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 2 different color Klaatu

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Broke
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PostSubject: 2 different color Klaatu   Wed Sep 20, 2017 5:42 pm

This is what I was talking about the other day. 2 different colors on this figure. Is this what's considered a variant or would that be more like cloth cape Jawa and Vinyl cape Jawa?



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PostSubject: Re: 2 different color Klaatu   Wed Sep 20, 2017 6:22 pm

While there are tan and grey limbs differing between the two, I am unsure what this is......the tan and grey are very subtle differences and I have never seen one that is so pronounced as this. Here: http://swspaceclub.com/wbobafett/kenner-variants/mold-color-variants/#klaatu
You can see a tan next to a grey limb. The difference is subtle and not as stark. Having never seen an example like yours I would have to conclude it is either degradation or been customized somewhere along its life to make it this dark of a brown.

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PostSubject: Re: 2 different color Klaatu   Wed Sep 20, 2017 6:33 pm

Looking at this closer, I am wondering if the reason it stands out so much is due to the black background. Though the front facing picture is really throwing me as the right arm appears a deep drown just a few shades lighter than the shirt, the rear picture actually appears like the limb is lighter. It could be down to lighting and background that are throwing me off here.

There are quite literally tons of variants for klaatu given the limb combos. Imagine each limb being able to be a different color and then the various combos of that so three grey limbs and a tan right arm, three grey limbs and a tan left arm, three grey limbs and a tan right leg, etc etc with each limb being interchanged. These varying combos theoretically exist out there somewhere. A klaatu focus collector might have even collected them, but I haven't searched for a focus collection to know.

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PostSubject: Re: 2 different color Klaatu   Wed Sep 20, 2017 6:51 pm

@trappedtexan wrote:
While there are tan and grey limbs differing between the two, I am unsure what this is......the tan and grey are very subtle differences and I have never seen one that is so pronounced as this.  Here: http://swspaceclub.com/wbobafett/kenner-variants/mold-color-variants/#klaatu
You can see a tan next to a grey limb. The difference is subtle and not as stark. Having never seen an example like yours I would have to conclude it is either degradation or been customized somewhere along its life to make it this dark of a brown.

It wasn't customized. This was from a child's collection that was inherited. It was part of that lot I bought. Unfortunately I had just ordered a Klaatu the day before so I ended up with 2. It could be that it needs a good cleaning but they are definitely different colors. I can take a photo on white paper???????
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PostSubject: Re: 2 different color Klaatu   Thu Sep 21, 2017 3:31 pm

Hi Guys,

Nice topic broke! Very Happy

I can see you have two different Klaatus. Both look legit to me and each was made in a separate and independent factory within Hong Kong, which is why they are different:


  • Unitoys of Hong Kong – figures made at this factory had “HT” Stamped on the reverse of the cardback near the POP seal.
  • Smile of Hong Kong - figures made at this factory had “HN” Stamped on the reverse of the cardback near the POP seal.


In your photo, the “Tan” limbs variant comes from “Factory HT”. The weapon you have shown with him is correct; note the thick section at the bottom of the axe handle - it’s more cylindrical in shape with sharper edges (paint can shape).

The Axe on the other chap is also correct for that guy. He is from “Factory HN”, which made axes with the thick part at the bottom being more rounded at the edges (looks burger bun shape).

I made a quick comparison of the axe handle thick section to help you:



As for the severe tan discolouration on your “HT” variant, I think this particular Klaatu was just simply loved by its original owner, played with a lot and thus exposed to more sunshine. I believe that the level of Tan colour associated with the “HT” Klaatu, is accentuated by the U.V. So the more the U.V. exposure from strong sunlight, the more the colour compound breaks down from the original grey from over 30 years ago.
Hope this helps.

As we are on the subject of Klaatu, I have included some further details below. Thanks to Bryan (and his comments on two Yodas that I bought a few weeks back), I have caught the variation bug and as well as completing a loose set of mint figures, I am trying to track down some of the variants for each character too.
This is my current research on Klaatu…

I bought two mint different Klaatus - The Left comes from factory "HT" and the Right comes from factory "HN".





  • The “HT” Klaatu shown on the left has tan limbs where as the “HN” Klaatu on the right has the standard grey limbs. When these figures were made 30+ years ago, both would have had all grey limbs as this is what would have been specified in the design plan for the figure when tenders were sent from Kenner to the factories. Further, samples from these factories would have been sent back to Kenner for approval, so any significant deviation from colour scheme (tan instead of brown) would have been picked-up and corrected for later cardback releases.

  • A part form the limbs being a different colour, on first inspection they look very similar and have similar markings: "©️LFL 83" on the left boot and "H.K." stamped as the COO of origin on the right boot. This sometime confuses people in that they believe both figures are from the same factory, when they are not.

  • The major difference is the head, as Wolf points out in his guide, one Klaatu has a head moulded in green plastic (AKA Moulded Head) with the armour painted grey - this is shown left in my photo, and the other Klaatu has a head moulded in grey plastic and the face painted green (AKA Painted Head) - this is shown right in my photo.

  • Another fact that Wolf points out is that the Moulded Head Klaatu can be found with all sorts of combinations: All Tan limbs; all grey limbs and a mixture of both. Whereas I agree with this statement, I don't fully agree completely with everything else he has stated:

    Wolf: "The widely spread opinion that the tan limbs Klaatu is just a discoloured figure is wrong in my own opinion. The figures with “tan limbs” always have a green molded head whereas the silver molded heads always have grey limbs. It is known that mixed up figures with grey and tan limbs present exist, but these must have occurred when the production was changed from green to silver molded heads. While changing the production not only the head color but also the limb color was changed."

  • In my research so far: Every Painted Head Klaatu that I have seen has been made by factory (HN). This is a completely different factory to (HT). If we can get a Klaatu focus guy (with a huge collection of Klaatu MOCs) to chime in, that would be great.

  • The plastics used in factory (HN) would have a different chemical composition to the plastics used in (HT); the factories are both separate companies and thus would have their own secret recipes for formulating the plastics. This explains why you always only see a limb discolouration from grey to tan in Moulded Head “HT” Klaatu Figures. It is because that factory (“HT”) used a grey plastic with a colour compound that is susceptible to break down after a good period of time.

  • Sorry Wolf, but I disagree; mix limbs Klaatu are not a change in production from green to silver moulded heads. They are just examples whereby some of the limbs of a (HT) Klaatu haven’t started to degrade yet. Breakdown is a natural phenomenon it’s like leaves falling from the tree, it will be random and not all the limbs will decay at the same rate or in the same time.

  • “HN” factory made their figure with a grey head that is painted green (Painted Head), they also used a plastic compound which has shown over the last 30+ years to be stable. This is why the Painted Head  Klaatus always have grey limbs (unless they have been deliberately bleached or heads swapped).

  • “HN” also made the 65-A Palitoy (NCOO) Klaatu figures, so this is why they all come with grey limbs too!
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PostSubject: Re: 2 different color Klaatu   Thu Sep 21, 2017 4:37 pm

Craig, thank you. That is an amazing explanation. I truly appreciate it! You and TrappedTexan always come up with solid info for me.
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PostSubject: Re: 2 different color Klaatu   Thu Sep 21, 2017 5:25 pm

I am more inclined to believe the limbs are actually a completely new color. I say this for one main reason.....with every transformant we see figures at varying levels of change. The green limb Chewbacca for example there has been shown some that half the limb was changing; the orange cloak squid head we have seen cloaks halfway through the process. I have yet to see a klaatu with half his arm tan and the other gray. I am not sure on a color wheel how gray could even fade out to brown. That is a different topic, but maybe an artist can attest? Is brown somehow used in the manufacture of gray? It seems likely that the different factories produced different results due to plastics and dyes used in them, but I don't see how that would allow this transformation in these limbs. That's why I think the tan is a legitimate variation and not a transformant.

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PostSubject: Re: 2 different color Klaatu   Thu Sep 21, 2017 10:17 pm

I think I'll take some pics on white paper
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PostSubject: Re: 2 different color Klaatu   Thu Sep 21, 2017 10:32 pm







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PostSubject: Re: 2 different color Klaatu   Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:47 pm

Hi Bryan,

Thank you for taking the time to reply and I appreciate your opinion. I think there will always be a split of opinion in the Tan Klaatu camp  Smile

You’ve put forward some challenging arguments...

I am not chemist, so I have no way of knowing if grey plastic turns directly to brown/tan or whether the original grey inducing pigment somehow fades, leaving behind  a residual tan appearance. But if it is a chemical reaction from exposure or some other trigger, I wouldn’t necessary expect one of the component base colours (which made up the plastic’s original colour) to remain, maybe the reaction causes a new colour, I don’t know, but I also  don’t think we can use a colour wheel here. Looking at Broke’s HT example – I think this is just at an accelerated level of degradation.

I do appreciate your other point also: “Why don’t we see a limb in the transformation process”. I have asked myself the same thing and found the following post in Rebel Scum: 09/09/2005 D. Martin

"Turns out our boy Tan Limbed Klaatu is nothing more than a victim of plastic degradation. I have watched one go from gray to tan in less than idea (sic) conditions. The plastic is still ever so slightly blotchy, but not enough to document in photos. On the bright side, variation collectors will now be able to save time looking for the multiple possible variations we thought could exist because of the limb colours."


If you click on the link that I have placed above, you can see a couple photos  that he took for his thread which show a feint tan "blotchiness" forming on Klaatu's grey leg. Not sure if I am allowed to copy the photo and post here on TIG, but:



(If you adjust your screen angle or look at the image from different angles, it helps illustrate the blotchiness)

The key drivers personally for me (in addition to my arguments in my first post above) are:



  • Klattu's shirt:  The torso for the HT Klaatu was moulded in brown plastic with the shirt detail section (around the collar and shirt buttons) painted grey; here the limbs were moulded in the shirt colour. If the limbs were always intended to be tan, why paint the shirt grey?

  • From my own childhood we all had a Klaatu figure in class in 84, but I never saw a tan limbed Klaatu back then.

  • This thread in RS is from 2003 talks about a Klaatu all limbs being rare. Were they genuinely rare nearly 15 years ago because only some of the limbs had started to decay, so finding an all tan limbs Klaatu was difficult. Has this changed now with time? As I picked-up an all-tan "HT" Klaatu very easily. Has any one got a mixed limb (grey and tan) Klaatu that they have had for a long time and recently observed that more limbs have turned tan?

  • Going back to the two Klaatus that I displayed earlier in my first reply. Here they are again on white background:



    As you can in this photo and above, the tan discolouration is only very slight compared to the grey limbed (HN) . It was bought MOC, but when I received it, the feet had smashed through the bottom of the bubble during posting. So is has spent most of the past 34 Years sealed.

    Now compare these to an "old" All tan loose figure I have bought over a decade ago, this Tan is much stronger indicating that the process is gradually increasing with time and conditions and discolouring all over the surface of the limb, maybe this is why you don't see an example one half of a limb turning completely tan whilst the other half stays grey



    P.S the two photos here with the white background are actually one single photo, I cropped the very Tan figure out off the first picture, so that you can see the slight tan discolouration on my new "HT" Klaatu.

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PostSubject: Re: 2 different color Klaatu   Sat Sep 23, 2017 4:04 pm

I see the point with the shirt. I wonder if on the tan limbs if the area of plastic that we may be able to see near the crotch joint has also turned tan? This may help resolve this as if this area is still the gray color on a tan leg this may indicate that uv changed the color. Of course if oxidation leant a hand then this area could still be effected. (I indicated the area on one of broke's photos above as we can see the joint I am referring to better)



To clarify I am talking about the inside of the joint. it may be able to be seen by moving the leg up a bit and then some of that area may be exposed. The argument that they painted the shirt gray is a valid one though, but I think it only lends some credence as the change to tan may have been that they had tan plastic on hand or easier to get than the original. Plastic color changes were made as we can see in the face. Why change that plastic? it is my guess that it was easier to change the plastic color used than get a new batch of the original color plastic.

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