Yamato V2 1/60 VF-1 Addendum

Yamato V2 Shoulders 1

News(how-to): How-to fix those broken shoulders


So you’ve purchased the greatest rendition of the VF-1 ever made to date… or so websites like mine had you believe after the initial praise these toys received.  Then, some months and a few transformations later you noticed some stress fractures on your beloved toy’s joints.  A month later you went to transform the toy and one arm (or both) fell right out.  What next?  Are you relegated to a sweet looking fighter mode display piece?

Yamato V2 Shoulders 3

Step 1: Find a place that can get you replacement parts.  Allegedly Yamato figured out what was breaking the shoulders and used a different pin in them that should keep them from breaking.  To be 100% honest, I’m not sure I buy that and I’m still a little afraid to handle my V2s and will not be buying another one until it’s clear that there is something different about the shoulder.  I’ve been told that I’m being far too fearful but at nearly $100 a pop, more for the super versions, the allure has worn off.  So where can you get replacement parts?  If you’re outside of Japan this might prove really tricky.  First, try contacting the vendor you purchased the toy.  If that fails, go over to MacrossWorld and ask for help getting shoulder parts.  Your shoulder parts will come in one of two different forms.  The first replacement parts I got, from my retailer, came complete with whole new arms.  Unfortunately, these arms were from the same production run as the flawed toy and before I could even attach the arms I noticed one was already broken (that’s right folks, it was broken without ever having been on a toy or handled in the slightest).  So, I ordered a second set.  The second set was flawless so maybe Yamato really has figured things out.

Yamato V2 Shoulders 5

Step 2: Transform the toy to a stage between fighter and battroid to give yourself easy access to the bottom of the toy without the legs being in the way and remove three screws.  The first screw is at the base of the swing bar and attaches the tail to the plane.  The other two screws would be covered by the arm sliders in GERWALK or battroid modes.

Yamato V2 Shoulders 6

Step 3: Flip the toy over and remove the wing structure (top half of the back) and then remove the two screws that hold the arms in place.  Note when you remove the plastic nuts that they have a concave side to match flush with the screw… you’ll want to make sure you have that right when you put things back together again.

Yamato V2 Shoulders 4A

Step 4: Remove the fragile shoulder piece from the arm assembly by pulling off the shoulder housing (it’s pressure fit via a couple pegs and a groove, gently pry it apart while applying pressure upward) and then removing the screws in the bicep.  You don’t have to completely remove the screws, the shoulder fits via a ball joint so you just have to back the screws out enough so the ball joint has enough play to pop out.

Yamato V2 Shoulders 2

Step 5: Replace broken shoulder piece with new piece.

Yamato V2 Shoulders 7

Step 6: Reverse steps 4-2 and you’ll have a perfectly functional toy that’s just like new (or better than new if your toy was broken right out of the box).  A special thanks to those who are helping get replacement parts for people who have purchased this toy and made this post possible.

35 Replies to “Yamato V2 1/60 VF-1 Addendum”

  1. I said it before and I’ll say it again, it may be more anime accurate, but you can’t beat a good sturdy toy like the 1/55 originals.

  2. Unfortunately I’ve said pretty much all I can say on that in Step 1. If you live in Japan or Hong Kong getting parts are easy… for the rest of us it’s a bit of a pain. Good luck. –

  3. I live in HK, and I just find out the shoulder is broken like yours!

    could you tell me how can I get the replacement part?

    thanks!

  4. If you live in HK you should have some luck by contacting a local retailer who sells Yamato products. The wholesaler who brings them their toys should be able to also bring some replacement parts. This can prove tricky though because stores usually like to operate with returned toys that can be replaced with a new toy. Alternatively, you could buy a toy from a local shop that is the same color, go straight home and swap out the shoulders, then return the toy that same day and say it was the one with broken shoulders. That’s not exactly the most honest way of doing things.

  5. I called the wholesaler today – they said they have never done it (getting replacement parts) before; and they actually sourcing yamato’s toys from another reseller in Japan……

    It looks like I am not able to get a replacement parts for my VF-1S
    :(

  6. Depending on how bad the original break is, it can be possible to repair the parts to the point of being functional, although most of the tightness in the pin joint could be lost.

    I got both a Roy and Hikaru 1A early on, each with cracked (but not broken) shoulders, and managed to repair them enough to work pretty decently.

    The first (trickiest) step is to remove the existing pins from the joint. If the joint is cracked, they may slip out easily enough, but I had to apply pressure with a push-pin to push them out. Be careful, since it’s very easy to stress or crack the joint further while doing this. One of my shoulders started out with just a stress mark, but it cracked outright when I pushed the pin out.

    Now, you need to select what you’re going to use for a new pin. If you want to file down and use the originals, that can work, but when I glued the joints, the holes shrank, and I needed something smaller. Personally, I found sections of a thick paperclip worked just fine.

    After that’s done, I’d almost say you want to dunk the fragile bits of the joint piece in superglue. Okay, that much glue is not really necessary, but I made sure to give the fragile ends of those hinges a good coating of glue. You might need to use thin glue to get into the cracks, but I used thick and slow drying stuff to build up the area around the hinge (which may be why one of my glued one’s cracked again recently).

    Now, here is why you need to pick a new pin material first. You need to make sure the holes are large enouge enough to insert your pin after adding the glue. If you use thin glue, this might not be so big a problem, but thick glue will fill the holes in. While the glue is still wet, take a piece of your new pin material, and use it to clear any glue blockage from the hole. Keep the new pin moving, don’t let it stick in the joint.

    Once the glue is starting to dry, and you’re sure you have the holes cleared enough for the new pins, just let the glue sit to harden.

    Now, you can make the new pins however you really like, using your new material. How sloppy or stiff this joint will be after the fix is determined by how you make the pin work. Mine turned out pretty sloppy, since I made the holes in the outer piece pretty small, and the pin size I needed slops around in the inner joint piece. While you could drill out the holes after gluing them, I wouldn’t recommend it just because of the extra stress that will place on an already fragile part.

    For my pins, I cut sections of a thick paperclip to be the same length as the originals, and then did a couple small modifications. I purposefully pinched the tips of mine to make them slightly oval shaped, which helped to secure the pins into the joint. So, if your cutting process leaves the pins with a chiseled tip, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

    I also slightly bent each of my pins into a very gentle V shape in the middle (VERY gentle) in order to give them a slight spring effect inside the joint. Ideally you’d want a shape like this –^–, or even something like this
    –v^v–, but that can be rather hard to do on something this small. The bend in the middle was simply to give the smaller pin more grip on the inside of the inner joint, since my pins were a bit smaller than the originals.

    Anyway, once you have pins that will stay in, and the glue is all dry, all that’s left is to reassemble the joints, and see if they work. If you added too much glue (like I did), the joint might not fit together well, so you may need to file or sand it down a bit so things fit. If your pins fall out too easily, you could possibly just glue them into the joint at the tips, but I’ve avoided doing that since it would make any future repairs a lot more difficult.

    I hope that helps you some. I did manage to get a few spare joints through a Macross World group order, but my own repairs have lasted a good 8 months now, and I’m keeping the old repaired joints as emergency backups.

  7. Wow, thank you very much for your detailed instructions
    I am trying to talk to the local vendor to see if they can help…but already waited for a few days and got no response

    I hope I am able to get the new version of the replacement parts or I will end up putting it in my display shelve in fighter mode and see if yamato will release the movie version with strike and super parts one more time (hopefully also comes with GBP-01 and the launcher smoke…a truely ultimate all-in-one edition). Even better is for them to get a new macross license and release a 3.0 version of 1/60 VF-1S……

  8. any idea where on Macross World can i get these replacement parts. your suggestions were kinda vague as to where to get these replacement shoulder parts. thanks.

  9. Since Harmony Gold has rights to VF-1 merchandising outside of Japan I’m being intentionally vague because it’s a gray area as to how much Japanese exporters can assist foreign importers of their goods. I know HG folks visit this blog (they used one of my pics at Comic-con last year and no, they didn’t credit me but they did ban me from Robotech.com for reporting on what was said). Unfortunately, even if it weren’t for HG I honestly don’t know of any good way to secure replacement parts right now.

  10. So let me make sure I understand correctly: the 1/60 VF-1 version-1 had defective shoulders that broke easily, but the version-2 does not? If so, when shopping for a Yamato 1/60 VF-1 version-2, how do I know if I’m getting a version-2 and not a version-1?

  11. Not quite. “Version 1” of the 1/60s is generally accepted to mean Yamato’s first effort at the 1/60 VF-1 toys. These toys were released in the early 00s and feature diecast and partsformation. Yamato then made their 1/48 VF-1 toys and followed that up with a bunch more 1/60 releases before revisiting the 1/60 VF-1 with a whole new toy (the Version 2). There have been a couple iterations of the V2 toy though. The first year releases are essentially all what I call V2.0 and the second year we start seeing in the phase of the V2.1. The V2.1 features a clear canopy and a different leg to crotch locking mechanism. All V2.1 toys are safe. Of the V2 toys, I have a list in the V2 post that says which are safe and which ones aren’t. You can tell a V2 from a V1 in that the V1s are all boxed in packages that feature huge windows and no collector’s style flip top lid. There’s really no way to tell a V2 from a V2.1 without asking someone if the canopy is tinted.

  12. Hi, I really love Robotech and I love action figures but I have no idea of which Valkiries to buy. I bought this one [removed]
    Can you tell me if it safe to keep it or just return it and buy another. Which one would you recommend to me from eBay or amazon? Thank you so much for your site, it is really awesome! However if I really like the figure I might keep it if there is a way to reinforce the shoulder hinges. (if..there is a way) regards.

  13. Unfortunately it’s impossible to say. The shoulders have a good likelihood of being safe though so I wouldn’t sweat it. If they do break, that particular toy has a good likelihood of being reissued someday so you could probably get parts later down the road. I’d say you should just assume it’s safe (too late, you bought it already anyway) and just enjoy it to the fullest.

  14. I just got it … It is wonderful indeed. However, both of the hinges were broken :(. The seller is a lair. He told me they could not know if the model had issues.

    Anyway, I will try to fix it or send it to a guy from MacrosWorld who works on 3d printing, he could get the part and digitalize it on Auto CAD. and the it could be 3d printed. I hope that helps.

  15. By the way, what kind of plastic are the hinges made of? I am asking to figure out the best kind of glue to do what our friend Chronocidal Guy suggested. I seems reasonable.
    Regards,

  16. I got it at last. It is just great, however, both hinges are broken :(. Someone from MacrossWorld say he could design the piece on autocad and I could 3d print it. I dunno if it would be worth it. Any experiences?

  17. Looks like I too have joined the ranks of the fallen. Shoulder hing broke on my first day/transformation. Bites.

    I don’t have much faith in finding replacement parts and didn’t know if anyone had any particular success w/ any specific glue out there for this operation.

  18. Man that’s totally lame. Sorry to hear you guys received a bum version. Can you just return it to the retailer? They’ll probably reissue all these toys eventually and when they do you’ll be sure to get a newer version with safer shoulders.

  19. Got my DYRL VF-1S Hikaru today and neither shoulder had stress marks or cracks. Does this mean it is safe or should I worry that they will break in the near future? As I am new at collecting Macross/Robotech items and this is my first Yamato, is this particular model prone to breakage? This is the version with the “rainbow” canopy by the way.

  20. No stress marks from the start is certainly a good thing but the rainbow canopy means you’re not completely out of the woods. The first VF-1S Ichijos are on the list as “Avoid” quality but the anniversary version that comes with a flashlight is safe. Also, the further down the “avoid” list you get the safer you probably are and the VF-1S Ichijo is one of the last first releases to be labeled ‘avoid.’ Something to remember though, even the toys marked “avoid” had plenty that have held up through numerous transformations… so you could always get lucky. Good luck to you! If the arms are going to break eventually there’s not much you can do to avoid it so just put it out of your mind and try to enjoy the toy as much as possible.

  21. Mmm nobody here can draw the hinges on autoCad or Sketch up and post them on shapeways or another place so we can order them? I don have the tools nor the hability to do that, but judging from the pictures they use fairly good quality materials. pleaseeeee! I do not want to return mine….

  22. Somebody with spare arms could get this guy to make them:

    http://www.skintuckyfried.com/dmc/dmcdirect/dmcdirect.htm

    The thing is, they would have to be the new corrected arm parts and they would have to be sent to the guy. Of course, you’d have to get him to agree first.

    I am a customizer of various action figures and have done over 50 commissions and over 120 for myself but making these parts is beyond my skill. I can sculpt and paint pretty much any figure you want, but is is a done freehand, so something this precise is beyond me.

    IF someone here has the parts to send maybe we could get together a fund and buy 100 sets. Enough sets for us and sets for Micronian to sell to others that need them. Just a thought, but obviously it would have o be cleared by Micronian first.

  23. Oh, and I’ve dealt with the guy before for custom parts. He is VERY realiable and has good quality stuff.It takes him a while to get you your parts, but he always comes through. If someone contacts him and he declines, I have a few others I could post that make custom parts if there is any interest in this idea.

  24. Nobody here has any Yamato with shoulders issues and a good geek friend to make the 3d models and share them? I do not :(

  25. Hey a good commenter from MacrossWorld.com does very detailed and good quality projects. He says he could help us rebuild the hinges, for a cost of course, since he uses expensive resins. ( He has more than 3000 post on that site so you can tell he is a very active) If you happen to have this issue on your 1/60 Valkyries’ shoulders, let me know and if we get several folks together we could get this done. The cost of both is $20 for a pair. I have seen other plastic pieces (different toys) on eBay and they can be expensive as well. I think it is a great price to make or VF-1Js or other actually usable.

    PM me on the forum “Evilware” or directly to “Jasonc” if you are interested.

  26. [IMG]http://i1059.photobucket.com/albums/t437/taylawayist/IMG20120615_001.jpg[/IMG]

    Hey, i found a vf 1s original takatoku toy, its missing the rear wing, and yellow and black bit, still has box, instructions, decals and armour. Worth anything?

  27. These days, with all the Bandai reissues, an old Takatoku that’s not in pristine shape isn’t worth very much. It might be something better to turn into a custom.

  28. The shoulders do not ALWAYS break on these but, unfortunately, it’s pretty common on the Super O. You’ll definitely have to investigate them when it arrives.

  29. Hi guys, I have a broken right shoulder ball and socket joint for my Yamato V2 VF-1J. May I know if the replacement parts are still available?

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