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Why is recasting hurting the business?

02 nov

If you go online and do research on resin model kits, you will hear two terms crop up almost instantly, these are garage kits and the word recast. Now what are these and how do they relate to each other is important. However what is more important is how they effect each other and the business of model making.

First you need to know what the term garage kit means. The term comes from how the resin model business began. Men and women would make molds of rare kits, upsizing them larger, or making molds for ships and figures that never existed before. They would make these molds and then pour these resin kits in their garages. Thus the term garage kit was born. By far this is not a derogratory term, in fact most makers are proud of their start.

The terms Garage Kit, is actually one used with respect.

Mold making is an art, and due to the cost and time of making molds, the cost of resin when you buy it in small quantities, these kits are usually pretty expensive. Many garage kit makers operate on thin margins, making very little per kit. The kit may cost you or I 400 dollars lets say, but they might make a hundred bucks from it, and once you factor in how long it takes to pour the resin, prep it etc... Well..... You see what I am on about.


So now onto what is a recaster, and why are they so harmful to the business. Well, ever see a resin kit online for half the cost of everyone else? Well, that kit is most likely a recast. Recasters are thieves, yes they are. They buy a kit and then they make their own molds off of the resin parts. They then sell these kits for far less. They take someone elses hard work and just steal it. This has several negative effects, and effect the customer and also the hobby and the original maker in unique ways. Such as.

Hurts YOU the customer by...

  • Many times these casts use cheap resins. (They break easy)
  • Floods the market with inferior molding quality.
  • Frustrates new molders so new kit making slows.
  • Puts honest makers out of business.
  • If a recaster steals someone elses work, what do YOU think they will do to YOU....
  • Most recasters operate dubious operations. You want to give them your credit card info?

Hurts the market by...

  • Floods the market with inferior models.
  • Puts legitimate makers out of business.
  • Taints honest makers sometimes with the label of recsters.
  • Dishonesty hurts honesty.
  • Stifling innovation and development.
  • Forces prices up in the end. See below...

What would you do if you saw a brand new Chevy Tahoe for sale online, for 5,000 bucks. Great deal and you go meet the seller, they are awesome. Truck is perfect, test drive it works great. So you are talking with the seller, and say... Why so cheap? And they shrug and say, oh.... I stole it from the local Mall parking lot last night. But hey it is a great deal. What would you do? Buy it? No you would not, in fact you would be shocked at how can a person try to sell something they stole, and why would that person steal to begin witn....

well it is the same thing when you buy recasted products. You are purchasing stolen goods. But, how do you know it is recast and not legitimate? Well there are some simple ways of doing this, these are.

  • Ask them are they they the original maker of the mold.
  • Ask for detailed images of the kit. Look for clean lines, crisp details.
  • Pay only using PayPal.
  • Ask them for a guarantee they are the original makers.
  • Deal with only makers in your own Country.
  • Are they just selling on Ebay. Sorry recaster heaven there.

Recasters sell cheap and drive legitimate prices up. So how and why... Simple, legitimate makers of molds, and we at The Replica Forge are just that, have to factor in the cost of having our work stolen. We are working with a company now that will help purchasers identify if the model they have is a recast, or a legitimate Replica Forge cast. But also it is just about honesty. There are those who will profit off others hard work. By staying away from recasters you help the hobby. We know people like a deal. But, honest dealers and buyers help the hobby.

As an example.

We build a lot of resin kits, and we pay a very high price (happily) for them. We know what we are getting, we know the quality, and we know these men and women. We with many are personal friends of them, or on social media. We respect them, and know they are reliable. Sure we also know how to get an X-Wing resin kit for half the cost. But it is a recast, and we know the mold quality is horrible, the lineage of the kit is ruined, and most of all. We would be screwing fellow hard working members of this business. We will not do this. That is why on this site you see NO RECAST signs all over.

What can you do?

You can do something when you see suspected recasters.

  • Most importantly. When in doubt DONT BUY.
  • Ask for detailed images of the kit. Look for clean lines, crisp details.
  • Pay only using PayPal.
  • Ask them for a guarantee they are the original makers.
  • Deal with only makers in your own Country.
  • Are they just selling on Ebay. Sorry recaster heaven there.