About Me

My photo
No Fixed Abode, Home Counties, United Kingdom
I’m a 51-year-old Aspergic CAD-Monkey. Sardonic, cynical and with the political leanings of a social reformer, I’m also a toy and model figure collector, particularly interested in the history of plastics and plastic toys. Other interests are history, current affairs, modern art, and architecture, gardening and natural history. I love plain chocolate, fireworks and trees but I don’t hug them, I do hug kittens. I hate ignorance, when it can be avoided, so I hate the 'educational' establishment and pity the millions they’ve failed with teaching-to-test and rote 'learning' and I hate the short-sighted stupidity of the entire ruling/industrial elite, with their planet destroying fascism and added “buy-one-get-one-free”. I also have no time for fools and little time for the false crap we're all supposed to pretend we haven't noticed, or the games we're supposed to play. I will 'bite the hand that feeds' to remind it why it feeds.

Sunday, July 22, 2018

L is for Latecomers!

I was sorting the 'my pictures' folder the other day and found several folders which weren't registering in Picasa, they can drop-off for various reasons (renaming all the images [in the folder] will cause it to disappear [from the screen] in Picasa!), although it's usually if the containing-folder is moved, which occasionally happens by accident.

One of the folders was from the Guards mini-season back in 2012/2013? And it's that one we'll look at now, it's odd that A) I didn't notice they weren't Blogged at the time and B) has three random images of other figures, in with what are mostly the Timpo/Toyway variants?

54mm Figures; 54mm Swoppets; 54mm Toy Soldiers; Ceremonial Guards; Ceremonial Troops; Guards Division; Plastic Toy Soldiers; Polyethylene Toy Soldiers; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Swoppet Guards; Swoppet Heads; Swoppets; Timpo Ceremonials; Timpo Guards; Timpo Toys;
Timpo/Toyway; oldest at the top, question marks at the bottom. And from the top, they are; first version better paint, a pair of simpler paint and the SLR Shoulder-Arms pose from the second version, the officer placed mid-way as his paint, being different is harder to place.

Then the rest of the second type with two officers, one having gold collar and epaulettes, the other black. Below them are four first version, re-issued in PVC and fine-painted as a third version by Toyway, and below them are some cruder ethylene or polypropylene 'bits' which I assume are Toyway, but whether they came before or after the PVC ones I don't know, they may be test-shots, especially the blue officer? French Guards . . . unthinkable!

54mm Figures; 54mm Swoppets; 54mm Toy Soldiers; Ceremonial Guards; Ceremonial Troops; Guards Division; Plastic Toy Soldiers; Polyethylene Toy Soldiers; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Swoppet Guards; Swoppet Heads; Swoppets; Timpo Ceremonials; Timpo Guards; Timpo Toys;
The paint difference between the first versions is limited to gold paint on the collar/epaulettes of those with the earlier bases.

The other comparison is between the second versions SLR's, now I genuinely don't know if Timpo did a brown and black version, or if the brown ones are only from Replicants, who I believe did produce some. As Replicants use a grade of polyethylene very similar in properties to that used by Timpo, would you even know the difference? Ours were black when we were kids, but I've seen more brown ones in recent years!

54mm Figures; 54mm Swoppets; 54mm Toy Soldiers; Ceremonial Guards; Ceremonial Troops; Guards Division; Plastic Toy Soldiers; Polyethylene Toy Soldiers; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Swoppet Guards; Swoppet Heads; Swoppets; Timpo Ceremonials; Timpo Guards; Timpo Toys;
A Toyway blister-card of these came-up on evil-feeble-feeBay a while ago and they went for a pretty penny to a bit of a bidding 'war', and why wouldn't they; they are arguably the best version, faces are a bit pale, but more realistic for being so, the PVC is hard-wearing, and they are painted to a high-standard with proper PVC-paint which takes a lot to remove.

The Attention pose's legs though are wrong for a Royal Salute, the twos being in-line, either they are the officers Attention legs, or Toyway had a new pair knocked-up? In fact - looking at the boots; they have used the second version legs with first version bodies for the whole set!

And second version bearskins with first-version heads? Bases are the mid-era one with a Timpo Toys cartouche in the centre. But the three 'odds' at the bottom of the big line-up shot shows first-version legs, so Toyway had them both?

54mm Figures; 54mm Toy Soldiers; 60mm Toy Soldiers; Brass Section; Ceremonial Guards; Ceremonial Troops; Cherilea 60mm Soldiers; Cherilea Plastic Bandsman; Cherilea Plastic Musician; Cherilea Toy Soldiers; Guards Division; Guards Drummer; Lone Star 54mm Guards; Lone Star Guardsman; Plastic Toy Soldiers; Polyethylene Toy Soldiers; Polystyrene Toy Soldiers; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com;
These three shots were also in the folder, and yet I'm sure we saw most of them in the thematic posts at the time, so I don't know what I was playing at, but it may be a clue as to why the folder disappeared, moving stuff around?

On the left is a Charbens drummer, sans-drum! As the drum was missing from PW's in their recent excellent tome on the subject of Charbens; I'm guessing I'll have more luck looking for rocking-horse shit? Thinks . . . I might have a khaki-green drum with two studs close-together somewhere, could that be it? Or am I thinking about something I saw in someone else's stock - blue and white painted edge and red rope-work VɅVɅV's painted over, if the memory has any merit? But those studs were square . . . I'm thinking of the Herald Hong Kong one aren't I? Or even a copy . . . Doh!

Then we have a 'Brass Section' shot which avoided the Brass Section post back then, the two Reisler's (one with the gurt-big sousaphone!) were probably PW purchases the previous year? While I'm sure we saw the Cherilea 60mm and Lone Star trumpeter at the time?

That's it for today and probably a late post tomorrow.

Saturday, July 21, 2018

"Walmart Exclusive" is for Smyths!

Back at Christmas we had some shelfies of this set sent in by Terranova, to which I muttered 'Lucky buggers across the pond, Walmart Exclsive, fussa-russa....&etc.' and vowed to look out for them at Asda, then, still Walmart's subsidiary over here (I believe they've announced plans to off-load it?), but then the week before May's show (for which I should have been saving my pennies) I found this on clearance in Smyths for a tenner - it hadn't been there at all a few weeks earlier?

So not an 'Walmart Exclusive' at all, and while I thank Brian again for the earlier shelfies, we can now tick the close-up box!

1 Galoob X-panders Lanard The Corps Elite Fantasy G.I's Plastic Toy Soldiers - Lid Cap Base Sniper 104 Pieces; 3 Armies; Attack Helicopter; Attack Walker; Challenger I; Challenger II; Fantasy Figures; Galoob GI's; Giant Sets; Helicopter; Lanard Toys; M1 Abrams; Made in China; Plastic Figurines; Sci Fi Figurines; Science Fiction Figures; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Smyths Toys; Vehicles; Walker Bot; Walmart;
The "Bonus" base is also the lid, so if there was no 'bonus' the contents would presumably fly everywhere, thus we see the 'fake-news' hype of highfalutin' sales-talk in action! I also said at Christmas that I liked the sniper, cable-tied to the lid, but not enough to hang-on to him [with the lid], so the lid went to charity with the tub, half-full of the duplicate poses.

2 Galoob X-panders Lanard The Corps Elite Fantasy G.I's Plastic Toy Soldiers - Toob Tub Container 1 104 Pieces; 3 Armies; Attack Helicopter; Attack Walker; Challenger I; Challenger II; Fantasy Figures; Galoob GI's; Giant Sets; Helicopter; Lanard Toys; M1 Abrams; Made in China; Plastic Figurines; Sci Fi Figurines; Science Fiction Figures; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Smyths Toys; Vehicles; Walker Bot; Walmart;
Before sorting; the box has a tall wedge of card running-up inside, through the centre, but it's not that wide at the bottom, and to be fair to Lanard, seems to have less to do with 'padding-out' falsely and more to do with ensuring that the numerous contents are displayed in a tall, slim container, by keeping them pressed against the sides.

3 Galoob X-panders Lanard The Corps Elite Fantasy G.I's Plastic Toy Soldiers - Figures 3x8 Poses Red Sand Green 001 104 Pieces; 3 Armies; Attack Helicopter; Attack Walker; Challenger I; Challenger II; Fantasy Figures; Galoob GI's; Giant Sets; Helicopter; Lanard Toys; M1 Abrams; Made in China; Plastic Figurines; Sci Fi Figurines; Science Fiction Figures; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Smyths Toys; Vehicles; Walker Bot; Walmart;
The figures, mostly based on the old Galoob X-panders figures as previously stated. The prone figure has a soft jungle-hat and would seem to be a more recent addition, and all of them have been 'de-spaced' and brought back to planet earth with a 'Fritz' helmet and an urban-warfare, light belt-order make-over! Weapons are still quite spacey though.

4 Galoob X-panders Lanard The Corps Elite Fantasy G.I's Plastic Toy Soldiers - Accessories Bunkers Sangers MG Posts 2 104 Pieces; 3 Armies; Attack Helicopter; Attack Walker; Challenger I; Challenger II; Fantasy Figures; Galoob GI's; Giant Sets; Helicopter; Lanard Toys; M1 Abrams; Made in China; Plastic Figurines; Sci Fi Figurines; Science Fiction Figures; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Smyths Toys; Vehicles; Walker Bot; Walmart;
Two machine-guns are supplied loose (you need four!) in the set, they fit into two holes on the lid, and both a sandbag position and a small stand found among the contents, the latter is supposed to sit behind a rather lame 'sanger' made of three pieces, these are the colour-matched accessories 'sand' force get!

5 Galoob X-panders Lanard The Corps Elite Fantasy G.I's Plastic Toy Soldiers - Instructions Ephemera Paperwork Art Work 104 Pieces; 3 Armies; Attack Helicopter; Attack Walker; Challenger I; Challenger II; Fantasy Figures; Galoob GI's; Giant Sets; Helicopter; Lanard Toys; M1 Abrams; Made in China; Plastic Figurines; Sci Fi Figurines; Science Fiction Figures; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Smyths Toys; Vehicles; Walker Bot; Walmart;
Bit's of artwork you may be interested-in; the figures in the artwork are a sort of fantasy/post-apocalyptic mix of cyber-punk ner'do wells bearing no relationship with the figures included whatsoever!

6 Galoob X-panders Lanard The Corps Elite Fantasy G.I's Plastic Toy Soldiers - AFV Tank Jet Fighter Accessories 4 104 Pieces; 3 Armies; Attack Helicopter; Attack Walker; Challenger I; Challenger II; Fantasy Figures; Galoob GI's; Giant Sets; Helicopter; Lanard Toys; M1 Abrams; Made in China; Plastic Figurines; Sci Fi Figurines; Science Fiction Figures; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Smyths Toys; Vehicles; Walker Bot; Walmart;
The other contents, the barbed-wire 'entanglements' went to charity along with the two sandbag barricades, but I kept the security fences, they are quite useful, as are the angle-iron beach obstacles/tank traps.

The tank supplied to red-force is a generic M1-Abrahms/Challenger-I type thing and was kept for it's similarity to other simple 'readymades', from the green-force armory; the plane went, but I hung-on to the helicopter.
 
Again - while a lot of this is typical 'padding' it hasn't been enhanced with a bunch of crappy farm fence, trees, cactuses or palms, which is another point in Lanard's favour? It's war you want - it's war you get!

7 Galoob X-panders Lanard The Corps Elite Fantasy G.I's Plastic Toy Soldiers - Attack Walker Bot Autobot 3 104 Pieces; 3 Armies; Attack Helicopter; Challenger I; Challenger II; Fantasy Figures; Galoob GI's; Giant Sets; Helicopter; Lanard Toys; M1 Abrams; Made in China; Plastic Figurines; Sci Fi Figurines; Science Fiction Figures; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Smyths Toys; Vehicles; Walmart;
The 'walker' is lovely - from the front! But from the back reveals it's cheapness, as a hollowed-out single moulding, likewise the revolving 'head' looks fine from above, but at least it's hollow is hidden while in situ. One day I will fill it in with two-part epoxy, add a few greeblies and paint it, before posing it with 28mm fig's!

8 Galoob X-panders Lanard The Corps Elite Fantasy G.I's Plastic Toy Soldiers - Tank Jet Fighter Helicopter AFV's 5 104 Pieces; 3 Armies; Attack Helicopter; Attack Walker; Challenger I; Challenger II; Fantasy Figures; Galoob GI's; Giant Sets; Lanard Toys; M1 Abrams; Made in China; Plastic Figurines; Sci Fi Figurines; Science Fiction Figures; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Smyths Toys; Vehicles; Walker Bot; Walmart;
The three part helicopter is a bit sci-fi but equally, similar machines are coming into service or are under development, so it's gone in the Heli-zone, the 'plane went - for obvious reasons - and you can see that the tank is simpler that Airfix's venerable old mouldings.

Trying to photograph - one-handed - a tank-hunter on a thread creeping-up on a robot killing-machine (when the thread is in the other hand) proved a bit of a tall order, so it's a tad fuzzy!

Friday, July 20, 2018

T is for Traitor in Chief

Donald Trump, Golden Shower Video, Helsinki 2018, Kinky President, Lesbians Pissing, Pissing Lesbians, Putin Vladimir, Trump Donald, Trumpundbrexit, Two Lesbians, Vladimir Putin, Water Sports Film, Watersports Video, WP Kink, US President Looking Uncomfortable With Russian President, Sitting with a small table between them

Quiz Time!

Look carefully at the following random picture, and then answer the questions as honestly as you can, ticking one box each time, with your answer -

Donald Trump, Golden Shower Video, Helsinki 2018, Kinky President, Lesbians Pissing, Pissing Lesbians, Putin Vladimir, Trump Donald, Trumpundbrexit, Two Lesbians, Vladimir Putin, Water Sports Film, Watersports Video, WP Kink, US President Looking Uncomfortable With Russian President, Standing at Podium, Giving Sound Bites to Media
Using only the men's* body language;

1 - Try to work out which of the two men in this image is in charge of the situation?
A. The man on the left
B. The man on the right

2 - Which of these two men might have compromising video-footage of the other man?
A. The man on the left
B. The man on the right

3 - Which of these two men is confident of the validity of the vote that last got him elected/re-elected to high-office?
A. The man on the left
B. The man on the right

Results

Mostly; A's - Thanks for trying, I think we all know which way you voted in 2016. You can go back to cleaning your guns in front of your wall-mounted entertainment centre while supping that weak, gassy, beer.

Mostly B's - You knows it! You fuckin' know - the shit we're in!

* The use of 'man' or 'men' in this quiz is for ease of identifying either one or both of two narcissistic, right-wing, fascist bully-boys, happy to sacrifice their people's hopes or nation's identities on the global stage in the search for personal aggrandisement in a dying world.

M is for Miscellaneous Metal Marvels

This is the whole sheet from which the 'bikes we saw earlier were cropped-out of. I have a small collection of mostly accidentally acquired metal flats, and I store them on these A4 sheets of foam-core craft material, white for painted or 'odds', black to better display bare-metal castings.

They can then be stacked in a 9-litre Really Useful Box (I'm not being paid for this, they're just brilliant boxes), without damage, and bent or damaged flats can be carefully straitened by being pushed onto the sheet with a block of hard-wood, safe in the knowledge they won't get bent again.

Obviously, if I get a whole set, they get their own sheet, if I have a bunch of similar small samples (semi-flat red-coats in 20-30mm; camp scenes and marching, seem common 'odds') they go together on one sheet, which leaves a couple of sheets for everything else . . .

Archers Shield, Bicycles, Cattle, Children, Demi Ronde, Dog, Fences, Hedges, Lead Flats, Lead Model, Lead Toy Animals, Lead Toy Figures, Motorbike, Motorcycle, Owl, Petrol Cans, Racing Cars, Semi Flat, Small Scale World, smallscaleworld.blogspot.com, Trees, Whitemetal Figurines,
. . . of which this is the non-military 'Bits & Bobs' sheet!

And it's a real mixed bag; I have meandered over it - conversationally - planning the blurb in my head, but it'll be easier for you if I work left-to-right, top-to-bottom -

The shrub-line and hedge are actually just as likely to be from larger scale toy soldier boxed sets as they are from sets of flats, while the archer's pavise between them is not technically a 'flat', being a 25mm war-games accessory for fully round figures (Gisby - recognise it?), but it fits as a flat!

Two obvious game-playing pieces, then one of the most interesting things in my whole collection, it is in point of fact actually nearly fully-round, but the nature of the sculpt and the base means this is the best place to store it. It appears to be two sheets of brass, beaten into shape (against a steel former, or pair of steel formers?), which have then been braised together to create a hollow 'tin' model . . . but it's not clear. If it wasn't for the razor-sharp base I'd assume an old penny-priced bracelet-charm?

The next three (which came from Adrian Little I think?) are semi-flat and - in part - 'spirit-painted' (a kind of ink which shines metallic from the bare-metal showing through) in the fashion of old penny-toys, so I guess some kind of penny-toy group, incomplete, possibly characters from a German folk-tale? But they could be early model-railway figures; one seems to be holding a dipping-net . . . tadpole hunters!

The two cows we've seen here at Small Scale World, they came in a mucked-about with Heinrichsen box (I think) with an odd mix of Napoleonic casualty and colonial types.

Almost certainly board-game playing-pieces for the whole row, and probably both incomplete sets, with the three larger cars (also thanks Adrian!) being from a probable four, the smaller ones could have more missing brothers? They (the small pair) are also die-cast mazac.

The petrol cans (cooking oil?) will be from an early slush-cast vehicle (or dolls house accessory) set I suspect, while the tatty fence-line could be from a larger-scale, boxed, farm set? The owl is a more-modern casting, semi-professionally painted and seen here before - I think.

Doing the last two rows together - we've seen the tree from the same Heinrichsen set and the 'bikes this morning, which leaves another relatively modern animal - the deer, a dog of unknown orphanage and three pieces of railing.

The round-tipped piece is lead and from an unknown flat set, the two on the bottom row are a long-run and fragment of rigid die-cast mazac, railway-station railing from Wardie - Mastermodels and therefore - again - not technically 'flats', but flat enough!

F is for Four Wheels Good . . . Two Wheels Better!

Time for an occasional round-up of motor-cycle madness that is those motorised bicycles seen here, or acquired since we last looked at such things; which must be more than a year ago as some of the images are dated May 2017!

1 - Compo Motorbike; Composition Toy; Elastolin Hausser; German Toy Figurine; Lineol; Made In Germany; Motorbike; Motorcycle; Motorcycle Toys; Motorcycles; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Swiss Army; Toy Motorbikes; Toy Motorcycles; Two Wheels;
Pretty sure this is Elastolin (but it could be Lineol), and almost certainly a post-war version from a pre-war mould, as it has been 'converted' to Swiss nationality (with a new helmet) in order to hide its previous origin or use as a Nazi, or Nazi-themed 'war toy', which was one of the stipulations of obtaining permission for re-starting production under Allied denazification regulations.

Its construction is quite clever, with a combination of tin-plate bike and composition rider joined permanently by a part of his armature making-up the handlebars buried under a composition headlight, something similar is happening at the foot-rest/engine level too.

2 - Britains Khaki Infantry; Britains Motorcycle Toy; Hollow Cast Toy; Hollow-Cast; Motorbike; Motorcycle; Motorcycle Toys; Motorcycles; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Toy Motorbikes; Toy Motorcycles; Two Wheels;
Photographed at the same time and an early Britains machine [check], I've Mercator Trading to thank for allowing me to photograph both. This is a standard 54mm to the previous machine's 70-odd millimetres; and - a heavy lump of lead!

3 - 1100 15; 2005; C-138; Centy Toys; CNG Auto Rickshaw; Green India; Indian Toy Figure; Made In India; Mansarovar garden; Motorbike; Motorcycle; Motorcycle Toys; Motorcycles; New Delhi; Pull Back Action; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Toy CNG Auto; Toy Motorbikes; Toy Motorcycles; Tuc-tuc; Tuk-tuk; Two Wheels;
This is fantastic! First, it's a tricycle, second, it's another, rare use of the 'Make: India' tag; and it won't be the last - 'Terranova' sent it with several equally interesting stable-mates (who have been near the top of the 'long' queue, twice since Christmas, only to be put off!), so we will see them too, at some point.

Made by Centy Toys (new tag!), it's an auto rickshaw, tuk-tuk,  tut-tut, Tukituki or motorised tricycle, depending upon where you are when you encounter one, has a pull-back motor and - as you can see form the posed Berserker - around 60/65mm. CNG stands for Compressed Natural Gas, which Tuk-tuk's are going over to.

It's one of the great frustrations of the blog that I know what's missing; all the stuff Hasbro and Mattel don't look at, all the Indian, Chinese, Vietnamese, South African or Brazilian domestic product, locally produced toys from Ankara, Ulan Bator, Lagos, Mombasa, Tripoli or even Moscow; so it's nice to see one - Thanks Brian!

4 - China Toys; Chinese Motorcycles; Cycle World; FunTastic; Made in China; Motor racing; Motorbike; Motorcycle; Motorcycle Toys; Motorcycles; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Toy Motorbikes; Toy Motorcycles; Two Wheels; Zip Cycle;
On the left; also sent in by Brian this shelfie is a colour variation of another, which was sent in by Mr. Berke as well, along with a similar but different design, both branded to FunTastic, with; on the right - an unbranded generic pocket-money toy of the same ilk, these, judging by the size of the hook-slots, being slightly larger that the approximately 54mm reported by Brian for the FunTastic machine.

5 - China Toys; Chinese Motorcycles; Dirt Bike; Made in China; Motorbike; Motorcycle; Motorcycle Toys; Motorcycles; Power Hot Forc; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Special Type; Super Moto; Super Speed; Toy Motorbikes; Toy Motorcycles; Turbo Wheels; Two Wheels;
These are markedly bigger with Mr B reporting that the avocado-green one is suitable for Barbie/Ken dolls, so 5, or 6-inch, with the left hand pair (equipped with child's stabilisers!) in the 4-inch bracket? Neither is branded and all brand-marking seems wholly imaginary!

6 - Bicycles; Flat Figures; Game Playing Pieces; Lead Flats; Motorbike; Motorcycle; Motorcycle Toys; Motorcycles; Playing Piece; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Toy Motorbikes; Toy Motorcycles; Two Wheels; Whitemetal Figurines;
Been in Picasa so long I can't remember which the new one is! I think it's the khaki one with the brown base? At least two (the motorbikes), possibly all three, are likely game-playing pieces/movement counters and vary between 15mm (orange), HO-OO compatible and near 30mm (the bicycle), with the upper-pair soft-metal flats and the orange one a die-cast mazac type.

7 - Army Men; Armymen; Hong Kong; Hong Kong Motorbikes; Hong Kong Plastic Toy; Hong Kong Toy Soldiers; Made in Hong Kong; Motorbike; Motorcycle; Motorcycle Toys; Motorcycles; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Toy Motorbikes; Toy Motorcycles; Two Wheels;
Seen before (possibly from Peter Evans), the one on the left (around 60mm scale/size) has been joined by the one on the right (from Peter Evans!), it has a colour variation plug-in head and slightly darker sand camouflage, crude and fitted with stabilisers, it's 'pocket-money', it's rack-toy 'nothing special', but it's a bike, military and welcome here! Cheers Peter . . . for both?

{I Thought we'd seen it before, but I can't find it on publishing, so maybe not . . . I've probably got some unused images somewhere! And I think he's closer to 80mm-equivalent!} 

8 - Bicycles; Budgie Rider Figure; Budgie Toys; Diecast Toy Accessory; Motorbike; Motorcycle; Motorcycle Toys; Motorcycles; Plastic Figures; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; Toy Motorbikes; Toy Motorcycles; Two Wheels;
We finish this round-up with a dearth of 'bikes! I have sooooooomany loose, often unknown seated figures, riders or torsos/part figures in every size/scale and material imaginable. Mostly from die cast toys or long-lost plastic models of motorcycles, pedal-bikes, horses, camels, cows, donkeys, aeroplanes, circus acts, tank turrets, jeeps, fire-engines . . . you get the picture!

These are three of them who have come in over the last few years, and I know what they are so they can close this post.

From Budgie (Morestone (Morris & Stone)), we are looking at three of at least five variations of these motorcycle-riders, and two sculpts; from the left AA Automobile Association) or Dispatch Rider, The [Isle of Man] TT (time trails) Racer and the RAC (Royal Automobile Club) patrol-man.

The AA man got the same paint-scheme as the military dispatch-rider, so it's hard to call, but he is a different sculpt with a smaller 'cartridge-box', so may be the later numbered DR Rider? All three have seen better days and lost their machines, but they are 54mm, plastic figures!

More M'bikes when they've built-up again!

Thursday, July 19, 2018

News, Views Etc . . . Forthcoming Events

Auctions first this week, with three up-coming (is that bad English? I think that's bad English . . . well; sod it!) over the next week . . .

1 - Newbury - Special Auction Services SAS 81 Greenham Business Park, Newbury, West Berkshire, RG19 6HW Webite www.specialauctionservices.com eMail mail@specialauctionservices.com Telephone 01635 580595 Facsimile 0871 714 6905 Transport Models Memorabilia Auction Sunday 22nd Tuesday 24th July 2018
Sunday 22nd July 2018

Newbury - Special Auction Services (SAS)
81 Greenham Business Park, Newbury, West Berkshire, RG19 6HW
Tel: 01635 580595
Fax: 0871 714 6905
Transport Models (first half of a split, two-day sale)


Monday 23rd July 2018

Lewis - Wallis and Wallis
West Street Galleries, Lewis, Sussex, BN7 2NJ
Tel. - 01273 480 208
Fax. - 01273 476 562
General Toy Sale


Tuesday 24th July 2018

Newbury - Special Auction Services (SAS)
81 Greenham Business Park, Newbury, West Berkshire, RG19 6HW
Tel: 01635 580595
Fax: 0871 714 6905
Memorabilia (second half of a split, two-day sale)

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Toy fairs are thinner on the ground this week, as the summer holidays kick-off with the break-up of the state-sector schools on Friday . . .

Sunday 22nd July 2018

Kirkby-in-Ashfield - Townsend Toy & Train Fairs (Malcolm Townsend)
Festival Hall, Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, NG17 7DJ
Mob. - 07951 072 790
10:00 - 14:00hrs
Accompanied under-16's free
Free parking, refreshments

Orpington - SRP Toyfairs
Crofton Halls, Orpington, Kent, BR6 8PR
Tel. - 07739 998 012
10:00 - 14:00hrs


Tuesday 24th July 2018

Tonbridge - SRP Toyfairs (evening fair)
Angel Lane, Tonbridge, Kent, TN9 1SF
Tel. - 07739 998 012
18:00 - 20:00hrs
Admission £1.50p, Children Free


Wednesday 25th July 2018

Burton-on-Trent - Townsend Toy & Train Fairs (Malcolm Townsend, evening fair)
The Town Hall, Burton-on-Trent,  Staffordshire, DE14 2EB
Mob. - 07951 072 790
18:00 - 20:30hrs
Accompanied under-16's free

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Other Events

2 - Brighton Summer Toy & Model Train Show Sussex Vintage Model Railway Collectors Venue,  Knoyle Hall, Knoyle Road, Brigton, BN1 6RB, Website www.sussex-transport/svmrc, eMail sussexvintagemrc@hotmail.com Saturday 21st July 2018
Saturday 21st July 2018

Brighton - Summer Toy & Model Train Show (Sussex Vintage Model Railway Collectors)
Venue - Knoyle Hall, Knoyle Road, Brigton, BN1 6RB
Tel. - 01323 893661
Mob. - 07785 567251
Admission £4.00, accompanied children free
Layouts, displays, trade stands
Lunch and refreshments
Disability-access to ground floor only

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Finishing with the big one, which will probably get a second reminder/mention next week . . .

Friday 27th - Sunday 29th July 2018

London (Olympia) - London Film & Comic Convention
Exhibitions, trade stalls, show exclusives, over 100 guest stars booked.

Note - you need to double check on tube times as I seem to recall is a funny service there weekdays v. weekends?

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If you are an event promoter/show curator/auctioneer and you want your toy, model, collectable or popular-/youth-culture type sale/exhibition/event listed here - FOR FREE - or linked to; please eMail me -

maveickatlarge[at]hotmail[dot]com, 

- stating the date/s of the event, address of event, contact details, opening/viewing times, admission pricing and any other relevant facts/details or features - parking, travel notes, disability access, availability of refreshments, event subject matter &etc.

And please mention any flyer-art or poster-/leaflet-scans but send by separate eMail, in case they go to the 'junk' folder, from where they can be recovered and marked safe, but only if I know they're there!

F is for Follow-up - Cluedo

So to closing a day of board-game posts, we looked at the newer 'standard' version of Cludo the other day, and a nice set of Simpson's playing pieces from the same game a while ago, and I picked-up a few more in recent days, so we're going to look at them next.

It's a funny thing but - in sympathy with the corporate 'web' we saw with the Buzzbee stuff yesterday -  you don't know who to credit these to, indeed; if I posted them as three posts they would end-up with different tag-lists, by dint of one being Waddington's, one Parker and one; Hasbro-Parker.

I will find the old posts and tag them 'Cludo' (if I haven't already) as the more examples that appear, of the more popular games with figures, the more complicated the picture will be with all of them.

Technically they are all Hasbro now, but in the past, the two 'big boys' (Waddington's and Parker) shared licenses of each other's games, and bought-up all the smaller guys, one by one, leaving everything in the Hasbro stable!

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This was going to be three images, but I didn't think I'd have enough blurb to justify them, in fact I could have dropped them into the above waffle, but hay-ho! Three games purchased for a grand total of less than a fiver, three charity shops in three towns, but to be honest, car boot sales give-up this kind of thing for similar small beer!

Top is a late 1970's or early 1980's version of the standard game, the cards still have the original artwork, and when I was a kid the 'player' looked the same. Obviously; without the little faces perched on top - jut a small blob finial.

Middle left is the box for a set the setting for which is a sort of febrile Hollywood/Bel Air type community. The other set is an electronic one which introduces four new playing figures (we'll look at in a mo') but doesn't have the six traditional characters, who remain only cards, with two additional ner-do-wells; Rusty the gardener and Mrs. Meadow-Brook. Character artwork for the later conforms to the Hasbro era.

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The Players of the 'Discover The Secrets' version are lightly coloured clear plastic, on full-coloured bases, very boring, but there are nine murder weapons instead of the common six, one of which is a celeb' award . . . some divine justice in there I feel!

Below is the set I remember with its little piece of yellow 'rope' and  'Habitat' design 'mini-figs', not that I'm suggesting Habitat actually had a hand in designing them, just that they are part of the whole post-modernist, melamine, Perspex, 2001 A Space Odyssey furniture, geometric wallpaper era of 'form & function'al design.

Similar playing pieces were found in most games of the era; Go!, Ludo, Hama . . . and with the Campaign ones having little Napoleonic headdresses instead of a ball! Hopefully with this new move away from plastics we will go back to turned wooden tops or upside down golf-tees? I rather like wooden toys, they are very tactile and age with grace.

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The electronic set has only four player figures and they aren't the murders, they are to help find the one among eight who is actually guilty, as I bought the set elsewhere and dumped the non-useful contents in the bin after photographing the box, I can't even tell you how many murder weapons there were as they were also only cards, and went to land-fill!

I will remove them from the little-click-button bases at some point, but having investigated the task, it will require a very sharp chisel and a clamp . . . and the right angle for a swift, sure strike with a hammer!

Each of the four seems to equate vaguely to one of the common characters, with Prince Azure being the Colonel Mustard, Lord Gray - Professor Plum, and the two ladies Peach for Scarlett and Lavender for Peacock, I don't think this is accidental, I suspect the game started life quite differently to the final published version,

A lot of these spin-offs are pale, often gimmicky, shadows of the tried and tested originals, and I think this was tweaked until it worked, in the course of which two players were lost as pieces, four renamed and the rest added-tp as a card set?

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Ah, the 'meat & two veg' of Cludo . . . the guns and knives! Posed with the Roman Gladius and 'pepperpot' we looked at last time are a silenced automatic (Walther PPK?!!) and vicious-looking kitchen knife from Hollywood along with the more traditional 'representative' pistol and letter-opener of the standard set.

As I mentioned lest time, there is still the interim set of grey figures on coloured bases from the 1990's to come, and I will look out others. There's a Junior Cludo version (no murder, just cake theft - and 'grown-up's doing the stealing at that!) which seems to have figural pieces and which I nearly got the other day - but I already had the Buck Rogers under me'arm!

R is for Reaper Rock Chick!

The same day I encountered the Buck Rogers set, I was already heading for the Games Shop in Aldershot which - many years ago - was the HQ of Esdevium Games (now Asmodee) hoping for another extension pack for my Zombies!!! (which I've never played), but they didn't have any, or - at least - they only had a cards-only extension pack.

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Consequently, looking around for a consolation-purchase, and by now having the huge TSR box under one arm and my portfolio and 1000 4x5½ click-shut bags in the other hand, I plumped for this guitar-wielding punk-rock, tank-girl, chick-babe!

To be honest; when I got it home and out of the visually quite-distorting blister, I wasn't terribly impressed by the quality of the sculpt, which I would call a bit blurred or 'sandy', I've seen better 3D prints. I hope she will paint-up a bit better one day with a flash-trim and some washes?

It says it's 20% recycled plastic which is a good thing and I don't think that's the problem, I just feel it's a very poorly-defined/finished casting.

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Meanwhile Brian was ID'ing his own diver from the other-day's post, with a much cleaner looking casting! Line-branded to Chronoscope, I think it also covers nicely for the worlds of Messrs Wells, H. G.  and Verne, Jules!

However  . . . unpacking for the day, photographing and sorting (of six colours, 360-odd times) faced a two-hour-plus hiatus, due - I'm sure - to Blog-visitor Jah's encouragement of shear nehkid idleness in my ancillary-staff!

Boss . . . can you move the sun an inch to the left? It's right in my eyes!

That's better . . .

. . . zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!

F is for Follow-up - Buck Rogers in the 25th Century

This post has a history almost as complicated as the bear's one yesterday, in that I noticed the main trope of the post a few days after the last post on the subject, which was a bit of a gap-filler itself, as I was working with a small sample. So I rounded up some new shots, but given how many there were in the previous effort, there was little else I could do with what I had.

Equally- the shots I took of the trope (the backs of the comics) were frankly kwarch, so at some point I borrowed them, scanned them, added then to the rather piss-pot poor folder's contents and forgot about them for a while. Then the other day I managed to pick a near-mint set up for £1.50p and it was all back-on!

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So, the 'trope' of the post: The pre-production shots used by TSR for advertising the game contain some stuff which never made it to the game, That - in itself - is not uncommon, relying on catalogues for information is always fraught with the danger that the thing never saw the light of day, but I thought it would be fun to compare, in the hope that people might recognise one or two of the interlopers?

On the left is the earlier advert for the game, the later on the right, now I forgot to note the dates of the magazines, but they were only about four-months apart, and from 1988. Both were UK issues of 'American Comics'; DC's Superman I think?

The one on the left has several features not found in the final set, while the one on the right (also advertising Dragon Lance - Graham A . . . post coming soon now; thank you!) is accurate to the published sets, except in the colours of the six armies.

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The most obvious anomaly is this chap, who stands in for the 'Gennies' (which I think should be pronounced Jean'eeze, rather than Jenny's), genetic engineered humans, larger than the standard humans.

Now, the question is - does anyone recognise the sculpt? There are that many of them in the publicity shot it seems they must have been either commercially available (probably whitemetal) stop-gaps for the PR studios photographer to work with, or - possibly - taken/borrowed from another boardgame, whether TSR or not?

They appear to be vaguely bird- or animal-faced (respirator?), with a 'blaster' held high in the right hand and the left holding a tapered shield. Do you recognise them, have you got some?

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The figures eventually issued are the upper row of the lower shot here, firing two blasters back 'over their shoulder' as it were. I've also done an Airfix comparison, and you can see how the gold 'character' sculpts seem to have a hierarchy, with Buck and Black Barney larger (equal to the Gennies), Ardala and Doc Huer an intermediate size while Wilma and Killer Kane are as small as the human 'Troopers'.

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The same conundrum is to be found in the space fleets, where the transports (left) are correct in the press-release image as for the game (as the Troopers were), but the other two craft are very different.

The 'Battler' (middle) is represented by something looking more like the Triang/LP 'Supply Force Mercury' married to the wings of an SR71 Blackbird! It's replacement in the actual game having more in common with a Klingon 'Bird of Pray'.

The fighter (right) too, varies between the image and the set, but by not so much, the issue one being similar to a Cutlass, the artwork using a sharper dart shape which looks familiar and may be from another game?

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A shot with upper and lower surfaces and all colours, the transports look a bit like intergalactic ocean liners with their wide deck and lines of port-holes.

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The factories are hardly changed, maybe the top right-hand corner tweaked/simplified to help the mould-release process. But the 'Satellite' is completely different with the PR model being more of a land-based radio-dish, while the game gets little killer-stations with a bloody-great ray-gun mounted on them.

As an aside; if you have a Galoob Micro Machine Star Wars collection, these satellites with their orange-segment, surface-detailing will make perfect heavy-machineguns for Snow Troopers on Hoth, matching the larger sphere-enclosed accessories that came with a couple of those sets, or the Action Fleet equivalents.

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While the second set of magazine adverts had the correct set's artwork, the box itself gets the incorrect artwork from the pre-production publicity.

I have studied both sets of artwork, and as far as I can tell, the gold characters are in the correct sizes and poses, but there may be slight differences suggesting they were using masters or other production-phase sculpts, rather than the final issue mouldings, it's hard to tell.

And colours of all armies in both sets of artwork are different from the final production choice, the pale blue being closes in both pictures.

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Finally; the near mint set that came in the other day had three damaged figures, two 'shot-shot' mouldings, caused by either the mould or the resin being too cool for proper production, causing the flow to stop before the tool cavity is filled, low pressure at the injection head in another cause of the same result!

I was going to replace the three with the ones I had here loose, but noticed that while the bases on all the figures in the set are smooth, the odds'n'sods are all marked with a reversed seven; so it would appear there are at least two tranches?

I have a set in storage, not quite complete and all the cards 'punched', but the box is better than the new one; I hope that between the two, I will cobble-together a really good one.