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Possibly fake printed CMF?

vaoinasvaoinas EstoniaMember Posts: 11
edited May 31 in Everything else LEGO
Hello,

I recently bought a series 1 nurse CMF from a bricklink store.
When it arrived, it raised my suspicion immediately. It arrived in ziplock bag, which is normal when buying bricklink. It has all the Lego markings as well, so the pieces should be real Lego. But the printing on torso, head and tile looks matte and grainy. Colors look bit pale as well. Seems, like someone is printing Lego pieces themselves and then tries to sell it as genuine CMF.
Another little detail that makes me suspicious is that the head piece has recessed stud instead of blocked open stud they had in 2010.

I have about hundred CMF's plus about the same amount minifigs from different sets. I've never seen such a bad quality printing on Lego minifig before.

Is the figure real or fake?





Comments

  • datsunrobbiedatsunrobbie West Haven , CTMember Posts: 762
    http://mybrickstore.blogspot.com/2014/12/imitation-of-lego-collectible.html

    If it has the LEGO logo in the right places, I'd figure it is genuine LEGO. Even the ones in the link above don't have the logo.
  • vaoinasvaoinas EstoniaMember Posts: 11
    http://mybrickstore.blogspot.com/2014/12/imitation-of-lego-collectible.html

    If it has the LEGO logo in the right places, I'd figure it is genuine LEGO. Even the ones in the link above don't have the logo.
    My suspicion isn't if the parts are fake - I guess they are genuine. I suspect that the printing on them is fake.
    Pitfall69
  • FowlerBricksFowlerBricks USAMember Posts: 140
    Hmm...sure looks like custom printing to me.
  • iso3200iso3200 97 miles from Brickset TowersMember Posts: 1,637
    Fake - digitally printed inkjet I'm afraid. (Photo of my original attached).

    The colours on yours are made of multiple inks. An original piece is printed in 3 solid colours.
    catwranglerPitfall69sid3windr
  • samiam391samiam391 A Log Cabin in KY, United StatesMember Posts: 3,933
    I call foul.

    While LEGO is prone to slip-ups, that printing is absolutely dreadful. Fake or no fake, I'd be asking for a return on that alone. It does look as if someone has taken a plain white (or something similar) minifigure torso and done their own printing job over it. 

    That suspicion alone though wouldn't be enough to really confirm it's a fake. My focus, same as yours, is on that head.

    https://www.bricklink.com/v2/catalog/catalogitem.page?P=3626bpb0430&idColor=3#T=S&C=3&O={"color":3,"ss":"US","cond":"N"}

    It should be a blocked open stud, not a blocked stud. There is no other explanation for that, as the head does not appear in any other sets. Thus, the only conclusion I can ascertain is that someone has taken a blocked stud head and printed over it. 

    Definitely, a concerning development that someone is printing their own CMFs and marketing them as LEGO, but it was really only a matter of time until some snake of a human started doing that. 

    I wouldn't immediately be confronting the seller about it as the culprit, as it's possible they've obtained it from someone else and are marketing it thinking that it is also genuine. However, if they've got a bunch of other nurses for sale, that would certainly make me suspicious.

    Best of luck on the road to getting your money back, and thanks for bringing this to everyone's attention! Keep your eyes peeled, people. 
    Pitfall69Yodaliciousdougts
  • BOBJACK_JACKBOBBOBJACK_JACKBOB ScotlandMember Posts: 248
    Just had a look at my cmf1 nurse. 100% genuine, bought by myself at time of release. The printing is very smooth and the head has a blocked open stud.

    Looking at yours, the thing i noticed first and would be most suspicious of, is the moulding line on the hairpiece. It is very noticable.

    While by no means an expert, given the rough printing, different style stud on the head and the line on the hair, I would strongly suspect that this figure is not genuine.

    Wait for others to give their opinion too as I could be wrong.

    Bob
  • vaoinasvaoinas EstoniaMember Posts: 11
    edited May 31
    samiam391 said:
    I wouldn't immediately be confronting the seller about it as the culprit, as it's possible they've obtained it from someone else and are marketing it thinking that it is also genuine. However, if they've got a bunch of other nurses for sale, that would certainly make me suspicious.
    Well, this guy has at least 4 more of these nurses on sale right now.
  • samiam391samiam391 A Log Cabin in KY, United StatesMember Posts: 3,933
    edited May 31
    vaoinas said:
    samiam391 said:
    I wouldn't immediately be confronting the seller about it as the culprit, as it's possible they've obtained it from someone else and are marketing it thinking that it is also genuine. However, if they've got a bunch of other nurses for sale, that would certainly make me suspicious.
    Well, this guy has at least 4 more of these nurses on sale right now.
    Could you link to his shop? I'd be curious to see what else he has for sale.

    Might have to get Bricklink involved if his other items are fishy too.
    Pitfall69
  • davee123davee123 USAMember Posts: 776
    So, I'll put this out there as well:

    The 1st series of collectible minifigures were some of the first elements made in China.  At the time, when we bought ours (at Toys R Us, I think-- the LEGO stores were cleaned out), we were horrified at the low quality of the plastic.  The ABS used in China was noticeably translucent, and had a different, less reflective/shiny surface (more matted).

    The prints, however, were reasonably good.  After all, we were told multiple times that the printing quality for Chinese facilites was actually BETTER than their Danish counterparts.  With that said, it's hard to tell from your picture, but the print on the torso looks... odd.  It looks like the yellow neckline isn't solid yellow.  Maybe that's some sort of resolution issue on the camera, but it looks suspicious.  If you have other CMF's from Series 1, I'd compare them and see whether you have similar issues on areas that are supposed to be solid colors of print.

    I might suspect (as above) that someone may have tried to print something on a genuine torso.  You can check the "underarms", too.  It won't prove anything 100%, but there should be a small, rectangular indent under the arms (up against the body), which is a mold variant that started appearing in Chinese-molded figures from the time period.  If the indent ISN'T there, then someone's put different arms on the torso.  If the indent IS there, then you're really not closer-- it could still just be a genuine torso.

    The head (as stated) also should be a closed-top hollow stud-- not the "triple support-but-fully-hollow" head that was in 99% of LEGO's offerings in 2010.  That variant was mostly introduced in 2010 in Chinese made minifigs, and didn't start making into Danish versions until later.  So that part's fine.

    The print on the head looks ... odd to me?  Not so crazy that I'm suspicious, but... the eyeballs look rather ... oval-ish.  And... maybe the distance between the eyes if off (too narrow)?  I'm not sure.  Something looks strange about it, but it could just be the camera angle or something.  Technically speaking, that's a much harder part to fake.  Printing on a curved surface is tough, so I'd be surprised if that were successfully faked at that quality level, while screwing up something like the proportions of the eyes.  It's curious, but I wouldn't be too suspicious of that.

    The hair looks fine to me.  Again, given how difficult it is to mold LEGO hair, it's not likely to be a fake.  Same with the legs.  And ... not really sure about the 2x2 tile.

    So, at a guess, you probably have either a 100% genuine figure, or you maybe have a torso that's been custom printed on a legitimate LEGO torso.

    DaveE
  • lcf119lcf119 Arkansas, USAMember Posts: 13
    The first thing that raised a red flag for me was the face print, it looks rather squashed. Also try checking to see if the torso/leg moulds are characteristic of early cheap plastic CMFs, as described here. DaveE raised an interesting point though, the arms may or may not be switched out, and if it is indeed a genuine torso, it could have the black bar erased off the neck. But based off the print quality alone, it does seem like you have a fake.
  • FowlerBricksFowlerBricks USAMember Posts: 140
    Looks like someone took a blank minifigure and pad-printed the designs on there. Why they chose to do that one, I don't know. If I were them, I'd have done a really rare minifigure, like one of the Comic-Con guys.
  • oldtodd33oldtodd33 Denver 4800 miles to BillundMember Posts: 1,829
    edited May 31
    @FowlerBricks  Probably worth it to most con artists. https://www.bricklink.com/v2/catalog/catalogitem.page?id=93043#T=S&O={}

    I agree with everyone else, it's a forgery. The recessed head has only been used in yellow in 3 sets and none before 2013 which is 3 years past the production of the cmf nurse.
    Pitfall69
  • akunthitaakunthita USAMember Posts: 936

    That definitely looks like regular custom pad-printing. LEGO's own printing is never raised like that. And of course there is also the issue with the closed stud on the head. The nurse is actually a pretty desirable and rare minifig, so I guess it made sense for someone to try to make their own.

    I would contact the seller and tell them your concerns, and include your pictures as well. They may or may not know what they are selling is fake (they may have gotten their stock from somewhere else). If they don't give you a refund and take the rest of their listings down, I would also report them to BrickLink's admin. This is a very concerning development.

  • vaoinasvaoinas EstoniaMember Posts: 11
    edited May 31
    samiam391 said:
    Could you link to his shop? I'd be curious to see what else he has for sale.

    Might have to get Bricklink involved if his other items are fishy too.
    Since the seller agreed to refund the returned minifig + shipping, and has (as I checked now) removed all these nurse CMF's from his store list, I decided not to post the link here. Hope I'll get my money back and the seller learned his lesson. Funny bit is that he said to send it back as normal letter - probably realizes as well, that the figure hasn't much value in it. 

    I checked the arms and legs too - compared to my other CMF's they all seemed to be too new molds to be from 2010.
  • FowlerBricksFowlerBricks USAMember Posts: 140
    @oldtodd33: Wow, I didn't realize that she was so expensive.
  • shaaseshaase Member Posts: 5

    @Vaoinas, sorry to hear about this but thanks for raising awareness.

    It's not surprising to find someone taking pick a brick parts which costs them pennies and then either removing old prints and putting on new prints, so they can turn around and sell those parts for huge profits.

  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 14,345

    davee123 said:

    The hair looks fine to me.  Again, given how difficult it is to mold LEGO hair, it's not likely to be a fake. 

    I wouldn't worry about the hair, that is a cheap part.

    lcf119 said:
    DaveE raised an interesting point though, the arms may or may not be switched out, and if it is indeed a genuine torso, it could have the black bar erased off the neck.
    The CMF torsos don't have the bar anyway.




    But as to others, this is definitely a home printed one.

  • vaoinasvaoinas EstoniaMember Posts: 11
    Thanks for everyone who bothered to answer.

    Returned the minifig back to seller this morning and got my money back as well. 

    Seller apologized, but mentioned his supplier has hundreds of these in stock at BL. So I would be really careful, if looking for Series 1 nurse CMF's right now.

  • BuriedinBricksBuriedinBricks USAMember Posts: 1,301
    That seller should probably be at least flagging Bricklink admins about their "supplier."
    SprinkleOttermadforLEGO
  • madforLEGOmadforLEGO USMember Posts: 7,873
    Pretty sure BL admins crack down hard on such deception (and that is what it is). It is a shame, hope you did not have to pay for the return shipping either
  • carnage717carnage717 U.S.AMember Posts: 88
    Since there is only one seller that has 100's listed on BL its not hard to figure who the supplier is
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 14,345
    They are selling them as minigifures only though, not as sets like this one. I'd also be quite surprised if they are selling fakes, as they seem a good seller.
  • vaoinasvaoinas EstoniaMember Posts: 11
    edited June 2
    hope you did not have to pay for the return shipping either
    Got partially back original shipping and return shipping as well, so I guess, my seller handled it well.

    Since there is only one seller that has 100's listed on BL its not hard to figure who the supplier is
    Had the same suspicion

    CCC said:
    They are selling them as minigifures only though, not as sets like this one. 
    If they would sell these as minifigures only, but without mentioning they are custom printed (if they actually are), there's not much difference - they would still decieve a customer.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 14,345
    vaoinas said:

    CCC said:
    They are selling them as minigifures only though, not as sets like this one. 
    If they would sell these as minifigures only, but without mentioning they are custom printed (if they actually are), there's not much difference - they would still decieve a customer.
    Yes, but that would mean that your seller was having to source the other parts (especially the tile) separately from a different seller to the one with lots of nurses. The tile only comes in that set, and the seller of the minifigure doesn't sell it.

    So it might not be the seller that has 100s of them. If it is the big German seller, then they do get lots of CMF parts from time to time. I have bought from them before and had no problems with the parts.

  • darthdcdarthdc Member Posts: 150
    Just comparing the pictures to my copy of the Nurse (which I know is the real deal, having purchased it back in 2010) and the face looks wrong. The eyes are too oval, and her lipstick is too dark.
  • 19741974 Member Posts: 120
    edited June 13
    So, the conclusion is that indeed this was a fake CMF? I want to bring this to BL's attention but I'd like to be sure ;)

    Cheers,

    Ole
  • HuwHuw Brickset Towers, Hampshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 5,677
    edited June 13
    Just spotted this thread so sorry for late reply.

    It's fake. It's been printed on a UV printer such as this Roland. The raised print and 'dotty' nature of it is a trait of items printed on such devices and is evident on minifigs produced by most customisers.
    sid3windr
  • 19741974 Member Posts: 120
    Thank you Huw, your word is good enoug with me. I'll post tis to the BL community then :)
  • 19741974 Member Posts: 120
    Sorry for the missing two "h" ..
  • HuwHuw Brickset Towers, Hampshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 5,677
    edited June 13
    I can photo my genuine torso for comparison if there's still doubt there.
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