Muscular Club - Figure Body Review

The past few years have been interesting times for the 1/6th scale collector and kit-basher with the emergence of more and more ‘after market’ parts and accessories being made available without having to pay the often high prices for ‘break downs’ of boxed figures.  There was a time in the not so distant past that the only source for a figure body, certainly a ‘muscular’ one would have been a loose item from a Hot Toys boxed set, and you’d be looking at least £40-50 for such a body.  Then Hot Toys themselves, along with other manufacturers decided to branch out into this area of the market, offering carded loose bodies separately, often the same type used with their boxed figures; a great plan which cost them little more than some new packaging.

Move forwards in time and a revolution has started in the 1/6th world offering a wide selection of good quality and value for money muscular figure bodies, at a fraction of the price that some of the larger brand names are charging.  Most reason ones worth noting are Kaustic Plastik’s new line which has been available for a little while now which are very affordable, Hit Figure also produced a figure with a rubberised upper torso and most recently, newcomer on the scene ‘Muscular Club’ with their design which we’ll be looking at today.

The version that we were kindly sent for review was the initial version, whom Kit, the lead figure behind the project, referred to almost as a ‘prototype’ for better things to come.  This initial offering is low on parts, but also more importantly very low on cost, priced at a mere £19.51 available directly from their eBay site.  This particular iteration comes pre-fitted with a pair of relaxed hands, solid feet (that being not a hinged toe), but interestingly two neck pins; one for HT head and one for Soldier Story.  This last piece was an instant attraction for me, as finding a way of securely mounting a Solider Story head which are widely available, onto a different body often requires some modification of sorts.

The build quality is very reasonable considering the low cost, which makes this body an affordable item for kit-bashing, as opposed to the near £40 each for popular named brand figures.  There were some initial reports on the OSW forum of loose ankle joints, and I can confirm that it was unfortunate that my figure too displayed this problem.  However, after some investigation it was clear the problem was not the figures ankle cup, but slightly undersized ankle pins that caused the problem – easily solved by swapping them out for some spares (most people have some in their parts box, TTL brand etc…) or putting a small amount of plumbers PTFE tape around the pegs to add extra width and grip (as pictured).  For the serious kit-basher and customiser, such a small issue should be no deterrent from what is otherwise an excellent value product.

As mentioned above, the ankle pegs are compatible with other popular manufacturers such as ACI, HT etc, as are the wrist pins which although not too loose, come out fair easily without the need for heating.

The skin tone is fairly neutral and a fair match for most HT brand (or after market copy) head sculpts, it would seem however that there is far more choice available for necked head sculpts than neck-less, even with the sudden market explosion of muscle bodies recently!  The finish is possibly slightly too shiny, but this is easily solved with a quick spray of matt varnish (for use on acrylics only!), you can even tone the body with pastels etc before hand to add a little colour and definition.  Again, nothing that the serious kit-basher would consider too daunting; I personally spray all of my figure bodies to get a perfect skin tone match with the head.

In terms of articulation, due to the more realistic elbow looking joints in the arms, and let’s face it that is the attraction of these bodies; the usual 90 degree bend is all that is achievable.  This should be sufficient for most static poses, but does limit somewhat the more dynamic ‘rifle to the shoulder’ type poses that can be achieved.  A general good range of motion is available in the shoulder and the neck joint, underneath the rubber upper torso, is articulated too.  The upper body joints are all relatively stiff, but not so much that you risk breakage through posing.

The upper body also has two articulation points at the mid-section and waist allowing for rotation and around 20-30 degrees bend in each direction.  The lower body takes some inspiration I feel from Kaustic Plastik, certainly in the knee and ankle joints.  The bend in the knee gives around 130 degrees of articulation which is sufficient for most poses, although I’ve been informed that Version 3 of the body may have a double-jointed knee for better articulation, something that will be welcomed by the community I’m sure.

At the time of writing this review, Version 2.0 is now available, the same body but with a few more accessories, including the same pair of relaxed hands, a pair of ‘trigger’ hands and a pair of bendable hands, along with the feet and necessary ankle and wrist pegs.  All of this for only £20 plus free shipping makes for a very affordable muscle body for your kit-bashing needs.  We need more enterprising ventures such as this to keep the market competition fresh and the consumer choice interesting and cost effective.  Personally, I’m very impressed with the body for the asking price and will certainly be looking at sourcing some more.

Special thanks to Kit for providing a review sample.

The Muscular Club v2.0 body is available direct from their eBay page here.


 

JOIN. LIKE. FOLLOW.

Connect with us via Facebook®