Harry Potter Wand Replicas – Genuine vs Fake

by | Feb 4, 2017 | Fantasy Props, Harry Potter Props, Workshop Blog | 0 comments

My wife and I got our first Harry Potter Wand replicas last month, a fact which I am sure will make our parents proud. While we were at the WB Studio Tour, Charlotte picked out Hermione’s and Ginny’s wands from the gift shop and I decided to save my money for more blasters. As a result, I was already regretting my decision by the time we were on the motorway.

I won’t bore you all with the details, but suffice to say when I got home I found that eBay was full of sellers providing cheap wand replicas, mostly from China. I figured they’d probably be a bit ropey, but “how bad could they be?”. So in a rare moment of cheapness, I decided to order a Chinese Harry Potter wand and, since shipping was half of the cost anyway, a Sirius Black wand too.

I am a firm believer in that tired old idiom ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’. So, have a look through the gallery below to see how the quality of the fake Harry Potter Wand replica props stack up to the real deal.

First up is Charlotte’s Ginny Weasley wand. This is the officially licensed replica from Warner Brothers, as sold at their attractions and through their web shop. Like all the official Harry Potter wands, this was nicely presented in an Ollivander’s style box. Little things like this are important to people like me. In other words, be thankful I’m not talking about the various attributes of the card stock they’ve used.

The wand prop is dead straight, with well-cast details and a consistent paint job. No complaints here.

The close-up shot of the handle reveals a few small casting imperfections, but nothing that would cause sleep problems in adult, well-adjusted human beings.

Next up is Hermione’s wand.

The Hermione Granger wand is presented in a nice grey box. The prop itself is well cast, straight as an arrow and has a reasonable paint job for a factory “wood” finish.

The Hermione and Ginny wands compared. Both are very good castings, that have been cleaned and finished well.

Both official wands we own have these markings, consequently, they are considerably more potent in battle.

The Fake Harry Potter Wand Replica

Now we move onto the fake Harry Potter wand. Rather than the elegant simplicity of the Ollivander’s style box, the fakers have gone with the “my Nephew’s pretty good at Photoshop” look. I’ll leave you to decide which is better – you’ve earned the right to free will, don’t disappoint me.

Just in case we were in any doubt about where this came from. However, it is worth noting that the genuine Harry Potter wands are also manufactured in China.

Oh noes, it’s broken! Daniel Radcliffe allegedly broke 80 wands during filming of the Harry Potter movies. Though I suspect his breakages were caused by having to use them as a pry bar every time Rupert Grint got his head stuck in railings. By contrast, my wand couldn’t make it via air-mail in a padded box.

Close inspection of the break area of my Harry Potter wand revealed that the casting is full of large air bubbles. Honestly, it’s like a fucking Aero bar, thus it’s likely to break again. And while I’m at enough altitude that you all look like ants from up here on my high horse, look at that box. Delicious!

Here’s the fake Harry Potter wand alongside the equally fake Sirius Black wand. Thankfully, the latter arrived intact. Let’s take a moment to talk about the quality of these pieces. First of all they are full size compared to the official wands – a good start. Both wands exhibit bad casting marks or ‘flash’ where the two halves of the mould they were cast in didn’t align perfectly. In both cases, they have attempted to clean up the seams using a large file, leaving heavy tool marks in the surface.

The painting on the Sirius Black wand isn’t too bad, a little thick, but almost on par with the genuine wands. However, the fake Harry Potter wand looks like it’s been painted by a cataract ridden Lemur. I mean, sure, opposable thumbs will help grip the paintbrush, but that shouldn’t have been the sole criteria for the recruiter.

Finally, my favourite part. Do you see all that dust on the Sirius wand? That is, in fact, stuck firmly into the paintwork. 10/10 for effort guys, you’ve managed to check all the boxes on the ‘how to fuck up a simple task’ checklist.

I can hear the faint mumbling of “you get what you pay for, idiot” permeating through my internet connection, propelled by capillary action and the power of smugness. Well, yeah, that’s the moral of the story here. But with a fair amount of remedial work, I think I can make the two fake wands workable. By comparison, the official wands are good enough for our collection right out of the box. Although, If I wanted to be picky, I’d comment that the wood effect paint job on Hermione’s wand could be a little better.

To sum up, don’t buy knock off Harry Potter wands. The work needed to make these wands presentable doesn’t present a positive cost/benefit in my opinion. Moreover, it’s probably best not to encourage IP infringement. Particularly if we want WB to keep churning out quality films that are such cultural bastions as; Batman vs Superman, Catwoman and the universally loved Dukes of Hazard remake.

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Dogless - Prop Up Shop

Prop Builder, cutting mat enthusiast and part time Douglas Fir.

I’ve been making things since I was old enough to pronounce Lego. Consequently my maker life has been spent constructing, kit-bashing and scratch-building anything and everything that has taken my fancy. After dedicating my time to Wargaming, Model  Armour & Railways, I stumbled across what has now become an obsession – Prop building.