Despite collecting Transformers for pretty much as long as Transformers have existed, there are very few parts of my collection that I consider "complete." However, with the recent acquisition of the Action Master Gutcruncher (pictured to the left), I can now say that I have all of the American-released Action Masters in my collection!
Of course, the main reason I was able to even aspire to completing the section of my Transformers collection is the fact that Action Masters were so unpopular back when they were first released. I've already spelled out why I like them ages ago, but it's worth noting here that they were so unpopular when they first came out that I was able to find them on clearance at Kay-Bee toys (as KB toys was then spelled) for less than a dollar each! Of course, this only covered the carded toys. Not the boxed ones. And even then, I only bothered to get all the Action Masters that were representations of existing characters from early in the original line.
Naturally, this left several holes in my collection that I started trying to fill once I was out of college. I started with the boxed toys representing popular characters, although I turned to getting the carded new characters before I was able to finally achieve my goal of getting all of the Action Master versions of established characters when I won Action Master Optimus Prime in an eBay auction. Optimus Prime cost me a fair bit back then, and I figured that would be as far as I went.
But when I eventually started cataloging (and later creating) the Power Plans that came with the Action Masters, I soon realized that there weren't too many gaps left to fill. So I slowly worked towards getting the remaining boxed toys representing new Action Master characters, until I eventually had them all... except Gutcruncher.
Gutcruncher remained the sole gap in my American Action Master collection for a rather long time. I can't really explain why. Part of the reason was no doubt that, as the largest "new" Action Master character in the line (same price point as Megatron, but less than Optimus Prime), Gutcruncher was fairly rare, and quite expensive. But I could have probably picked Gutcrucher up a long time ago if I'd really bothered. Long story short, I finally found an auction for the toy at a reasonable price on eBay recently, and the toy arrived this past week. Now my collection is complete! (Well, I could always work toward getting all of the European Action Masters, but that will take quite a while yet, not to mention more money than I care to think about at the moment.)
I do have a request, though. Although my Gutcruncher is in wonderful condition, and came complete with all of the parts for the vehicle it was originally packaged with, it did not come with any stickers whatsoever. I have already contacted the folks at Reprolabels about getting replacement stickers, and they've indicated that they would be very happy to create a Gutcruncher set, but they lack scans of the original stickers (or access to a clean Gutcruncher with factory stickers applied) from which to create the set. If anyone has access to such, please send them a line via the Reprolabels site. I'm sure the Transformers fan community would be most grateful. I know I would!