Category Archives: 1:50

News from the Continent August/September 2017 – Conrad

By Hans – Georg Schmitt

All photographs supplied by, and copyright of, Conrad.

Conrad produce commercial vehicles and construction equipment diecast in Germany to 1:50 scale. The images shown below are of models that they intend to release this Autumn.

Art.No. 1615/03 MAN TGE Box van


Art.No. 2116/02 TEREX 3160 Challenger Mobile crane “Felbermayr”
Art.No. 2206/0 Liebherr R920 Compact tracked excavator with monobloc jib
Art.No. 77165/02 MAN TGS M Euro 6 tipper with loading crane


Art.No. 77217/02 MAN TGS M 3axle Euro 6 Meiller roll on/roll off dumper “COLAS” –
Art.No. 2519/02 Vögele Super 800-3i tracked surfacelayer – “COLAS”

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News from the Continent – Conrad June/July 2017

By Hans Georg-Schmitt

All photographs supplied by Conrad, and their copyright is recognised.

Conrad plan to release the following new models by July 2017. All are diecast and to 1:50 scale for Germany. Conrad are well known for their high quality construction equipment in authentic liveries. Most of the models shown are new liveries and fitments on previously used castings.

2107/08 DEMAG AC 100-4L Telescopic crane – WIESBAUER

2114/03 GROVE GMK 6300 L All-Terrain Crane including jib extension – Felbermayr


2202/07  CASE CX 250D tracked excavator – Case Livery


76230/01 NOOTEBOOM articulated low loader on MAN TGX XXL Euro 6 2-axle tractor


2968/01 POCLAIN TY2P with jig


2441/02 SANDVIC tunnel loader LH 621

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Catalog Corner: Tekno Part II

by Karl Schnelle

Part II of this series focuses on the more unusual Tekno catalogs:   from France, Japan, and Holland.  Maybe they are not so much unusual but just different from the normal catalogs shown in Part I.

As in Part I, most of these catalogs have no dates listed, so their dates are approximated based on the newest models shown.


I have seen three leaflets from France, all printed in blue or black ink. All three were produced by Solido, because they had a marketing and production agreement with Tekno.  In fact, the regular Solido catalogs (in French) from 1966-71 had 3-5 pages each of Tekno models.  The 1972 catalog did not, so perhaps their agreement ended in 1971.

Around 1962, this 1-page, black & white sheet came out from Solivac, the parent company of Solido.  Click image below for larger version.

Then, in 1964 or 65, this blue and black printed sheet came out.  The Solido and Tekno names were shown in equal proportions this time.

A year later or so (65 or 66), this blue and black tri-fold page came out in French with no mention of Solido. Notice that the traditional Tekno script has been changed, and they are now refereed to as marvelous Danish miniatures!


I assume the Japanese importer produced these catalogs.   From 1964-65, the next catalog is a completely different size and color than any other Tekno catalogs.  It is only 4 pages and measures 26cm x 18cm.

Next up is a smaller multi-fold brochure from 1971 that resembles some of the colors that Kirk used (black background, close up photos, etc).  Kirk produced Tekno cars under Tekno and then Kirk brands for a while.  The front of the 16 pages shows a Toronado with black hood (bonnet), while the back shows a nice shot of a disassembled Mercedes bus!  Both of these were made by Kirk, in fact,

Finally, the regular 1968-69 catalog has been seen with Japanese characters.   Were the other newer catalogs also translated into Japanese?  The cover is identical to the one in Part I.  [Photo credits: Tom Eitnier]


 After Tekno Denmark went out of business, Tekno Holland bought out the name and some of the models and started operations again in 1974.   Living in Copenhagen in 1981, I went to every toy store I could find to see if they had any Danish old stock left.  In one former toy store that was completely empty, there  was this sticker still on the window.  “Tekno Again” announced that Teknos were being sold again in Denmark after an hiatus of 2 years.  The dimensions of the sticker are  exactly the same as the previous three catalogs.

Just to finish the story, a  few years later, this multi-fold catalog was included in Tekno boxes from Holland.  The same Tekno Holland orange is used! The front and back are shown below.

This brings us to the end of my catalog story.  As a keen collector, I am still searching for more examples of Tekno Denmark catalogs. I am sure there are more out there somewhere!

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Catalog Corner: Tekno Part I

by Karl Schnelle

A year ago, we published Catalog Corner: Marklin RAK, so it is about time for another!  This time, Karl’s Katalog Korner will be about Tekno, mostly from Denmark.   Part II will mention Tekno Holland. Even though Tekno started pre-war in Copenhagen, my catalogs only go back to the late 1950s.  Let us know if you have any earlier ones!  I also have seen a few other catalogs pictured online so I know there are more out there than what are shown here.  See for example

The Royal Library in Denmark has 2 remarkable catalogs, from 1940 and 1958.  I have never seen them for sale.   The blue 1940 has construction kits, doll furniture, and wooden toys, but only the last few pages have vehicles: tinplate fire trucks and a tinplate ambulance plane. The tall, skinny red calalog from 1958 has many diecast cars and trucks but is from 18 years later!

The red one is also on this Danish site, along with a larger dealers catalog (undated) in a red binder, but only the cover is shown.

Tekno made a lot of engineering or construction sets (like Meccano) – their catalogs and instruction manuals are not included in this review.


The first two catalog sheets are dated by the models shown on them, so 1956 is just an estimate.  (Click on all images for larger versions.) They are both large two-sided, single sheets that fold up to small rectangles (the middle section with the blue Thunderbird).    This one is in English.


Because this one has the new Ford Taunus van, I dated it to 1957 when that van was introduced by Tekno.   It’s the same size as the previous one but easy to tell the difference by the color of the car in the middle; a green Thunderbird.  This one is in French, so I assume that these 2 sheets came in multiple languages each.


These next two are other early catalogs that I have and are very similar to each other but much smaller than the previous two.  Really they are just 4-section foldouts with the back being a pricelist and the middle drawings of more cars with their reference numbers.  The one on the left has English/French/German text inside (no prices), but the one on the right is for the Swedish market (with prices in Swedish krona).   The three trucks on the right are also Swedish versions of more common Teknos. The catalogs are dated to around 1958 or 59 by the newest cars pictured inside.


The next three catalogs are the same size as the previous (10 cm x 15.5 cm) but are now in booklet form.  They are again dated by when the newest cars illustrated were released. They are easy to put in order because they have numbers circled on the top right of the cover.  From what I have gathered, these are not catalog numbers (if so, where are 1 to 24?) but are the price in Danish øre (100 øre per kroner).

This catalog has a collector’s name stamped on it, I think, as opposed to the more common dealer or store stamp (see the 2nd catalog above).   The Scania-Vabis fire truck is a beautiful example of their work in the 1960s.  I also love the different versions of the Mercedes-Benz ambulance:  black Falck ambulance and black/red fire department ambulance.  The yellow metal flag is sitting in a hole on the roof and is usually missing now-a-days, if you can find one at all.


The following year (more or less) saw the same format but with different cars and trucks on the cover.  Plus, price increased to 30 øre.  The Scania-Vabis excavator is pictured in the common colors it came in, but the two Mercedes-Benz 300 SLs are much brighter and more colorful than any Tekno I have seen.

The bar at the bottom of the cover changes to yellow background, where symbols for features are described in six languages: suspension, steering, and interior seats!  [Ed. Note:  Date was corrected to 1963 per Peter Frandsen.]


The third in this little series again has a Scania-Vabis truck plus a car on the cover.  The front and back cover are shown above. Price goes up to 35 øre, and seven languages are now on the yellow bar!

The back of my copy (with six airplanes) is stamped Schuco Toy Company Inc, New York, – an interesting connection!


Tekno modernized in 1968 by going to color photography and adding a date to their catalogs.  Two Ford D-800 dump trucks are featured as well as two very serious-looking Danish kids.    A newer Mustang and Monza are shown (opening features not shown!).  The older Scania-Vabis Esso tanker is shown in the background as well as half an old beetle on the left.  The size increases to 20 cm x 15 cm, as well, for this one, as well as the next two.


These three larger catalogs all have two years printed on their covers – perhaps they were made for the Christmas season which was always huge for Tekno.  In any case, 70-71 was very hard to find years ago but now seems to be just as common as the other two on current auction sites.  On the cover is another kid who is playing with the Scania CR-76 bus.  Lots of play value was included with this bus:  opening doors, steering, and driver!   Even as a kid, I always liked the skylights so you could peek in and see the seats and full interior!  I never had this catalog as a kid, but I did have the bus!


I did find a few of these catalogs as a kid, in two toy stores on the Walking Street in Copenhagen in 1972.   The Ford D-800 appears again but with cargo bed this time.  The rear sides fold down, as well as the rear tailgate.  The rear bed is all plastic but adds lots of play value.  Doors open and cab tips up, but this is not shown in the cover photo.

These are all the common catalogs I have seen.  In Part II (coming soon), we will explore the Japanese, French, and Dutch connections.

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Find them on

News from the Continent January 2017 – Conrad

By Hans-Georg Schmitt

Images of the models supplied by the Manufacturers.

The latest releases from Conrad are shown below. They are all diecast to 1:50 Scale.

#2767/0 SANDVIK Dumper TH663


#77181/07 MAN TGS Euro & MEILLER 3-axles Three-sided-tipper


#2116/0 TEREX 3160 Challenger Mobile crane


#99919/01 CONRAD Extra – Load set ballast set RAL 1007

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New Historic Greyhound Bus Models

By John Quilter


Two different model makers have recently introduced 1:50th scale models of historic Greyhound buses. The 50th scale is a common collector’s scale for commercial vehicles and buses. Corgi, based in the UK, have over the past decades made a number or American and English buses and coaches in this scale and a company known as Royal Coach also make and distribute a number of buses in this scale.

The subjects of this article are a pair of historic Greyhound buses. The earliest one is a 1931 Mack Parlor Coach which was commonly used by Greyhound during the 1930s. This is a front engine bus with a wheelbase of about 219 inches and an overall length of about 394 inches or just over 32 feet. One interesting feature of this bus is a grilled rear in the style of the rear of the observation vestibule of passenger rail cars of the era. While styled in the idiom there was no access from the inside of the bus and the space was often used simply to store a pair of spare tires.

The model has two rectangular signs one of which says, San Francisco New York Express. Above this rear feature is a ladder to the rear of the roof that served as baggage storage. This was long before the later development of underfloor baggage space. All the passenger windows have drapes. The passenger capacity appears to be 26 with mostly forward facing seats except for the rear most area where there are eight seats facing each other.

The model shows two large domed cylinder like features just in front of the radiator which are air shock absorbers that in smaller versions were also sometimes seen on passenger cars in this period. There are two large low mounted headlamps and a spot light on the driver’s side roof pillar. A pair of chrome horn and a pair of running lamps adorn the forward part of the roof. Long before the era of air-conditioning the roof has eight louvered vents for ventilation. The model has nicely printed signs some of which show a selection of cities that Greyhound served San Francisco, Los Angeles, Denver, Omaha, Kansas City, St Louis, Chicago, Cleveland, Pittsburg, Philadelphia and New York. And of course, there are multiple examples of the Greyhound symbol, the running dog. A transcontinental trip in one of these Parlor Coaches must have been quite a scenic adventure in the early 1930s. The undercarriage shows some detail of what appears to be standard truck based design with a front engine, half elliptic springs, a long propshaft and even longer exhaust system. The Greyhound maintains a restored version of this Mack bus in their museum fleet of historic buses, this being the earliest bus in their collection. The power plant on Greyhound’s Macks was a six cylinder gasoline (petrol) engine of 126 horsepower which Mack advertised as the most powerful bus in America. Reports also indicate that at least one experimental bus was tested with a Cummins diesel. During this era White, Faegol, Yellow Coach (a GM subsidiary), and ACF built intercity buses which all were of quite similar design. Because these, and the Mack, did not have underfloor baggage storage all were relatively low compared to later designs and the Mack used an innovative hypoid bevel drive differential that made it possible for the lower floor. Exterior and interior was aluminum paneling over white ash wood framing.

This attractive scale model is a product of Iconic Replicas www. Its design is done in the USA but the model is a product of China.


Now, jumping a more than a full decade to 1945 and an ACF Brill IC-41 bus which was produced from 1945 to 1950 during which time 1374 were built to supplement the Greyhound fleet that at the time was using many GM built Yellow 743 rear engine diesel buses and the later GM PD-3751 often known as the Silversides for its fluted aluminum flanks. Continuing with their earlier experience, the ACF Brill continued to use a gasoline Hall Scott six cylinder engine laying over on its side pancake style and mounted mid chassis under the floor for this 37 passenger coach. It was first offered with a 190-2 engine and later a 190-5 which also drove the optional air-conditioning system. Gearboxes were four speed Spicer units. Minor styling changes took place on these buses from an early 1946-47 version with a small upright “grill” in front to a wider horizontal barred grill to a still wider almost full width barred grill in 1948 to the 1951 model with no grill. Some buses had plain painted metal sides and others had the aluminum fluted sides. Finally in March 1952, a Cummins NHHB-600 four cycle diesel was made available. ACF Brilll owned Hall Scott so this was a deviation from their in-house engine. An interesting feature of his bus was the entry behind the right front wheel which allowed two seats in the very front opposite the driver which must have been quite desirable for those wanting the best view of the road ahead. Common users of these postwar Brills were Greyhound and Trailways but other operators were customers as well.

The model of this bus is a 1948 version, in Southeast Greyhound livery. Again in 1:50th scale this replica is a product of American Heritage Models at

This Chinese made replica features accurate but delicate photoetched windscreen wipers, chrome grill and bumpers, fluted aluminum sides with a white top. The running dog logo is now much larger and prominently displayed on the flanks. Undercarriage detail is minimal except for an exhaust pipe. The Southeastern livery comes with many different destination signs to cater to markets in cities such as, Memphis, Miami, Mobile, Nashville, New Orleans, Savannah, Tallahassee, Tampa and others. Pick your favourite city. Also offered are versions in two different Trailways liveries.

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News from the Continent – Conrad Summer 2016

By Hans-Georg Schmitt


These are special models announced by Conrad and expected over the summer months. All are diecast to 1:50 scale unless otherwise stated.

18704 Conrad 2946_02_Liebherr_A920_2016-Bieber

2946/02 Liebherr A 920

Hydraulic excavator with bucket and grader blade in the livery of Georg Bieber

18705 Conrad 2107-06 TEREX AC100-4L_MERKEL_web

2107/06 Terex AC100/4L

Telescopic crane in Merkel livery.

18706 Conrad 2941_02_Liebherr_R9100_

2941/02 Liebherr R9100

Tracked excavator with Bucket

18707 Conrad 75156-98004 MAN TGS Abrollcontainer und Tieflader_WÖRMANN_web

75156/0-98004 MAN TGS 3-axle Euro 5

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Nacoral vs. Tekno – a Volvo FB89 comparison

by Karl Schnelle

In my last post, I talked about the first Tekno car; now I would like to discuss the last Tekno truck!  Volvo came out with their 3-axle FB 88 heavy truck in 1965 and Tekno’s version appeared in their 1968-69 catalog as new and with a photo of the real double-truck (3-axle truck + 2-axle trailer).   Their 1970-71 and 1971-72 catalogs  showed the actual toy in 2 versions: ASG transport-spedition and transport-spedition.

However, in 1972 a larger 12 liter turbodiesel engine was introduced by Volvo, easily distinguished by its wider black radiator – this was called the FB 89.   The same year in August, Tekno Denmark was declared bankrupt and sadly out of business, so the FB 89 never made it into a catalog.    This version must have been made for only a few months so could be the very last Tekno truck from Denmark!

I have had a #425 Tekno FB 89 for many years and have heard rumors that Nacoral of Spain copied Tekno’s.  So I recently acquired a copy to do the face-to-face comparison.  Volvo ended the series in 1977 so I assume the two companies made their 1:50 versions around the same time frame.  The orange Nacoral is on the left (below) and the blue Tekno on the right.

Volvo FB89 f

The front of the cabs show that the Nacoral has slightly smaller windows and an air intake behind the cab.  This version of the Tekno has a signboard (other versions did not).  The front bumper design is very different as well.  Both cabs tip to reveal the big engine.

The doors of the Nacoral have window frames – more delicate and nicer than the Tekno, I think.  the canopy is plastic (Tekno’s is tinplate).

Nacoral Volvo FB89

The Tekno has the nice paint job and decals of a real Swedish transport company, ASG.  This same version as well as plain ones was released by Tekno Holland and shown in their 77/78 catalog.  So The Dutch did acquire the Danish molds for this truck and trailer.

Tekno Volvo FB89

Like the front, the rear ends are different.  The rear lights on the Nacoral are plastic lenses, not decals.  The design details of the entire rear are different as well. Both have a tow hook for the trailer that both also made to go with the truck.

Volvo FB89 b

Finally the undersides reveal several similarities and differences.  The truck frames are similar but not identical with plastic parts hanging off on different sides.  The Tekno has sophisticated steering while the Nacoral is much simplified with a plain front axle.   The printing on the cab is in the same location and the rear suspension is the same design.

Tekno Nacoral Volvos

Everything so far could be accounted for by two companies making a good quality 1:50 scale toy of the same truck – similarities in the toy design are bound to happen when the prototype is the same thing.  However, if you look at the mechanism that hold the rear axle up (not needed when the truck has no load), that extra play feature looks identical.   The Tekno has the sliding bar engaged; the Nacoral has the axle free and the bar slid to the right.

In conclusion, I think that Nacoral took the Tekno design as inspiration and improved it (window frames, more detailed front and rear bumpers, etc) but liked the sliding axle mechanism and kept that design exactly as-is.  Tekno had it on their FB 88 since 1968, while Nacoral probably introduced theirs around 1973 (source:  That’s just my opinion; what do you think?

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Conrad Christmas 2015

By Hans-Georg Schmitt

Conrad issued two Christmas specials in liveries from well-known operators. These complicated and large diecast models of construction equipment is made to 1:50 scale.


2744/04  Terex Superlift 3800 tracked crane

This version of this large crane is in the livery of Franz Bracht a crane hire company based in Erwitte whose yellow coloured equipment is used on large construction projects.
17890 Conrad 2744

2100/43  Liebherr LTM 1070-4.1 Auto crane

Here we have the impressive 8 wheeled mobile crane in the livery of Regel. Albert Regel is a German company based in the Kassel area which is marked on the side of the blue, yellow and white liveried vehicle.
17891 Conrad 2100

Ford in Miniature – The Lincoln Zephyr

The First Genuinely Successful Car of The Modern Age.

By Dave Turner

Previously exclusively producers of very high priced top-end motors, Lincoln realised in the early 1930s that the economic situation would make things almost impossible for them and other manufacturers in the same high-end sector. A mid-range offering was essential if Lincoln was to survive.

As a first step, the Sterkenberg is often quoted and this was a styling/design exercise dreamed up by John Tjaarda based on aero industry construction techniques. Briggs, Lincoln’s main body supplier managed to interest Edsel Ford in the whole concept, no doubt as a means of stemming the decline in demand that was already being experienced. Several more prototypes followed, some front and some rear engined, but traditionalist Henry Ford made sure that the engine was going to be at the front as well as insisting on transverse springs and mechanical brakes.

A relatively short front end dictated the use of a correspondingly short engine, and so a new V12 of 267 cubic inches capacity was featured when the new ‘streamlined’ Zephyr appeared in November 1934 for the 1935 season. Compared to contemporary styling the new Lincoln must have looked as if it came from outer space, with its ‘V’ shaped front end and faired-in headlights and not a sharp edge in sight. Initially just two and four door Sedans were available and rather strangely the trunk accommodated only the spare wheel, luggage being stowed behind the folding rear seat.

A three passenger coupe and a town limousine were added to the range for 1937, and a more practical trunk and spare wheel arrangement was adopted. 1937 Zephyrs can be identified by the four sets of twin plated bars on the grille. For 1938 convertible sedans and coupes were added, at the same time an additional three inches was added which took the wheelbase to 125” while a split grille of fine horizontal bars made identifying the 1938 model easy. Hydraulic brakes arrived in 1939 whilst the fine bars in the two-part grille were now vertical, the central section of the front bumper was now open and the body sides curved out to hide the running boards. The latter disappeared altogether for 1940 when the headlights became sealed beam and thus vertical rather than sloped, the windows and trunk were also enlarged, as was the engine, to 292 cubic inches. The convertible sedan was dropped but a new five seat club coupe was added to the range.

A fine plated border to the two-part grille appeared for 1941 together with small combined parking and direction lamps which were now mounted on top of the front fenders. The 1942 season was cut short in February by world events but styling of that years Zephyr was considerably changed by squaring up the fenders, fitting a heavier grille and enlarging the engine, yet again to 305 cubic inches. When production resumed for 1946, the engine reverted to 292 cubic inches in size while the appearance was changed by the adoption of a rather Cadillac-esque grille. The Zephyr name was dropped, the range being simply Lincoln. Identifying 1947 and 1948 cars is simple since they had Lincoln script on the side of the hood in place of the previous plated strip and the return to pull-out type exterior door handles. Production of the erstwhile Zephyr terminated in January 1948 in anticipation of the significantly different 1949 cars.

As the first Lincoln Zephyr was such an eye-catching design, contemporary toy makers inevitably featured them in their product line. A few toys were even based on the prototype Doodlebug and in some cases were subsequently turned into actual early Zephyrs, the diecast Tootsietoy for example. Their actual Zephyr initially came as a four door sedan or as a wrecker with a crude crane mounted at the rear. Hubley produced cast iron Doodlebugs and Zephyrs during the later 1930s while another US name from the past, Erie offered two sizes of toy four door Zephyrs.   in New Zealand began their range of sandcast aluminium toys with a four door Zephyr in 1944, although it was the shortest lived of their range lasting just one year.

Kingsbury made pressed steel toys and included a two door Zephyr that came with a caravan although the distinctive fenders on the real car were simplified beyond recognition. The only modern day 1936 miniature Zephyr so far recorded came from the National Motor Museum Mint Range, and was a 1:32 four door sedan with opening hood and front doors that reveal some basic plastic interior and engine detail. The model sits rather low on a chassis that features extremely low profile white wall tyres and incorrect longitudinal springs rather than transverse.

Moving to 1937, just two examples have been recorded to date, a toy clockwork plastic bodied four door sedan was offered by Wells Brimtoy, steered by a lever below the grille. Unfortunately the tinplate base doesn’t shrink with age to keep pace with the body, the latter having lost over 8mm on the example to hand. At the other end of the extreme, a superb 1:18 model of the new for 1937 Zephyr Coupe from Ertl Precision 100 made its appearance in 2002 and despite the passing of nearly 12 years, its quality and accuracy has still been equalled by very few models. In fact the days when the Chinese made models to this quality and detail, at a price one could afford have gone and will probably not return. Everything opens that should, even the vent in front of the windscreen. The spare wheel tilts in the trunk behind which is a tool roll full of tools and there is even a key in the ignition! Contemporary model reviewers were ecstatic but forecast even then that such quality could not be continued.

The Arcade cast iron 1938 Zephyr four door sedan must be among their final toys as production ceased with World War Two and it’s price today reflects this. The next miniature 1938 Zephyr didn’t arrive until 1989 when Durham Classics created just 200 handbuilt models of the three passenger coupe for the Toronto Toy Show. This subsequently became a regular model and was eventually reworked to produce models of the convertible coupe. Detail on these is rather limited, even inside the re-worked convertible. Next along came Matchbox with another convertible coupe in the Great Marques sub-series of their Models of Yesteryear range. Unlike the Durham these are diecast, the plastic interior offering more detail that featured variations in the painted detail applied in subsequent issues. The most pleasing model 1938 came from Brooklin in 2004, their cannon smoke metallic painted four door sedan comes up to their well-established standard of accuracy and finish, and of course being a sedan made a welcome change from all the recent more ‘exotic’ convertibles that latter day model makers seem to prefer. Not only has there been a kiddies pedal car by Steelcraft based on a 1938 Zephyr, but Hallmark produced some die cast miniatures of it.

Models of cars from the Tin Tin stories have offered some interesting subjects, another 1938 Zephyr convertible coupe was featured in the Seven Crystal Balls story as the car of Captain Haddock, and while not pretending to be a scale model the Atlas Editions miniature has much appeal. Moving on to 1939 and we have to thank the Yatming range from China for a pair of very nice convertible coupes. To stand alongside the superb Precision 100 1937 there is the Road Signature 1:18 scale model, obviously less expensive than the Ertl and with less fine detail but very nice nonetheless. It came with a choice of top up, or a cover for the top when down, whilst a range called Fairfield Mint had them produced in a different colour and re-packaged. Obviously employing the same background work, this big model has a little brother in the shape of a 1:32 scale version of the same subject, available with the top up or with the top down. Commendably this boasts all opening parts and steerable front wheels.

Another 1939 Zephyr model has been recorded under the Marty Martino label but the author has never seen one. These are said to be highly detailed aluminium 1:6 scale models, and sound intriguing. 1940 Zephyrs received a plated surround to the twin grilles, and as such theDinky example falls into this category. This was probably the first toy car I received back in the 1940s, a claim that will be familiar with many other current and long since abandoned “collectors”. This depicted the rakish three passenger coupe and must have inspired many young enthusiasts to become life-long admirers of cars in general, and the more stylish in particular. Many years ago the opportunity was taken to acquire what was advertised as the prototype of the Buccaneer model Zephyr and this turned out to be the Dinky body together with a base plate built up in brass inscribed simply “Buccaneer 1937 Lincoln Zephyr”. If the body was intended to be substantially modified at the front to create a ’37 was not known, but illustrations of an actual Buccaneer model show the Dinky 1940 details plain and simple.

A range that enjoys the title Essence of the Car depicts well known motoring subjects as a simple but recognisable solid shape, one of these represents a Zephyr, the exact identity of which is probably not intended but appears closer to a 1941 three passenger coupe than any other. New for 1940 were the sealed beam headlights which were still enclosed behind the teardrop shaped rims but for 1941 the headlight outline was now circular and vertical rather than smoothed into the curve of the front fender. Styling got a significant change for the short lived 1942 season with the rather heavy looking full width sub-grille surmounted by a shallow vertical section. A 1:25 scale resin kit for a two door coupe version was produced in the US byGuy Cantwell in the 1980s while just twenty examples of a slush cast miniature of the same subject were made by Steve Lovan of St. Louis. The latter were illustrated in MAR 76.

A contemporary toy of the 1946 Lincoln came from the Auburn Rubber company in the US, depicting the convertible coupe in open form. Of chunky and robust build they were claimed to be soft and non-damaging to furniture etc., however with age they will now be quite hard. Some examples featured round headlights while for some reason others had rectangular shaped lights. Another very early toy 1946 Convertible Coupe came from Mercury in Italy, and while the Auburn’s rubber content hardens with age, the Mercury diecast material simply disintegrates and the delicate windscreen and side window frames will be lucky to have survived. Much later, and hopefully more resistant to time, are the trio of handbuilt 1948s from now defunct and much missed Western Models in the UK who offered four door sedan, club coupe and convertible versions. Despite the technology of their white metal model cars going back to the days of chunky plated parts and bright strips being created by simply scraping the paint away, they do have undeniable appeal. It appears that they have re-located to Israel and now concentrate on aircraft models.

Photographs below include:

1. Matchbox 1:43 diecast from UK: YY64, 1938 Convertible


2. Tootsie diecast from USA: 6015, 1936 Four Door Sedan.


3. Unknown tinplate from USA: Prototype.


4. Erie 1:37 diecast from USA: 1936 Four Door Sedan.


5. Wells Brimtoy 1:34 plastic/tin from UK: 9/43, 1937 Four Door Sedan with clockwork motor and shrunken plastic body.


6. Erie 1:58 diecast from USA: 1936 Four Door Sedan.


7. Signature 1:19 diecast from China: 102, 1939 Convertible shown with top fitted.


8. Dinky 1:50 diecast from UK: 39c, 1940 Coupe.


9. Matchbox 1:43 diecast from UK: YY64 1938 Convertible rear.


10. Brooklin 1:42 handbuilt from UK: 106, 1938 Four Door Sedan.


11. Steelcraft 1:5 pedal car from USA: 1938 Convertible in front of a real ’37.


12. Western 1:43 handbuilt from UK : 83, 1948 Four Door Sedan.


13. Auburn 1:46 rubber from USA: A17, 1946 Convertible.


14. Mercury 1:43 diecast from Italy: 5, 1946 Convertible, showing part of the windscreen frame missing.


15. Ertl/Precision 100 1:17 diecast from China: 32890 1937 Coupe


16. Nation Motor Museum Mint 1:31 diecast from China: 23600 1936 Four Door Sedan


17. Signature 1:34 diecast from China: 32333 1939 Convertible


18. Western 1:42 handbuilt from UK: 105 1948 Club Coupe


19. Western 1:42 handbuilt from UK: 83 1948 Four Door Sedan


20. Western 1:42 handbuilt from UK: 109 1948 Convertible


21. Durham Classics 1:44 handbuilt from Canada: 4, 1938 Coupe, CTCA first issue.


22. Auburn 1:46 rubber from USA: A17 1946 Convertible


23. Atlas Editions 1:48 diecast from China: 12, 1938 Convertible from the Tin Tin Collection.


24. Buccaneer 1:50 kit prototype from UK: 1940 Coupe, Dinky Toy body fitted with brass base for the kit



Lincoln Zephyr

Fun Ho NZ 1944-45 108 Four Door Sedan 180mm 1:29 Sandcast Aluminium
NMMM China 2006 23600 Four Door Sedan 165mm 1:31 Diecast/Plastic
Erie USA 1930s Four Door Sedan 140mm 1:37 Diecast
Erie USA 1930s Four Door Sedan 88mm 1:58 Diecast
Tootsie USA 1937-8 6016 Four Door Sedan Tow Truck Diecast
Tootsie USA 1937-9 6015 Four Door Sedan Diecast
Hubley USA 1937 Two Door Sedan 150mm 1:34 Diecast
Kingsbury USA 1939 Two Door Sedan Steel

1937 Models

Brimtoy UK 1949 9/43 Four Door Sedan clockwork 152mm 1:34 Plastic and tin
Ertl/Precision 100 China 2002 32890 Coupe 295mm 1:17 Diecast/Plastic
Autoworld China 205 Cuoupe – Pepsi Cola livery 295mm 1:17 Diecast/Plastic

1938 Models

Arcade USA 1930s /40s Four Door Sedan 216mm 1:24 Cast Iron
Arcade USA 1930s/40s 1590 Four Door Sedan Yellow Cab 216mm 1:24 Cast Iron
Matchbox UK 1992-6 YY64 Convertible 123mm 1:43 Diecast/Plastic
Durham Classics Canada 1989 4 Coupe 120mm 1:44 Metal
Durham Classics Canada 1991 8 Convertible Closed 120mm 1:44 Metal
Durham Classics Canada 1991 9 Convertible Open 120mm 1:44 Metal
Atlas Editions France 2002 12 Convertible “Tin Tin” 110mm 1:48 Diecast
Brooklin UK 2004 106 Four Doord Sedan 127mm 1:42 metal
Steelcraft USA Pedal Car 40 inches 1:5 Steel
Hallmark China Pedal Car 102mm 1:9 Diecast

1939 Models

Marty Martino USA Coupe 1:6 Aluminium
Yatming China 2004 102 Convertible Signature 282mm 1:19 Diecast/Plastic
Fairfield China Convertible as above repacked 282mm 1:19 Diecast/Plastic
Yatming China 2008 32333 Convertible Signature 156mm 1:34 Diecast/Plastic

1940 Models

Hubley USA 2237 Cast Iron
Dinky UK 1939-50 9c Coupe 106mm 1:50 Diecast
Buccanner UK Coupe Repro of Dinky 106mm 1:50 Diecast

1942 Models

Cantwell USA 1980s Coupe 1:25 Resin Kit
St Louis USA 1992 Coupe 1:43 Slushcast

1946 Models

Mercury Italy 1950 5 Convertible 126mm 1:43 Diecast
Auburn USA 1950s A17 Convertible 119mm 1:46 Rubber

1948 Models

Western UK 1990s 83 Four Door Sedan 131mm 1:42 Metal
Western UK 2000 105 Club Coupe 131mm 1:42 Metal
Western UK 2000 109 Convertible 131mm 1:42 Metal

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