About Me

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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. I will 'bite the hand that feeds' to remind it why it feeds.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

W is for While I was away....

Well, while I've been off-line, the trickle of bits into the 'master collection' has continued, if not apace, at least with a pleasantly surprising occasionalness! Here are a few bits that have come in over the last 4 or so weeks.

The day the Internet was lost I actually managed to get to the Post Office in the morning and send little parcels off to various souls, among whom were the boys over at Moonbase Central (see bloglist - left), and Paul call-me-Woodsy liked his parcel so much he sent me these Polish Flats by return.

I suspect the bottom two may be Russian, but as I have similar figures copied from Russian flats but made in Sophia, and carried in a Bulgarian box, there's every reason to believe they are Polish. The silver ones above will definitely be Polish, probably Centrum, the stands are similar to a lot of production from Poland. Thanks Woodsy!

Meanwhile, not to be outdone, his blogging partner Bill call-me-Wotan seems to have emptied every drawer in the house! Those racing cars and the little plane are definitely 'Kitchen Drawer' stuff!! There are all sorts of nice bits here to be sorted into the right pile of boxes in the next few days, not least the Cherilea UN machine-gunner, who, apart from belonging to arguably the worst sculpted set of toy soldiers ever made, anywhere, ever!...is also rarely found in one piece.

Likewise the Cherilea 8th army guy is usually missing the end of his Bren-gun, while other items of note are the Hong Kong copy of a Timpo 8th army man marked HK, but probably from the same stable as ABC, the Corgi Rhino and the hard plastic seated US sailor/Coast Guard-man who I've encountered before but not managed to obtain, and who must come from a motorized toy, probably a boat, he has a locating slot on his bum! Thanks Wotan!

From the Dennis Murry collection I mentioned this afternoon, comes this exquisite combat bugler! Already one of my favorite pieces in the whole collection, I have a couple of these European cavalry (posted as part of the Plastic Warrior show report back in May) and some smaller 50mm Spanish plastics in khaki, and they do have a certain undeniable charm about them.

As can be seen there is a similarity to the Britains teenage show-jumper, but it's not a direct take, and with the rider moulded on, the similarity is equine only! Can anybody give him a makers name? The collection contained a lot of French figures and a few Dom Plastik paratroopers, but I would have said this guy looks Spanish in style and therefore - origin?

Finally, feeling rich for half a hour about three weeks ago (I'd just got paid for a painting job and was still a few hundred yards short of the bank!) I grabbed a couple of these as samples, very tasty samples. They are by Zaini (ZZ mark), and are clearly rivals to Kinder, about 7 years ago they did a set of Chocolate bears. And I saw some pink 'Disneyesque' eggs in some store the other day which were probably Zaini as well.

If the opposition have the product recognition of Kinder it makes sense to attack on a dozen fronts at the same time in order to get as many 'curiosity' sales as possible. These use toys imported from China, and the Flintstones graphic gave-up a jet-fighter!! Hay ho!


MSFoy said...

Hi - this is really just a general ramble on the subject of plastic figures - apologies for the lack of focus. When my cousin and I were kids (late 1950s?) we discovered that our local Woolworths sold very cheap plastic models - unpainted. They were a bit larger than the Herald and Timpo figures we had, and were PVC of some sort. They did a very cool range of astronauts (I suppose they were spacemen then), in a dark silvery blue, they also did soldiers in a scum-green shade and a very American set of assorted sportsmen in ivory, including a skier, a basketball player and various odd-bods. I'm sure there were cowboys and indians too, but I can't really remember.

Our collections have disappeared over the years - I think the skier was in a box of junk somewhere once when I moved house. One day archeologists will dig up our civilisation and wonder at the number of Bic pens and little plastic men down the backs of sofas.

I'm confident these figures are well-known and not particularly interesting, but it is now so long ago that I'm not sure whether I just imagined them!

I always enjoy this blog, as a refreshing glimpse of something different.


Maverick Collecting said...

Hi Tony

Almost certainly Marx, most made in the UK plant in Swansea, but I think they did carry US Product from time to time. That Swansea cream plastic - sportsmen, backwoodsmen, ceremonials etc... - is notoriously brittle now, so future archaeologists will find a sort of miniature Greek ruins down the back of the sofa!

'Malms'...small offerings from down the back of the sofa!! [How come I've got a verification word on my own blog!!]

Paul´s Bods said...

You have an incredible collection of toy soldiers....where do you get them all?? :-)

Maverick Collecting said...

Now, There's synergy in action...I bookmarked your Blog at lunchtime intending to link to it this evening! Can't remember where I saw it...Airfix Tribute site? Anyway once the News Quiz has finished on R4 I will do so! Painted Airfix - if I recall correctly?

As to where they come from...everywhere; Shows (next one is Birmingham next Sunday, but Andy Harfield's is around now? I've probably missed it!), Car Boots, swaps like those described in this post, collections, like collecting anything old you've got to ferret it out, while keeping an eye on the pound-shops for the odd bit of new-production!

Paul´s Bods said...

Great minds think alike...the news quiz on radio 4...the only real political radio programme going :-)
I haven´t got a telly, not for 25+ years now, I like watching the pictures that the words on radio make in my head.
Yep, you probably saw my stuff on Bennosforum of the ATF. The Airfix bods (why ever did I begin with the idea to paint every pose of every set!??...as if I´ve nothing else to do) mostly appear on the ATF these days, seems appropiate somehow.
I like your collecting style...grand, I like flea markets and the like as well, it´s the great feeling when I get something connected to the hobby, however loose tha connection is, some purchases need a lot of explaining to the wife, mind you it keeps my inventive side alive!!
Cheers and looking forward to more of your postings

Yori said...

"The silver ones above will definitely be Polish, the stands are similar to a lot of production from Poland."

You're right, it's Polish stuff. I played with them when I was child in early '80. In these days they were available in all newspaper shops in whole Poland.

These warriors are Polish knights from X-XI centuries.

Maverick Collecting said...

Hi Yori

(Quick edit there no one will know about once I've deleted the original...)

Thanks for that, Paul did assure me they were Polish, but while I could see the Polishness of the silver bases against the typically thinner Russian one's, the two Knights were very similar to both Bulgarian and Russian production, so it's nice to have it confirmed by the horses-mouth...or should that be the 'Zubr's mouth?!

I had no idea that there was a European Bison (Wisent), let alone that it was the national animal of Poland, don't'cha just love Google!! Not that knowing that fact helps identify Soviet-era flats!! So Thanks again...if you find any around your local flea-markets...?