Beagle 1/10 Ride Armors & Toynami Masterpiece Cyclones

Review(updated): Includes VR-52F & VR-52T Releases

Packaging & Extras: (4.5/5) Beagle releases, (5/5) Toynami releases
From what I understand, and this is not an attempt to be funny, Beagle hired some talent from Yamato for the creation of the packaging for their Ride Armor toys. The initial result (for the Stick toy) was a box that feels just like a Yamato product right down to the cardboard insert with instructions and decals smuggled beneath it. The box is huge, easily dwarfing all previous Ride Armor toys. A box of this size should have a collector’s style lid to cover the large window that reveals the toy inside. Having that big window with no lid to cover it will probably lead to some accidental box destructions. Toynami did better with their standard book-style box.  The book-style box is large but not nearly as large as the Beagle as evidenced by the comparison pictures below (Please excuse my banged up box, I got it cheap).  The extras provided are fantastic. Beside the rider figure and the bike you get:
1) a pack of HBT cells
2) Gallant
3) Sniper-custom Gallant with strap
4) head with helmet (adjustable visor) – helmet-less head comes installed on rider figure
5) 2x right hands (Gallant grip, open), 1x left hand (open)
6) heavy gun (VF-52F only)
7) heavy gun attachment clip for bike mode (VF-52F only)
8) 1x hand for gripping heavy gun (VF-52F only)
In the next clamshell down you’ll find:
9) a display stand consisting of a base, a storage cover, and an adapter for each mode
Behind the cardboard tray that holds the clamshells you’ll find:
10) stickers
11) Instructions Beagle VR-52F Instruction Manual Web or Toynami MPC VR-052F Scott Instruction Manual Web
I should note that I was a little let down by the fixed pose hands. The hand that holds the gun doesn’t grip the gun tightly enough and I seemed to constantly be looking for hands that did not exist.  On a down note for the Toynami, the plaque on the display stand was not updated for Robotech purposes and reveals Mospeada details.   The Ray release came in a smaller box than Stick and didn’t come with the heavy gun or the accessories related to it.

Charm & Collectability: (4/5)
Ride Armor toys are a unique beast, they tend to have lukewarm sales upon release only to become hot collectibles later. I originally wrote: “We’re truly lucky to see another company take a stab at a deluxe Ride Armor toy again; the story goes that the man at Gakken responsible for the development of the 1/8 toy was demoted after its poor market performance.”  Since then the Beagle/Toynami lines performed so poorly that the man at Beagle responsible for this product suffered a very similar fate to that original Gakken employee (though Gakken continued on as a company and Beagle dissolved).  The exorbitant price attached to this figure assured that many people would want it and few would own it. Toynami originally intended to release 10K of this toy but then slashed that number to 3K when the economy plunged.  Beagle and Toynami both drastically reduced the number they intended to create and in the end the product did not prove viable ending this line after just two models. The Toynami is differentiated from the Beagle with a different head sculpt and the addition of a serial number stamped on the bike.   I wish Beagle would have done something to make Ray more desired, like include an Annie figure, campfire set, or Stick in street clothes figure. Without some sort of bonus item, the Ray and Rand releases sold much slower than Stick/Scott.  If you’re considering paying huge aftermarket prices for these toys here’s some food for thought:  Beagle is dead and gone, there will be no reissues. Also, the Stick/Scott figures have awful cloth suits that fall apart. There is some metal content in these toys, primarily in the kickstand and swing arms connected to the wheels. Releases were:
VR-52F Stick Bernard, January 2009 by Beagle, MSRP 24,000¥
VR-52T Ray, June 2009 by Beagle, MSRP 24,000¥
VR-52F Scott Bernard, March 2009 by Toynami, 3,000 pieces, MSRP $199
VR-52T Rand, August 2009 by Toynami, 3,000 pieces, MSRP $199

Sculpt, Detail, & Paint: (9/10)
Phenomenal. There are only four minor issues that keep this toy from getting a perfect score:
1) There could be more tampo printed detail.
2) The boots/feet aren’t quite big enough when comparing the toy to the line art which makes the toy look a tad uneven in armor mode (although it looks better in bike mode).
3) The waist armor on the Stick figure has been shrunk (for articulation purposes).
4) There’s a giant screw hole in the figure’s neck.
The Gakken 1/8 bike isn’t as long as the Beagle 1/10 bike but I’m guessing the Gakken is a bit under-sized to assist with its armor mode. Beyond that everything here is gravy. There is a crazy amount of detail from the handles to the foot pegs. This toy is just plain sexy including the use of colored transluscent plastic instead of paint for areas like the tail light. The tires are also thin rubber tires sturdy enough to support the vehicle, it’s very impressive.

The Ray & Rand toys lack some of the identifying details (Mars Base insignia, “MB”, stripes on hip guard). Many had hoped Beagle would plug the neck hole for the Ray release but unfortunately it was not to be.

Design: (8.5/10)
There’s a lot to like about this toy’s design. Here’s a list of the positives:
1) This is a transformable motorcycle with a functioning suspension (not literally). There are coil over springs and the toy ‘bounces’ up and down if you press on it.
2) This toy has an amazing transformation BUT it’s not quite ‘perfect trasnformation’. The way everything twists, contorts, and comes back together forming a flexible enough power suit will leave you impressed. The transformation is a little too amazing, expect to spend a FULL HOUR transforming this toy the first time you go through the motions. Any experience you have transforming Gakken or CMs products will not be much of a benefit here. Highlights include:

3) Integrated kickstand
4) Integrated foot pegs

5) Targeting scope housing in chest. This one isn’t quite handled as masterfully but it still is pretty impressive. The scope is stored in the armor but it must be removed and reattached to go from lying down to its active position. I found it may be best just to store the scope with the other extras when not in use as it can shake down around the shoulder area and make transformation/articulation more difficult.

6) The HBT/Protoculture cannister can be removed from the bike making for some fun diorama posing. The HBT/Protoculture carrying pack is also pretty cool, allowing you to open it up, remove/add canisters, then put it back together again.

7) Stick/Scott can carry their big gun, attached to the front of the motorcycle, in bike mode. The slots aren’t the prettiest though so it was nice to see they were removed on Ray/Rand’s version.

8) Ray/Rand’s built-in gun has a pivot that moves it from the forearm into the hand.

9) When transformed, you can display the armor as a power-suit without the rider inside. It makes for a very cool display.

10) The display stand is really cool. On the downside, you can’t do a ‘popping the wheelie’ pose in motorcycle mode. On the plus side, the stand supports both motorcycle and armor modes, you can even display two toys on one stand at the same time (one in bike mode/one in armor mode or two in armor mode). If you have just one toy, the stand adapts from bike configuration to armor configuration very easily. The toy will remain steady in position even when doing flying poses. To top it all off, there’s a storage compartment that conceals all the accessories while displaying the guns.
Not everything is sunshine and gravy. There were a couple compromises and weaknesses:
1) Transformation isn’t quite perfect. Though not mentioned in the instructions, I found it necessary to remove the rider’s head before swinging the chest armor over. That’s one strike against an otherwise utterly amazing transformation.
2) The front gauntlets in bike mode don’t lock into place… although the VR-52T toys are slightly tighter this can become annoying as you’ll find yourself having to lightly tap the gauntlets straight again after handling.
3) This may be more of a build issue but the windscreen on the bikes doesn’t lock securely enough in position.
4) The use of cloth is a nice touch but it could have been better implemented as it needs to be tamped down occasionally. A more rubbery but tighter material would have been ideal, improvements were made on the Ray/Rand release but it seemed like they still hadn’t found the perfect material.
5) The toy suffers from balance issues and could have used heavier boots or a heel extension gimmick of some kind for displaying in armor mode without the stand.
If you hate long and elaborate transformations you may feel this score should be much different.

Durability & Build: (5/10) +3 for Ray/Rand due to improved fabric on figures
As mentioned in the design section, there are a few loose spots that make handling of this toy less enjoyable that could be considered “build” issues:
1) The windscreen
2) The back half of the bike
3) The gauntlets (in both bike and armor modes)
4) The helmeted head on Beagle’s Stick toy
Apply a tiny square of clear tape to the bottom of the ball on Beagle Stick’s helmeted head to solve that particular issue. Subsequent releases by Toynami and Beagle had a rougher textured ball on the heads that offered a much better fit. One of the flaps on my Stick’s boots was also loose enough where it took a lot of massaging to get it to look just right (I’m probably one of the few people who would care).  Obviously anything this complex lends itself easily to being broken in transformation. Transformation does require a strong hand but I was quite surprised at how well everything handled the abuse. Many of the parts are simple ball joints which means excessive transformation will likely lead to a sloppy and difficult toy but it also means that parts that are over stressed from mistransformation may just pop off instead of breaking. After all these years of release, there’s really been only one item prone to catastrophic failure, and that’s Stick and Scott’s fabric suits; many owners saw wear around the seams immediately. Beagle/Toynami did make the Ray/Rand volume 2 toys a bit stiffer and used a better fabric that didn’t come apart so easily. As the Stick suit has aged, the foam layer has fallen apart on many Stick/Scott toys. The foam seems to dry out and crumble off.

Fortunately, the toy does have actual cloth underneath the foam so you can remove the foam completely and then dye the underlying cloth red to a pretty decent spot. The unfinished and exposed metal bits also have a tendency to look oxidized.

Articulation: (9/10)
The only thing this toy lacks in bike mode is the ability to slightly angle the front wheel. The rider figure is perfect and can assume many natural-looking riding/maneuvering positions. Armor mode is not as great. To extend the range of motion in the arms you may want to unhook the gauntlet supports as demonstrated below (although you can obtain a pretty good range with them still attached but you run the risk of throwing the chest out of alignment). The biggest issue in armor mode, as is so common these days, is balance. The relatively small feet don’t help anything but all the joints are stiff and maneuverable enough that with a lot of patience you can pose the toy without the help of the stand. Of course utilizing the stand (and if you’re not going to be hovering around the toy at all times, use the stand) allows for wondefully dynamic poses although the figure will still be hindered a bit by the full suit of armor (just as you would expect pretty much anything wearing armor to have its range of movement limited). It was harder than I had hoped to get a convincing look of Stick firing his missiles while looking through his scope but that’s mostly due to the limitations of the tiny scope.  There’s enough articulation in the ankle to easily balance the riding figure on one leg.

Total Score: (40-43.5/50)
These are easily the best Ride Armor toys ever made so it will be up to you to determine whether or not they’re worth the high price of entry. For those of you waiting for a Fuke/Rook or Yellow version, you can stop waiting, it’s not going to come out.  While this might be a sturdy and durable product it’s definitely an adult collector’s item so if you’re looking for something to play with in a reckless fashion definitely stick with the MegaHouse offerings. If you’re curious as to why Toynami made their changes (other than the new packaging and plaque) I would have to assume it’s largely so that they could sell their versions as numbered limited editions. It doesn’t work very well to sell a toy in one market as limited when it could potentially be reproduced exactly in another market. Honestly, I think Toynami is just giving themselves a headache since high end toys like this are made in such limited quantities it’s unlikely people would buy it because of the number. It’s a shame really that neither MegaHouse nor CMs have really gotten their acts together on the smaller and cheaper Ride Armor toys as this Beagle will now leave many fans left with the decision to potentially buy one of two subpar products or one ridiculously priced but excellent product. Now that I have a Beagle, my view of both the CMs and MegaHouse products has diminished. It’s a shame the line will never be complete, I know many of us were looking forward to owning all of them.

Original post date: January 23, 2009
Updated January 26, 2009 – additional pics were added
Updated August 17, 2009 – Toynami specific pictures/content were added.
Updated October 5, 2011 – This review has been updated, line art comparisons, standard definition video review, pictures, and Rand/Ray content were added condensing two separate posts to one.
Updated June 10, 2018 – Included 4K guide on how to repair the damaged Stick/Scott suit. Added comparison photos from Sentinel Ride Armor review.
Updated July 8, 2018 – Included 4K transformation guide from armor mode back to bike mode.
Updated October 21, 2018 – Included 4K tranformation guide from bike to armor mode
Updated November 18, 2018 – Included new 4K review!


37 Replies to “Beagle 1/10 Ride Armors & Toynami Masterpiece Cyclones”

  1. NOTE: I need to get out of town for the weekend so I didn’t have a chance to finish editing a few pics for this post. I will update this post on Monday when I return with more pictures (if you have any special requests, let me know). There’s a lot here so let me know if you see any mistakes/typos so I can fix them when I do the update on Monday.

  2. Very honest review,you,re right about it becoming a sloppy and dificult toy with transformation-ultimatly a display piece.
    I noticed you didn,t mention the cloth attachment to the shoulder (or lack of)

  3. Great review with the short time you had.

    Quick thoughts (although I have only pre-ordered the Toynami version – waiting)

    1. The throat screw hole seems unacceptable in a toy of this cost. If this is a high priced display piece I do not want them all looking like they have throat cancer.

    2. As you suggested I think a spandex, more clingy material would have been much better. It bunches and wrinkles and makes the figure look too doll-like.

    3. I don’t like the crotch guard. It needs a slim piece that goes around to the back. In your great comparison pic I liked all other offerings better in this area. Privates need protection in combat, and it would look better.

    4. I wish Toynami would use a darker red and more clingy fabric, less bright white plastic and a few other tweaks, but I suppose these are set in stone already.

    Love the Gallant strapped on the back in rider mode – looks awesome! Can’t wait to see the rest of your pics.

  4. — Also, Yacolog details covering the armor inside crotch screw to prevent scratching, you might want to detail that here as well – thanks.

  5. Great review. I just got this toy and I must say I am really impressed. I do agree with Darrin Geisinger’s first point about the screw on his neck. I could have been placed in the back….maybe there’s a way to cover it up.

    Other than that, suck it up gentlemen, this toy is delicious. Skip out on a few nights at the bar and you’re set!!!

  6. EXCELLENT review!!! But honestly…..I did not expect anything less. I sooooo want to get a Beagle or maybe even a Toynami version. I just cannot see spending that amount of dough on one. Especially since I am trying to collect the v.2 1/60 VF-1 line. THANKS for the great review mate.

    N I N J A

  7. Post has been updated with several new pics. Darrin, I wasn’t quite sure which screw was outlined as being a potential scratching problem in the yacolog post, did I just skim too quickly past the pic? I saw a few complaints from people who had a hard time extending the boosters from the wheels for the first time, some had to use tools, I too had a very difficult time but managed to pop it free without any tools.

  8. DAMN YOU! Here I had convinced myself not to spend money on this, but now I want one. Love the pict of the Beagle running over the CMS and Megahouse offerings. And Pepsi Max is delicious- got addicted to it on trips to Europe years ago and was glad when it finally came to the states.

  9. Here’s the link for the screw scratching issue:

    WOW – did he replace the chest lights on his Gakken with translucent plastic? That mod looks great.

    Loved your pic of the Beagle plowing over the CMs and MH. But again the fabric, especially around the knee, looks terrible. Is the stitching messed up there too? I see white along the seam.

    We’ll be seeing people replace this fabric with something better I suppose. There’s a million-to-one chance Toynami may before they release their version. My mother-in-law sews but the embarrassment of asking for her help may outweigh the benefit.

  10. Corrected the picture with the Mega House and CMs being trampled to correct the scales. Also updated the title of this post to correct the model type (sorry if I broke any links out there).

    Thanks guys for posting the link to Yacolog, great comparison pics there also.

    The fabric isn’t really messed up on the seams per se but a little white does show through on some of the stitches (much less noticeable in person than it is in pictures). The knees being bent as far as possible makes managing the fabric a bit more difficult, I’m sure some people handy with the various materials out there will come up with better solutions.

  11. Do you have a picture of all versions of this toy in full armor mode. Kind of like Beagle%20VR-52%204.jpg, but fully equipped.

  12. Yes ftfbeat, I do… I have lots more comparison pics. Some day I’ll do a separate post to compare them all like I did with the VF-1 toys.

  13. micronian,

    Nice review as always!

    I have the Toynami one on pre-order and now more than ever I can’t wait to get it.

    I love the look of the book style case for the Toynami.

    Regarding the screw hole in the neck. Do you need to loosen it for anything?

    I was thinking of taking a little of the styrofoam from the packing, cutting it into a little circle sticking it in the hole and painting it the same color as the rest of the neck.

    If I don’t need access to the hole, I”l just glue it in place.

    With all the thought and detail they obviously put in the toy, it is odd that the would not give the same thought to the screw hole or at least cover it.

  14. And still no word on the MPC version.

    Thanks for yet another quality post. I have a feeling some of us still-waiting Toynami customers will give up and import the Beagle.

  15. At this point, if you’re okay with the darker visor and different head sculpt, and you live in the USofA, there’s not much of a reason to seek out the Beagle. From what I understand the Toynami will be shipping very soon and can be had for $50+ less than I paid for my Beagle.

    SDF-Commander, you can easily plug that hole in the neck in a number of ways.  I like your idea of inserting a bit of painted styrofoam.  I’m sure there are a great many ways you can reduce the impact of the neck hole and many of them wouldn’t require permanent alteration of the toy.

  16. Micronesian,

    Thanks man. I can’t wait to get mine. In the mean time please keep those updates coming and thanks for posting about this and the other AMAZING stuff in your collection.

    Until I get my hands on my own MPC Cyclone, I’m living vicariously through you and your collection :)

  17. Can I say that just folding out the foot stands had me saying “wow”? The mechanism for the footstands is impressive for gosh-sakes!

    The Galant rifle; the awesome strap with metal rings, the thumb power up switch – the detail is awesome. The way the materials feel in your hand! The plastics feel and look great, very low shine.

    The neck screw-hole did not bother me as much as I thought it would.

    BADS; front missile launchers flop out of place, windshield going cookoo if I breath while holding it, wish they could have made small yellow plastic lights (like the turn signals) to go into the boot lights. They would have had to make a small depression for it but it would have looked much better than the yellow paint and covered the seam there.

    And face sculpts? Who cares with this dark face shield! It looks so great with it down I will likely never display it otherwise.

  18. A couple of things you may want to note for your next update, Jenius:

    I have the Toynami version, and it says in the packaging that it is actually limited to 3000 units, rather than 10K.

    Also, from your review – “Obviously the plaque on the Toynami display stand will reference Robotech rather than Genesis Climber Mospeada”

    The Toynami actually uses the same plaque on the stand. What’s also kind of interesting (but not really, hehe) is that the manual for the Toynami uses all of the same pictures as the regular Beagle, even down to the pictures of the extra head. They also left some Japanese text in random spots in the instructions.

    I love this toy, and am happy to report that the helmeted head is nice and tight, not at all floppy.

  19. Do the chest compartments open up to reveal the missiles inside?
    I haven’t seen any pics here or on the links that has them opening.
    That’s one aspect that looks better on the megahouse. Other than that
    this looks pretty impressive. Even at $200 a pop I want a full set!

  20. I’m afraid you’re getting your ride armors all mixed up. Scott’s/Stick’s doesn’t have missiles in the chest compartments, all he has is a targeting scope that synchs with the missiles on his gauntlets. It was Yellow who has the missiles inside his armor’s chest pieces (as evidenced by the Mega House toy and I’m sure will also be the case on the Beagle). There was one piece of art, I believe done by Paladium, that shows a Scott ride armor with chest missiles but it looks awkward, it’s not canon, and the missiles launch straight up instead of being angled forward.

  21. I finally got one of these (Toynami version) and I noticed something in the review:

    “The hand that holds the gun doesn’t grip the gun tightly enough…”

    In your pics, you’re using the Gallant-holding hand on the gun. There’s a different hand for the larger rifle that has the trigger finger curled, and it seems to do a fine job holding the gun.

  22. Why pay that much for something that is not very good. I don’t care for it. I thought that the original concept was. Much nicer. It had that bulk to it that would’ve looked great with a gakken collection. When fans look at the animation they can notice that mecha bulk that looks and just kicks ass. This toy looks like a doll in cheap plastic with throat cancer.

  23. I hope to one day have one of these Beagle figures (don`t care which LOL).
    Currently got around 20x CM Corps 1/18th ones, so could have bought one or more before LOL
    Gotta love the 1/18th CM Corps ones but these Hell Yea are truely the pinnicle of Mospeada goodness.

  24. I just got my Scott from BBTS and I love it. The quality and playability of this toy is amazing. My helmeted head was a bit floppy but a piece of scotch tape over the ball fixed that. SDFcommander I like your idea of plugging the neck hole, I think I will try that out.
    Great review as always, is was the main factor in convincing me to buy this MPC toy. Thanks.

  25. Where can I still get a Scott Bernard Masterpiece Cyclone? Anyone know any places online?

  26. yeah damn, after getting the MPC Ley, I really need a Stick, but on ebay they are already going for around $400! Wahhhhhh

  27. I can’t say I’m as impressed as others are. I hate the look of the rider figure. The legs are way too skinny, the hole in the neck looks terrible, and I’m not at all a fan of Stick’s helmetless head. I definitely think Toynami did a better job with their Scott head.

    What happened to the tampo-printing on Ray/Rand? Mospeada toys with no tampo-printing just look wrong.

  28. I still have mine on display in bike mode.
    but damned if you aren’t correct about the articulation in armor mode.
    makes me want to go through the torture so I can display some battle poses.
    stunning piece, really.

  29. Hi there

    I’ve been a long time fan of your site. Your reviews have really motivated me to make quite a few of the purchases I’ve done in the last few years! I was wondering what your opinion is today of the beagle/toynami mospeada ride armors. I’ve been looking to getting one but they are over 500 on eBay and most likely will continue to go up in price. Just wondering if you believe they are worth paying the price. I have read in detail your review and they score very high in every category but I believe toys Engineering has improved significantly over the last few years and I do wonder if your opinion today is still as high compared to when you got it.

    I would appreciate your thoughts and thanks for the great work you do


  30. Man, I really wish I had the time to pull these toys out of wherever I have them stored and give them an updated treatment. It’s true that they were very easy to recommend a few years ago even though people thought the prices were high. Today’s prices are enough to make anyone think twice. Without question they’re still the best ride armor toy out there (since no new ones have come out) and, as much as I hate to say it, I’m not sure we’ll ever get another ride armor toy. So, I’m sorry I can’t give you an updated impression right now but I can say if I were going to own just one Ride Armor toy, it’d be a Beagle still. I’ll bet if someone made it today they’d find a way to take a little pain out of the transformation process… it’s a bear. Next time I have one out I’ll shoot a transformation video.

  31. Hi micronian or anyone,

    Just wondering, my Rand from Toynami has a small hole on his suit at the bottom of his butt, so when he bents his legs forward a little hard plastic will poke out. Does yours have one too or did I get a defect?


  32. Sorry I haven’t responded, mine is piled away in storage right now. Next time I have it out I’ll take a look but it might not be for a while. In the meantime, maybe someone else will see your question and give you a response.

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