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.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

L is for Loose-ends in Liberation Land

Yes, we're back to the Men of '76; for the third time? But Brian Berke sent me two sets of the figures in his last (previous - another's turned-up!) donation to the Blog, which answers a few of the questions raised in the previous posts and turns up a couple of new things worth mentioning.

The first is that the header card artwork is - of course - the 'Spirit of '76' vignette we looked at the other day, both this artwork and the figures being taken from the famous eponymous painting by Archibald Willard.

The two sets Brian sent, the second (Cornwallis) had been de-carded in the past, so after I took these shots, I re-liberated them, but of immediate interest is that the two cards are of different sizes, and with no reason, as the 'extra' is added top and bottom of the white header, with similar margin extensions on the back. The 'meat and two veg' being the same on both cards. The other thing to note is that the card backs do differ from set to set, the Assembly Instructions are the same, but the blurb is card-specific.

Off the card, and glossy with the signs of the passing of the forty years between issue and release lost in the protection the blister gave them, that's a couple of scarlet jackets or my name's Marion! Sorry Mr Wayne!

Comparison between the details of 'officer' and 'trooper', two items of interest here: Firstly; the painted helmet-plate (forerunner of the cap badge) on the officers Busby has developed verdigris under some past damp conditions, suggesting a high content of real copper in the paint, but of far more interest is the sword . . .

. . . Correct me if I'm wrong, but that looks like the Officer's Katana from the Britains Deetail Japanese Infantry set (or copy of it!)? A set which although having the 1971 stamp on the - generic-to-the-range - base, Britains didn't actually catalogue until 1973. It would appear that the piracy reached the 'high street' at least a year BEFORE the original!

That was the problem with 'joining them' (by transferring production to Hong Kong), rather than beating them! Someone had filched a sword and run it down the road to Innovative's contract manufacturer (cooperative production partner, now OEM), who ran-up a copy, before Britains were anywhere near ready to add the Japs (and Brits) to the Deetail range.

Brian also sent the leaflet that came bagged and stapled to some sets, it doesn't add much to the posts, other than that there are only the 8 sets listed - from 1972 - in a 1973/75 reprint; however I will (eventually) scan it and add it to the A-Z post. As always; thank you very much Brian Berke.

Also worth noting that in the sham battle arranged at the top of the back page, all the Native American Indians have joined the forces of the legitimate government, a force of 25 which has flanked the 18 Rebels, who are short of gunners . . . Fort Ticonderoga might have been a push-over, but I suspect Fort Innovative will prove a tougher nut to crack!

Later the same year (Nov 22nd) . . . I'd forgotten that Basil Duke had Blogged these ages ago on his Fort Apache Supersized Blog, follow the link to find good images of the fort and larger grouops/formations of loose figures.

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