Miniatures Talk

Old Figures

Posted by steve_pickstock on 15 Jan 2022, 19:13

I am currently sorting through some of the figures that I boxed up when I was tidying up the attic. There are figures still in their boxes, some on sprues and lots, and lots, and lots, and lots of figures that are loose, based and un-based, painted and unpainted, chopped, broken, bent or just pristine. I think there's about 200L in total.

I'm aiming to sort them out into individual boxes - labelled Ancients; Medieval/Renaissance/17thC; 18th/19thC; 20thC/Modern and Fantasy, and then bag up everything in those boxes.

So, while I have been doing this I keep turning up classic figures - Airfix Napoleonic Hussars with their heads turned unnaturally to the right, dead cuirassier horses, Revell 30YW Swedish musketeers loading and some from one of my favourite sets - the Zvezda Imperial Roman Infantry with that magnificent centurion - one of the most imposing figures I have ever seen.

Some of them are less than impressive - the Revell WW2 British infantry man with his PIAT balanced nonchalantly on his shoulder, as he ambles off to battle, as if the device didn't actually weigh a ton. There is even a set of the newer Airfix WW2 British Infantry set - the one that was replaced by the ESCI figures - which for their age are surprisingly brittle.

So, in no particular order which sets do people feel nostalgic about?
For me it probably has to be the Airfix US 7th Cavalry. Those guys came in for so much hammer - though Airfix magazine must take the blame for that - Huns, Khitan Liao, lesser known Napoleonic ally states - with a bit of plasticene and some banana oil (pre-Miliput days), they became anything we needed. I think some of them might even get an outing in the Star Wars universe soon.

After that it would be the Matchbox WW2 British Infantry - for the one officer in particular, the guy in the sheepskin jacket. Those and the Matchbox Modern Paras, such a beautiful set.

Anybody else?
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steve_pickstock  England
 
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Posted by Fire at Will on 15 Jan 2022, 21:21

Yes, I still have memories of the Airfix US cavalry - I converted them into Confederates, French Hussars, Scots Greys, Boers (only just retired from service) and some strange Crimean War Russians. I'm sure some must have been used for ancients along the way.

There has to be "Rommel" from the first Airfix DAK set and most of the figures were combined with US marines lower halves to make my Waffen SS for Normandy, one of my all time favourite units (sold last year, sob!).
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Posted by Minuteman on 15 Jan 2022, 21:44

Happy memories!

In the days when Airfix were really the only show in town for a 'young wargamer-on-a-very-limited- budget' (ie: back in the 1970s) we had to make do, and I remember using the Airfix US cavalry as the basis for my Napoleonic British light dragoons: at the time, it was a conversion that I was very proud of...Airfix Waterloo French infantry heads and extra layers of paint to build up the 'sleves' of the light dragoons (the US cavalrymen being in shirtsleeve order).

Do I still miss the hassle of trying to attach Airfix horses to their bases? :eh:

I also have very distinct memories of the excitment of the Matchbox WW2 sets coming onto the market. Whereas the Airfix 1/76 sets were 'patchy' in terms of what they provided (few heavy weapons) the new Matchbox sets had a really good balance of figures useable for 'rifle companies' and figures suitable for a support unit + a couple of officers, all in one box. When money was in short supply, this counted for a lot. The Matchbox 1/76 WW2 tanks and related WW2 models were also great, and still hold a very firm place in my heart; indeed, some are still in my WW2 collection, almost 50 years on.

What are you intending to do with this mass of figures, Steve? If you have surplus Revell TYW figures I may be happy to purchase these at a fair and reasonable price.
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Minuteman  United Kingdom
 
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Posted by zulu`s 1000`s of em on 15 Jan 2022, 22:02

All the Airfix sets , but lately the first series 8th army and Africa Korps ,as a child most of my early table top action was with them, and they were probably the two sets that got me hooked for life.
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Posted by steve_pickstock on 16 Jan 2022, 00:00

Minuteman wrote:What are you intending to do with this mass of figures, Steve?

Primarily it's a stock-taking and re-organising exercise. 50-odd years of collecting figures - I really have no idea what I have. Once it's done then I may start some down-sizing/rationalising what there is. I know that there are lots of Zvezda Napoleonic Russians from a project that never went anywhere so they can probably go. I think they will be offered through this forum first. But it won't be for a while.

Minuteman wrote:If you have surplus Revell TYW figures I may be happy to purchase these at a fair and reasonable price.

I have read this sentence several times now, and I still can't comprehend it. surplus Revell TYW figures?! Nope! Don't understand that one. :-D :-D :-D :-D
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steve_pickstock  England
 
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Posted by Graeme on 16 Jan 2022, 07:19

The set I feel most nostalgic about is the Airfix Napoleonic Highlanders. The very beginning of 1/72 Napoleonics and when they first came out I thought they were the best things ever. What really ramped up the nostalgia factor was the fact that when I started collecting figures again they were totally unavailable. For many years I thought I'd never see them again until, eventually, a local hobby shop got one of the Waterloo playsets in.

I don't have any nostalgic feelings for the Airfix Japanese Infantry figures themselves but since they were the first set I bought they do figure in a lovely nostalgic memory of the day I discovered Airfix sets. I was probably about 4 or 5 years old and I remember crossing the street to look in the window of a hobby shop in Redcar. The window was filled with what must have been every Airfix set available at the time. Alladin's discovery of the cave was a bit of a sideshow by comparison.

I loved the Airfix U.S. Cavalry when I was a kid. It was the kepis, I thought the kepis were soo cool. 8) I don't have any now.

Otherwise its individual Airfix figures, the sub-machine gunner in the first type Commandos, the grenade thrower in the German WWI infantry, the running WWI Frenchman, and the charging swordsmen and slinger in the Ancient Britons. (still my No. 1 all time favourite set). with all of these it's the realism and dynamism of the poses, I think Airfix really brought those figures to life, I felt they were actually doing what they depicted.
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Posted by Flambeau on 16 Jan 2022, 11:06

Minuteman wrote:Happy memories!

I If you have surplus Revell TYW figures I may be happy to purchase these at a fair and reasonable price.


By the way, Minuteman, I still do have quite a lot of old Revell 30YW infantry (off the sprue) + one Zvezda Imperial infantry + one (almost) complete set of Revell 30YW artillery (all figures, guns and team are there, there may be one or two small parts missing, like a seperate hat). I would like to sell these, as I switched to 28mm ECW for this period a long time ago, out of frustration for the lack of suitable "Ironsides". I don't have any cavalry though, sold them a while back to another enthusiast. If you're interested please contact me, but take into account that I'm in Germany, prices for shipping have climbed considerably since Brexit.
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Posted by Harry Faversham on 16 Jan 2022, 15:27

For some of us 'yesteryear' seems just like the other day...

Image

Image

Image

:oops:
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Harry Faversham  England
 
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Posted by Bluefalchion on 16 Jan 2022, 18:46

I don't really have nostalgia for my old 1:72 and 20mm figures because I still have them and still paint them occasionally. My nostalgia is for my nearly complete Airfix 1:32 range, which were stationed on the giant mound of earth in my backyard dug out from the ground for a foundation for an expansion.

I got home from school one day and the mound had been hauled off with all hands lost.
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Bluefalchion  United States of America
 
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Posted by Minuteman on 16 Jan 2022, 23:16

Flambeau wrote:
By the way, Minuteman, I still do have quite a lot of old Revell 30YW infantry (off the sprue) + one Zvezda Imperial infantry + one (almost) complete set of Revell 30YW artillery (all figures, guns and team are there, there may be one or two small parts missing, like a seperate hat). I would like to sell these, as I switched to 28mm ECW for this period a long time ago, out of frustration for the lack of suitable "Ironsides". I don't have any cavalry though, sold them a while back to another enthusiast. If you're interested please contact me, but take into account that I'm in Germany, prices for shipping have climbed considerably since Brexit.


Thank you Flambeau. My offer to 'relieve' Steve of any surplus Revell TYW figures which might have been cluttering up his attic was, of course, a long shot and one which Steve has provided a polite yet firm response to...thank you Steve! I am not surprised!!

I think that postage costs Germany to the UK will probably make your kind offer prohibitively expensive, so I will decline. But much appreciated nevertheless.
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Minuteman  United Kingdom
 
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Posted by Graeme on 17 Jan 2022, 03:17

Bluefalchion wrote:one day and the mound had been hauled off with all hands lost.


AUGH! :shock:

That hurts just reading about it.
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Graeme  Australia
 
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Posted by Flambeau on 17 Jan 2022, 12:07

Minuteman wrote:
Thank you Flambeau. My offer to 'relieve' Steve of any surplus Revell TYW figures which might have been cluttering up his attic was, of course, a long shot and one which Steve has provided a polite yet firm response to...thank you Steve! I am not surprised!!

I think that postage costs Germany to the UK will probably make your kind offer prohibitively expensive, so I will decline. But much appreciated nevertheless.


Hello Minuteman,

just saw that I offered you the same lot some time ago and you declined because at the time you considered yourself well supplied. Just forgot about it, my bad. Perhaps I'll put them in the market section one of these days.
Postage from Germany for a parcel to the UK is between nine and 13 Euros (depending on size and weight) without track & trace and insurance, which is barely acceptable, after that it get's very expensive.
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Posted by Peter on 19 Jan 2022, 13:36

Airfix Wild West and Napoleonic figures. They fought many times against eachother in my self created battlle of The Alamo. ;-)

Also some Matchbox kits that my dad bought for me at the sunday market have a special place in my memories. :-)
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Peter  Belgium

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Posted by Bluefalchion on 19 Jan 2022, 16:30

Peter wrote:Airfix Wild West and Napoleonic figures. They fought many times against eachother in my self created battlle of The Alamo. ;-)

Also some Matchbox kits that my dad bought for me at the sunday market have a special place in my memories. :-)


I wish there were Sunday markets in my town that sold Matchbox kits!
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Bluefalchion  United States of America
 
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Posted by Peter on 19 Jan 2022, 19:16

Bluefalchion wrote:
I wish there were Sunday markets in my town that sold Matchbox kits!

That market stil excist in Antwerp but doesn't sell any toys anymore in my memory. The period I'm talking about is almost 50 years ago. ;-)
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Posted by PhilC on 19 Jan 2022, 19:20

Peter wrote:The period I'm talking about is almost 50 years ago.

You mean in the previous century ? really ?? :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
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Posted by Peter on 19 Jan 2022, 20:22

PhilC wrote:You mean in the previous century ? really ?? :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

Yes my friend! :mrgreen:
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Posted by RSDean on 22 Jan 2022, 13:58

My first Airfix set was probably a Guards Band for some reason, but, given the arc of my gaming and hobby life since then, the most nostalgic set from back in the day is the Airfix Robin Hood box. My current 1/72 medieval/fantasy project has some of the actual figures I’ve had since the early 1970s mixed in among the turn-of-the-millenium HaT reissues.
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Posted by Bluefalchion on 22 Jan 2022, 18:47

Amazing how good those Airfix figures from 50 years ago hold up in quality and detail to this day.

To all the manufacturers making figures currently that are not as good as Airfix--hang your heads in shame.
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Posted by steve_pickstock on 24 Jan 2022, 16:49

Bluefalchion wrote:Amazing how good those Airfix figures from 50 years ago hold up in quality and detail to this day.

To all the manufacturers making figures currently that are not as good as Airfix--hang your heads in shame.

I think most of that is in the preparations. The Airfix figures (and Esci, Revell and people like IMex and Pegasus) use 3-up masters. Models 3 times the size of the final product which are then pantographed down to size when the moulds are machined. That allows the sculptor a lot of leeway when adding details.

On the other hand I am in complete awe of sculptors who produce masters in 1-to-1. The poor chap working for Alliance/Strelets/Red Box/Linear A (I reckon he is only allowed out for daylight occasionally and then they chain him - if it is a him, if it isn't, I apologise - then they chain him back up) is a freaking genius with the level of detail acheived in those figures.
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steve_pickstock  England
 
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