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.

Monday, July 24, 2017

T is for Test Shot

I found these looking for other stuff for the ongoing figure posts and don't think I've ever shown them here? Taken nine years ago, they seem to be a test-shot for the Pioneer Covered Wagon, announced by Britains in 1972.

Photographed a few months before the blog started and while I was still getting my head round digital photography they aren't the best shots here, but they aren't the worst either!

As far as I know this configuration was never issued as a retail item, even with painted crew.

The canvas tilt or cover is in an unusual deep turquoise or what interior designers call aqua! (that's 'water' in English!), while the wagon is a wood-brown, not so wacky, along with the wheels in a different shade.

The undercarriage is another more-'sky' blue, and the accessories are also browns, with a set of unpainted crew, missing reins and whip. The purple vinyl was - however - used within the Wild West range toward the end; some Deetail Mexicans and Apaches spring to mind?

The team though is fully painted, but - again - missing the reins. The Gun team had by then (1972) been given this team, and if not (happy to be corrected!) the existing Stage-coach had been using it for some years.

The feeling is the team was taken from the production line of one of the other sets and added to this otherwise test-shot mock-up. Other clues are the thick layer of dust on an otherwise un-played-with model and the lack of arrows on an otherwise undamaged model.

In the first two catalogues issued with the wagon ('72 and '73) the wagon is shown as brown with a cream/neutral/manila canvas tilt, but only as an 'artist's impression', from the 74 catalogue onwards the familiar dark-blue wagon with pure-white cover, cream tools/barrel and a black undercarriage is always photographed.

In both cases the wheels are red, the undercarriage going red in '77 to match. Both (wheels and frame) dun in '78 and dark brown in '79. How these changes played-out in the shops in anyone's guess, or even if they all made it to a retail release, but brown wagon and turquoise tilt doesn't seem to have ever featured.

I suspect therefore that this was a test-shot, maybe playing with colours, but more likely just a 'check-fit', and probably came from one of the big Britains 'archive' sales in the early part of the new century. I may even have been told that at the time, but if I was - have forgotten so in the intervening years!

Whatever - it's different!

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