What material are superhero figures made of?

In this entry we will see the different materials that are most common in the world of figurines, why these materials are used and not others. What characteristics they have and how you can take the best care of the figures made of these materials.

Types of materials

PVC: Also known as polyvinyl chloride, it is the third most widely produced plastic after polyethylene and polypropylene. PVC is used in construction because it is a cheaper material than other more durable materials such as iron. Its characteristic is that it can be made softer and more flexible by the addition of plasticizers. It has many uses other than figures, such as clothing, insulation or electrical cables among many others. PVC begins to deform at temperatures above 60 degrees Celsius.

ABS: Also known as acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, is a copolymer made by polymerizing styrene and acrylonitrile in the presence of polybutadiene. With different proportions of each material, to create chains that bind together, making ABS stronger than pure polystyrene. It is resistant to low temperatures and can withstand up to 80 degrees Celsius.

Resin or synthetic resin: Materials with properties similar to natural plant resins, they are viscous liquids that are capable of permanent hardening. Although chemically they are very different from resinous compounds made by plants. The resin is freely applied to one of the two monomers in a copolymer.

Uses of each material

PVC: PVC is the most used of all materials and the one you will find the most, both in our store and in others. PVC is characterized by being cheaper compared to other plastics and resistant. Because it is a thermoplastic, it is easy to work with and can be recycled. In addition, it is not too rubbery and soft. Also, we found high quality PVC, which is soft to the touch and has a skin-like appearance, which is not achieved with other plastics such as ABS. Although the downside of PVC is that it can be somewhat brittle and does not withstand high temperatures and pressures very well. This can affect the figures, causing them to deform or bend, although for this they have to be exposed to high temperature or pressure.

So watch the temperature to which you subject your figures if they are made of this material, before they deform and there is no turning back.

ABS: Unlike PVC, ABS is a much stronger plastic and does not bend as easily. This is why most figures are made of ABS for the bases or legs of the superheroes. Although it says PVC on the figure, it is often a combination to make the figure as strong as possible. ABS is a specialist in handling weight without deforming, although the downside is that if it falls from a great height, the ABS can break.

Unlike PVC, which will only bend, ABS can break because it is more fragile to falls. Although a good quality ABS can withstand falls and is not easy to break, since the figure industry has learned to make it more resistant to avoid this kind of problems.

Resin or synthetic resin: This material is not seen so often, and it is for certain reasons. The resin is much more fragile than the two previous materials, and can not survive a fall or a strong blow. Although they have other virtues, such as resistance to temperatures, humidity and the ease of cleaning they have. Resin has a use for making more details and more accurate, with some aspects. This is what leads to see resin figures, although it is not usual.

To wash the figures, in case they are dirty they can be submerged in water or use water to wash them. This without rubbing to avoid removing the paint or details, but the plastic is water resistant and can be left submerged for an hour with some detergent or liquid soap to remove dirt on a PVC or ABS figure. Do not use chemicals other than soap or you could damage the figure and ruin it. It is not good to abuse this either, as they may suffer from being washed too often. It is only in exceptional cases that they have become dirty for some reason.

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