July 2018 features a Golden Anniversary!

Just go right to the photos!

July 2018

More on this little guy later…

A tease!

A tease!

Big Tractor Mike becomes Small Truck Mikey for the day with this trio. We start with this Greenlight stake truck with swapped cab.

Though if he hadn't mentioned the cab swap, I don't think anyone would have complained.

Though if he hadn’t mentioned the cab swap, I don’t think anyone would have complained.

Next is this custom hay elevator, which raises and lowers. The hay bales are hand-cut painted wood.

Hey.

Hey.

Finally, we have this ERTL custom Dodge service truck with tool box and air compressor.

Splotchy paint aside, that's a nice-lookin' air compressor!

Splotchy paint aside, that’s a nice-lookin’ air compressor!

Tom rolls up some (rumpled) royalty with this not-quite-MIB Petty product with purty Petty picture.

Couldn't say "Petty photo" or "Petty card" because that would interrupt the flow of my vibe, man.

Couldn’t say “Petty photo” or “Petty card” because that would interrupt the flow of my vibe, man.

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.)

Opening and closing credits.

Opening and closing credits.

"It's 106 miles to Chicago, we got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cig--" Yeah, yeah, we heard it before, Egon.

“It’s 106 miles to Chicago, we got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cig–” Yeah, yeah, we heard it before, Egon.

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.)

Harrumph.

Harrumph.

Tom firmly establishes his reign as Suncoast DiecastersViscount of VWs by apprehending from BTM this Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition Volkswagen Beetle. (Cue fanfare and confetti.)

Click below for your free larger image to use at home, school or work.

Click below for your free larger image to use at home, school or work.

1000w x 996h

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…

I dig how cartoony the Beetle looks here.

I dig how cartoony the Beetle looks here.

…On the model itself, of course…

Go back and look at the 0 in the previous image; does it look like a track loop to you?

Go back and look at the 0 in the previous image; does it look like a track loop to you?

…And even on both the background and car image on this sweet reproduction Collector Badge.

This ain't no plastic cheapie -- this is a real metal memory-maker!

This ain’t no plastic cheapie — this is a real metal memory-maker!

Thus I very proudly declare the Hot Wheels 50th Anniversary Edition Volkswagen Beetle (cue fanfare and confetti) to be Suncoast DiecastersFind of the Month(*) for July 2018. Thank you, Mike, and congratulations, Tom!

See you at our August meeting — which is this Saturday!

~WM

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November 2017 Update – now with text & photos!

Been putting in extra hours at work because of the holidays. Nice for my wallet, not so nice for my free time. Particularly, it’s been impacting relatively frivolous things such as club site updates. That’s also why it took so long for me to post my lament on the closing of a K-Mart. So, no silly intro this month. Just get to the photos!

November 2017

Emergency Back-up Ken brought in this fabulous BMW Isetta 250. The Isetta has had a bit of a resurgence in pop culture popularity, thanks in part to TV shows such as Family Matters and American Pickers. Among toy car collectors, it’s probably best known for its super-powered appearance as Hot Wheels’ Whatta Drag. The Isetta is classified as a microcar due to its small size. Just how small is the Isetta?

Well, this is a 1/43-scale model ... and it's *barely* the size of HW's VW Drag Bus.

Well, this is a 1/43-scale model … and it’s *barely* the size of HW’s VW Drag Bus.

What’s this?? (asked William Dozier):

The zippest car collection, indeed.

The zippest car collection, indeed.

That’s the back (or front, same view) of an unopened shipping pack of Inside Stories (“Storys”?), courtesy of Big Tractor Mike. BTM explains that this is how Hot Wheels were shipped way back when: A box, not dissimilar to the boxes one sees at a K-Day event, contained not a well-organized arrangement of ready-for-hanging mixed models but rather the lot of identical models bagged thusly. That this set is still in its original bag is of course super-rare and thus super-special. Upping its specialness (in case you missed it in the above photo) is this neat detail:

Practically a brand unto itself.

Practically a brand unto itself.

Yes, these are from the near-mythical and poorly-documented Leo editions from India. With the exception of a “native language”-edition backer, one usually has to do some research to determine which country a particular Hot Wheels model is manufactured in. The Leo models, in contrast, are always clearly identified.

Now, here’s the hard choice for the serious collector: to open, or not to open? If one opens the pack to better display the models, the value of it being specifically an unopened shipping set is immediately lost. On the other hand, the set as it is … is frankly not much to look at display-wise.

Tom continues his reign as Suncoast Diecasters‘ Viscount of VWs with this purchase from BTM. This is the Volkswagen 1500 Saloon, (No. 15), a limited model in production only from 1968 through 1972. He paired it with a custom re-paint by Jim in the form of a candy-apple red Ice Cream Truck.

Note Jim's rustic hand-hewn lettering.

Note Jim’s rustic hand-hewn lettering.

Original Ken was RAOK’d via BTM using this custom edition of Jaded. This one features an illustration of that incredibly popular and very well-known DC superhero who developed bird-like superpowers after getting bitten by a radioactive raven, and who was advised by an old man, Remember, if you ever get superpowers, you should probably use it to do some good, instead of not doin’ some good.

In this scene, he's battling ... I don't know, Godzilla, I guess.

In this scene, he’s battling … I don’t know, Godzilla, I guess.

(Ahem) It reads: ‘From a time when nearly all businesses depended upon these versatile small commercials to deliver a variety of goods throughout the country.”

Please read along silently, as I type aloud.

Please read along silently, as I type aloud.

And just what is it delivering?

Garbage!

Garbage!

Courtesy Emergency Back-up Ken, this is the Scammell refuse lorry, a 1:76-scale three-wheeler from Oxford Diecast. Of course, it does not deliver garbage. It collects waste material from the residence or office, and carries it to a waste handling and processing center. Which … is … in actuality, delivering something from point A to point B. So, yeah, this thing really does deliver garbage!

Honestly, I don't know why you were giving me such a hard time about it.

Honestly, I don’t know why you were giving me such a hard time about it.

For its recognition and celebration of mundane workhorse vehicles, its well-sculpted detail, and for simply being a really good-looking model, I declare the Scammell refuse lorry to be Suncoast DiecastersFind of the Month(*) for November 2017.

Congratulations, EBU Ken!

Congratulations, EBU Ken!

See you at our December meeting!

~WM

October 2017

Our October update is published with yet a wee bit of October left! Let us dance and cavort!

Before moving on (by which I mean, scrolling down), I’d appreciate it if you’d take a moment to peruse our new page in which Your Humble Webmaster engages in a little self-marketing.

Okay, now we can move on to the photos!

October 2017

This is our first meeting after Hurricane Irma. (As you may recall, our September meeting was cancelled on account of that cacophonous countess.) I wasn’t sure whether it be dour or joyful. Turns out it was, in the words of Star Lord, “a bit of both.”

Dour in the sense that precious little trading occurred. In fact, the only trade that happened was this RAOK from me to Tom, our well-established and long-enthroned Viscount of VWs. Upon reflection, dour is a wholly inaccurate word, as this gift was warmly and readily received with great appreciation. So, joyful is the better word here. (Take that, bit of both!)

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Beyond that, it was a meeting in which friends who hadn’t seen each other in two months just relaxed, talked, gabbed, and basically reconnected. And that’s always joyful.

See you at our Novemb — Aw, heck, I forgot to buy a red tractor! Anyway, see you at our November meeting!

~WM