First off, just what is a scrapper anyway? This isn't an official term, hence the quotation marks before, but this is a name given by collectors. Scrappers are Vinylmation figures that have not passed Disney's quality control. Perhaps they're missing an accessory, have been painted wrong, or the design was cancelled and the figures were not produced, leaving some discarded prototypes.
When these figures are thrown out, people trying to make a quick buck will scavenge for them, find some, and sell them on eBay. Sometimes this is obvious, but in other cases it's harder to tell, as I'm about to show you.
All of the figures below have been listed by eBay seller mangoflavorcm who's registered in Hong Kong. DO NOT BUY ANYTHING FROM THIS SELLER!!! By no means are scrappers always from Hong Kong, nor does that mean scrappers can't be sold from other locations. However, 99% of the time scrappers do come from Hong Kong sellers, because the figures are made in China and are therefore easy for them to get hold of.
Here's one of the more obvious examples of a scrapper. This vinyl is clearly incomplete, unfinished and pretty dirty. It also looks to me like the arms are the wrong way around. The seller has actually labelled the vinyl as "unfinished" and in "used condition" but has still opened the starting bid at $7.99 for a piece of junk. You may have guessed that this figure is supposed to be the White Rabbit from the Alice in Wonderland Series:
Unfortunately, scrappers get worse. Here's an example of a type of scrapper you can often find, a scrapper comprised of various parts from different Vinylmation figures:
And finally, here's an example of a more subtle scrapper, see if you can pick up what's wrong with this figure:
Scrapper - can you guess why?
If you couldn't spot it, don't worry, I think it's only possible to notice if you're familiar with the original figure. Here's how King Mickey from the D-TOUR series is supposed to look:
Now you can see, he's missing the buttons on his sorts and his crown accessory. What's more, this seller has 99.8% positive feedback with a feedback score of over 4,950. Who would suspect any issues?
When looking for a scrapper, check if the full details of the Vinylmation are in the listing title. For example "Mickey Mouse figure", "Urban Series" or "Holiday 2" as opposed to "Urban Series #3 Cookie Jar". If the details are incomplete or non-descriptive, it's probably because the figure is a mix of figures so they don't want to be specific. Google image search the title or the series to see if the figure for sale matches any real Vinylmation in that series. Or type the title into Chasing Vinylmation (e.g. "King Mickey" or "Urban #6") to see a 360 picture of what the figure should look like. If it doesn't match - it's a scrapper.
Park #5 Scrapper Hybrid: Arms from the Abominable Snowman and body from XP-37 Space Cruiser (with the head the wrong way around!)
I don't actively look for scrappers, but sometimes I see them being sold on eBay when I'm searching for other things. As I find shady sellers, I'll add their names to this list.
Known eBay Scrapper Sellers:
I hope this post didn't scare you, especially if you're new to the hobby, but I hope it has educated you on some of the shady stuff for sale out there. Don't cut corners assuming there isn't something wrong with that cheap vinyl with free shipping from Hong Kong because it could be a scrapper. Even if they have great feedback, people don't always realize what they're buying! And lastly, please feel free to leave me a comment or email if you have any questions. I'm by no means an expert, but I will help where I can :)