plug which made the head easy to pull off and on. This was the Eagle Eyes version

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Action Man

    We had them in the early 1980s & I think they were bought new.
    The Trickster On The Roof

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    Pendlebury
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    824

    Default Re: Action Man

    Got my first when I was about 5 for christmas. Built up quitw a collection and then my mum sold the lot to the next door neighbour for 20 when I was about 13.

    Started collecting the 40th anniversary sets in 2007 from Modellers loft. Fantastic sets and most have remained unopened.
    "GAME OVER MAN, GAME OVER"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
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    Trowbridge,wiltshire
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    934

    Default Re: Action Man

    Wow,Action man.My favourite all time toy.I must of got my first one sometime around 1973-1975.Cant be too sure of the year.Between 76 and 77 I got into lots of trouble by taking them into school or organising mini swap meets so that items of clothing and spare grenades and guns could be exchanged for other pieces.Always made bunkers trenches,etc either inside or outside if the weather was warm.Every boy I knew had at least one action man,some like my neighbours boy had the chopper,or his brother the bike.
    I had gained a few by the late 70's like eagle eye,talking,solid hands and rubber gripping hands etc.Then one day they all dissapeared around 1980.It was about the time that mum sold on my cyborg action figures.Only unlike the cyborg ones I did not know where my action men had gone.They just went.I suppose at the time us boys were use to stuff just going without anything being said,and we never really asked about it.It was just a natural thing that happened from time to time in our house.I feel that out of all our toys the ones I miss and would of loved to have kept were my action men.

    I have been looking on many auction sites recently and must say that I am surprised at the price of real vintage action men go for.Lucky for me I managed to purchase two eagle eye examples fairly cheaply but they need a bit of work doing to them to get them battle ready again.It's a start and It already feels like a couple of old friends are coming home.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Suffolk, UK
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    230

    Default Re: Action Man

    I used to collect Action Man as a kid in the 70s/80s-had well over dozen in the end, I think, though a number of them were somewhat war wounded (missing fingers where the rubber had perished Etc). I still have half a dozen, though; an Eagle Eye version in commando gear, an older version with painted eyes, a talking tank commander (with tank, though the gun broke off about thirty years ago), Atomic Man with his glass arm and leg, Captain Zargon (foe of the Action Man Space Ranger) and one of the early Action Men with the painted head, again in commando gear. I also bought one of the 40th Anniversary reproductions in order to have something to display my old Grenadier Guards outfit on...

  10. #10
    sf1378 Guest

    Default Re: Action Man

    I've got a collection of hundreds. Been collecting on and off since 1997 when I had a disposable income. Richard - the heads were never glued on. The earlier ones like sixtyten said were connected together via elastic and hooks with a plug on head atop either a rounded spike, or a stump - when Palitoy introduced the Eagle Eyes head in 1976/77 to allow for the mechanism to work. Then in 78 they introduced the 'New Dynamic Physique' (queue Stuart Maconie whining on about him having blue pants 'you couldn't take off on 'I Love...' ). The head for this model was connected to the body via a vinyl rod which over time perishes and the head falls off - however collectors know how to re-attach heads with elastic, removing the neck cone from within the head...I've repaired loads that way.

    I've got many vintage originals, many of the 40th Anniversary range (which I found to be somewhat disappointing as the quality of the dolls was not good and full of faults - hair easily coming off, gripping hands that reacted with weapons and 'melted' them when held over prolonged periods on display, elasticated chin straps that 'bled dye' under the dolls chins, cracked limbs, overly tight elastic that warped limb joints - especially the ball joints atop the thighs, 'wet paint' on caps, talking dolls that 'didn't talk', the wrong voice box in the later Eagle Eyes Talking Commander (they used the same recording as the earlier version!). I think while Alan Hall at Modellers Loft did a fairly good job doing the line from 2006 - 2009/10 he did scrimp on the quality of the doll itself - something Palitoy didn't do with the originals as even in a battered, broken condition the durability of an original is far better - especially the flocked hair...I had to return many back to Modellers Loft and in the end the owners griping led me to buy from other stockists - one in particular would really check the dolls etc over before sending me them. It was a bit of a hit and miss affair really and as a collector, if your buying brand new, you want it sans flaws ideally. My collection even used custom flockists - certain ebayers offer the chance to re-flock the hair in totally new colours, add sideburns, Pancho Villa style moustaches, goatee beards, you name it, they probably can do it. I once had a 40th doll reflocked with sideburns and a nice drooping moustache to give him that posh Brigadeer look and dressed him as a 1970s British Army Officer...another I had reflocked in ginger hair, clean shaven. I've even had ones done with light grey hair and beard and whitish hair and beard too - to give that aged look. Uniforms in my collection even range from ones made up from modern 1/6th scale (the size used) manufacturers who make truly accurate examples of modern Israeli, WW2: Afrika Korps, German Paras, WW2 British Tommies, German Panzer NCOs, the S.S. regiments, Scots Guards and Officers, Russian Spetznaz, British WW2 Tropical Campaigns, I've even made many custom uniforms using either vintage or reproduction parts and outfits, i.e. I made a German U-Boat Captain, an Afrika Korps Officer (based on an unmade Palitoy product), a Kreigsmarine, and then also I've made more realistic customs using modern made 1/6th scale items from all eras, etc, etc...its a vast collection - I've often thought of slimming it down but collectors of Vintage Action Man all get very attached to their stuff, I know of many collectors who all remark that all the faces on the dolls have slight differences to them - its really down to the molding runs and how it cooled down but you do see each as having a 'character of their own' - and when I used to collect them each time I'd buy bashed up dolls on ebay mainly I'd look at them after a good clean up, perhaps a reflock and new hands and a repair of missing limbs and instantly it would hit me what they would be dressed up as...many collectors love buying knacked dolls and restoring them to former glory - my late Mum really loved Action Man from a design perspective and she used to make up stories of how they'd become damaged and come to our house for shelter, food and repair - 'wash him up and dress him up - hes cold and ill!' she'd say to me....even in my late 20s! I've even managed to speak to Bob Brechin, who was Lead Designer at Palitoy on and off via email about Action Man and the later Action Force it spawned from time to time...however, for all their niceness, its actually the simpler designs I really like - a bearded Adventurer in jumper, jeans and boots and his Special Mission Pod containing his inflatable raft, rope, anchor, flare gun, bipod and Bren Gun! You don't have to worry about 'ruining him, noting gets lost so to speak - its easy to all handle too and muck about with....

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