SDS is very nice armor but it is not ANH accurate at all. As far as kit armor go - I have owned Marco Entertainment armor, FX armor, 2 GF sets of armor, and now SDS. Of all THOSE kits - SDS is the best. My GF kits which I understand are basicly the same as the AP kits of today were not nearly as nice as the SDS. The SDS is assembled much better and the strapping is much better than when you puchase those kits fully assembled. Also - my major problem with the other kits I owned previous to SDS was that the abdominal plate and the lower back plate were not made large enough to join and have a closed seam like in ANH. Those kits all had a gap at your side which I truly hated. Also - those kits would have the belt attached to the abdominal plate - which is not ANH correct.
Now SDS as far as accurate ANH armor - not at all. It does not even come close. It is assembled really nice, the milky white color is the best armor color I have seen so far, and the strapping while not correct to ANH is pretty good. Now A.A. makes claims that he has the original skins to the molds from ANH - which he created the armor from - untrue! There is way to many inconsistancies with the armor for it to have been remade from original skins. I would say it is definatly ROTJ recast.
Here are some of the inconsistancies to ANH armor I have found:
1) On the Ab plate - the molded line above the center box does not go all the way up to the top of the ab plate.
2) On the Ab plate - under the small set of buttons on the side of the ab plate the armor should have a grove molded into it. You can see this groove on Sandtroopers because they have 3 buttons but it is harder to see on Stormtroopers because of them having 4 buttons - his armor does not have the groove.
3) The strapping is not correct to ANH at all.
4) The belt that comes with the armor is plastic - now you have an option to purchase a leather belt (which I have) and both are not correct to ANH. I put a sew line on the top and bottom of my leather belt to match the movie more - but please note it does not come that way.
5) The only parts that have been fitted with stripps is the front of the upper and lower leg armor. In ANH the stripps were also on the backs of the upper and lower legs and front and back of the lower arms, front and back of the middle arms all of which are not on SDS.
6) The stripps on the upper leg fronts - these stripps should stop about an inch or so above the end of the armor at the knee. The armor above the knee is rounded on ANH armor and the stripps should basicly go up against this rounded raised surface leaving a seam on the bottom of the upper leg armor above the knee. SDS has these stripps go right to the bottom - incorrect. Now the reason he is doing this is because when you are using ROTJ armor the seams overlap. This rounded molded area above the knee has been ajusted for the overlapping. So when the armor has been mottified to be ANH and stripps are added - this bottom rounded area is no longer rounded but flat. I have modified mine to be correct but it still does not even look completely right because of the rounded arear being made flat. - see my picutres below.
7) The sniper plate is screwed on which is incorrect on SDS armor.
The ab plate does not have the rivets in the sides holding it together like ANH amor.
9) The lower back plate does not have the step cut into the lower corners. What I mean by this is where the lower back plate meets the ab plate - on the bottom there is what looks like a square of material missing. On ANH armor this missing square which makes a step (stairs) look is in the mold (it is not cut out of the material which I have done to make it correct). SDS is missing this in his armor.
10) Now TM tells me there is something incorrect about the lower leggs. It has something to do with the right and left sides being used on the wrong side - I'm not sure what that one was so TM will have to give you that information.
11) On the upper Back plate - the Gear that is molded in the center of the box - it is centered with the 2 upright "11" molded parts. On ANH armor the gear was not centered but a little lower. I asked A.A. about this and he said that the gear came off alot during the making of the ANH armor and it can be in many different spots - now if that is try why do ALL THE ON SCREEN SETS OF ARMOR have it in the same spot which is slightly lower thant the "11" and uncentered?
12) Canister that attaches to the back of the belt - the original cansiter had 2 metal bands attached to it and then was clipped to the belt. SDS molds one large white piece of plastic to clip it to the belt - incorrect. Also, the white plate that is attached to the cylinder - there is what looks like a button on it. Most armor including SDS this button is molded out - giving a button look - on ANH armor the button is molded in - making what looks like a ring molded on the armor.
13) the ribbs that connect the front chest plate and upper back plate are not correct. The ribbs on ANH armor have that square piece molded in the front end on the chest armor but in the back on the upper back armor this square is missing on the ANH armor. SDS has this square on both the front and back of the Ribbs. Also, in ANH the ribbs are connected to the front chest plate but they are not accually connect the the upper back plate. They just hang over it and are hiding what is underneath those 2 plate connecting them. SDS is using the ribbs to connect these 2 plates and hold them together like strapping. The problem with that besides not being correct - it does not take a lot of stress from movement and they always pop open. I have since corrected this on my SDS.
These were all the non-accurate ANH things I could find - there is probably more.