Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Birmingham Toy Soldier Show: 2012

German Landsknecht flag bearer from First Legion
On Sunday I took myself along to the 22nd holding of Birmingham's Central Model and Toy Soldiers Fayre, to give it its proper title, aka The Birmingham Toy Soldier Show

I wasn't there all day so I'm unable to judge just how well attended it was overall, but when I got there, when it opened its doors to the public, it didn't seem quite as busy as it has in the past

Liebstandarte SS ceremonial band by K&C [they do this soooo well!]
Nevertheless, there were plenty of traders there, including most if not all of the 'usual suspects', including K&C UK, Grey Goose Collectibles, TM Terrain, Little Legion and Maison Militaire to name but a few, selling vintage and new figures and vehicles from all the major metal and plastic manufacturers; HAT, Armies in Plastic, Victrix, Airfix, Timpo, Figarti, Thomas Gunn, Collectors Showcase, First Legion, Black Hawk, Conte Collectibles, King and Country and seemingly bucket loads of Britains!  Plenty to keep the big kid in all of us more than happily entertained!

Recently released ceremonial archway

Close up of some of the adoring onlookers, also released fairly recently

K&C's new and improved range of distressed French buildings, complete with numerous German invaders
This year I was 'on a mission' and owing to other family oriented commitments I was unable to spend the whole day there. My main reason for going was to collect a recently released Figarti tank that I'd asked Clive of GGC to bring along to the show for me, a vehicle I featured in a recently posted Figarti review, and it's a little beauty! As soon as I find time to get it out of its rather handsome box I will take a couple of photos and put them on here as part of my next 'Latest Additions' post. For now, I will keep you in suspense

A fraction of the armour and 'warbirds' available on the Figarti retailer's stand. Thanks for the tank, Clive!

Whilst there I came across a stand I don't remember seeing at the show before, Tiger Hobbies Limited, and what drew my eye was the rather impressive arrangement of 1/72nd scale die-cast military vehicles piled high on their table, along with the arguably even more impressive 1/24th scale Tiger II tank, complete with crew, sitting above it

I had quite a good chat with the owner as I perused the selection of 20mm tanks and other armoured and soft skin vehicles on show, mostly from Hobby Master and Panzerstahl and a few from Blitz 72, a small, but growing, range of 'budget' die-cast and plastic vehicles aimed primarily at the wargamer who might want to buy several versions of the same vehicle without having to re-mortgage the house!

One word sums this up; nice!

The Tiger II, made from a combination of die-cast and plastic parts, was priced at £50. The detailing and the paint job are both very impressive for the money. The turret rotates, the gun elevates, all the hatches open to accommodate a full complement of crew figures should you want to buy them, and each of the wheel has its own independent suspension! The model comes with a plastic commander. The figures in the photos are metal and available at an additional cost. Vehicle and figures are both manufactured by VS-Tanks

If you like the sound of that, you'll be even more impressed when I tell you that for £50 more you can have a fully RC [radio controlled] version with the kind of 'functionality' that would typically cost you a whole lot more! Check out their website by clicking on the highlighted link above and see what you think. Happy browsing!

I leave you with a couple of snaps [poorer in quality than I would have liked] showing some of the lovely First Legion figures on the Maison Militaire stand. Happy hunting

Next year's show will take place on Sunday 13th October, earlier than usual, at the same venue; The Clarendon Suite, 2 Stirling Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham. See you there!

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