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.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

P is for Pick-&-Mix

I said we'd look again at the two carded Hong Kong artillery pieces in the vague round-up of various smaller-scale guns the other day, and while sometimes it takes me a while to do a promised follow-up, I have managed to get this one out in a quite timely manner...for me!

A fascinating little range of interchangeable parts making six possible artillery pieces, not all of them terribly accurate to real life I fear, but I remain to be corrected. We looked at the two commoner carriages last time...here they are again with the third carriage....

In the upper shot we see the various components of this 'set' of artillery pieces, being three carriage (structure) types, two barrel types (with the same pivoting superstructure/cradle); a quite good 155mm and a poorer rendition of the M115/M1 8inch (203mm) Howitzer, two wheel arrangements - on same length axles, along with accessories for the 155mm 'Long Tom' barrel (a pair of recuperators/recoil buffers) and coastal/siege mount (a pair of pivoting legs).

Below left shows the range of adjustment of the two extra legs; from full cruciform to almost tripod. This seems to be trying to be the M3 mounting for the M1918 3-inch gun?

The right-hand image compares the two wheeled mounts, with the supplier cutting the axles to a standard length, duel wheels are correctly used on the Long Tom, while single wheels are employed on the box-structure of the less historically factual (?) mounting.

The coastal/siege (AA?) mount with both guns in-situ. As mentioned above it seems to represent the M3 mounting for the old 3-inch gun of WWI vintage previously known as the M1918, neither gun being quite right for the carriage/cradle/mount.

Again this box-bodied carriage seems to have no parallel in the real world and - as the toy - has the legs (fixed) from the previous 'coastal artillery' piece attached to a box!

The construction of the 155mm is quite neat and makes a reasonable rendition of a popular artillery piece from WWII to the mid-Cold War...indeed; I'm sure they are still in use/inventory about the place!

Here it is ready to pound Aachen, Iwo Jima...or the Golan Heights! I'm missing the trunnions on the howitzer so it's posed (balanced) in all the above photographs, although the carded one we looked at earlier is complete and we will look at them again when I get round to finishing those articles on the HK figures.

These are perfect for 20/25mm - 1:76/72 scale figures, and when I first encountered them I assumed they were piracies of Roco-minitanks models, but Roco were later than these rack-toys and only did the M1/M2 duel-wheeled carriage so I think I'm right in suggesting they are actually 'based on' the early box-scaled 1:30/40/50th ('ish) model kits of Monogram, Revell, and Snap, (Aurora, Tamiya?) from the 1950's, themselves copied/pirated and/or licensed to various other makes (UPC, Crown...even Fuji or Marusan?), and if anyone can add further light on the origins of these diminutive guns, it would be much appreciated by me and I'm sure; other followers of the blog.

A few links to Wikipedia which may help...

Wikipedia - M115 / M1 - 8-inch / 203mm Howitzer
Wikipedia - M59 / M1-M2 - 155mm Long Range Field Gun 'Long Tom'
Wikipedia - M1-M2-M3 / 90mm AA Gun
Wikipedia - M1918 / M3 - 3-inch Gun

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