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.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

S is for Ships (and other vessels); Part 1 - Lucky for some...

...but not the owner - who was gunned down in public by the Triad's after he failed to repay them some money he owed!

Lucky Toys ('L' in a horseshoe and probably LP - Lucky Products), Laurie Toy (LT), Clifford (CT), et al. There was as much from this company as Blue Box, if not more and one of the variants of the logo is this E for Empire Toys...but I'm getting ahead of myself!

Given that I am the grandson of an Admiral, the first C-in-C of the Indian Navy; Grandad! I know precious little about naval matters or ships, so the seven posts below are - you must understand - written by someone who barely knows a trawler from an oiler!

However I have been following the games of Tim Gow and friends over at http://megablitzandmore.blogspot.com/ with some interest, not least because there seems to be an 'old school' casualness to it, just get some boats, paint them grey, give them names and away you go - all over the floor (they do need a roll of blue linoleum - I think!...but if none of them has a Volvo that's going to be problematical!), then they bomb the hell out of them with out-of-scale aircraft...it's how war-gaming should be...says a non-war gamer!

Anyway the other day he (Mr Gow) was saying he'd found some ships on feeBay, wasn't sure what they were, but they looked like such-and-such so that's what they'd be in the next game and I got to thinking; "Yeah, there is a lot of this vessel-shaped stuff in the mixed junk lots at shows and toy fairs, in fact...I've got a box of it upstairs...

E for Empire by Lucky, these are clearly meant for the bath as the bigger vessels have weighted hulls and they all have deep hulls, but it makes them hard to stand without taking a hacksaw to them!

Another view of the same three vessels and a couple of close-ups of the missile cruiser [this is how little I know - should you use capitals? 'Cruiser'?], I think this may be a copy of an old kit by Pyro or Aurora, I'm sure they produced something with a ridiculous great missile on the deck! But it may just be 'based on'? Also while the rest of the range are vaguely in-scale, the missile vessel is huge.

The smaller warships - the five destroyers - are all different and again may be based on or copied from Western or Japanese model kits. The medium-sized thing (corvette?) turns-up unmarked in all-silver but it's the only one I've encountered so far, I have a red-hulled version of one of the little ones, which is also unmarked, but somehow it didn't get photographed.


Missile Cruiser - 18cm (weighted hull)
Carrier - 15cm (weighted hull)
Missile Destroyer/Corvette? - 14cm
Tramp Steamer (?) - 12cm (flatter bottom)
Small vessels - all approximately 10cm

These have flatter bottoms and can be used strait-to-floor! But they are all civil subjects...with a simple 'MADE IN HONG KONG' they may or may not be Empire/Lucky, I suspect a rival, but you don't know with HK stuff until you get marked packaging.

Sizes on these and the lose ones below are between 12o (green and red one above) and 155mm (the two black & white ones below). The small black and white one is 130mm

The upper shot shows three more with - is that? - the QEII at the back, a large steamer with cargo and passenger areas and a smaller liner which also comes in grey (inset left, 105mm). The shot bottom-right shows the grey one with a smaller compatriot (who may also appear in the coloured series, 80mm), both these have been put together very poorly with funnels all askew and glue all over the place. They have also been militarised with the addition of gun-turrets!

The little ship sneaking away at the back is by the Italian from of Ingap and is 10cm long. everything in this post is polystyrene except the masts of the civil set.

I've put the sizes in so that if you are a gamer you can work out if they are 'your' size, and any corrections or identifications will be most welcome, some of them must be based on real vessels, but apart from the cereal premiums in Part 7 below, none have their names on them. Also I've guessed scale for one or two but any help there would be appreciated too.


Steve said...

For the E grey and black war ships, These are Royal Navy Ships from the Late 1950s. They are very similar to the Triang ships from the 60s. The Smaller Destroyers, etc are the exact size as the corresponding Triang Ships. Same as the cruiser, but the missile is an added touch. The Battleship and Carrier( from the first pic) are not the same scale as the triang ones, as they are shorter. The Battleship appears to be based on The HMS Vanguard, with the missles, plane and stern crane as an extra touch.

There are also a few other models that came with the different sets, a black submarine, a patrol craft and an oiler and possibly a few more destroyers.

They appear to be quite rare as I have been looking for years to find some.

Maverick Collecting said...

Thanks for that Steve, all good stuff!

I helped someone sell a whole load of the Triang Minic's a few years before I posted these, but I didn't make the connection.

They aren't so much rare, as un-rated, a lot of Hong Kong stuff gets passed over and therefore tends to appear in the junk lots at the end of the toy sections at provincial auction rooms rather than getting listed on FeeBay or getting centre-table billing at shows. Most of mine have come in in those sorts of mixed lots.