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.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

I is for Iwako

Right...total surfeit of vintage crap in the last few days so lets have a look at some modern crap! This crap is - on one level - real crap, but it's also trendy-crap which means that in about 15 years time you'll have 30-somthing's on whatever replaces Facebook, or whatever Blogger's morphed-into going "Ooh, I remember collecting them back in the twenty-teens!"

Take the Deiner Industries robots I posted right back at the start of this blog as a minor make, they now have several web-pages and a couple of forum threads across the Internet, dedicated to them by the LRG (little Rubber Guys) collectors, who are a generation below me.

Anyway lets look at them...

 ...except of course - you've already seen them...there are great piles, tables, racks, tubs and other displays of them in WHSmith, Paperchase, Staples, Rymans, all the toy chains, most of the independent toy shops, Wilko/Wilkinson's and most supermarkets!

You just saw them out of the corner of your eye and dismissed them as crap - correct, well done, move to the back of the class and muck about!

But a massive collectability-factor with endless colour variants means they are taking-off like Loom-bands did last year (readers in the US had the bands craze a year or two earlier...I won't be covering them here, nor Hipsters with Merman hair-do's!!! Planet's going to the dogs...), and as new packaging types come out the older ones get reduced - and they're not expensive to being with - so collecting on pocket money budgets is a goer.

The above are the two standard formats from Iwako themselves; carded sets of 6 or 7 items and individual bags with a header card.

Ty have re-packed some in the hope of repeating the success of their now fading Bennie-Babies, but giving them a name and doubling the price hasn't helped when the originators are flooding the market with their originals!

There are non-animal subjects around like these trucks, although these might not be Iwako originals, the Wilko ones seem close but not quite (see below), however they are cheap, with the three cats being offered for 49p

Anything coming from the Far East is soon copied in the...er...Far East! these are fakes, found in an Independent toy retailer and were also only pennies. They (Playwrite) are quite poor, with daft colours and a poor register for the components, the Wilko ones are closer to the originals but made in China, not Japan

A comparison between various Iwako and non-Iwako giraffes, some dice (also Wilko) and a nice Battleships game from WHSmith wihich was around five or six quid I think, but I couldn't resist it. Wilko also do three larger stacking space-ships, but I forgot to photograph them!

All these are made from a new hybrid synthetic rubber, which is a softer version of the stuff HäT used on their Assyrian Chariots, it is gritty, easy to tare and not very good at the job it's earmarked to do...erase pencil lead!

However the old PVC and soft styrene that made the best 1970-90's erasers were very damaging to the planet and the UN are keen to get PVC phased out completely in time, so this stuff is presumably a step toward that goal?

Some more shots, it's all self explanatory. Apart from a bear that was blogged here a while ago; I was bought the first few as gifts, and since last autumn have been building up a small collection specifically for this post, that's them done and I won't be seeking any more, but they will start to come in in mixed lots in a few years - guarantee it!

Link:
Iwako Company Website

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