A few days ago I was reading about Hat Toy Soldiers at the Hobby Bunker forum. They have a few polls about figures in 1/32 scale. They are now trying to produce few sets of Seven Years War Austrians by having a crowdfunding. These sets deserve to be made. I hope they get enough support to make this happen.
A few years ago I purchased about 10 boxes of the Seven Years War Prussians. The Prussians are really nice and are very hard to find these days. I have been using these guys as Hessian troops to go with my Barzso American Revolution figures.
Here are some digitized samples of the Seven Year War Austrians below.
Set A – Fusiliers
Set B – Grenadiers
Set C – Command
The sets look really nice. I have been waiting a long time to add some more Soldiers that could be used as British or French Soldiers for the French & Indian War. You can build a nice army with few boxes of these guys. So head over to the crowdfunding page and order a few boxes so they will release these sets this time. Maybe we will see some British or French Infantry in the future?
Here is the link to the crowdfunding page, 1/32 7YW Austrians
I found some more pictures, these figures look like some of Hat’s best work in this the 1/32 scale.
I would like to wish all my collector friends from around the world a Happy New Year. I hope I will see some new figures or playsets at the Toy Soldier shows this spring or at least by the end of the year. Barzso Playsets might release some new figure sets or have some old figure sets back in stock in the near future. We shall see in time.
There was a bunch of new products that came out the last few months of the year. Mainly from X-Force and Russian makers. Paul from the Stad’s Stuff page has reported most of these sets already. I will show a few pictures of some of these sets that I found either on the company website or ebay.
Today on ebay I saw a limited edition Publius Viking for $14.99!!
Expeditionary Force keeps producing new figures about every other month it seems. Last year they started releasing Napoleonic Wars figure sets. They also branched out to the War of 1812. Some of the British figures could be used for both Wars. The Highlander figures had different Uniforms at the Battle of New Orleans than they did at the Battle of Waterloo. For me it is not a big deal if everything is not exact. These sets are going for about $32.50. Here are a few pictures.
British Line Infantry
British Royal Marines
Also last year there was a bunch of Vietnam related sets from different companies like Mars and TSSD. But the best so far have be made by the Russian company called Plastic Platoon. So far they have released 3 different American sets. They are going for around $55 to $60 or so on ebay. Hobby Bunker has Plastic Platoon figures also. Here are a few pictures of the American Vietnam forces.
25th Infantry Division
1st Cavalry Division
Another Russian company is Chintoys that start releasing sets of Napoleonic Officer sets and now US Civil War Officer sets. I saw some of the mounted sets on ebay today. They are going for about $50 for each set. Here are some pictures.
Here are a group of Medieval figures that are made by another Russian company called Warhansa. The set of Knights & Sergeants includes 5 different figures for $32. I think these are the best sculpted toy soldiers they have made to date.
Inzhener Basevich released some new figure sets based on the Russo-Japanese War. One set for each side. They are really nice, but are priced around $60.
The most common thing about all these new figures is the price. The cost of plastic Toy Soldiers have gone up so much the last few years. These are collectors prices and not prices for “Toys”, which is what the hobby of Toy Soldiers have become. It is for Adults now and made for a collection. Not as toys that we used to get when were kids. I remember going to the store and getting a set of Airfix toy soliders for less that $4.00. And now you cannot even get one figure for that price!
I ordered some new Playmobil parts and will start making some new customs soon. Besides that I will be finishing some other projects that I have been working on for a while.
I just wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
I have been busy with work related things and the holidays and have not had much time. Here are a few things that I have found recently or gathered this year.
Earlier this month I found this Marx Boot Camp Playset box. It is metal and unfolds to become a boot camp base. I got this for $20, it has some wear. I also found a few figures from the same guy. I will add some more figures and accessories to this set when I find them here and there for a good price.
I found these Marx Toy Soldiers on Saturday for $5 and these will look good with the boot camp above.
Earlier this year, I found these toy soldiers on ebay. I think the are by Cane. They are Marx clones of the 6 inch figures of WWII Japanese Soldiers. They look like they are 65mm or 70mm in size. I found these for about $6. I wish they were a little smaller is size but they are still nice.
Here are some pictures that I took of my Marx, Airfix, MPC and some Chinese made Japanese World War II Soldiers that I gathered this year. I will do a post about these Japanese Soldiers and others not pictured in the future.
I finally found the 21st Japanese Zero Airplane at a decent price of $35. I wanted this for a while but did not want to pay the high prices that I usually see them at.
That is it for now. I just wanted to do one more post before the year ended. This coming year I want to focus on crafting things and less on collecting. The next show I go to will most likely be in late Spring at Gettysburg. Some of the items that I will be looking forward to seeing next year will be the new Vikings and Saxons from William Britain, any new or old Barzso figures and any new plastic figures sets.
This year at the annual East Coast Toy Soldier Show it was it’s 34th year. As usual I had a good time. I stormed in like Queek Headtaker, lol.
After I did a quick recon of the place. I quickly found some vintage Marx German toy soldiers that Mike Russo was selling. He had 45 dark grey Marx German soldiers for $30.00. Then I later got 40 light grey Marx German soldiers for $20.00 from Francis Turner of the Marx Toy Connection. Last year I was looking for Conte figures and this year I was looking for the new recast Barzso figures. I didn’t find any of the Barzso figures. Maybe next time……
A few years ago I purchased a boxed “Guns of Navarone” playset for $50, but it didn’t have the German soldiers. So now that problem is solved. I also found a few other plastic figures, recast Marx Japanese figures, a metal cannon, 2 W. Britain “Wrath of the Northmen” figures and I re-joined the W. Britain fan club. Here are some pictures of the items that I got.
This year I noticed a few more vendors with vintage toys besides toy soldiers. There were some Warhammer miniatures, action figures, dolls, Playmobil, Fisher Price, Hess trucks. other vintage toys and some Military related items too.
After I finished searching the show, I got my camera and started taking pictures. One of the things I like about going to the shows is not all the vendors are toy dealers. Some of them are collectors or don’t sell over the internet. You never know what you might find at these shows. Then there are some unique vendors that either paint or create their own products. One of the first vendors that I started talking too after I finished searching was Mark Bell. He creates historical dioramas, check out his site Bell’s Dioramas in History.
Another vendor that I came across was Josh. He is a big collector that comes to the show every year and sometimes to other toy shows in Pennsylvania. He had a lot of vintage Marx figures and some other brands too.
Besides seeing some the vendors I know, I get a chance to see some of the other collectors. Paul Stadinger of Stad’s Stuff is one of them. Paul was there as a collector and a blogger like me. He should have a blog post about the show too. I spent a few minutes talking to him and his wife Laurie. Here is a picture of Laurie, Paul and me.
Another vendor was Mike Russo. He used to have a store in East Stroudsburg, PA. I used to go there a few times a year and now I see him once a year at the show.
W. Britain was also was there. I took the time to sign up for the collectors club again.
Here are a few more pictures from different vendors.
One of my favorite vintage toy dealers to see Rick Eber of Rick Eber’s Marx Playsets. He always has something interesting to see. If your looking for that hard to find item, Rick might have it.
Another vintage dealer was George’s Toy Chest. They had some nice items for sale.
Another vintage dealer that I got some items from was the Marx Toy Connection.
Another vendor that had some cool items was Mark Mcdermott.
Another of my favorite vendors is John Stengel Jr of Marx-Man. He has a lot of vintage figures. Either loose figures or in bags, plus sets and playsets. They usually have something that I am looking for. Also John does produce limited run figures. He might have some new sets next year. Hopefully will see some Normans, Saxons and maybe some WWII Germans.
Here are some more pictures from different dealers.
Michael D Roberto is the guy to go to if your interested in Hess Trucks. The Hess Toy Truck Encyclopedia
Doug Dearth does some really nice art work. You should check out his historical based art at Dearthco.net.
Here are a few of the main vendors that come to most of the shows on the east coast. George Guerriero of Minutemen Toy Soldiers always has the some of the nicest displays of painted metal toy soldiers. He also has some vintage or hard to find plastic figures too. I picked up some W. Britain figures from him and recast Marx Japanese figures at the show.
Treefrog Treasures Military Miniatures has a nice selection of painted metal figures at the shows.
Crown Military Miniatures is another dealer of painted metal figures. They usually have a lot of John Jenkins figures available.
One of my other favorite dealers is Hobby Bunker. They usually have plenty of both plastic and painted metal figures.
There were plenty of other dealers at the show worth coming to see. Bill Longo did a good job again. After I spent the first hour and a half searching for items, I came back to gather information on the show. Some dealers I missed just because of time. The ones that I did do my review on are ones that I have dealt with in the past or have had positive interactions with.
I am going to try to put together another post in a few weeks about WWII Japanese plastic toy soldiers. That is it for now. Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed.
Well it’s almost Halloween and a month after the the big toy soldier show in Chicago. If you’re like me and couldn’t make it to Chicago, what do you do? Well if your in the Tri-State area you go to the East Coast Toy Soldier Show. It is located at Fairleigh Dickerson University, Rothman Center, 100 University Plaza Dr, Hackensack, NJ 07601. So get up early on October 29th, it starts a 9am and lasts to 3am.
Last year I had a great time at the show. There was mixture of plastic and metal toy soldiers. They have a big selection of Hess truck toys, plus some of old & vintage toys. You can read more about last years show here, East Coast Toy Soldier Show 2016 Review
Also don’t forget pre-order your ticket for the show!!!!!!! You have until 10/20/2017 for them to process it. So get it done!!!! Last year I did it for the first time. Instead of waiting on line to pay, I walked in like a boss when they opened the doors. East Coast Toy Soldier Show Ticket Info
So, say hello to Bill Longo and thank him for putting together another great show 🙂 East Coast Toy Soldier Show on Facebook
It is sad news, but the Playmobil fan club page is closing down. Playmobil PCC released a statement yesterday.
Well it has been a busy week so far and the Big Show has not even started. Here is the first look at Barzso Playsets re-issued Woodland Indians. I have to say they look amazing, it seems like more of the details are brought out with the new process of casting. I heard that the material is more like plastic and not like resin. I can’t wait to get my hands on some of these. Here are some of the pictures that Jim Clouse had posted. These figures should be available at the Chicago Toy Soldier Show and soon after on his website.
I cropped the pictures and then enlarged them to get a better look. These new figures look some much better, maybe it’s the gray? I need a few dozen of these to add to my collection. I can’t wait to see the other figures that he is going to re-issued too. Now I wish I was going to Chicago 😦
If you have not seen my other two most recent articles that are part of these blog, check them out too. Latest News! ~ Barzso Playsets ~ and Interview with Ken Ciak and the Future of LOD Enterprises.
Hi guys, I just got some information about Barzso Playsets. According to Jim Clouse, Ron plans to produce some of his old sets. If they sell well, Ron plans to produce some new sets next year.
Some big news coming from Barzso Playsets. While Ron has been quiet the past year or two, he’s still been busy.
Ron has been looking for a better formulation of plastic resin to run figures in – – and has found it! The company that runs the figures are on board and have produced a selection of Ron’s previous figures.
The new material is more durable than the original resin, figures come out of the mold with straight weapons, etc. I have some of the early mold shots, and I even went to the length of dropping a firing guy on my concrete basement floor – no damage! Paint also adheres very well to the figures.
Here is a list of the figures that are available in the new material:
Pirates – Powder Blue
Confederate Casualties – Gray
Woodland Indians – Gray
Union Casualties – Powder Blue
Civil War Camp Poses – Powder Blue
Barbary Coast Pirates – Gray
1805 US Marines – Powder Blue
Lewis and Clark Character Figures – Powder Blue
Due to the higher cost of the material being used, prices will be $20 for eight figures (single poses, no duplicates). Ron said depending on collectors’ reception of these figures, he plans on making new figures for 2018.
Figures will be available at the Chicago Show this week, and will be added to the website soon after.
Looks like some more Great News before the big show starts. I hope to hear more 🙂
For more Barzso news check out my other post, Interview with Ken Ciak and the Future of LOD Enterprises.
Hi guys, It is a week away from the biggest Toy Soldier show of the year. But if you are like me, you can’t make the trip to Chicago. Usually I search the internet before and right after the show to see if I can pick up some new information on the hobby. Usually for the most part, the new releases or previews are done at the Chicago Toy Soldier Show. So besides searching the internet, I am doing some of my our research.
The past week I had asked Ken Ciak a few questions and then followed up on some others to create this blog article. It was a thrill to chat with Ken and learn more about him and his company LOD ENTERPRISES. So let us begin.
“LOD Enterprises is a manufacturer and distributor of plastic collectible toy soldiers. The firm, based in Green Bay, WI, draws on the rich history of plastic soldiers and playsets to create new figure sets for the collector’s market. The company started in 2014 with Ken Ciak as its managing member.”
This year LOD will have Set # 3 of the War with Troy, and previews and some pieces of the Ancient Warship & Trojan Horse available.
Warhorse Miniatures: Hi Ken, I would like to thank you for taking some time to answer a few questions. I would like to say that I like your figures and what you have done for the hobby.
Ken Ciak: Thank you for the opportunity to discuss for a few minutes about the figures and accessories from LOD Enterprises. I appreciate the compliment about the War at Troy figures. It has been very rewarding working with a lot of talented people who more than help to make my vision and ideas a reality. The response from collectors has been great and motivates me to keep working hard to create more figure sets.
Warhorse Miniatures: Tell us a little about yourself and how you got started in all of this?
Ken Ciak: My background would not directly lead anyone to think of me to enter into the toy soldier hobby. I am part of the three & three-quarters inch Star Wars generation so while toy soldiers were still readily available, my focus with toys and collecting changed mightily in 1977. That being said, I always enjoyed toy soldiers and playsets. I like the ability to have a full complement of figures and diorama pieces all in one box. I purchased a couple of American Revolution sets from Classic Toy Soldiers in 2010 and 2011 before grabbing the TSSD Romans and Barbarians set when Nick and DeAnna released it.
Warhorse Miniatures: What was the hardest part about getting started?
Ken Ciak: The hardest part of getting started actually turned out to be relatively easy as soon as I started reaching out to people in the hobby and toy soldier community. I had zero idea of how to go about it but found that people at the Toy Soldier Show in Chicago were always approachable and willing to help. My initial thought was to get either Nick or Ron Barzso to create a set where I would be willing to invest to have my Trojan War playset made by one of them. I certainly over simplified the process, but found both of them (along with many others including Bill McMaster) able to guide me through the process. Three years later, I am no expert and still learning with each day but the journey has been fun and introducing a new set is gratifying as the previous one.
Warhorse Miniatures: I like the adventure that you have taking us with the War with Troy series. First the Walls of Troy and some figures, then you expanded with Chariots and additional figures. Lastly character figures, the Trojan horse and now a galley. Has our journey finished or has it just begun?
Ken Ciak: Thank you for sharing that you are enjoying the War at Troy adventure. The Iliad is one of my favorite books and I remember reading a version of the Trojan War in the 6th grade and being hooked. The story is rich with characters, both mortal and immortal, and filled with action. The journey is not over as there are additional figures and accessories in the pipeline for development.
Warhorse Miniatures: So what new line of figures would you start or what do you think you might do in the future?
Ken Ciak: As for future releases, there are a few ideas that the sculptor and I are working on. There will be another War at Troy figure set that will combine characters and possibly allies of the Trojans (Amazons). I would like to release a WWII figure set in the next couple of years. We have also kicked some ideas around for a Christmas set that is not a toy soldier set, but would include Santa, elves, and reindeer and aimed more towards kids.
Warhorse Miniatures: I am happy to see that you are now producing some figures that were originally produced by Barzso Playsets. Any other Barzso sets that you might produce in the future?
Ken Ciak: The Barzso figure sets are wonderful and I am honored/humbled to be able to continue to market them. Ron has done a tremendous job in the hobby and been a great guy to visit with and discuss opportunities. We had talked last fall about the Revolutionary War and Robin Hood figure sets and re-releasing them. Ron had them made at the same factory in Hong Kong (Eastcorp Toys) that the War at Troy sets are produced. I liked the opportunity to expand into two other eras, especially two eras that I enjoy. Also to do so with a popular and well-done brand of Barzso Playsets. It has worked out well for me and the market has been very responsive to having all four of the figure sets available again. Ron and I have spoken about some other sets and there is a possibility of producing another one or two in the future.
Warhorse Miniatures: What other Barzso sets do you think you might produce in the future?
Ken Ciak: Regarding Ron Barzso, I had an opportunity to visit with him yesterday and we are going to discuss some figure sets at the Chicago Show. I am excited about the opportunity and they will be new figure sets. We will announce the subject and details next weekend. As for his older sets, they will not be recast by LOD Enterprises at this time.
Warhorse Miniatures: Great News!!! Will the figures from you and Barzso be a new subject or an existing theme from Barzso? Also do you think it will be one or two different sets?
Ken Ciak: The figures with Barzso will be an existing theme and there will be multiple sets. Ron and I are going to hash out the details on Thursday when I arrive and I think he/we will announce it right away after that. Our trading rooms are close so I am hoping it creates some buzz with the weekend traffic.
Warhorse Miniatures: Thanks Ken, is there anything else you would like to talk about regarding LOD Enterprises.
Ken Ciak: I appreciate the opportunity to talk about LOD Enterprises and our time in the toy soldier arena. It has been a quick three years. We are continually working to improve our product and introduce plastic soldiers to fans of all ages. We are working on a set of rules for war gamers (hoping for an early 2018 release) and will continue to expand on the successful figure sets we offer.
New Sets, Ancient Warship & Trojan Horse
War of Troy Set # 1
War of Troy Set # 2
War of Troy Set # 3
Walls of Troy
Ok guys, I am going to wrap this up. This article took me longer to prepare than I thought it would. I am still learning about the blogging and try out new features. I hope everyone enjoyed the article. Here are a few tip bits and some new things that I decided to add at the end.
I am excited to hear about the news with LOD and Barzso. Plus to see what other future items the LOD comes out with. Right now LOD is one the most interesting companies, I feel good with them continuing on making quality products for years to come. The wargaming rules for his figures sounds promising, and maybe it gets some new collectors into our market. Me and Ken talked about a few other things, he likes read about history. When we talked about the WWII figures, I mentioned on how collectors are with uniforms and weapons. They expect more when it comes to recently eras. I am glad to hear from him that he will take his time to get the details right with these future figures.
Warhorse Miniatures: I think making toy soldiers is hard. I mean that sometimes it is hard to make collectors happy. If you do make a WWII figures, collectors want to see both sides made together. I have been waiting for some new Japanese soldiers for years now.
Ken Ciak: That is one of the most appealing aspects of the hobby is working hard to achieve a set with appropriate details even for the most discerning customer. I will be taking my time to make sure I have all of the details down for the WWII set. The Bronze Age and the Iliad have a been a passion for a long time so many of the aspects are “easy” for me to gather from a research and knowledge standpoint.