Sunday, 26 February 2012
This looks to me to be a copy of a plastic Elastolin figure, I bought it in a local baking shop last week and it is part of a set of cake decorations which mostly comprises copies of Britains Wild West series. This example stands (or lays) about 60mm in size and is made in a slightly bendy but acceptable PVC, it is clearly marked "made in China". While we all naturally abhore the practice of pirating or copying another companies products, would I like to see the venerable inheritors of the Hong Kong trade make copies of say..... the Elastolin Huns? You bet I would.
Friday, 17 February 2012
Guilbert didn't make a lot of stuff but what they did was very good, these were some of their early production in an acetate material which generally doesn't stand the test of time very well. These examples have the name marked on the base but many don't, they are distinguishable by the hats and plumes which are moulded seperately and glued on, also the swords are just a length of wire, originally I thought that this was just a case of somebody repairing a broken figure but all the early examples I have seen are like this and it was a common practice with a number of early French plastic manufacturers. Later production was in white hard polystyrene and I'm not sure I've seen any of these with the manufacturers name marked underneath. I do think they have a certain elan.
Thursday, 9 February 2012
A. When it's a Hong Kong copy. I've been having an off-on tidy up of my toy soldier room for several months now, it's not that it's a big area but that the concept of "go tidy your room" does not become any less tedious or disheartening just because you've left adolescence far behind!
Monday, 16 January 2012
I admit I had been drinking..... but not that much. I blinked in the January sunshine, opened my eyes and it was still there. I could hardly believe it but it seemed such an amazing thing that I felt I must share it with you dear reader (whoever you may be)
Since I no longer work in town I avoid going up into London (because it can be a bit of a nightmare) but a few days ago Mrs C needed to visit Chinatown so I went along as her bagman. After a pleasant lunch we headed back towards Waterloo Station via Trafalgar Square, the later is of course a tourist destination of International renown with Nelson's Column in the centre surrounded by four podiums. The thing is that only three of the podiums have statues on them and the fourth stood empty until a few years ago when someone came up with the idea of using it to showcase modern works of art, some of which have been quite controversial. This particular work has had little or no attention from the media and has nothing to do with collecting toy soldiers, except that it is a model even if it does weigh in at a whopping 4 tons and 15 metres long, so it just had to go in the blog.
I've never heard of Yinka Shonibare but anyone who can make a four ton model of HMS Victory in a bottle has earned their MBE in my book.
Friday, 13 January 2012
In the last few days the postman has brought me the latest issues of Plastic Warrior and Figuren Magazines.
Plastic Warrior number 146 has articles on: The Crescent story, Very early plastic warriors, Where did the toy soldier go?, Book Review, Britains stuff, Wild Young Dirky, UFOs, Auction Review, Cherilea Commandos and Minor Makers - BMS
Figuren Magazin Nr. 4 2011, has articles on: Erich Leistner - Master diorama maker, Bad Nauheim 2011 figure show, A hundred years of Hausser, Pfeiffers 11cm military figures, Gulaschkanone by Metall-Spielwaren Weimar, German made Indian canoes, "Winnetou" boardgame, Modelling book review, Nativity figures and 32nd Herne figure show.
Both magazines are available by subscription direct from the publishers and in my opinion are indispensable if you are a serious collector of old toy soldiers.