I was 11 years old in 1960,when HO OO Railway Scale marching figures first appeared.
For the Group Build on, `Benno`s Figure Forum`,this year I am going to paint some of these tiny to the eye things up. Perhaps even a full set for The Parade,of marching figures. Not Action Poses. These Guards figures have no faces ,and hands are blobs with rifles just plastic sticks showing no detail what so ever,but these are the first ever toy figures produced by AIRFIX in HO OO Railway Scale,and are indeed the last.They are the beginning of Toy Town History as I often term it.
Where other scales have produced costly Military Bands,the smaller scales have not,so there are no bands of this type after 1960,which is, a full stop! To be sure on the Benno`s Figure Forum.
THE GUARDS CHEER THE QUEEN
The first thing to do is opening the boxes, and then review the troops available. I thought it best to share this information because it a fact that 50 odd year-old figures often suffer from age. ( As indeed we do too,and in reality, those ultraviolet light patterns of which there are many are in a process of slowly killing us.)
THE DREADED PLASTIC FATIGUE STRIKES!
Test the plastic this way,bend the base slightly using your finger and thumb,and if the legs snap and crumble away like dried up tooth paste ,that is plastic fatigue! These figures were bought loose in a plastic bag on E Bay, a few years ago and there they stayed until the other day. So the boxed sets are the best and most expensive way of obtaining them to try and avoid this breakdown of the plastic. However one buys and take the chance that they will be OK.
However Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining, as the old saying goes, so I simply opened up other boxes in my vast Collection of Toy Figures. Which are perfectly OK! The broken ones I left on the table, and the colour comparison of the yellow figures can be noticed. The Colour Party where produced in a nice red, which meant heads including face, hands, trousers, and rifle stick and base only needs painting. Basic colour only need apply here, because like skittles there is no detail on them at all.
Below All Are Fit For Muster
A Beginning To An End
It was early morning and winter time 28/01/1960,and the The Guards 1st and 3rd Lt Companies were leaving their barracks on Barrack Street in Norwich. The road void of all traffic welcomed the hob nailed boots of spit and polish for there were none better in Norwich that was for sure. Lead out by their overly keen Brass Band, they filed out past the old iron gates with its two Sentry Posts.The lights were still on in the Officers Quarters as the marched past.
This will wake up all the sleepy heads that have no want of it that is for sure.
As the 1st Foot & Mouth, march away into toy town history, they bring this part to a funny ending it is hoped.I`ll paint a few up for samples and show them later. BB