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.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

N is for New Finds, Pt.1 - AC Models and Modelscene

I was visiting my friend Jimijames down in Chandler's Ford the other day, during one of our big storms, needless to say when I got to Eastleigh the trains were all shot to buggery and so - having a few minutes (!) to spare - I went for a wander. A few hundred years found me out side AC Models, an old-school model shop, redecorated to a modern standard, filled with goodies and staffed by really friendly, helpful and knowledgeable staff.

I wandered in, had a mosey-nosey about and found that Modelscene are now issuing the old Merit figures unpainted on sprues consisting of three old sets together. I bought two straight away!

Further study (ha! Further 2 minutes on Google!) reveals a third set (5200); being the various passenger sets. I assumed they must be the original sprues from the Merit days, but Paul (Morehead - Plastic Warrior) reminded me that the Army were produced in khaki plastic at one point and the other two sets weren't, so it would seem that Peco / Guagemaster / PPP have made up a new mould with the old cavities from the three old mould-sets brought together. The Boy Scouts cart is loose in the other card's blister along with a steel axle, cut to length.

They (AC Models) also had a 50p rummage bin, and the next day I returned and bought another Triang cable-drum flat and some accessories from the recent Hornby military sets along with a set of bear-naked ladies! We've looked at the Hummers already Here, while the - full-price - Preiser rudie-nudie beach-babes will feature in a post one day with the Noch naughties and one or two other items in a similar NSFW vein!

The cable-drum carriers are for a retirement project and I have collected (amassed?) various flats in tin-plate, die-cast and plastic with Matchbox, Elmont and other road vehicles, along with the Airfix telegraph pole set, and various cable drums painted and transferred, kit and commercial, it is intended to get one of the big steel-mill kits from Atlas/Terminal/Walther's, cut it down the centre-line, mount it against a painted backdrop and have a marshalling-yard for all the cable-drum lorries and rail wagons laid out in front...one day!

While I was there I also grabbed a few Zvezda sets, they are simply exquisite, and while you only get four or so figures or a small AFV, AT or Flak-gun, they are only 1.99! They are made out of a very pure (?) styrene, which looks and feels at first like an ethylene, soft'ish to the finger-tips and very shiny, but when you apply a spot of glue you get a neat and instant weld, and realise that it's actually a hard plastic when you have to mend the grenade!

Old fashioned high-street model shops are as rare as rocking-horse shit these days and so to find a new one is a nice surprise and given that my childhood memories of model-shops is one of them all peopled by miserable sods who sighed all the time, it's a double bargain to find such nice staff and pleasant atmosphere.

AC have a website here AC Models, but try and visit them, these few survivors need all the patronage they can get, I'll definitely be going again! They have a second half next door which may have been Gaming/Role-play or R/C stuff - I don't know because I didn't have time to visit it!

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