Aliexpress cleaned it's act?

Hi folks,

I’ve been cruising aliexpress and I’ve noticed a lot less copies of figures particularly the larger scale 120mm Verlinden figures such as the American gulf war SAW gunner or the M203 gunner. Have they cleaned up all those illegal copies and replaced them with 3d printed figures now?


Depends on which shops. Some have little to no knock-off’s, with lots of original castings, and 3D prints; and other shops still have a large selection of knock-off’s.
:smiley: :canada:


But which one to choose?




A lot of model figure kits on Aliexpress, DHGate, eBay, Amazon, Google search, ETSY, and other websites are from China and are recast. Practically all Google searches produce Chinese recasts and not the original vendor. It is hard to find original resin kits on Amazon and eBay as most of those are recast. “Unbrand” or “No brand” is a dead giveaway along with no product number, meaning Chinese recasts won’t identify the original resin seller.

One can tell by the 3D images. Usually the original manufacturer’s 3D image is of a higher quality with multiple views of the figure compared to the Chinese recast version with just one 3D image to sell the product.

I don’t know about aliexpress, but there are other Chinese online sellers such as DHGate that sells recast resin figures for very cheap.

I find that if you cannot find and buy it from HobbyLink Japan and HobbySearch Japan, or LuckyModels and HobbyEasy (both in Hong Kong), then chances are it’s a Chinese recast as these online Asian hobby webstores sell the original figure kits.

Does it make a difference? I find it does as Chinese recasts often have casting errors, poor instructions, poor packaging, inferior fit, and a host of other issues. You get what you pay for as most original vendor Asian sculptors are so skilled that figure kit fit and casting quality issues are practically nonexistent if you buy the original figure.


Can’t help but think of this and it’s sort of amusing…

Onyx Canine, or something like that, I’d bought several of their name brand accessory sets, with their name on the box from reputable brick & mortar retailers. All were very disappointing with poor quality and air bubbles. At first, I didn’t believe Onyx Canine quality could be so poor. I purchased three different sets as I kept reading how great Onyx Canine products were from various “sources” online. Paid close to full price for garbage but that’s sometimes the nature of aftermarket.

I have zero respect and no regard for “Onyx Canine” as a manufacturer given the garbage they willing boxed and sold at premium price.

Fast-forward to placing an order for several sets of R-Model tracks on Ali-Express, what pops up but some knock off looking Onyx Canine accessories.

On a lark, I bought one just to see how terrible it would be, given it was a no name knock off a product that had a history of terrible quality. It was like $6 and it’s typically ~$30+ for the Onyx Canine branded version in the box.

The $6 “knock off” parts were good quality without air bubbles far superior to the name brand “Onyx Canine” brand garbage I purchased in the past.

Seems like the nameless pirates cared more about their casting quality of their knock offs than the OEM big name did. Or maybe it was some vast deep state resin casting conspiracy. I don’t know and at this point I don’t care.



I don’t and won’t feel bad in the least about purchasing that likely knock off set given the OEM brand had proved to be garbage on multiple occasions in the past.



I noticed aliexpress give less results for models depending of the country for some reason


YMMV = Your Mileage May Vary…

@Armor_Buff There is a lot of truth in your post. A lot of North American sculptors have their resin kits cast in China because it is the cheapest and best quality around. However, one Sci-Fi resin kit maker got shut out because his Chinese caster didn’t fulfill orders in time, moved, and just closed shop without him knowing it, leaving him stranded and apologizing profusely on his website. China worked for him well enough until his casting system just fell apart so he can no longer sell his high-quality and awesome resin kits. He totally folded.

One good thing is that his caster in China was legal and reputable…the caster had to sign a legal agreement to NOT pirate or copy his molds into cheap knockoffs (but in reality, how to enforce it…fly to China to pursue? There is a travel warning for Americans not to fly to China). And yet in using a China resin caster, when the caster decided to just quit the casting business, the OEM Sci-Fi resin kit owner and seller was left stranded with no way of getting his molds back and fulfilling orders.

So cheap knockoffs are indeed a trend in China and that is why many reputable OEM sculptors, online stores, and model kit expos refuse to sell and ship to China.

China also sells high quality 3-D prints and knockoffs. A lot of the major American, South Korean, Japanese, and European OEM resin figure brands have been 3-D printed as cheap Chinese knockoffs.


Look through the shops’ catalog. Recast/knock-off’s usually have several color/painted shots of the product lifted from the original manufacture’s site, whereas original and 3-D items are usually B/W computer images, but these “rules” are certainly NOT hard and fast. I really don’t think printed figures can be “knock-offs” (unless there is a deep-state Chinese conspiracy to hack designers’ files and pass them off as their own :thinking: :joy:) . I buy quality 3D figures on Ali Express at incredibly low prices, and shipping (shipping to Canada can be only a few dollars, or free! I don’t know about US as I remember one of Trump’s policies was to place tariffs on Chinese imports and on cheap/or free shipping). I have a few favorite, and dependable stores I constantly shop from, and Ali Express, like ebay, have a reliable refund policy when items get “lost” in the mail.
:smiley: :canada:


I don’t buy individual figures on AliExpress. However, DSPIAE has an official tool store on AliExpress and over the past year I have done business with them often. I have always gotten fast, reliable, informed service and my purchases have been flawless. I also just yesterday purchased the NEOECO airbrush set for the incredible price of $35.95 with free shipping. Can’t beat that!

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I’ve browsed the DSPIAE tools and wondered about their quality. Are they good, or does quality vary?
:smiley: :canada:

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On the contrary, DSPIAE makes one of the finest tool lines in the world today. Don’t be fooled by the affordability - the innovation, engineering, and quality are off the charts. I can’t recommend them highly enough and there’s plenty of guys here who will agree. I now have almost their entire line and every tool has exceeded my expectations. Buy with confidence, you will be pleasantly surprised.

Excellent quality with all of the DSPIAE tools I’ve tried. Probably a dozen total. All are top notch quality and outstandingly excellent.

With one exception. I greatly dislike their adjustable circle cutter.

It’s marginal for more than typing paper. Nearly worthless for anything like index card stock, never mind .010 plastic sheet in my experience.

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well damn! I guess I can count that one out for making discs out of sheet styrene. :frowning: