TBM Steel Brigade (1992 Mail Away Remake)

TBM Steel Brigade (1992 Mail Away Remake)

As a kid, mail away toys were a constant item of my desires as they were for my brother as well. Unfortunately, I had the kind of no-fun parents who thought that any toy you paid postage for was a scam. So when I started collecting as an adult, you can imagine my embitterment upon discovering the aftermarket prices on V2 Steel Brigades… Little to say, this Black Major Reproduction became an immediate item of my interest.

So around late 2017, The Black Major produced a run of custom Steel Brigades in assorted color varieties. Of them, he made a reproduction run of V1 and V2 Steel Brigades, with some obvious and tasteful differences so that anyone can tell them apart form one of Hasbro’s. The V2 Steel Brigade remake was of great interest to me, even though I’m not the type to shy away from paying for a decent collectible.

The thing is, the 1992 Steel Brigade is a figure that simply out prices what it’s current value should be today. You see them plenty in comparison to other rarities, but that doesn’t stop these from fetching anywhere from $300 to $500. That’s simply too much for a domestic release. But, the colors are interesting and it does well to compliment my 90‘s collection, which is why this custom serves my needs perfectly.

The figure is quite similar to the Hasbro version with a few obvious differences. First, all of the colors are much brighter. This may be off putting to some, but I think they match very well with some of the other brightly colored items from Battle Corps and such. Second, the arm patch is now silver instead of white. Third, the belt is now solid gold, and does not have the black details of the Hasbro version.

The Black Major Steel Brigades were overall some pretty good figures quality wise, but the run had one general problem in the way that they had a lot of difficulty holding their guns. Their grips were too tight while their guns had handles too thick: certainly a recipe for broken thumbs on such otherwise fantastic figures. I’ve circumvented this by trimming a portion of the handles down on the M16’s for some of mine as you can see below.

The black major factory custom 1992 Steel Brigade gi joe hasbro mail away exclusive

This figure does a great thing in providing me all I need from the V2 Steel Brigade. It’s a niche and odd repaint, but I like it and it nicely compliments my 90‘s collection. This design is by no means worth the $300+ that a Hasbro figure can commend, but a similar looking remake for $15 to $20 is perfect.

The black major factory custom 1992 Steel Brigade gi joe hasbro mail away exclusive

TBM Steel Brigade and Steel Brigade V2 Links:

Forgotten Figures

Cobra Island

Yo Joe

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3 Responses to TBM Steel Brigade (1992 Mail Away Remake)

  1. Mike T. says:

    These figs are awesome and the repaints made for great figures that collectors were ready for. It’s great to see people with originals genuinely worried that these will affect the value of their originals. Sadly, we’re seeing them so pissed that they’re pushing BM underground. Without him and RLA, there will be nothing keeping the hobby afloat in 2 years when this upsurge in interest dies off.

    • Nekoman says:

      I find it hilarious that vintage collectors are always panicking over their figures being devalued by reissues/bootlegs… Across a few vintage toy lines I’ve watched over the years this almost never happens. Although it does seem to happen with underproduced modern figures.

      What kind of morons collect action figures as investments anyways?

  2. R.T.G. says:

    I’m a big fan of this figure! The gold head design is a very cool one, that unfortunately wound up going to waste on such a rarity. So it’s nice to be able to actually have a usable one.

    Action Figures as an investment is a ridiculous concept. I mean I understand value, and hoping that your figures do retain it, but the fact there’s a couple hundred obvious repros of the Gold Steel Brigade isn’t going to torpedo the value. In other collecting areas, usually a reproduction does more to boost value of the original.

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