January '08 News
1/30/08 - Pretty in Pink
In May of last year, Huw Eastwood of
Wales shared images of his work-in-progress as he crafted a die-cast Pink
Panther custom car from scratch. Huw recently sent me an e-mail with
an update. Check out the pics above. Wow, very impressive!
Here is what Huw had to say:
"The basic model is a solid casting with applied vinyl stickers for the
windows and just basic engine-top detail cast insitu. The one with the
opening/closing side door is a one-off version of the solid casting, on
which I machined the back out and fabricated the door in brass- The tiny
door hinge pins are 1.2mm diameter !!!! It's also got a recessed engine
bay with brass engine -top detail. This extra work on the super-spec
version took about 100 hours on top of casting the basic 'solid' model."
"If I could get Cragar style wheels in a smaller 9mm size I would fit
all the cars with them, but unfortunately they are always over 10mm
diameter and Johnny Lightning cars are very limited in the UK. Most JLs
are rubber tyred so the diameter cannot be reduced at all, so the solid
plastic ones I used on the 'super-spec' car with the opening door were a
very lucky find, and I managed to turn them down to 9mm diameter to a snug
fit on the Panthermobile."
1/30/08 - Congratulations!
Congratulations go out to legendary
custom car builder/designer/collector Jay Ohrberg who was inducted into the
Grand National Roadster Show Hall of Fame on January 26th. Jay has
designed and built many custom cars throughout his distinguished career,
including many cars that have been featured in films and on television.
WEBSITE to learn more about this legend.
1/27/08 - Trade Bait
I got these cars pictured above in the
mail on Saturday after completing my first trade in the
Toys Forum. I found some extra Dinoco Mia & Tia sets at Target
and traded with a very nice woman from Illinois. I'm hoping to get two
more cars (Tow & Not Chuck) this week in another trade. If that trade
goes through without a hitch, all I'll need to complete my collection is
Flik & P.T. Flea Movie Moments and the three-pack with gold Mia & Tia.
I got the cars from my second trade this week. This sure is better
than driving store to store. These pics have been added to the
- Sneak Peek
I spotted these photos online.
Here's a nice little sneak peek of some of the vehicles to expect throughout
the year in Mattel's Cars line. Pictured at left is Dudley
Spare, which is Octain Gain's "pitty." From what I've seen, it looks
like all of the pitty characters will be based on Not Chuck, with that same
angry look on his face, even though the photo on the card looks completely
different. I found these photos
1/23/08 - Today's Finds
Once upon a time (May 2006 to be
exact) Mattel released four playsets in conjunction with the first wave of
die-cast Cars. Flo's V8 Cafe was the largest and arguably the
most popular. The other three, The Curio Shop, Casa Della Tires and
Ramone's House of Body Art were fun, but languished on toy store shelves for
awhile before they eventually disappeared. Not too long after
vanishing, I noticed prices for the playsets began to soar on eBay.
Flo's consistently reached well over $100 with the Curio Shop close behind.
Luckily for me I had picked up Flo's to photograph for my website, but I
regretted having never picked up the other three sets. Well, Toys R Us
surprised collectors in August of 2007 by releasing Flo's V8 Cafe as an
exclusive. They must've sold well, because TRU decided to offer all
four playsets. Today, while making my usual toy rounds, I found two of
the exclusives for the first time in my area. This time, I decided I
wasn't going to pass them up. Now I just need to find the TRU
exclusive version of Ramone's.
1/22/08 - Go Speed Racer!
Mattel has the license to produce toys
based on the upcoming Speed Racer film, including die-cast cars as
part of the Hot Wheels line. The Mach 5 is pictured above. Visit
Toy News International for more pics of upcoming Mattel toys from the
1/20/08 - Added to My
Having never seen these in stores, I
decided to go the eBay route to add the Hogwarts Express to my collection.
Made by Corgi it's 1:100 scale. Corgi also made Mr. Weasley's Ford
Anglia and The Knight Bus, but I feel the Hogwarts Express is the most
iconic vehicle in the Harry Potter films. All three have been
added to the Harry Potter gallery,
1/16/08 - Going Once,
I happen to catch some of the
Barrett-Jackson car auction on the Speed Channel. The auction takes
place January 12-20 in Scottsdale, Arizona and features some of the most
beautiful cars in the world. What I'm really looking forward to are
the auctions for a replica of the 1966 Batmobile (above), The Monkeemobile,
The Beverly Hillbillies truck, the Thunderbird convertible from
Thelma & Louise, and John Schneider's General Lee, the same car that was
auctioned off on eBay last year and ended up in a hoax when the winning
bidder didn't come through with his several-million-dollar bid. Click
for more info.
UPDATE: The Batmobile replica sold for a whopping $185,000
on Friday night!
UPDATE: The truck from The Beverly Hillbillies sold
for $125,000. The Thelma & Louise Thunderbird sold for
$65,000. The Monkeemobile sold for $360,000!!! The Miami Vice
Movie Boat sold for $175,000. John Schneider's General Lee went for
$450,000!!! Those are some pretty amazing figures! Check out
this video on
1/14/08 - Holy Hot Wheels,
Thanks goes out to Chris Davies who
passed along the photo at left of Mattel's upcoming line of 1:50 scale
Bat-Vehicles. I cannot WAIT to add these to my collection.
According to the website Entertainment Earth, these are expected to ship in
May at $54.99 for the set.
1/13/08 - Reel Rides - Act
I just saw the first report of the
second series of Reel Rides cars hitting Wal*Mart stores. "Rozy51"
posted pics (above) in the Hobby Talk forum. Pictured above are:
'81 Cadillac from Casino and blue and red Mini Coopers from The
Italian Job in 1:87 scale. According to a report released in May
of '07 the other cars scheduled to be included in this release are the
Delorean from Back to the Future, The Bluesmobile and KITT from
Knight Rider. I'll start looking for them this week and let you
know what I find.
1/12/08 - Dukes -
A big thanks goes out to Erik
McCartney who discovered the above pic of Johnny Lightning's fourth release
of cars from The Dukes of Hazzard. Pictured above are:
Uncle Jesse's Black Tilllie II ('67 Mustang), State Police Car, General Lee
(from the straight-to-DVD The Dukes of Hazzard: The Beginning), Bo
Duke's #44 Buick Grand National Race Car, Carnival of Thrills Chevy Vega and
Daisy's Plymouth Roadrunner Zinger.
UPDATE: Erik also sent me some info on Release 6 & 7.
Release 6 may contain General Lee (of course), County Police Car, Cooter's
Plymouth (above, left) and Rosco's Patrol Car Zinger. Release 7 may
contain Dirty General Lee, Dukes Monster Truck, Lucifer (above, center) and
Cooter's Pickup (above, right.) The above pics were found at
1/12/08 - "I'm going after
Here's an exciting bit of news.
Hasbro is planning all sorts of toys and figures to coincide with the May
2008 release of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
(whew, that's a mouthful.) The toys will reflect characters and
moments from all four Indiana Jones movies. I discovered online
that Hasbro's Titanium line will include die-cast vehicles from the films as
well. If that's not good enough for ya, how about a 1:64 scale
die-cast adventure PLAYSET??? I am really excited about this.
Hopefully, we'll get some pics from Toy Fair 2008 revealing which vehicles
will make up the first wave.
1/11/08 - Today's Find
I had the day off today, so I ran some
errands. While I was out running around I visited the hobby store I
had some luck at a month or so ago. My luck continued as I found a
lone Dinoco Mia & Tia Movie Moments 2-pack hanging on a peg. I still
haven't had any luck finding Race Official Tom or Pit Crew Guido yet.
1/08/08 - Camaro:
Then & Now
I saw this photo posted in the
HobbyTalk Forum by
www.1stopdiecast.com. Apparently, Jada is going one step further,
not only offering a Concept Camaro that resembles Bumblebee from
Transformers, but now offering a vintage Camaro that resembles Bumblebee
before his...um...transformation. Even though the Camaro pictured
above is an '81 Camaro and Bumblebee was a '77 Camaro.
1/06/08 - Fun with the
I picked up some HO scale cactus
(cacti?) on eBay to display alongside my Cars collection. After
painting the bases, they started to look pretty cool, so I took some diorama
pics for fun. I made the Route 66 sign from scratch. Cactus
McQueen, Sheriff and Doc Hudson are from the Dirt Track 3-car gift
UPDATE: I just completed this billboard, which was one of
the most frustrating and difficult things I've ever done. Everything
was so tiny and fragile. I bought the kit on eBay and had to paint it,
assemble it, and print the sign, but I think it turned out pretty nice:
1/03/08 - For you slot car
Making my usual toy rounds, I spotted
this at a local Toys R Us. Since there hasn't been much die-cast from
the Transformers movie, this is the next best thing. Barricade
takes on Bumblebee in this 1:64 scale slot car set. It was a little
out of my price range, but it sure was tempting. Visit the
Toys R Us website for more info.
1/1/07 - Happy New Year!
I just wanted to wish everyone a Happy
New Year and I'm looking forward to a great 2008. Would you believe this
website will be celebrating its FIFTH anniversary in February? In the
world of die-cast, there are some exciting things to look forward to.
Mattel's 1:18 scale '66 Batmobile should be arriving early in the year as
will RC2's General Lee as part of its 1:18 scale Authentics Line.
Speaking of General Lee, at least two more waves of 1:64 scale cars from
The Dukes of Hazzard have already been announced by Johnny Lightning and
I'm sure more are to follow. Click
HERE to get an
idea of what to expect from Mattel's Cars line in 2008. It's
fairly overwhelming. You may want to consider taking out a second
mortgage on your home. Also in 2008, Knight Rider returns to
the small screen. On the big screen we'll have The Dark Knight
and Speed Racer. And one my current favorite actors, Jason
Statham, is in production on Death Race. I don't know if it
will spawn any die-cast cars, but who's not looking forward to the new
Indiana Jones movie coming out in 2008? Again, I have a feeling
it's going to be a great year!