Wilko Wild Western Express

Vintage 54mm Pound Store Plastic Cowboys and Indians fight over the cargo and caboose of my new Wilko Western Express train.

A snip of a plastic battery operated railway set at £10. Read more at:

https://sidetracked2017blog.wordpress.com/2018/07/14/the-wild-wilko-western-express/

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More Plastic Zoo Staff 2018

 

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Four useful civilian or military 54mm figures, one with each animal and vehicle blister pack – photographer, binoculars baseball cap guy, female scientist or medic and determined looking adventurer figure with jungle hat. 

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Useful figure, handy smaller scale lorry and an African animal to boot. 
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Good looking 1:32 or 54mm figures from the back as well. They could be adventurers, Press or war photographers, officer with binoculars, medics. 
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Determined, distinctive and versatile female medic, vet  or scientist figure. Feisty enough to suit Star Wars games too. 
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Female Space scientist, tropical biologist, dinosaur vet ??

The usual mix of scales of figures and vehicles can be annoying to some but is full of potential across a range of scales.

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Odd mix of scales per set surrounding the 54mm figure 
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36mm pound store figure conversion, HO/OO Railway figure, 30mm Spencer Smith figure for size comparison with the lorries.  
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Useful trucks and useful (detachable?)  wooden crates. 
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The accompanying animals …
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Ark Toys and Ravensden origin. 

These were a useful set of civilian or military safari or zoo figures that I got at a discount, not Pound store materials but certainly useful plastic figures and lorries to accompany some of my Pound Store Plastic  conversions.

Blog posted by Mark, Man of TIN , Pound Store Plastic Warriors blog 29 May 2018.

Pound store paint conversions: American Civil War

 

Glossy toy soldier style American Civil War troops can be painted using cheap pound store plastic figures.

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Right: pirate or pound store Matchbox clone 54mm  Japanese WW2 infantry repainted as American Civil War Confederate Infantry, alongside one of my handmade Polymer clay scruffy standard bearers with a Britain’s Deetail flag.

An overlooked blog post from summer 2017 that I forgot to post – Whoops!

Having spent time in the past converting OO / HO Airfix Japanese Infantry into Union or Confederate troops and zouaves,

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2017/07/16/confused-by-zouaves-some-airfix-acw-paint-conversions/

I wondered how this sort of conversion would work at 1:32 or 54mm scale.

For paint scheme inspiration for the glossy toy soldier style, I looked to my books and my display cupboard.

I like the paint style on this Tradition of London solidcast Union infantry man, handpainted by a member of the Guild of Master Craftsmen,  a past Christmas present.

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Tradition of London ACW Union Infantry

Other simple  paint inspiration can be found in these Britains, Tradition and Herald figures.

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These two damaged Britain’s ACW Confederate  “On Guard” figures surrounding the central figure look under their flaking paint like they were once Union figures!

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The Tradition professionally painted Confederate photographed by my rougher enamel glossy painting of Tradition ACW photographer.
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Herald ACW figures, minus much of their paintwork.

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Some of my childhood Herald ACW officers missing their swords.

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One of my favourite Herald figures the ACW Confederate Bugler

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Other ACW figures in my collection came long ago from a quirky collectors shop in Cornwall.

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I love the Tintinesque  Thomson and Thompson moustache on this figure!
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Another childhood branch library favourite …

A bit of plastic and lead American Civil War toy soldier inspiration, equally applicable to Imagi-Nations troops.

Blogposted by Mark, Man of TIN on his Pound Store Plastic Warriors blog, May 2018

More Dumb Soldiers in the Garden – The Clean Up Operation Begins

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I have been busy this week working on some wounded lead soldiers and horses.  Whilst waiting for recast arms and heads to arrive, I spotted this pile of metal detecting finds on sale online.

A couple of pounds later,  a tiny parcel arrived and as I cleaned them up, I posted the online auction picture to see what  battered lost treasures and delights my blog readers could spot in the pile.

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2018/05/06/more-dumb-soldiers-missing-in-action/

Some of my blog readers were pretty accurate in their view of what was in this earthy pile of broken lead. They variously identified:  a bronco cowboy, an old toy racing car, a weird gnome, highlanders in kilts and guardsman. Well spotted!

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The toy soldier and sailor figures before clean up. Fragments of red coats of old enamel paint have survived on some. Possibly a section of a Johillco pilot (bottom right) and Crescent airman or Marine Officer with swagger stick (top right) 
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The animals from Cococubs to cowboys  and a beautiful fox.  An imp, a broken  Native American Indian and part of a petrol pump add to the strange mix. Many of these smaller objects will be put into a display box frame. 

The strangest of the lot was a metal dwarf or garden gnome figure. It might even be Father Christmas with the red paint?

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A strange gnome type figure, an old toy racing car and an ornate broken thing … this is a job for Bagpuss! 

As I cleaned the dry earth from inside and out, I recognised some broken bits as fragments of old lead toy soldier figures that I have in my collection by Britain’s and other makers.

Where I could, I checked them against my originals.

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Battered but common Britain’s Greandier Guardsmen firing (set 34) late 1930s to mid 1960s and marching (second grade fixed arm New Crown range figure No. 41P) 
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The bashed remains of two Britain’s sailors, with traces of blue paint, compared with my intact Royal Navy Blue Jackets No49N (second grade paint) based on the fixed arm Royal Naval Reserve figure (1907 – 1940). On the right, a Crescent airman with swagger stick. 
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Colonial and Khaki Highlanders – John Hill / Johillco (centre) and Britain’s (right) Khaki Highlander 34N second garden finish (with surviving traces of Khaki paint) compared with complete examples in my collection. 

I use Gloss Acrylic paints and will eventually varnish the figures to get that old toy soldier look.

As I began to clean ready for undercoat and painting, I started on some simple traditional repairs using glue, wire and matchsticks.

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Britain’s Guardsmen and sailors get an undercoat along with  the wood and wire start of new rifles and legs. 
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Highlanders and unknown Guardsman torso get their new legs. 
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New bases from Fimo, ready to paint sap green and mount on tupenny (2p) pieces for a bit of weight in the base. Two Britain’s Guardsman from the metal detectorists collection,  alongside two Broken Britain’s figures given to me by  John Forman. 

Repairs may not be pretty but they are designed to be robust, using what materials I have to hand, and aiming to get these lovely figures fighting on the tabletop or in the garden again soon.

Another order of recast heads from Dorset Soldiers will be required soon to finish these figures.

I shall post pictures of the completed figures, like RLS’ poem The Dumb Soldier,  back from the earth when suitable new recast heads arrive.

A very satisfying few days of tinkering and mancrafting.

Blogposted by Mark, Man of TIN, Bank Holiday weekend May 5 / 6 2018.

 

 

Pound store 42mm conversions

Attractive 42mm pound store plastic conversions by  Rob Young on the Eastern Garrison website  https://easterngarrison.blogspot.co.uk/2018/05/1897-playing-at-converting-chinese.html

Saluting Donald Featherstone’s Centenary

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A small 54mm plastic parade for Donald Featherstone on his Centenary.

Celebrating Donald Featherstone’s Centenary on 20 March 2018

Donald F. Featherstone (1918 – 2013)

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2018/03/03/featherstone100-donald-featherstone-centenary-20-march-2018/

Blogposted by Mark, Man of TIN, 20 March 2018.

More Dahomey Amazons

 

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UNESCO series on Women in African History PDF

 

You can download this PDF graphic novel free at the following UNESCO website:

https://en.unesco.org/womeninafrica/sites/womeninafrica/files/pdf/The%20Women%20Soldiers%20of%20Dahomey_Women%20in%20African%20History_Comic%20Strip_0.pd

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An unusual parade …

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An interesting graphic novel about the Women Warriors of Dahomey, produced by UNESCO as part of their Women in Africa project or resources.

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French colonial forces arriving against the Dahomey Amazons

I have previously posted about these female warriors and made the start on some Pound store plastic soldier conversions

 

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2018/02/15/colonial-amazons-women-soldiers-of-dahomey-and-siam

Interesting Dahomey flags https://commons.m.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Dahomey_flag_1889.svg

I have temporarily mislaid my pound store conversions of plastic soldiers into Dahomey Amazons but will eventually finish them. I don’t know of any current manufacturers of Dahomey Amazon gaming figures.

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Blogposted by Mark, Man of TIN 10 March 2018