Thursday, June 22, 2017

#823 GUISVAL – MORRIS MG 1100 and SEAT 850 COUPÉ (No. 28 and 32) (1967)

These two are probably the most valuable Guisval cars I have. I do not have many from the very first years with their boxes, just these two and 3 or 4 more. These two casts were in the very first Guisval catalogue including die-cast metal cars from 1967.

The Seat 850 was already presented in one very early entry I wrote for this blog (#23). The car presented then had slightly different wheels. That white Seat is the same that appears in the new pictures, for comparison purposes.

It is interesting to mention that in the very first boxes, the cars where fixed with some kind of double-sided sellotape, as you can see in this picture below. With the time, that sticky band has degraded and has turned to some kind of dusty stripe. This method was probably not very effective, so it was soon replaced by two pegs that would fit the base of the car. There is another picture above comparing the two Seats 850. The yellow one has no holes in the base, the white one has.

The MG 1100 has a practicable bonnet, which is a bit fragile, and the Seat has practicable doors. At the time is was not so uncommon for 3 inches cars to have this quality features, that later would be disappearing gradually.

  • Name: Morris MG 1100 (Nr. 28) and Seat 850 Coupé (Nr. 32)
  • Scale: 1:64
  • Year: 1967
  • Company: Guisval (Spain)
  • Size: approx. 3’’ or 7 cm

Monday, June 19, 2017


I presented more tan one year ago a book that included all cartoons shown in the Spanish Television (and local channels) during the 80s. Now, there is a second part to that book with the cartoons from the 90s.

This new book by Jose Guerrero includes many more references than the previous one, because in the early 90s, two new national channels started together with the regional TVs, all of which offered children’s programmes especially during the weekends and in the mornings. As a result, this is a much more ambitious work.

There are also some improvements, like a better quality of the book binding, an index, several interviews with people related to the cartoon industry in Spain, and the book is so beautiful and so cool to read thanks to a very colourful and graphical layout.

I think this book is a must for nostalgics and also for people interested in the history of TV. Note that the 90s were a great time for anime, the first computer generated series, the start for private channels (you had to pay for them), cable TV and many different types of cartoons, while old style animation was still being produced.

I think this small, handy encyclopedia won’t be outdone in a very long long time.

The book was published thanks to a crowdfunding campaign, and there are only very few units left (overproduction). They can be found at ebay, but only for a very limited time. The keyring below was one of the crowdfunding rewards.

Friday, June 16, 2017


Dinky Toys released the Volkswagen 1300 Sedan in 1965 with reference 129. The car was plenty of detail, had practicable parts, two-part wheels with metallic hubcaps and plastic tyres.

After several years selling it, in 1972, the model was update with plastic “superfast-type” wheels, and it kept selling for a few years more (unitl 1976). There are two versions with plastic wheels, being this one the newer one. That is the model I present here today.

The box in which it was sold was also modified. The original one is the classic yellow base and transparent cover, while the newer model came in the box with black base and transparent stretched cover.

Almost all models I have seen of this are painted blue, but other rarer colour exist.

The model still has all practicable parts, jewel headlights and nice details, like the license plate stickers, but it is not so nice anymore. However, being an iconic model of th history of automotion, it is a nice collectible.

  • Scale: 1:64
  • Year: 1972
  • Company: Dinky Toys (Great Britain)
  • Size: approx. 9 cm

Tuesday, June 13, 2017


Cragstan is a toymaker from the United States that produced toys in the post-WW2 Japan. It is still unclear if the company was based in the US or in Japan, but the fact is that Cragstan toys are maed in Japan, and were intended mostly for importing then to the US.

Cragstan also had an Israeli company to produce die-cast cars for them, and this company was Gamda Koor (a.k.a. Sabra).

Gamda apparently started in 1962 recasting toys from the British company D.C.M.T. (Lone Star Toys). Koor, was a separate brand owned by the Israeli Trade Union, joined Gamda creating Gamda-Koor in 1966. Among their early production, there was a line of American Cars in 1:43 scale called Super Sabra Cars intended for export. The series comprised 24 models between 1969 and 1972, and they were numbered 8100 to 8123, although many of them were available in stock, police, ambulance, taxi or other decorations.

Some of these models were decorated with decals referring to Israeli Army, national hospitals, national ministries,… or even the United Nations logo, but these were intended only for the internal market.

The same Super Sabra Cars models for the international market were sold rebranded as Cragstan in boxes that remind of the American flag, and renamed to Detroir Seniors (in the plastic chromed bases they were marked Detroit SR). With a budget price 1.49 US$, Cragstan wanted to compete against other more traditional brands like Corgi Toys and Dinky in the U.S.A.

The only two cars I own by Cragstan and also the only two Israeli cars I have are the two I am showing here, which are the same in two different decorations.

The Chevelle Station represents thee model from 1964 to 1967 in its station wagon version. It is a beautiful car not only in its standard sedan version, but also this is rare one.

I date it 1970, because the Super Sabra Cars were in production between 1969 and 1972, and it is unclear if the Cragstan rebranding happened straigtaway in 1969 or more probably a bit later.

  • Scale: Aprox. 1:43
  • Year: 1970
  • Company: Gamda-Koor for Cragstan (Israel/ U.S.A.)
  • Size: approx. Around 10cm

Saturday, June 10, 2017


I have presented a few dinosaurs from this toyline based on the original Jurassic Park movie, but no figures so far. This is so, because the figures came with several accesories which are difficult to find, so completing figures costed me quite a long time.

Although they were great toys, I guess they didn´t sell very well. It was already a time were actions figures were decaying in popularity against videogames, and also being the movie a PG-13, I guess not many children bought the figures as Kenner may initially have expected.

The figures are copyrighted in 1992, and the movie was premiered in 1993, that is why the characters do not resemble the actors that played the roles. Also among the dinosaurs there are some which do not appear in the movie, so probably the toyline was made from the existing scripts before the movie was actually shot.

The two main characters with which the movie starts are Ellie Sattler and Alan Grant (Laura Dern and Sam Neill), two paleontologists specialized in dinosaurs. The third main character is Ian Malcolm (played by Jeff Goldblum), that did not appear as a figure in this very first Kenner release (Fail! - this character is actually the most remarkable in the first movie). The rest of characters can be considered as supporting roles. This would be correcte shortly afterwards in a second wave of figures which included repaints of all 5 figures plus 6 new ones.

In total there were 5 figures made, being the other three the bad-guy Denis Nedry, then the kid Tim Murphy and the Dinosaur Hunter Robert Muldoon, whose story is also quite secondary (many scenes were removed from the final cut?).

Most figures came with some action feature, not in the figure itself, but in the accessories. In this case, Ellie came with a firing missile launcher (well, not a missile, but a hook) and Alan came with a backpack that releases one flying sauria trap.

I took the figures out for the following diorama pictures. Hope you like them.

  • Toy Line: Jurassic Park
  • Year: 1993
  • Company: Kenner (U.S.A.)
  • Size of the figures: Around 10 cm long

Wednesday, June 7, 2017


The cartoons directed by Cruz Delgado based on the masterpiece of Miguel de Cervantes was a major success in the Spanish Television in 1979 (when it was aired for the first time), and, of course, some merchandising items were made to make more money licensing toy figures, books and all kind of things for children.

These two figures are one example, maybe the best known toy made out of the Don Quijote cartoon. The two PVC figures were originally made by Juguetes Eura S.A., a company that also had the rights to produce Peyo’s Smurfs in PVC, although in 1980, this license was lost because Schleich had bought the rights worldwide for that same series, and they had to stop producing them. The whole story is told in The Cursed Country.

The thing is that Juguetes Eura, would later become Comics Figuras S.L. (also known as Comics Spain). Both companies have the same founders and the same address. The new company was founded in 1982, also by Ramón Magriña and Eulalia Camps, as a matter of fact, EURA is formed with the initial letters of the names of the two founders: EU (Eulalia) and RA (Ramón).

The topic with the Smurfs has been extensively studied, but the other figures are somehow forgotten. Eura did not only made these… they also had figures from La Abeja Maya (Biene Maja), Asterix, Barbapapas, several Disney characters and more… and their quality is quite interesting.

Back to Don Quijote, there were four figures made of this series. Don Quijote and Sancho Panza, plus the same two characters riding their Horse (Rocinante) and Donkey (Rucio), respectively. The riding characters could be removed from their mounts.

Don Quijote (standing) came with a very small and fragile sword that could be attached to his belt.

The same figures were later available marked with “Comics Spain”. Each figure was available with and without plastic base to improve the stability, but I cannot say if some were earlier than others, or which brand (Eura or Comics Spain) do each one have.

  • Year: 1979
  • Company: Juguetes Eura S.A. (Spain)
  • Size of the figures: Around 10 and 6 cm tall

Sunday, June 4, 2017


This deck of card is similar to the one in the previous entry, only slightly rarer (to my knowledge, Bielefelder is in general rarer than Piatnik) and also slightly older. Of course it focuses on F1 drivers, but also include other categories as well.

As a matter of fact, it includes two extra cards with the technical specifications of Formula 1, Formula 2, Formula 3 an Formula V, apart of one card with the instructions and the cover card.
Unlike the most common quartets with cars, here we have pictures of the pilots in their pilot outfits, most of them taken directly in the cars, circuits and the paddocks. There are a few of these pilot quartets, but they are not very numerous. I guess the cars are more attractive for children, and this quartet is more for hard-core fanatics.

Note the interesting selection of drivers, many of which are today great F1 legends. The current champion was Emerson Fittipaldi with Lotus-Ford and the following year Jackie Stewart won also with Lotus-Ford.

  • Name: PS-MATADORE (No. 0228)
  • Year: 1972
  • Company: Bielefelder Spielkarten (West Germany)
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