Mattel’s Hot Wheels celebrates its 50th Anniversary this year, a remarkable achievement for any toy line. In honor of my favorite brand’s longevity, I would like to give you the background on some very interesting models. Over the last fifty years, Hot Wheels has produced thousands of models and variations. But it can be said […]
I know, I know, that sounds like a particular seasonal car commercial. But we really did have a great November meeting, made so especially by some surprise guests.
Get to the photos!
Well, who is this handsome young fellow? This is the grandson of Chris, the owner of the Sports Bar & Grill.
Kidding! Big Tractor Mike RAOK’d the young’un with a pack of Micro Machines.
Here’s another reason our November meeting was special: I brought cars! It’s been a looooooong time since I did. But I dug out a bunch to hand out during Halloween (yes, with candy). I had 48 candies (24 of two kinds), and 24 cars. These are the cars I had left over at the end of the night.
Spare Mike had this sweet, sweet ’33 Plymouth PC Sedan. This is one beautiful classic cop car. The simple monochrome paint with black fenders and chrome highlights just works.
This is a very special build. It’s another custom by Doug, of course, but this isn’t just any old barn. This is an exact replica of Spare Mike’s grandfather’s barn. I can tell you, Spare Mike was quite moved as he looked over the model.
Here, Original Ken takes a few photos to post to Suncoast Diecasters‘ Facebook page.
The biggest surprise at our November meeting was the visit by two nice Canadian ladies Big Tractor Mike while operating a booth at the ’49er Flea Market. They specifically scheduled their next trip to coincide with our meeting. Here aer just some of the vehicles they bought.
I selected a few of their assortment to showcase. Here is a 1/87th-scale caravan by Eko, with the classic teardrop shape. Next to it is Matchbox’s Flying Bug. This orange one is apparently the only variation MB ever offered (even though the wiki doesn’t list it).
Here we have a VW Sharan by Siku. On the right is a snowmobile.
Oh, by the way, that isn’t just some “generic” snowmobile. It’s a Ski-Daddler, by AMF. I know this because the toy says so on its base.
It’s by Corgi, and features WhizzWheels. For being a good representation of a particular snowmobile, for being overall in very good shape, including still having its windscreen, and for having a nicely-sculpted (and painted!) driver, I declare the Corgi AMF Ski-Daddler to be Suncoast Diecasters’ Find of the Month(*) for November 2018.
…And with a couple of hours still left in November, our November update is actually published during November! Holiday celebration!
See you at our December meeting!
It’s late but, yes, that’s my weak attempt at some October title humor. My search for better employment (including job fairs, workshops, etc.) takes up an annoying amount of time.
So, just get to the photos!
Original Ken snags this sweet Articulated Truck by Matchbox. Its base states that it’s actually at 1:115 scale.
Seriously, though, please take time to appreciate the effort Dough puts into these builds. Each of those pieces is hand-cut.
Large Harvester Michael shows how he maintains his Sizeable Combine certification, by bringing these, um … big tractors.
Hey, look, it’s– Oh, wait….
Just in time for Hot Wheels’ 50th Anniversary, Mike Corey had this 40th Anniversary custom-edition GMC Motor Home.
Even though it was Saturday, Big Rob brought in a little #ThrowbackThursday by wearing his old Hot Nuts T-shirt. I’ve mentioned before that Hot Nuts was the predecessor to Suncoast Diecasters.
“He’s the Hot-Movin’ Guy/With his hands on the wheel/He’s the Fast-Drivin’ Man/With the–” Okay, that’s not really a theme song from anything.
In reality, this is a super-sweet find by Big Rob. It’s a 1965 Strombecker Cheetah slot car. It’s 1/25th scale, which gives you an idea how small those cars really were. Its chassis is by Dynamic, typical for the ’60s. Original Ken, who knows a thing or four about slot cars, advised Rob to not try to make it run again. He (O’Ken) says “it will never be as fast as today’s slowest cars, and many original parts like threaded axles and wheels are no longer made.”
What can I say? Big Rob, thank you, and thank you again, and thank you once more. He RAOK’d me with these two large-scale RC replicas of Twin Mill and Sweet Sixteen II. These massive rides are over 12″ long!
It was one of those meetings where practically everything stood out in its own way. I’ve made it a rule for the site not to have multiple FotMs; so after careful consideration, I have selected Big Rob’s Strombecker Cheetah, and his box-busting Hot Wheels RAOK to me. Congratulations, Rob; both of our Dual Finds of the Month(**) for October 2018 are yours!
See you at our November meeting! –Which is this Saturday!
As I mentioned in our previous update, I’ve had a cutback in hours. Ironically, one of the days I now regularly work is Saturday. So, I had to miss our September meeting. Thus, Original Ken again stepped in for photo duty. I chose the best for this update.
We’re introducing an interesting new feature this month: in-caption links. I won’t bore you with the technicals of not being able to create hyperlinks in photo captions in our old hand-coded version of the club site. It’s something I’ve seen on other “blog platform”-type sites, and I found it intriguing. The Holy Spirit told me to give it a shot, and voila!: functional hyperlinks in our own photo captions! This obviously gives me more options for the placement and, as it were, “timing” of off-site links.
So get to the photos!
I wish I had more information for you about this item. Big Tractor Mike bought it from Spare Mike. The side reads “O’Neill Family Produce”. But I’m fascinated by the richly sculpted and individually painted food items.
You can tell it was a successful meeting, because…
…From Bill. He bought them from Bill.
That Ken is a funny guy. He takes this here photo, and edits a copy of the front end into the pic to make it look like the car has two engines.
From Ed’s stock, this array of … Er, these vari-colored, uh … Field of, um … All these multi-hued … Hmph. I’m not sure what I could say about this….
Scott had this vintage (ca. 1960s?) slot car case (with space for Name and Racing Club)…
…With two controllers and three sweet classic slot car models neatly tucked inside.
For its wonderful “retro” vibe, its great contents, and its overall good condition, I declare Scott’s vinatge slot car case to be Suncoast Diecasters‘ Find of the Month(*) for September 2018. Congratulations, Scott!
And with just over an hour of September left, our September update is actually posted in September! I should treat myself to a pizza! (But I have some bread to finish off, so I’ll treat myself to some deli slices instead.)
See you at our November meeting!
I apologize for the lateness of this update. I’ve recently had a cutback in hours at work, so my overriding priority right now is to find a good replacement job. Thus, frivolities such as these club updates take a back seat. (If you happen to know a Tampa Bay area business that’s in need of a hot-rodding creative, please let me know!)
Nonetheless, our August meeting was indeed grand. Good group of people, including a couple o’ members we hadn’t seen in a while. And one stupendous structure.
Hey, get to the photos!
Bill does very well for himself by buying this Hot Wheels 20th Anniversary 3-pack. No idea what the CW/CP price tag represents. Circus World, maybe? If you know, share in the Comments!
Sorry for the glare and shadows. This is actually the last photo I took, before my camera’s battery went out.
Bill also bought this good-looking Indentor, an entry from the Crack-Ups series. I was hoping to get a really nice photo of it…
…But unfortunately as I was setting it up, I broke it.
A bit of a departure here: Some nose art on a Midnight Otto.
Ed was at the meeting. It’s always good to see Ed. He’s a great guy. But I wish he’d bring some stuff to the meetings once in a while. He never brings nothin’!
Amongst his nuthin’, Ed had this oddball little fellow. Threw us all off for a little bit, because we couldn’t ID it. Then we figured out why we had trouble recognizing it…
Mike C. has been absent from the club for the last few months. He made a delightful surprise appearance at our August meeting. Looks good, sounds good. And to make his return complete, he bought some items. A few. You know, three or four.
Big Tractor Mike bought this set from Ed (leaving him with nuthin’), which features a Batman “action guide”, and three Batman-themed vehicles: one of the over five hundred eighty six variations of the Batmobile; a Joker-themed Evil Twin (a sly choice for comic book aficionados), and a Bane-themed whatever that is.
Original Ken picked up this lovely Mercedes 350 SL (Majorette, 1/60 scale), which I actually thought he bought at the previous meeting, but no.
Man, I dig those reflections.
Well-appointed interior, and an opening trunk, which is always nice.
And now for the Big Thing of the Meeting: The Grand Barn, a custom hand-built replica of an actual barn, by Doug. I don’t know what scale Doug built it at; nor did I ask him to place his hand in the photo. He was discussing the barn with another member, and just happened to point out a feature right before my camera’s timer fired. A lucky accident, as it gives you some idea of the size of the model.
I call it the Grand Barn for several reasons, such as its sheer scale, and its incredible detail.
Size: 1000 x 486 pixels.
This build is loaded with details.
See the small sub-building on the right? It will become important later.
Size: 1000 x 562 pixels.
Note the gleam just off the right of the nose of the contented cow on the left. That’s light reflecting off the artificial water in the trough. Yes, artificial water, a product used to add yet another touch of realism.
Note the real metal chain on the post in the above photo. It’s used to shut the open gate in the below photo.
Size: 1000 x 536 pixels.
Here’s an interior shot of the upper section, in which you can see some of the amazing detail that Doug put–
Ha! I’m foolin’! This is actually the storage shed in back of the Sports Bar.
Fooled you twice! It really is a shot of the upper interior, as you can see in this farther-backly photographed photograph.
Size: 1000 x 882 pixels.
How’s this for detail? Lightning rods!
More evidence of Doug’s attention to detail: Each piece of this door is hand-cut, and the hinges work.
Remember that sub-building I mentioned earlier? I wanted a shot of the interior detail, so I set my camera on the table with the lens just outside its door. Didn’t turn out as I’d hoped.
I knew I had to try again while I still had some battery. So I reviewed my camera settings, pushed the camera’s lens into the door, and hit the button…
…Ten seconds later, I got the shot. The modified flash setting lit up the interior details nicely while also creating rich shadows, and you can still see that the lights are lit.
Impress yourself with Doug’s amazing detail by clicking the link below:
Size: 1000 x 750 pixels.
For its size, its realism and its astounding and near-overwhelming quality of detail, Big Tractor Mike and I declare Doug’ custom hand-built Grand Barn to be Suncoast Diecasters‘ Find of the Month(*) for August 2018! Many congratulations, Doug!
See you at our
September October meeting!
Just go right to the photos!
More on this little guy later…
Big Tractor Mike becomes Small Truck Mikey for the day with this trio. We start with this Greenlight stake truck with swapped cab.
Next is this custom hay elevator, which raises and lowers. The hay bales are hand-cut painted wood.
Finally, we have this ERTL custom Dodge service truck with tool box and air compressor.
Tom rolls up some (rumpled) royalty with this not-quite-MIB Petty product with purty Petty picture.
So they greenlighted the movie idea, eh? (Get it? ‘Coz that’s what they say in Hollywood, see, and the brand is Greenlight, see, and — You know what? I’m gonna give a nod at Tom for buying this mint-in-shell set, then I’m just gonna stand over there somewhere.)
Remember last month when I jibed Original Ken for not nabbing this Wiking street cleaner? Well, guess what — he went ahead and bought it this month! (Good thing, too, because this model has some nice details.)
To make sure there’s no mistaking that this is not a 50th Anniversary Edition (cue fanfare and confetti), Mattel has placed the “50” logo everywhere. On the backer, as well as on the vehicle illustration on the backer…
…On the model itself, of course…
…And even on both the background and car image on this sweet reproduction Collector Badge.
Thus I very proudly declare the Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition Volkswagen Beetle (cue fanfare and confetti) to be Suncoast Diecasters‘ Find of the Month(*) for July 2018. Thank you, Mike, and congratulations, Tom!
See you at our August meeting — which is this Saturday!
A situation at work required my presence, so once again Original Ken provides the photos. We have several nice customs in this update, so get to the photos!
I apologize for both the haziness and smallness of this first photo. OKen took a wide “group photo” of some of Big Tractor Mike’s Tomica stock. Thus, no particular item was really in focus. Also, since the pic was comprised of such a large number of boxes, even at full resolution (which this is) each box was smaller than our standard photo size. nonetheless, I was intrigued — not to mention a bit creeped out — by this freaky spider crane model. I swear, it looks like something that could be part of ROTF Devastator.
Here’s something that will make your eyes happy again: Ken’s beautiful photo of BTM’s Custom T-Bird (original Redline).
No, it’s not a garbage truck, yet I’m still surprised that Ken did not buy this Viking street cleaner.
Actually, Ken had all three of these models staged in a single photograph. However, somehow this ’77 edition was accompanied by a sweeeet reflection — on the pleather pool table cover, yet! — and I just had to showcase it.
1983 Extras Series Upfront 924 — the extra being the snap-on ski rack. As I pointed out back in August of 2010, the ski rack isn’t merely some vaguely ski-shaped pieces; there are two pairs of poles with baskets, and two pairs of skis with boot bindings. And thanks to Ken’s hi-rez camera, you can see this even more clearly now.
Two Tyco Corvette slot cars, which Ken sold to Scott.
And now, we get to the customs. These first two photos feature another farm display by BTM, which includes two custom handmade trailers.
The original of the above photo had quite a tilt, which sharply cut off the road piece. I was able to rotate it, but had to crop out the sharp road end because it looked like it was just falling off into space.
An M2 Machines pick-up, customised by Doug for Mike.
And with half a week of June left, I shall treat myself to a cheeseburger in celebration!
See you at our July meeting!
Our May meeting was lots of fun. Slightly smaller crowd that last month, but still lots of laughin’, reminiscin’ and braggin’ took place.
By the way, I’ve updated our About page to include info on Suncoast Diecasters membership. Please check it out.
Okay, now you can get to the photos!
The Hulk is from the DCU, right? Heh. Kidding, of course. Once again, Big Tractor Mike brought in a wonderful scale-correct display of farming equipment, some of which has been highly customized by Michael. Oh, yes, there are more photos. But first…
…Ed shares some choice models in his collection:
Here is the most beautiful of the models that Ed asked me to showcase, the ’69 Chevy Camaro Convertible. If you look closely at the photos (and you should be doing so anyway), you’ll note that the model is far more detailed than a typical off-the-peg model. However, I’m unable to ID the specific series. It’s not listed in the 100% Hot Wheels series. It may be part of the 100% Preferred GM Performance Parts series, but I can’t prove this as there’s no photo in the listing.
(In case you’re wondering why I didn’t just ask Ed when I took the photo, it’s because I turned the toy over, saw what I thought was the Vintage series logo on the base, on said to myself, Well, that was easy.)
And here’s my favorite of the set, Sir Rodney Roadster, a pseudo-fantasy vehicle based on the Lotus Seven S4. I say “pseudo-fantasy” because it seems some liberties were taken with the design. Fact: I never heard of this model until about fifteen-ish years ago, and it was by accident. At a local shop I spotted some gimmicky Hot Wheels merchandise, little yoyo-like things. Each consisted of a “tire” about 2½” in diameter, with a teensy HW model inside. Pulling the string caused the car to race around inside the tire. So I bought one, seeing as I’d probably never own any other version of Sir Rod here.
Here, finally, are the afore-promised photos of BTM’s farm display. And look at them; they’re beautiful!
Okay, more kidding. These thumbnails are teasers; click on any one, and you’ll open a gallery of delightfully larger images which you may left/right through at your leisure. (There’s no info for this machines because BTM is still having e-mail trouble, and neither of us took notes during the meeting.)
By the way, I have chosen a Find of the Month model … but I’m not telling you which one it is. I want you to think about the photos in this update, and make your best guess.
Or you could, you know, just view it on Twitter.
And with two days left in May, I shall cry a hearty Victoryyy!
See you at our June meeting!
Happy #CincodeMayo! Also, Happy #FreeComicBookDay!
#Maythe4th be with you!
(P.S.: Tomorrow is #FreeComicBookDay!)