Category Archives: Never Mind The Adverts…

Never Mind the Adverts Pt13 – 1979 Big Trak

Welcome to the latest Never Mind The Adverts Here Are The Toys!

Time to take a look at a toy that I always wanted as a kid but never had. Now, as an adult collector, I can finally say I have one! The original box is in a sorry state but the vehicle works perfectly (just needs a replacement bulb for the photon torpedo). After a good clean up and a trip to the shops to buy a monster load of batteries, I had the Big Trak following my commands along the kitchen floor like a good one. Oh, and the thing was so noisy it set off the neighbour’s dog upstairs barking.

Welcome to the world of the mighty electronic Big Trak!



BIG TRAK (US) or Bigtrak (Europe) was a computerised toy vehicle created by Milton Bradley in 1979. This six-wheeled tank-like space monster came with attractive decals, a front-mounted blue photon beam headlamp and an integrated programmable keypad that remembered up to 16 commands which it then executed in sequence. The US version was moulded in grey plastic while the European version was white. A companion unit was sold separately – the Big Trak Transporter – a trailer which could be attached to the rear that carried and dumped loads in response to Big Trak’s pre-programmed commands. Big Trak was relaunched in 2010 by Zeon Ltd who produced replicas of the original.








Hamleys. UK. 1983.


Thanks for requiring batteries with us  🙂  Join us again soon for another edition of Never Mind The Adverts!

Never Mind the Adverts Pt12 – Die Cast toys

Welcome to the latest Never Mind The Adverts Here Are The Toys! Time to take a look at some die cast vehicles from the 1970s to present – direct from The Vintage Toy Advertiser collection. 


Corgi 1995 re-issue of the James Bond Aston Martin DB5

Corgi 1973 J.P.S. Lotus Formula 1

Corgi Ford Escort

Corgi Allis Chalmers forklift

Corgi Batman vehicles

Corgi Doctor Who

Corgi Juniors Penguinmobile and Superman Punching-fist Rocket

Corgi Beatles Taxis

Corgi Helicopters


Hot Wheels 1990s


Hot Wheels Star Wars

Kenner Star Wars X-Wing Fighter Mail Away

Star Force Knockoff X-Wing Fighter


Matchbox Superkings Jaguar XJ6

Matchbox Yorkie Truck

Matchbox Battle Kings Helicopter K118. 1978

Matchbox Superfast Woosh N Push. 1972


Mattel Disney Cars


Welly Mini Cooper


Majorette Construction


Thanks for looking 🙂

Never Mind the Adverts…

… here are the toys. Part 11. Today we take a quick look at some modern goodies like Adventure Time, Harry Potter and Star Wars Funko Pop Vinyls, Pez, Mr Men/Little Miss and Rubik’s Cube food promotion toys, and a cool Doctor Who Titans Tardis!  As always, thanks for looking  🙂

Princess Leia Pop Vinyl Bobble-Head. Wootbox exclusive.

Adventure Time Pop Vinyl. Marceline.

Pez Donkey Kong and TMNT.

Titans Tardis. Wootbox exclusive.

Rubik’s Cube. From the Quick Magic Box meal collection.

Mr Men and Little Miss. From the McDonald’s Happy Meal collection.

Ron Weasley. Harry Potter Pop Vinyl Mystery Minis.


 

Toy Time Ad Break

Welcome to a special ‘Never Mind The Adverts Here Are The Toys’ in which TVTA grabs a few goodies from the toy box and attempts to match them up with their advert counterparts. Modern and vintage, anything goes today! Thanks for looking  🙂

Ecto 1. Wootbox exclusive. 2018.

US. Tales of the Teen Titans. 1985.

Pez dispensers.

Secrets of Haunted House. 1981. US.

Corgi Juniors Superman.

US. Weird War Tales. 1979.

Takara transforming X-Wing Fighter. 1978. Japan.

Takara X-Wings. Collectable postcard. Star Wars The Toys Chronicle Books. 1995.

The shootout. Photo TVTA.

Kenner X-Wing and figures. Collectable postcard. Star Wars The Toys Chronicle Books. 1995.

Various figures and accessories from vintage Playmobil indian sets.

Denmark. 1983. Image supplied by Jaltesorensen.

2000 AD Mega Heroes figures

UK. Eagle. 1983.

Slaine. 2000 AD Re-Action figure.

2000 AD Sci-Fi Special 1996.

Vintage NASA Space Set Made In West Germany

A TVTA mystery toy special! NASA formed in 1958 and West Germany ceased to be in 1990 – so this toy set which I picked up for under a tenner at my local vintage toy shop was produced anywhere between those two dates, likely the late 70s early 80s? The figurines are approx 1 inch tall, and like the lunar module and rocket vehicle have ‘W GERMANY’ stamped on them as COO (Country Of Origin). The red pilot figure has no COO stamp but has the same uniform as the others, and was likely meant for a vehicle that’s missing from the set? I made this quick dio using card, rocks and sand.

Edit: 20/11/17. Thanks to TVTA agent Arohk over on the TIG forum I’ve found out the origins of these toys. Fast forward to the end of this post to find out!


Mystery solved! The figures and “Lunar Set” were originally made by Jean Höfler, with the figures eventually being licensed out to Plong bubblegum in North America. The following images are all courtesy of the excellent site: blechroboter.de

image by blechroboter.de

image by blechroboter.de

Thanks for looking 🙂

Never mind the adverts Pt10 – Takara Die Cast Darth Vader

Welcome to another Never Mind The Adverts… Here Are The Toys! This time we take a look at the 1978 Die Cast Darth Vader figure made by the Takara company, Japan.

Japanese toy company Takara has never been shy of infusing its love of the quirky into the toys and merchandise it was licensed to produce and distribute for the first Star Wars film. The transforming X Wing Fighter and missile launching R2-D2 are just two examples. It’s no great surprise to see their die cast Darth Vader receiving similar treatment with a ‘robot-look’ makeover, and the issue of not just his trusty lightsaber but a full-on missile-firing crossbow!

Features: This cool die cast Darth Vader measures in at around 7 inches tall (17.78 cm) has articulated legs and arms, and can turn his head to the left and right via a lever located on his back.

Accessories: lightsaber, crossbow, two shots, removable vinyl cape, stand.

Packaging: the partially bilingual box comes with the typical Takara graphics and includes the ST logo belonging to the company responsible for checking the safety standards of the toy. Line drawings on the back of the box indicate the action features. The bottom right insert picture on the back appears to show the C-3PO die cast figure that was released along with Vader.





If you want to discover other cool Japanese vintage Star Wars collectables check out my guide over on The Imperial Gunnery Forum

That’s all for now. Thanks for looking, and join us again soon for another Never Mind The Adverts!


 

Never mind the adverts (Pt9)

Welcome to part 9 of TVTA’s series Never Mind The Adverts.

In this edition we focus on James Bond 007 Spy cards.


A collection completed!

Today I finally completed my 007 trading card set! I needed five cards to finish, two of them super-rares. The cards were released in 2008 by GE Fabbri Ltd alongside a fortnightly run of magazines containing facts and info on the James Bond films. The magazines and cards were available to buy in UK newsagents. There were 275 cards to collect, trade and play with (each card has numerical statistics similar to Top Trumps).

A collectors tin was offered with issue 2 in which to store your cards. Mini albums were also available if you wanted to display in a reading format. Other items included a 007 spy pen and a burglar alarm toy. Some of the items were only available for subscribers and were not sold in shops.

Got, got, got, haven’t got, got…

After spending a small fortune and finding that I needed only a dozen or so cards to finish, I stopped buying the cards as I was only turning up doubles. When GE Fabbri discontinued the line I was disappointed to learn that unlike other trading card companies such as Panini, they didn’t offer an end service to buy directly any remaining cards needed. So, it was off to eBay for me to chase the stragglers. At first it was easy, but trying to find the last five I needed for a fair price proved to be difficult. That is until this week, when after a considerable hiatus I decided to hunt down those last stragglers and got lucky!

And here they are…


A small breakdown of what was available either in-store or as a subscriber exclusive…

Issue 1 backing board that was available in newsagents for the series launch. In the foreground is the collectable storage tin that came with issue 2..


Storage tin showing a complete collection of the 275 trading cards. You can also see the double-sided poster standing in the inside of the lid which doubled as a checklist to track and mark off each card.


007 burglar alarm toy, two spy pens, and the wrapper from an opened pack of cards.


Series magazines and cardboard storage box.


The name’s Bond. James Bond. These cards are dedicated to the various actors who played the role.


Villains, allies, Bond girls, gadgets and vehicles!








To sum up, I’m delighted to finally finish this collection. The colourful cards are packed with interesting characters, gadgets and vehicles that span all the Bond films up to Daniel Craig’s first outing. There are plenty of metallic foils to collect along with a small number of super-rare tilting double image cards, making this set hard to complete yet not impossible – even almost ten years later on the secondary market. The magazines are well-produced and the extras are good fun. The collectors tin adds a touch of elegance but needs to be handled with care as the metal is very thin and prone to dents and scratches.

Marks out of ten for the entire set and the collecting experience: a solid 8.5.


That’s all for now. Thanks for looking, and join us again soon for another Never Mind The Adverts!

Never mind the adverts… here are the toys (Pt7)

Welcome to part 7 of TVTA’s series Never Mind The Adverts.

In this edition we focus on vintage and modern Playmobil figures.

Playmobil is one of my favourite toy lines for its simplicity, feel-good factor and traditional themes. As an archiver of toy advertising and a bit of a junkie when it comes to collecting toys, it’s always fun to add some Playmobil, whether from the secondary market, new, or by nagging the family to dig out any childhood stuff. Some of the following sets below are incomplete, but will still, I’m sure, have the power to bring a smile to your face.


First up…. vintage Playmobil Indians from the late 70s / early 80s

Various figures and accessories from vintage Playmobil indian sets.


And the band(s) played on

Circus bands. The top is a vintage set from the mid 1970s missing a few pieces, while the bottom is from circa 1991 and is missing the stage and a cymbal stand.


The Midnight Café

I was pleased with how this photo turned out. This set was available in France as a mail away order in the Playmobil catalogue supplement.


Rabbit Klicky Bunny Bizarreness!

Playmobil Easter bunny with eggs, basket and cane. Loose and packaged example. This strange but cute figure was given away in meals by French fast-food chain Quick in 2016. It has the feet and head of a rabbit appearing on the body of a Playmobil figure. The character is the same as the one sold in 2014 in the Playmobil Easter calendar pack. Playmo Easter bunnies can be dated back to 2004.

More Quick promotional Playmo figures

Sealed baggies. Quick promo figures from 2014 / 2015.


Recreio Comic from Brazil

Brazil. Sealed Recreio comic with Playmobil promotional figure in baggie. 2015.


I like to move it

E-Rangers Robot and driver. 2012. This very cool toy has articulated arms, legs and feet, and can grasp objects. It comes with a crate of red rocks for lifting (not pictured).


Elvis and Lady Gaga are in the house

From Playmobil’s ‘Fi?ures’ collection. 2011. Series 2 Elvis and Series 3 Lady Gaga.


Vintage Playmo-Space

Vintage Playmo-space. GE 5P robot with RG 9-5 vehicle and figure. Circa 1980.


Playmobil Special Plus

playmo-prince-buscuits-offer-2016-post

From the Playmobil Special Plus collection. Fairy and deer. 2016. This particular set was given away free by French company Prince when you collected ten tokens from their biscuit products.


Baby Dinosaur

Baby dinosaur, dinosaur egg, scientist. Circa 2011.


Table tennis

Table tennis players from 2011.


Zulu

Playmobil Zulu warrior. 2009.


Executioner

Off with their heads!! I call him “The Executioner of Lille”. He’s actually from the 2011 Playmobil ‘FI?URES’ Series 1 line


Zombie Pirates

I call these my “Zombie Pirates” but they’re really just various ghost pirates pulled together from sets between 2009 and 2012 to form an undead motley crew of ocean-bound vagabonds.

That’s all for now. Thanks for looking, and join us again soon for another Never Mind The Adverts!

Dates quoted from official Playmobil catalogues.

Thanks also to Klickypedia