Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
SilentMode

Quick REVIEW: Arealight's Curved Torsos

   9 members have voted

  1. 1. What do you think?

    • Poor
      1
    • Below average
      1
    • Average
      2
    • Above average
      2
    • Outstanding
      3

Please sign in or register to vote in this poll.

6 posts in this topic

Just thought I'd drop a very quick review of these curved minifigure torsos, available from the infamous customiser Arealight. I've been meaning to get hold of some of these since I first heard about them, and having sold quite a few S7 minifigures gave me the opportunity to obtain some.

These curved minifigures were designed to "give your female figs a shapely hourglass figure", and is certainly an interesting concept - especially if you're into building a large collection of female figures. But do they make any noticeable difference?

The package

01.jpg

Originating from Taiwan, the order took just over a week to arrive from the time of ordering. I'd actually forgotten all about it, but I know how long it took because I'd placed the order the day after I'd posted this.

As a nice surprise: included in the order was Arealight's signature Tentacle Head and Headscarf, both in Brown. Not sure if I have a use for them yet, but we'll see.

The contents

02.jpg

My order consisted entirely of curved torsos in colours I'd most likely use: four Yellow ones and two each of Black and White. The torsos are available in many of the basic LEGO colours (including Tan, Sand Blue and Sand Green), and some come with a limited range of prints. It's likely, however, that you'd be more interested in applying a decal to one of these.

You'll also notice I just had to try the Clear torso, of which I bought one. I wanted to lay to rest the possibility of a transparent minifigure being "impossible", as some have often officially and unofficially stated.

The torsos almost look like official LEGO parts, particularly as they have the "cross" holders for the legs. Hold one in your hand, however, and they definitely feel like a different kind of plastic.

At first glance, the curves placed on the sides of the torso (to give them their distinctive shape) seem insignificant, and we might be left wondering why we'd bother purchasing these over regular torsos, given that the curves are so small. Let's bear in mind that the hip pins have to be inserted into the torso and held there, as well as there having to be spaces for the arms, so there really isn't much space to have a curve in the first place - but there is a curve, and if we've bought one of these it's because we want our figures to have a more natural hourglass figure.

Being used

03.jpg

After ten minutes with the S6 Surgeon, three test subjects emerge from the table with their new bodies. On display here are the yellow, black and white varieties.

04.jpg

Taking a closer look at each figure, it takes a while to notice the curves in the torsos, but they are definitely there. It works particularly well with the black torso against a white background. As you can also see, the torso colours match the official LEGO colours very closely.

You know, it's easy to pair these torsos with female heads and imagine they're more feminine, but what happens if we use a non-female-specific head?

05.jpg

Well this is interesting. While I wouldn't think this figure looks more feminine with the curved torso, it does give the figure a more interesting shape than usual. Wouldn't it be cool to see official minifigures look like this?

More importantly, this picture shows that the figure could be male as well as female. This look would work well with a naked torso decal, or perhaps one where the figure isn't wearing very much.

Clear torso

Let's talk about the clear torso for a second. First of all you should know that the clear torso is slightly more expensive than the other colours (USD 3.50 for clear, USD 2.50 for the others), but the reference picture given on the site is fairly accurate.

07.jpg

Only a head exists as a transparent minifigure part, so I've created this abomination with spare parts to demonstrate this torso's application. You can see how the arms and hips fit inside.

I did find that the arms were harder to apply to the clear torso than the others, although it could be the arm itself rather than the holes on the torso. The arms were also a little stiff to move around once inside the torso, almost as if they were too close to the sides compared with the other colours. But generally they were okay.

09.jpg

Whether or not you're able to see the curves on the transparent torso, I'm a little excited about the possibilities for customisation. Sure we might not be able to create a completely transparent minifigure, but that's where imagination and creativity come in.

The verdict

Curved torsos are a good concept for a custom minifigure part, and particularly noted is that it's not necessarily just for female figures - if that was the case then the curves would be better served on a different part of the body! In any case they work rather well with existing LEGO parts - Be sure to have a good supply of arms and legs if you're going down this route. If you're designing decals for female minifigures, how to represent the curves on the sides is no longer such a big issue.

The only issue I have with them at the moment is that they're a little too easy to separate from legs. This won't be so much of an issue if you're customising figures for display in a case, but it could post a problem when light play is involved. The arms are slightly more difficult to attach to the torso than official torsos, but they do fit.

It's a relatively expensive part, and Arealight has a USD 10 minimum order policy, but if you're interested in doing more with your minifigures it's worth giving a try. If you're unsure about taking the plunge, have a look around for examples of customised versions of these torsos. (Actually I don't remember seeing any.)

10.jpg

Edited by SilentMode

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've got quite a few of these myself and I quite like them. I ordered one of the printed ones a few years back and it looks very nice, they do seem a bit expensive but they add something to you female minifigures.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really like these and actually purchased a couple last month. I got the printed female clone trooper torso and one of the Mandalorian ones along with lots of other parts. I think the quality is excellent and i'll be ordering more from Arealight very soon!

Great review Drew :wink:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice review! I think these can also be used for insectoid minifigures(Insect like alien minifigures, not the minfigures from the theme) and perhaps hungry islanders.

I've also got an idea for the clear torso:Perhaps a female bounty hunter halfway through applying camo?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They're interesting, and nice to see up close. The quality looks good. I've always had a slight problem with the overtly female torsos, especially those that could be used for either gender. I've never really seen the point of TLG printing a curved waistline on their female figs, it's not like the minifig is accurate as it is (height, joints, hands, proportions etc).

These are great for customisers, but I really hope TLG don't seperate their figs or reduce compatibility further by doing this.

The bonus parts are a nice gift!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've always been kind of iffy about these torsos. Personally, I tend to prefer printed curves which to me just look... curvier than this. Part of that might be because of how the bottom of the minifigure torso bulges out slightly more than the top of the legs assembly, meaning that the curve can never be "consistent"-- there will always be that bulge.

One advantage that it does have over printed curves in some cases is that it does follow the one most important "rule" of a human minifigure design: a LEGO skeleton torso could easily fit within the outer boundaries of this torso design, unlike some printed torsos (especially, but not limited to, customs) which make female minifigures look absurdly thin-- I'm thinking of ones like this lady's.

As for the transparent torso, I'm not surprised it works; if it didn't then I'm sure Arealight wouldn't be selling them. However, that really tells us nothing about the potential for transparent minifigure parts in official LEGO sets. You state yourself that these feel like a different material than LEGO's ABS and polycarbonate formulations, so it's possible that they would fail to meet LEGO's quality standards in one or more respects (color fastness/child safety/structural stability/"clutch power"). Additionally, this test doesn't really even tell us anything about the hand, arm, and leg connections between transparent parts, which likely would be the most fragile parts of a transparent minifigure (the head-torso connection could be stiff in a LEGO product due to the PC/PC connection but it would not likely cause any visible exterior damage to the parts).

The transparent torso does show something that might be part of the reason TLG doesn't make torsos with "curves"-- the outer wall of the minifigure torso is narrower in the curved portion than it is at the base of the torso. In TLG's preferred plastics this might make the torso brittle.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
Reply to this topic...

×   You have pasted content with formatting.   Remove formatting

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.