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No Fixed Abode, Home Counties, United Kingdom
I’m a 56-year-old Aspergic CAD-Monkey. Sardonic, cynical and with the political leanings of a social reformer, I’m also a toy and model figure collector, particularly interested in the history of plastics and plastic toys. Other interests are history, current affairs, modern art, and architecture, gardening and natural history. I love plain chocolate, fireworks and trees but I don’t hug them, I do hug kittens. I hate ignorance, when it can be avoided, so I hate the 'educational' establishment and pity the millions they’ve failed with teaching-to-test and rote 'learning' and I hate the short-sighted stupidity of the entire ruling/industrial elite, with their planet destroying fascism and added “buy-one-get-one-free”. I also have no time for fools and little time for the false crap we're all supposed to pretend we haven't noticed, or the games we're supposed to play. I will 'bite the hand that feeds' to remind it why it feeds.

Monday, January 13, 2020

1975; [WWII] U.S. Paratroopers, 51464 / 51464-8 / 51564-7 / 951564 - 1:32 Scale (54mm)

One of the late sets which received all the poses of the smaller 1:76th scale or 'HO/OO' set, a set which - itself - had a high number of poses, also a set which quite quickly appeared in a second colour, and it seems to be also that like the HO/OO set, the first; Airfix 'neutral' light grey, is more common than the second; Airfix 'army' green colour, suggesting that a top-up (or end-of-run?) of both scales was produced in the green, to use up some green or because the Ghurkhas or someone else green were also going through the production plant?

Airfix 1975; Airfix 1985 Catalogue; Airfix 1:32 Scale; Airfix 51464; Airfix 51464-8; Airfix 51564-7; Airfix 54mm; Airfix 951564; Airfix Blog; Airfix U.S. Paratroopers; Airfix US Paratroops; Airfix WWII; airfixfigs.blogspot.com; Artform International; Henbrandt US Paratroops; Hong Kong Artform; Hong Kong Paratroops; Hong Kong US Paratroops; Made in Hong Kong; Small Scale World; US Paratroops; Vintage Plastic Figures; Vintage Plastic Soldiers; Vintage Toy Figures; Vintage Toy Soldiers; Vintage US Paratroops; WWII Plastic Toy Soldiers; WWII Toy Soldiers;
Much looked-forwards to when I was a kid, it was strangely disappointing when it finally arrived, having far too many figures doing nothing, standing around doing nothing or prone doing not much. But that was an illusion caused by the number of poses and in fact six of them are fighting/firing, which is more than some of the seven-pose sets.

The bottom right-hand trio are Hong Kong copies we will return to down the page.

Airfix 1975; Airfix 1985 Catalogue; Airfix 1:32 Scale; Airfix 51464; Airfix 51464-8; Airfix 51564-7; Airfix 54mm; Airfix 951564; Airfix Blog; Airfix U.S. Paratroopers; Airfix US Paratroops; Airfix WWII; airfixfigs.blogspot.com; Artform International; Henbrandt US Paratroops; Hong Kong Artform; Hong Kong Paratroops; Hong Kong US Paratroops; Made in Hong Kong; Small Scale World; US Paratroops; Vintage Plastic Figures; Vintage Plastic Soldiers; Vintage Toy Figures; Vintage Toy Soldiers; Vintage US Paratroops; WWII Plastic Toy Soldiers; WWII Toy Soldiers;
29 figures in total, all pretty clearly numbered, in a mint set a drum-like sprulette’ should be present on the following prone/lying figures.

·         9 – on the heel of the right foot
·         10 – on the heel of the right foot
·         11 – on right foot
·         12 – on right foot

Airfix 1975; Airfix 1985 Catalogue; Airfix 1:32 Scale; Airfix 51464; Airfix 51464-8; Airfix 51564-7; Airfix 54mm; Airfix 951564; Airfix Blog; Airfix U.S. Paratroopers; Airfix US Paratroops; Airfix WWII; airfixfigs.blogspot.com; Artform International; Henbrandt US Paratroops; Hong Kong Artform; Hong Kong Paratroops; Hong Kong US Paratroops; Made in Hong Kong; Small Scale World; US Paratroops; Vintage Plastic Figures; Vintage Plastic Soldiers; Vintage Toy Figures; Vintage Toy Soldiers; Vintage US Paratroops; WWII Plastic Toy Soldiers; WWII Toy Soldiers;
The set was pirated at least thrice, with interim second-generation copies also resulting, the near same-size copies were issued with a HONG KONG mark on the base undersides, these were further copied, smaller, and issued as generics.

Airfix 1975; Airfix 1985 Catalogue; Airfix 1:32 Scale; Airfix 51464; Airfix 51464-8; Airfix 51564-7; Airfix 54mm; Airfix 951564; Airfix Blog; Airfix U.S. Paratroopers; Airfix US Paratroops; Airfix WWII; airfixfigs.blogspot.com; Artform International; Henbrandt US Paratroops; Hong Kong Artform; Hong Kong Paratroops; Hong Kong US Paratroops; Made in Hong Kong; Small Scale World; US Paratroops; Vintage Plastic Figures; Vintage Plastic Soldiers; Vintage Toy Figures; Vintage Toy Soldiers; Vintage US Paratroops; WWII Plastic Toy Soldiers; WWII Toy Soldiers;
In the UK the larger figures were carried by Henbrandt of North London/East Anglia, and while the card is similar to the generic there are enough differences, not lest that these are passed-off as Germans on a little label-box!

Airfix 1975; Airfix 1985 Catalogue; Airfix 1:32 Scale; Airfix 51464; Airfix 51464-8; Airfix 51564-7; Airfix 54mm; Airfix 951564; Airfix Blog; Airfix U.S. Paratroopers; Airfix US Paratroops; Airfix WWII; airfixfigs.blogspot.com; Artform International; Henbrandt US Paratroops; Hong Kong Artform; Hong Kong Paratroops; Hong Kong US Paratroops; Made in Hong Kong; Small Scale World; US Paratroops; Vintage Plastic Figures; Vintage Plastic Soldiers; Vintage Toy Figures; Vintage Toy Soldiers; Vintage US Paratroops; WWII Plastic Toy Soldiers; WWII Toy Soldiers;
The generic version were probably earlier (but probably only by a few months or a year at the most) due to the fuller/co-ordinated artwork and at least the nationality matches the uniforms this time! Other than the artwork differences, however, these are the same figures as carried by Henbrandt.

Airfix 1975; Airfix 1985 Catalogue; Airfix 1:32 Scale; Airfix 51464; Airfix 51464-8; Airfix 51564-7; Airfix 54mm; Airfix 951564; Airfix Blog; Airfix U.S. Paratroopers; Airfix US Paratroops; Airfix WWII; airfixfigs.blogspot.com; Artform International; Henbrandt US Paratroops; Hong Kong Artform; Hong Kong Paratroops; Hong Kong US Paratroops; Made in Hong Kong; Small Scale World; US Paratroops; Vintage Plastic Figures; Vintage Plastic Soldiers; Vintage Toy Figures; Vintage Toy Soldiers; Vintage US Paratroops; WWII Plastic Toy Soldiers; WWII Toy Soldiers;
Meanwhile, around 1986 (a bit later than the above sets?) the Artform Industrial Co., of the New Territories, also pirated them (probably separately to the other source) with heavier but neater bases and of a smaller size, matching one of my other copy-samples; which is probably a sub-piracy of the Artform set.

Airfix 1975; Airfix 1985 Catalogue; Airfix 1:32 Scale; Airfix 51464; Airfix 51464-8; Airfix 51564-7; Airfix 54mm; Airfix 951564; Airfix Blog; Airfix U.S. Paratroopers; Airfix US Paratroops; Airfix WWII; airfixfigs.blogspot.com; Artform International; Henbrandt US Paratroops; Hong Kong Artform; Hong Kong Paratroops; Hong Kong US Paratroops; Made in Hong Kong; Small Scale World; US Paratroops; Vintage Plastic Figures; Vintage Plastic Soldiers; Vintage Toy Figures; Vintage Toy Soldiers; Vintage US Paratroops; WWII Plastic Toy Soldiers; WWII Toy Soldiers;
Here's a close-up of the three types with those probable Artform sub-piracies in the middle, the larger generic/Henbrandt to the left and Artform's on the right.

Airfix 1975; Airfix 1985 Catalogue; Airfix 1:32 Scale; Airfix 51464; Airfix 51464-8; Airfix 51564-7; Airfix 54mm; Airfix 951564; Airfix Blog; Airfix U.S. Paratroopers; Airfix US Paratroops; Airfix WWII; airfixfigs.blogspot.com; Artform International; Henbrandt US Paratroops; Hong Kong Artform; Hong Kong Paratroops; Hong Kong US Paratroops; Made in Hong Kong; Small Scale World; US Paratroops; Vintage Plastic Figures; Vintage Plastic Soldiers; Vintage Toy Figures; Vintage Toy Soldiers; Vintage US Paratroops; WWII Plastic Toy Soldiers; WWII Toy Soldiers;
Fourteen poses would have allowed the duplicates to be blanked-off the tool when Airfix switched to the 14-figure boxes, ensuring that each box got all the poses.

Airfix 1975; Airfix 1985 Catalogue; Airfix 1:32 Scale; Airfix 51464; Airfix 51464-8; Airfix 51564-7; Airfix 54mm; Airfix 951564; Airfix Blog; Airfix U.S. Paratroopers; Airfix US Paratroops; Airfix WWII; airfixfigs.blogspot.com; Artform International; Henbrandt US Paratroops; Hong Kong Artform; Hong Kong Paratroops; Hong Kong US Paratroops; Made in Hong Kong; Small Scale World; US Paratroops; Vintage Plastic Figures; Vintage Plastic Soldiers; Vintage Toy Figures; Vintage Toy Soldiers; Vintage US Paratroops; WWII Plastic Toy Soldiers; WWII Toy Soldiers;
The 1985 catalogue carried part of the artwork from the rear of the 29-figure boxes, showing a painting of one of the figure poses from both sides and some like-wise rendered militaria.

Airfix 1975; Airfix 1985 Catalogue; Airfix 1:32 Scale; Airfix 51464; Airfix 51464-8; Airfix 51564-7; Airfix 54mm; Airfix 951564; Airfix Blog; Airfix U.S. Paratroopers; Airfix US Paratroops; Airfix WWII; airfixfigs.blogspot.com; Artform International; Henbrandt US Paratroops; Hong Kong Artform; Hong Kong Paratroops; Hong Kong US Paratroops; Made in Hong Kong; Small Scale World; US Paratroops; Vintage Plastic Figures; Vintage Plastic Soldiers; Vintage Toy Figures; Vintage Toy Soldiers; Vintage US Paratroops; WWII Plastic Toy Soldiers; WWII Toy Soldiers;
♪♫♪♪♫ Let's dance . . . pick up your best grenade and dance the blues
Let's dance; to the song they're playin' on the Werffer of Nebels
Let's sway, while color lights up the foxhole
Let's sway, sway through the line to a safe-throwing space!
♪♫♫♫♪h

Airfix Clones; Airfix Copies; Airfix Piracies; Airfix US Paratroops; Artform Industrial; Billy V US Paratroops; Combat Soldiers; Hans Postler; Henbrandt; Hing Fat; Hing Fat 101/30; Hing Fat Combat Soldiers; Hing Fat Toys; Hing Fat US Paratroopers; HP; Knock Offs; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; US Infantry; US Paratroopers; US Paratroops; US Plastic Soldiers; World War Two; WWII; WWII Toy Soldiers; WWII US Paratroops;
Further digging (in 2020) revealed Hing Fat to be the producer of another set of Airfix copies, almost certainly issued by several other brand-marks and/or as generics - both bags above are anonymised and . . .

Airfix Clones; Airfix Copies; Airfix Piracies; Airfix US Paratroops; Artform Industrial; Billy V US Paratroops; Combat Soldiers; Hans Postler; Henbrandt; Hing Fat; Hing Fat 101/30; Hing Fat Combat Soldiers; Hing Fat Toys; Hing Fat US Paratroopers; HP; Knock Offs; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; US Infantry; US Paratroopers; US Paratroops; US Plastic Soldiers; World War Two; WWII; WWII Toy Soldiers; WWII US Paratroops;
. . . here we see a set branded to Billy V, the now defunct (and short-lived in any event) import-arm of the equally defunct Imex. When I say 'import-arm', most of Imex's inventory was import or joint-venture of one sort or another, Billy V were specifically their 'Rack Toy' arm.

Airfix Clones; Airfix Copies; Airfix Piracies; Airfix US Paratroops; Artform Industrial; Billy V US Paratroops; Combat Soldiers; Hans Postler; Henbrandt; Hing Fat; Hing Fat 101/30; Hing Fat Combat Soldiers; Hing Fat Toys; Hing Fat US Paratroopers; HP; Knock Offs; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; US Infantry; US Paratroopers; US Paratroops; US Plastic Soldiers; World War Two; WWII; WWII Toy Soldiers; WWII US Paratroops;
Other revalations in late 2019/2020 have resulted in a 4th identified variation, so just when I thought I could put it all to bed, we're still looking for one's ID! Also a new colour, associated with the un-ID'd set has been sent to the Blog!

Airfix Clones; Airfix Copies; Airfix Piracies; Airfix US Paratroops; Artform Industrial; Billy V US Paratroops; Combat Soldiers; Hans Postler; Henbrandt; Hing Fat; Hing Fat 101/30; Hing Fat Combat Soldiers; Hing Fat Toys; Hing Fat US Paratroopers; HP; Knock Offs; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; US Infantry; US Paratroopers; US Paratroops; US Plastic Soldiers; World War Two; WWII; WWII Toy Soldiers; WWII US Paratroops;
Courtesy of Chris Smith came these sandy-coloured figures, probably issued as one of two-sides in a larger rack toy, they are similar to the Hing Fat attributed lot, but (with both these and the larger green sample) there are base differences which point to a 4th source.

Airfix Clones; Airfix Copies; Airfix Piracies; Airfix US Paratroops; Artform Industrial; Billy V US Paratroops; Combat Soldiers; Hans Postler; Henbrandt; Hing Fat; Hing Fat 101/30; Hing Fat Combat Soldiers; Hing Fat Toys; Hing Fat US Paratroopers; HP; Knock Offs; Small Scale World; smallscaleworld.blogspot.com; US Infantry; US Paratroopers; US Paratroops; US Plastic Soldiers; World War Two; WWII; WWII Toy Soldiers; WWII US Paratroops;
Base marks as I believe them to be attributable, but nothing is set in stone with this Hong Kong stuff! The figures from '2' & '3' are almost the same but the bases are very different, and it may be that one pirate supplied duplicate tools to two different makers, one of whom was Hing Fat.

Links
http://biblicrafts.blogspot.com/2020/02/airfix-ww2-132-us-paratroopers.html
http://biblicrafts.blogspot.com/2020/03/airfix-ww2-132-us-paratroopers-part-2.html

4 comments:

Biblicrafts Miniatures said...

Very nice educational post! I have just finished some of them..check them out :) I love the last picture and song!!

Cheers, George.

Hugh Walter said...

Thanks for the thanks George - I've posted the two links, and I'll try to spend some time finding your other Airfix stuff and linking to it too!

H

Martín Córdova said...

Hello! very interesting article, I want to invite you to our Facebook group dedicated to Airfix WW2 1/32 toy soldiers, I will share your blog with the group members. Best regards, Martín

Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/airfix132/

Hugh Walter said...

Cheers Martin, I'll check your group out, but I probably won't join, I am already in Friends of Plastic Warrior and Pod Stallions, and they keep me busy enough, what with the normal feed and the blogging!

H