1/6 scale action figure Update

1/6 Scale Action Figure Update

by Cyrus Chun

1/6 scale action figure collecting has grown tremendously in the past few years. Action figures,once relegated to action & adventure and science fiction (Sci-Fi), now includes historical figures such as Teddy Roosevelt, Ben Franklin, George Washington, U.S. Civil War, WWI, WWII, Knights and even a Roman soldier.

Some companies have taken the word “action” literally. Dragon(Dragon Models LTD or DML) a manufacturer of plastic historical WWII model kits has entered the competitive race with a basic action figure that has over 30 articulated joints. This figure can be posed lifo-like as opposed to the stiff “G.I. Joe” type made by Hasbro and mimic by 21 Century, Marx, Action Man, Cotswold and others. Big toy retailers like ToysRUs, K-Mart, Kay Bees, FAO Schwartz and Wal-Mart also are involved by special ordering certain figures or sets as their “store exclusives”, e.g., a K-Mart set I saw on the Mainland in Tennessee) during TDY; it was an Iwo Jima diorama scene set wlth participating Marines raising the US flag on Mt Shirabachi. It was unbelievable and cost a mere $250.00.

In 1999 21st Century released vehicles for their figures; Schwimmwagen, Kettenkrad, Indian motorcycle, Harley-Davidson motorcycle w/rider, AH Littlebird helicopter and a 1942 Willys Jeep. Hasbro also released an Indian motorcycle and a Harley-Davidson Commemorative w/ 1930’s style dispatch rider.

Year 2000 promises to bring more surprises to the world of 1/6* scale action ftgure collecting: .21111 CeDtga: Kubelwagen, M5 Stewart Tank, BMW motorcycle w/sidecar (foys R Us exclusive), US Bradley tank, various U.S. and foreign army troops and a US WWII tanker figure (Kay Bee exclusive), Yellow 8gbmariae: panzer Stunngeschutze commander (whose articulation would rival Dragon’s); DIMOD: Jackie Chan, u.s. G.I. (Steve), 2 female figures (Diplomatic Service and NYPD sniper) plus at least 20 more figures. Co1swold: plan to release 1- 2 new figures per month up to 24 for the year.

This is just some examples of manufacturers and retailers. There are hundreds of cottage industries that are devoted to custom uniforms, insignias, vehicles, diorama sets, etc. To give an idea as to the immensity of a 1/6th scale vehicle, a Tiger I Tank would measure 44″ long x 22″ wide x 19″ high. This tank is currently available which I believe can hold all five crewmen (no idea if its 88mm gun can fire .22 LR rounds). For Year 2001, 21-Century already has built a production prototype of the ME-109.

If you are interested in this field of collecting, I can help point you to the sources for customizing, however, I will not order the items for you.

Cyrus Chun  Yo, Joel!!

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