Parts Reuse in MOTU, Part One: 1982

Masters of the Universe, for all its diversity and creativity, was quite an economical toyline, creatively (and sometimes uncreatively) using and reusing the same molds over and over again throughout its run. Sometimes this was done fairly invisibly, and other times it was as plain as the nose on Faker’s face.

In this series I’ll be cataloging the reuse of existing molds, in context of what is known and what is likely about which figures were created in what order. For example, He-Man’s prototype was almost certainly finished before Man-At-Arms, so Man-At-Arms reused He-Man’s legs, rather than vice versa. I’ll also include parts that were reused from other toylines.

Sometimes existing parts were modified for use in new toys. For example, Beast Man’s chest seems to have been based on He-Man’s chest sculpt, albeit with a great deal of hair added to it. This didn’t save money on tooling, but it did save some time and effort for the sculptor. I’ll point this out whenever I see it. Whenever a modified part is used again, however, I’ll refer to it as belonging to the toy that used it first (for example, Stratos and Zodac reuse Beast Man’s chest).

I won’t comment on “invisible” parts, such as neck pegs or waist springs that are normally not seen.

First, the toys from 1982 that had (when they were created) all new parts:



Castle Grayskull

Battle Ram

Wind Raider

These toys from 1982 reused some existing parts:


Beast Man





Battle Cat

Parts Reuse series:



This blog has been greatly enriched by contributions from people all over the community, including artists, designers, archivists, collectors and general MOTU experts. There isn’t one person who knows everything to know about Masters of the Universe, but as a community there is a great deal of knowledge, and it grows over time. I’d like to acknowledge contributions from the following individuals and groups. Some of these are direct contributions, which means they directly shared information, images, suggestions,  and stories with me. There are others that I haven’t been in contact with directly, but have been sources of knowledge that I have relied upon consistently. I’m sure I’m forgetting someone, but I’ll continue to add to the list.

Special thanks to Jukka Issakainen, who has contributed in some way to almost every post in this blog. He has tirelessly assisted me with feedback, information and images since the beginning. I am deeply grateful to all of the following individuals and organizations, and many, many others:

  • Axel Giménez
  • Chris Vint
  • Danielle Gelehrter
  • Dark Horse
  • Dejan Dimitrovski
  • Dušan Mitrović
  • Eamon O’Donoghue
  • Emiliano Santalucia & The Power and the Honor Foundation
  • James Eatock
  • John Atkin
  • Jukka Issakainen
  • Larry Hubbard
  • Manic Man
  • Mantisaur82
  • Martin Arriola
  • Matthew L. Martin
  • Mark & Rebecca Taylor
  • Øyvind Johannes Meisfjord
  • Pixel Dan
  • Rudy Obrero
  • Shawn
  • Sir Shenanigans
  • Ted Mayer
  • Tokyonever & Grayskull Museum
  • Val Staples &
  • Vaults of Grayskull

Original artwork by Mark Taylor. Image courtesy of Ted Mayer. Colors added by me.