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buttheadsmate

Palz & Minimates .........I never knew

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Say what you like about his incredible ( as in NOT credible ) ebay pricing......... Ken Lilly (Corndogcollectibles ) takes fantastic photographs & really knows his stuff . Undeniable.

I always keep my eye on Palz prices on ebay & I noticed that Ken is promoting the X-Files line again for fairly obvious reasons I guess ! Perusing them I was fascinated by the various descriptions which are immensely in-depth.

Read the lengthy description of the figure in this auction http://www.ebay.com/itm/X-Files-PALz-2-Palisades-Mini-Figure-Marita-Covarrubias-Laurie-Holden-SRSG-Block-/321751750974?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4ae9e6193e .....you'll find a very interesting piece about the Minimate/Palz connection .

Once you've read that ..........read this http://stores.ebay.com/Corndog-Collectibles/All-About-Plastics.html .............frightening .

If you can't be assed to read the second bit then don't start complaining when your 'mates change colour no.gif

Read all of the Palz descriptions especially if you're an X-Phile.

Fascinating .

BTW if you get tempted into buying Palz .....try me first wink.png

Edited by buttheadsmate

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Very interesting. Were the Minimates already 2 inches tall at the time that the Palz rolled around, or were they still 3 inchers?

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I collected Palz (my dad bought me every single one of the Die Hard ones) long before I started with minimates -- I have to say that I <3 Buffy (& Joss Whedon) so much! Once I saw the C3 set with Catwoman (which I bought, as well as Max from DA) tho, I found MMC & the AA forum.

And I was hooked. :)

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I have one Palz. Agent Dana Scully. I liked the licenses they had, but not the boxy figures.

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I had the buffys and was always disappointed they weren't minimates. They were cool but too big to work with minimate parts.

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Any recommendations on polypropylene bags?

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This is a really interesting topic that I've thought about writing on for a little while...

Links to my suggestions for storage products are at the bottom if you don't want to read everything!

As of right now, I don't have a dedicated display room, (a problem which I hope to resolve before the end of the year). This means that much of my collection is stored in a couple of closets. The quality of the bags that you store your figures in is one of the most important factors in keeping your collection safe. There are other factors, which I'll get to, but as far as what can turn a storage situation bad, the bags are right at the top.

Polypropylene, (PP), is definitely the best way to go. They are acid free, archival quality, and I've never seen a single post about them ruining a figure, even those that have a high PVC count. These are what you want if you are looking at storing figures for a long while. Especially if you can't/don't control the light and climate issues that I'll talk about later on.
Polyethylene, (either high density - HDPE, or low density - LDPE), is an ok solution for *SHORT TERM* storage. These are cheaper than PP products, and carry some chemical reactivity problems with long term storage, but are perfectly fine if you are using them to protect a collection for a move or you use them to mail out trades. I wouldn't suggest using these for more than maybe six months at the most. And even then, I would only suggest using them if you can control the light and climate. I've tested different figures, (Star Wars - Vintage and Modern, GI Joe, Minimates), with polyethylene in a non-controlled UV room and have found that they can indeed leave the figures sticky to the touch, remove or fade paint, and sometimes leave a very strong oily or chemical smell. You can usually remove the smell and, to varying degrees the stickiness, by using the old high grade pure hydrogen peroxide and direct sunlight trick. But the messed up paint is something that can only be fixed by replacing the figure or doing some custom painting.
I wouldn't suggest using any other bags for anything more than a day or two. Using a store bought ziplock sandwich bag is ok if you need to transport something very short term. And, to be honest, I've seen figures stored in them for years without problem. But it's really a crapshoot and I've never seen the point in taking the long term risk.

Going beyond the bags, you also need to be concerned with light, (UV), and temperature. While there are expensive windows treatments to control UV and UV free light bulbs, you can completely eliminate UV degradation by simply keeping your stored figures out of the light. The easiest way to do this is to keep them in a closet that has the door shut. I also like to use opaque storage bins to keep the bagged figures in, just in case I'm putting things into the bins at night and want to leave them out for the next day. A clear Sterelite tub will work too if you're keeping them in a dark closet for the majority of the time. Whatever you do, don't keep bagged figures stored in uncontrolled light. UV degradation is a serious problem, especially for PP and LDPE.

As for temperature, a climate controlled environment is obviously ideal. Cold is usually better than hot, especially when stored in either LDPE or HDPE bags. The heat will drastically shorten the time it takes for a possible reaction to occur with the PVC and paint on a figure. My ideal temp range is around 50F-72F. This not only helps keep the bags from reacting with the figures, it also helps to control the second villain in the climate category: moisture. Moisture forming inside of the bags is a disaster. It can lead to mold, plastic degradation, paint lifting off of the figure.... basically everything that you want to avoid. In addition to controlling the climate, I've always liked adding in a desiccant, like a silica gel packet, to the tubs. This keeps everything nice and dry and is a very inexpensive final line of defense against moisture.

So this is my set up:

I'll start off by saying that no matter which bags you go with, you need to decide on both size and thickness... (keep your mind out of the gutter, Rob). I use a combination of bag sizes depending on the figure. But one thing that is the same with all of the first line of figure defense is the thickness of the bag. I always use 2 millimeter thickness for the bags that the actual figures and accessories are going in. I do this because I've found that they are the perfect balance of flexibility and protection. They are flexible enough not to bend delicate pieces and accessories but are sturdy enough help out in keeping them safe from upward or downward pressure when they are placed in a tub with other figures. Some of the second layer bags I use are thicker, usually 4 mil, but I'll point those out when I get to them.

The most common bag I use is a polypropylene 2x3 2 mil. This fits the vast majority of Minimates with enough room for accessories. If you've bought a loose figure online or made a trade, chances are you've seen this size of bag. The second most common bag I use is a polypropylene 3x4 2 mil. Some people might prefer a 3x3 2 mil to provide a closer fit, and that will certainly work for many of the larger figures. But I've found that almost every single one of the bulked up figures that don't fit a 2x3 will fit into a 3x4, where some actually don't fit very well into a 3x3 without some risk of bending a part of the figure, say Archangel's wings for example. Also, in cases where a figure comes with a large flight stand, or a ton of accessories, I like to put all of the accessories into the 2x3, then put that bag into the 3x4 along with the figure. It makes things much easier to identify and keeps some of the flimsy swords, arrows, etc... from bending.

Most of the figures in a given will easily fit into 2x3s and 3x4s. These are small enough to then be put into a second bag. Which brings me to the multi bag approach I use to keep things safe and organized. Please note that if you want to cut a corner with any of my suggestions, this is the place to do so. Since you've already paid the extra money for the polypropylene bags that actually come into contact with the figure, you can afford to use a polyethylene outer bag since it will only come into contact with the polypropylene bags. This allows you to spend a little less on that second layer, which is generally a good thing because you can usually buy smaller quantities of HDPE or LDPE bags for cheaper prices than you can with PP bags. 2x3s and 3x3s/3x4s are usually sold in 1,000 count sets, which you can easily blow through if you're storing a large collection. But for the other bags I will talk about, you don't need as many. So buying them by the thousands is wasteful and expensive. Getting a hundred is much more reasonable.

After bagging each figure of a given wave or box set, I then place those bags into a larger bag to keep them organized and add yet another layer of protection to the figures. For these larger outer bags, I always go with 4 millimeter thickness. They are more rigid and will allow you to stack more without pressure bending or drooping. The most common bag I use for this is an 8x8 4 mil. These are a little too big for smaller waves, but you can fold the excess almost perfectly in half, which allows you to stack the stored wave of figures like a brick. But if you want to store extra army builders, or you want to have more than one of each figure to have alternate looks, these will hold most every wave in full. To be honest, the only thing I can think of that took more than one 8x8 to store was the second series of TMNT blind bags. But that has to do with the size of the turtles and my absolute sickness with having multiple figures for each alt look.

In addition to the 8x8s, I also have a variety of other sizes for different scenarios. If you have a four figure box set with no extras for alt looks, then I personally like the 6x4 4 mil bags. They can sometimes hold five or six figures depending on size and volume of accessories. Another good staple to keep on hand is the 3x5. These are the preferred size for most of the 3 3/4 lines like Star Wars or Joes. But they are good for an exclusive two pack of Minimates as well.

After I have everything bagged and bagged, (and bagged), I like to label the bags as well. I had some paper stock cut to 3x3 with a thickness of a heavy resume paper, and I write what each set is and drop it in the bag. For instance, the first Avengers Age of Ultron wave would look like this:

Marvel
Wave 61

The TRU exclusives for the same wave would be:

Marvel
TRU AoU W1

This labeling system not only helps me find things faster when I need to check and see if the specialty and TRU paint matches for a wave or see if I need an alt look for a specific figure, it will help me keep things organized when I finally display my loose collection. It will be easy to keep accessories straight if they are in a bag that's in a larger bag that's been labeled. I can have a Marvel W28/Heroes ; Adversaries Box Set Deadpool out and keep the extra accessories easily accessible should I choose to switch up how I'm displaying at any given moment.

After all of the bagging, I then place the bags in the most even layers I can in the tubs. I also put a single layer of thin bubble wrap between each level of bags. I keep all of the Marvel bags together in chronological order, all of the DC stuff in one tub, and so on and so on.

I know it sounds like a lot of work, but it's worth it to me to protect the things I've collected and spent time and money on. I don't do this for anything other than Minimates though. It's good to feel like I have the pieces protected but the process of doing so also allows a good amount of time to admire and see the figures before putting them away. And I have different storage solutions for things like prototypes and delicate pieces, but that's a slightly different topic for a different time.

I hope that has been helpful to anyone that might be interested. I'm sure that some people already know all of this, and congrats for reading all through if you did! Here are some links:

Polypropylene bags:

http://www.gtzip.com/cellophane.html - Make sure you are buying the Ultra Clear Zip Bags! These are the polypropylene ones. If it isn’t Ultra Clear, it’s not PP from this site.

Polyethylene bags:
http://www.cmlsupply.com/packaging-shipping-supplies/ - These are the cheaper outer bags. Make sure to keep checking on your thickness levels when adding the bags to your cart.

Silica Gel:
Can be bought on the cheap in packet form from just about anywhere. Amazon is where I usually go to buy these.

Whatever you do, I would caution against buying the bags from Amazon. I’ve regretted it almost every single time I’ve purchased bags from Amazon. They are usually not PP or even H/L DPE, but much lower grade no matter what the description might say. They often arrive oily and with a strong smell.

As a disclaimer, I’m not affiliated with any of the above companies. But I have made purchases from each one. I’m sure that there is a site or store that could beat the prices from these places. But I’ve had great experiences purchasing from GTZip and CML, and I tend to stick with something that I know works.

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Sometimes....this time would be a perfect example .....I feel slightly inadequate confused.gif

What pk13 has written is what I would love to have ......er...wrote....er.....written . Bravo sir bravo....that was bloody fantastic & light years ahead of my poor direction to 'links' . Thankyou.

My excuse ? Those that have met me know that I can talk ......what you may not know is how slowly I type huh.png

Bags..... bags are a science .biggrin.png Who'd have known ?

As for Palz ....I'm not going to push them onto anybody....they have their faults but I have a great deal of love for them especially the X-files line .

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Thank you for the details! I need to rethink my Ziploc Sandwich bags....

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I'm trying my best to figuratively stick my fingers in my ears when I see this thread. Because if I pay it too much attention I know I'm going to feel compelled to re-bag all my old figures. And I don't have the energy to do that! Just let them decay in their little polyethylene bags, I say.

Putting that aside, fantastic write-up pk13. Thanks for taking the time to assist other collectors in this way.

Edited by karamazov80

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Great information, I wonder how Plano boxes rate for storage?

Same here. I don't bag any of my 'mates. They're all in Plano storage boxes. No sticky surfaces. No discoloration. The only issues I've had are the Iron Man helmets discoloring the heads underneath. Once I noticed that I simply store them with the helmets off.

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All of the problems I've had with Iron Man and metallic paints aren't related to storage, they're factory problems. The paint isn't fully dried before the factory puts the helmet over the head and then into the packaging. I haven't noticed any of them getting worse over time, they're "sun burned" right out of the box.

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Great information, I wonder how Plano boxes rate for storage?

Same here. I don't bag any of my 'mates. They're all in Plano storage boxes. No sticky surfaces. No discoloration. The only issues I've had are the Iron Man helmets discoloring the heads underneath. Once I noticed that I simply store them with the helmets off.

The Plano boxes I'm using have a recycle number of 5 with (PP) underneath. I have not noticed any problems but I'm still a new collector with little shelf time. I do notice the strong "gassing" of the Plano boxes when new.

(Oh please no need for bagging, oh please no need for bagging.........pray.gif

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The Plano tackle/storage boxes and trays should be fine. I'm pretty sure that I remember Plano being polypropylene. And if it has a recycling number of 5 or PP, then it's definitely polypropylene.

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The Plano tackle/storage boxes and trays should be fine. I'm pretty sure that I remember Plano being polypropylene. And if it has a recycling number of 5 or PP, then it's definitely polypropylene.

Good to hear, I have quite an investment in Plano boxes alone.

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so bagged or boxed ? is the question i've got mine boxed and my rare ones bagged maybe i should rethink that and i've got about 30 on display .

im assuming this isnt something that happens over night .

Thanks for the info pk13

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so bagged or boxed ? is the question i've got mine boxed and my rare ones bagged maybe i should rethink that and i've got about 30 on display .

im assuming this isnt something that happens over night .

Thanks for the info pk13

I do both, as in bagged individually with accessories and organized in the Plano box. I use all the dividers it comes with and usually can fit two figures in each slot. I put them back to back so I can hold the closed box upside down or right side up and see the figures in there.

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Is anyone else finding that the shipping from GTZip is really high? It starts out at around $4, but when I put in my zip code, it jumps to $11!

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so bagged or boxed ? is the question i've got mine boxed and my rare ones bagged maybe i should rethink that and i've got about 30 on display .

im assuming this isnt something that happens over night .

Thanks for the info pk13

I do both, as in bagged individually with accessories and organized in the Plano box. I use all the dividers it comes with and usually can fit two figures in each slot. I put them back to back so I can hold the closed box upside down or right side up and see the figures in there.

I keep them loose in the Plano box but it appears they've discontinued the 46-compartment version for one with only 24. Which sucks because I really don't want to have to bag them AND box them.

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Is anyone else finding that the shipping from GTZip is really high? It starts out at around $4, but when I put in my zip code, it jumps to $11!

It seems to jump up pretty quick as you add additional items. They do ship quick though; I ordered on Saturday and received the bags today. The box was fairly heavy too.

I noticed as I was re-bagging some minimates that the figure that seemed to have suffered the most degradation was a Cannonball that was in a bag with a blast-off stand. I assume the difference in plastics caused the problem. Not sure what everyone else has experienced, but I don't think I'll be putting any flight stands with the figures just to be safe.

And thanks again to pk13. I've been thinking about upgrading my minimate storage for a while so the link was a big help.

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