Chewbacca Unleashed.

Chewbacca Unleashed. (Vintage Chewbacca, Vintage Stormtroopers)

Chewbacca Unleashed. (Vintage Chewbacca, Vintage Stormtroopers)

Today I used my wife’s piece-of-crap camera instead of my usual piece-of-crap camera. I’m happy to report that hers (a 3-year old Sony Cybershot) puts mine (a 4-year old Olympus 710) to shame. With just one set up I can already see big differences. First, the Sony has a much better auto focus mechanism, grabbing clear focus even for a ridiculously close subject like Chewie here. The Olympus gives up on the extreme close-ups. Second and more importantly, the Sony’s light sensor is much more responsive than the Olympus. With the Sony I’m seeing great color and contrast, even with my hacky LED lights doing their best to blow out the picture. True this isn’t exactly cause for a ticker-tape parade, but I think the quality of my exposures (and the time needed to arrive at them) just improved by a long shot without me having to spend a dime. Here’s to small victories.

Even better, I think this is the first Chewbacca shot that I’m actually pretty psyched about.

Buying Notes on the Vintage Stormtrooper

Check out the current vintage Stormtrooper listings here.

The vintage Stormtrooper is among the most iconic of the vintage Kenner figures. The good news is they’re plentiful and you can pull a gorgeous, like-new one off the auction table for not much dough. Certainly no more than $15 delivered. But you’ve got to be a bit careful as you go.

First it’s common to see reproduction accessories. The vintage Stormie came with a beautiful little imperial blaster that helped him shoot up jawas and rebels alike. But small and fun often equals small and lost. Enter the repro accessory makers and with them a lot of confusion on how to keep things straight. How to tell? Thanks to the good guys over at Imperial Gunnery, this is a nut easily cracked. Check out their awesome guide first before you buy something your unsure of.

Second, take a good look at the photos to spot yellowing. The vintage figures molded in white plastic are the ones most prone to a change in color due to plastic degradation. Some are yellowing and some aren’t, just keep a keen eye on what the seller is showing you and ask for more or better photos if its unclear.

And lastly be sure to inquire on whether or not the figure has loose joints or not. Stormtroopers saw a lot of play in their day and the limbs became loose quickly. If this is important to you (it’s important to me) drop the seller a line through the eBay message system before bidding.

Feel free to add any thoughts in the comments and drop me a line if you run into any trouble!

Check out the current vintage Stormtrooper listings here.

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