UPDATED MARCH 01, 2017
VINTAGE G I JOE SALESMAN SAMPLE ACTION SOLDIER DELUXE FATIGUE PANTS CARD with MATCHING LOOSE SALESMAN SAMPLE DELUXE FATIGUE SHIRT SEWN TO A CARD
The full description is at the bottom of the page after all of the photos.
I have been collecting a lot of different things most of my life and Vintage G I Joe for 20 years. I have sold hundreds of vintage GIJoe items in that time. I have sold items on my website, on eBay and on other for sale sites. I have been buying and selling on eBay since the beginning of eBay. My dmckee63 screen name was originally registered in January of 1997 and I have had great success making people happy with what I sold to them.
The time has come for me to pare down my collection and this will be the main place I will do so. I will be working on several pages and groupings of items for sale and linking them all to the main front page. I will also be selling items on eBay to get rid of a few harder to sell items. Please come back regularly to see what I have available. Some of these items will be things you have never seen before and will probably never have a chance to buy again once they are gone. Thank you for your time!
A QUICK EXPLANATION ABOUT THE TERM SALESMAN SAMPLE.
A lot of people have misused the term salesman sample over the years. When I use the term, I mean this piece was originally used or intended to be used by a Hasbro Salesman, or an independent salesman representing Hasbro's products. This salesman was given the samples of the products coming to the market to take out and show toy buyers at toy or department stores so they could envision what the item would look like. Many of these salesman samples have shown up over the years but for the most part there has only been either one or two of any particular item ever found. I honestly believe that the items I have chased, the salesman sample small accessory cards and window boxes, there have probably been less than 3 dozen total found in the whole world, EVER! I have actually seen less than 20 of these pieces change hands over the 15 years of looking for them including all of the items I have in my collection.
Most of the known sample cards in are the hands of less than a half dozen collectors, including myself. They are the true definition of RARE. 3 or 4 pieces have shown up on eBay over the years and a few pieces showed up in the big Don Levine auction around 1999. I have actually helped identify 2 small batches of these salesman sample packages when they were unearthed. Both batches were found around the Pawtucket, RI area. One big find was literally found at the Salvation Army, a few miles away from the original Hasbro factory. Regardless of where they come from, they are truly unusual pieces and have very distinctive markings that only a few people in the world can identify. I am photographing and posting these items on my website to sell for the first time. I have owned many of these pieces for a long time and have always been reluctant to post photos of them for fear of people trying to duplicate them and fake out other unsuspecting collectors.
PLEASE note that after I have posted these items that most people will think I have faked them and that I am totally full of crap. Believe what you will but I do know a few honest collectors who have seen my whole collection in person and can verify my claims and where many of the items have come from. This first issue type of stuff has ALWAYS been my specialty in the vintage GIJoe hobby. Please also note that this stuff will never show up for sale again unless someone buys it from me and then tries to resell it.
ITEM #157 - VINTAGE GIJOE SOLDIER SEALED SALESMAN SAMPLE DELUXE FATIGUE PANTS CARD
It is a subtle difference but this is definitely a salesman sample card. There is no helmet sticker but the brochure is stapled on. The stapled brochure is done exactly like my Duffle Bag card in my first issue M.P. card set for sale. I still think it is also a salesman sample card because of the details on this Fatigue Pants card.
Here is the back of the card. You can see the normal first issue markings on the back.
Here is a close up of the staple on the card. You might be able to tell but this is definitely a poly bagged card, not cellophaned. The pants on the card is a very distinctly different color as well. This card actually came from the collection of James DeSimone. If you have the card in hand, you can see a small amount of silicone sealer inside the brass grommet; that is what he used to stick the card to the back of his display case. I know, right? INSANE to use something so permanent. James used to take his display case around to different shows so he mounted everything in the case for travel. I asked him and he had no idea this pants card was anything special. I bought this from him 16 or 17 years ago; that is how long I have been chasing after unusual sealed packages!
HERE IS A PHOTO OF THE SALESMAN SAMPLE SHIRT
I actually mocked up this shirt onto a card. It all has a GREAT story behind it and these two pieces belong together. This shirt is an exact match in color and material to the pants on the sealed card.
HERE IS ANOTHER CLOSE UP OF THE SHIRT
This is literally a salesman sample shirt which I bought a long time ago from a collector who found this with a HUGE salesman sample lot. That collector bought a huge lot directly from an old Hasbro sales representative. He had dozens of small, individual sample pieces and you will see a couple of them in my loose items for sale section. This piece though, definitely belongs with the pants card. See the little hole near the collar that I highlighted with a red circle? More explanation down below.
HERE IS A CLOSE UP OF THE SHIRT SLEEVE
See how the sleeves are taped down into place so that the shirt stays in the perfect display mode? Those sleeves have been in place for FIFTY YEARS! Only a piece mocked up as a salesman sample would be found with taped down sleeves.
HERE IS A CLOSE UP OF THE TAG AND INSIDE OF THE COLLAR
I can just about guarantee that you have NEVER even IMAGINED this kind of tag in any uniform before. Also note the little hole highlighted with my red circle. That hole is directly in line with the hole on the front of the shirt. This NO COUNTRY OF ORIGIN tag has had a HONG KONG tag added with glue. I would imagine that the Hasbro attorneys made them do this to meet import laws of the time. That hole in the shirt was burned through the shirt with a small hot poker and it was probably done in Customs at the airport. It was a common practice in the garment industry to bring samples of clothing back over the the US. To get the samples through customs without paying duties, there would be small holes burned through the material of each piece to make them unsellable. Since Don Levine was supposedly traveling back and forth from Hong Kong to the US at the beginning of GIJoe, he probably hand carried back a bunch of uniforms through customs. I believe this shirt AND the pants on the card both went through this process. It is really hard to show in the photo but there is a small burn hole through the pants on the card, right above the pocket.
HERE IS A SALESMAN SAMPLE CELLO
This cello was found in another place many years ago so I put it with this mocked up shirt card. The cello was clearly on another salesman sample card which got opened up. Note the blank tab on the helmet sticker? Yes, another salesman sample card and no telling what used to be on it. See the little pink sticker? A couple of those little stickers have showed up on other salesman sample cards that I have seen on eBay. My mocked up card will slip inside of this cello to help add to the salesman sample card feel that I was trying to get.
HERE IS A SALESMAN SAMPLE CARD THAT I MISSED ON EBAY
I DIDN'T GET TO BUY EVERYTHING I saw on eBay but I sure tried. I got beat out by someone and this salesman sample sailor shirt card (still out there somewhere) would fit really nicely in my collection, especially since I have the Sea Bag card. Check out the pinkish round sticker though, that is why I am showing this piece to you. That sticker is an exact match to the pink sticker on my loose cello with the blank tab helmet sticker. I would imagine the stickers were some sort of code used at Hasbro or maybe that was how they separated which area or salesman it was going to. Who knows but it is curious that these stickers were in the same place and only on salesman sample cards found in completely different places.
ITEM #157 - VINTAGE GIJOE ACTION SOLDIER SALESMAN SAMPLE SEALED DELUXE FATIGUE PANTS CARD with MATCHING LOOSE SHIRT with SALESMAN SAMPLE CELLO/HELMET STICKER
OK, I'm getting there. I know this is a long winded story with lots of twists but it is worth seeing my point of view.
First off, I got the salesman sample pants card directly from James DeSimone a VERY long time ago. He told me he had a few of those uniform cards and had opened the others specifically to use for photos for his book. One of the few things he had that was mint was the beautiful Soldier uniform with pockets in his great first book. I actually bought that loose uniform when DeSimone auctioned off his whole collection in Maryland. Those Soldier pants were EXACTLY THE SAME as the pants on the sealed card I bought from him. Furthermore, the loose shirt was exactly like my mint shirt shown in the set that I put on the card. I put the loose DeSimone uniform on a Joe and sold it to another collector because I had the perfect uniform already. I knew it was rare to find a NO COUNTRY deluxe Soldier shirt and pants at the time I sold it (about 12 years ago) but I had no idea that I would NEVER see another one again.
Then there is my loose shirt with the crazy NO COUNTRY tag and the glued on HONG KONG tag that I sewed onto a card and stapled the brochure onto the card too. This shirt came from a completely different big collector, much later, from a huge salesman sample lot. This shirt is an identical color and material match the to pants still sealed in the card AND to the loose uniform which was photographed in DeSimone's book. These two pieces are a completely different shade of green than any Soldier uniform I have ever seen and yet they are a perfect match to each other. This all adds up to one thing, they were salesman sample uniforms. So I am selling both pieces together, the pants card is an original salesman sample card, sealed, never messed with but no helmet sticker. The shirt card is a genuine salesman sample shirt but the card is mocked up by me and not sealed but it has the salesman sample outer cello with the salesman sample helmet sticker. I know it is a bit confusing compared to everything else I have for sale. I really think the provenance of a piece needs to be kept alive so you will have to remember this whole story if you decide to buy these. Regardless of how far fetched this whole story may seem to you, I value these 2 pieces highly and they are priced accordingly at $700. I think this uniform loose is worth that, especially since it is more rare than ANY uniform I have ever encountered, other than maybe one or 2 prototype uniforms.
Feel free to contact me with any questions you might have. I stand behind everything I sell 100% and all of my descriptions are guaranteed to be extremely accurate.
There will be NO HIDDEN DAMAGE, NOTHING WRONG that is not described, there will be NO HIDDEN SURPRISES.
I promise that I will treat your transaction the same as if I were the one doing the buying and making sure that you are satisfied with your purchase.
I accept credit card payments through PayPal (my user ID is the same as my email address, email@example.com)
If you still like to do things the old fashioned way I can accept postal money orders in the mail as well.
Make sure to send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) BEFORE SENDING a PayPal payment if you want to purchase something.
I am including the price of INSURED PRIORITY MAIL in all sales over $50.
Let me know if you prefer shipping via UPS or Fed Ex.
EMAIL DAN MCKEE TO ORDER ANYTHING BY CLICKING HERE!
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UPDATED MARCH 01, 2017