Darth Vader 4-up Silicone Mold (517-016)
The prototype shown here represents an example of a silicone mold used in the production process for Kenner's Micro Collection line. After the mold is created from the original sculpting it is used to cast hardcopies called 4-ups. This particular Darth Vader pose is designated by the unique product number 517-016. The first three digits indicate its presence in the Death Star Compactor playset, while the last three indicate the particular character/pose.

The second image shows the back side of each mold half.

An unpainted 4-up is placed inside the mold half on the left in the above photo. During the creation of a hardcopy, the two molds are placed face to face. The circular portions seen around the cavity area, called keys, serve to ensure proper mold alignment during the casting process. Liquified urethane enters the mold cavity through an opening in the joined mold halves called a gate. Once the urethane hardens, the mold halves are separated and the 4-up is removed. At this point, excess hardened urethane, resulting from urethane filling in the gate area, is sanded down to ensure a flat base exists on the 4-up.

The 4-up is shown inside the other mold half in the picture shown above. Remnant dynacast is visible on one mold half (right).

The final image highlights the pre-production series Todd owns for this Darth Vader Micro Collection figure. The series is comprised of the following:

Description by: Michael G. Mensinger
Photo: Todd Hudson
From the collection of: Todd Hudson
Country:United States
Film:A New Hope
Category:Prototypes / Micro Collection


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