There have been times during the history of the Stablemate line when the mold mark may have been changed or removed for one reason or another. Damage to the stamp can occur when the model is still soft after being removed from the mold or from exposure to heat or a corrosive substance later in its life.
The popular Morgan Stallion mold always has to be a little different. While a bare-belly on another G1 mold likely indicates an early release, it's not so simple with this mold.
First, bare-belly examples the dapple grey and alabaster models from his "Arabian Stallion" days do exist, though not long into the "Arabian" period he was given the standard copyright stamp; he was dated 1975 even though he was meant to be a later release.5
Bare-belly bays aren't uncommon, but hard to positively identify. I have a couple myself, but unless you are the primary purchaser or bought him second hand NIP (New in Package), one cannot say with absolute certainty that particular bay is a 1975 "Arabian Stallion" or a 1976 #5035 "Morgan Stallion". Still, relatively simple, right? Not even close.
As the 1990s progressed, the colours of the Stablemate releases started becoming more and more consistent, but variations still popped up now and again. A fine example of a later-days variation are these 1998 SR G1 Thoroughbred Mares.
Though the picture of the set in the catalogue showed what looked like a steel grey mare with a bald face, the production model turned out a bit different - a liver chestnut-going-grey; her body colour was generally a slightly brown-toned charcoal grey, but could be a shade or two lighter or darker.
The original ceramic Hagen-Renaker mold, #46 Mini Arab Mare1, was sculpted by Maureen Love Calvert, and leased from the company by Breyer for production in plastic. The Arabian Mare mold was released in 1975 and was discontinued along with the other Generation One molds in 2005. During this time, Breyer released ten regular runs and eleven special runs on this mold, making her one of the top four most used G1 molds.
Since today is my birthday I thought I would have a look back through my collection and do a group photograph of the various Stablemate scale models I received on my birthday. I ran a little database query and was shocked by the results - out of over 800 Stablemates, though I purchased many with birthday money, I only received three as actual gifts!