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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.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

U is for Unknown Wild West

More unknown figures, this time it's the Wild Wild West! I've used an Airfix ACW artilleryman for a scale comparison throughout.

Top row, left to right; Hard polystyrene - German premium? Early British soft polythene, has the arse-spike of a wagon rider but the legs of a horse rider? A fully articulated soft plastic figure, looks like the sort of thing Kinder would have produced, but as far as I know, this is not Kinder. maybe one of the lesser makes like LZ/Zaini? Finally a HK type figure but in a dense nylon type plastic, maybe French?

The next row starts with three Italian production very similar to the space men I posted yesterday, but still no manufacturers name. Then a figure I've left in even though I now have the library here and can tell you he's been issued by Nadi or Negrita (both French coffee brands) the other 19 can be seen on page 96 of Piffret's excellent 'Figurines Publicitaires'. Then the last figure seems to have a German or American feel to him? I think he's peeling potatoes!

The final row starts with two mounted figures I suspect are Italian, they're very similar to all the other Italian stuff I have, being hard plastic, I'd like to team them up with the correct horses? Then two (unrelated) figures one mounted and one probably designed to be either mounted or on foot, both quite ridged ethylenes, the yellow one on the left being so dense he appears - on first inspection - to be hard polystyrene. Finishing with a rubberised figure, this is one of those figures I suspect I have identified, but then forgotten the origin/lost the note! German?

The green guy is very like the largest version of the Siku figures, but is not a pose known to that set. Also; all the 45/50mm Siku's I have are a dun/fawn brown under the paint, not green, but I suspect Germany or France for this guy's origins?

Next is a nylon type plastic figure who shares sculpting and pose clues with a game called Bonanza, which I've recorded as being by MB Games, yet there is nothing on Boardgamegeek, apart from a note referencing a German game; From BGG - "Bonanza is an old German board game based on the famous TV-show. The game is a simple roll and move affair, players try to reach the Ponderosa with their four cowboys as quickly as possible." which was made by Noris Spiele. However the figures I have for that game are smaller.

Now it may be that the German arm of MB took over the game or that there was another game with this figure, or that the four cowboys were each a different size, OR that the others I have are a kid/teenager from the series and that this is an adult? Each player haveing four chacters from the TV production? I'm not familier with Bonanza, I grew up with The Virginian, and graduated to The High Chaparall and Alias Smith & Jones!!

The third figure is almost certainly French, minor make, and in the same phenolic plastic as Starlux, Jim and Clairet. The last figure in the row is a soft plastic copy of a character figure from Hausser/Elastoline's 'Old Shaterhand' line...licenced premium?

The next row are all similar to Dom/Maurba 60mm figures, I assume they are Dom/Manurba, as supplied to the German equivalent of Spanish 'Sobres' or the UK's 'Lucky-bags', but would like confirmation/denial before I label them up.

The last row has two faintly metallic soft plastics on the left, again the suspicion is German origins? While on the right three figures with the same release-pin marks as a lot of US production, but in a very rigid nylon type plastic?

Top left are two with MPC type bases, below them are poor quality copies with 'China' type bases but no mark (both Hong Kong and now China have always been happy to claim their production!). Back on the top row is a polythene wagon rider and small unrelated cowboy, any ideas? Below them is a guy in yellow with US production style base (release-pin 'holes') [Just appeared on Kent Sprechers 'News and Reviews page, he is from the Marx 45mm line; TSHQ/News], and a US cavalryman in a very soft polythene, again; I've no idea, have you?

Bottom row starts with two Native American Indians, unrelated but both rubberised, the one on the left a soft silicon the one on the right (who I think is German) in a more rigid PVC. Finally more Italian production, but this time children rather than adults, again can we tie these in with a manufacturer?

These are very similar to Tudor Rose, but equally very different! The horses are not those produced/supplied/licensed/copied/pirated to/by/from at least 5 US companies, 1 Danish, 1 Spanish and of course Airfix, and while the figures are similar, they are not the same. My feelings therefore are that they are a smaller UK company like Poplar, Fairylite or Kleeware. The painted one will probably be an earlier one.

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