November 30, 2012

Picture of the Week 30nov2012

Our Picture of the Week is in honor of NYPD Officer Larry DePrimo and 'Random Acts of Kindness'! While this has gone viral in a big way and and is all over the news in deserves every mention it gets. So this holiday season ...Pay it forward! We all can learn something from this act of humanity.

Culled from various sources:
NEW YORK — A tourist's snapshot of a New York City police officer giving new boots to a barefoot homeless man in Times Square has created an online sensation. Jennifer Foster, of Florence, Ariz., was visiting New York with her boyfriend Nov. 14, when she came across the shoeless man asking for change in Times Square.

As she was about to approach the homeless man, she said the officer — later identified as Larry DePrimo — came up to the man with a pair of all-weather boots and thermal socks on the cold night. She recorded his generosity on her cellphone. DePrimo, 25, speaking Thursday, remembered the night clearly, that even with two pairs of socks on, his feet were freezing.

The homeless man "didn't even have a pair of socks on and I could only imagine how cold that pavement was," DePrimo said. So, he asked the man if he had anything to cover his feet. “It’s okay, Sir, I’ve never had a pair of shoes,” the man replied. “But God bless you.” As the mystery man strolled away down Seventh Ave., DePrimo caught up to him and asked him his shoe size before walking into a Skechers on W. 42nd St. “I’d like to buy a pair of boots, something that will last a while,” DePrimo told a worker. “I don’t care what the price is.”

A few minutes later, the kindhearted cop bought a $100 pair of all-weather boots, size 12. Store manager Jose Cano applied his employee discount to lower the price. “It was really inspiring to see someone take five minutes out of their work day to do something small that can become something big,” said the manager. 

The photo shows the officer kneeling beside the man with the boots at his feet. "I have these size 12 boots for you, they are all-weather. Let's put them on and take care of you," Foster quoted DePrimo as telling the man. Foster, a dispatch manager at the Pinal County Sheriff's Office, wrote: "The officer squatted down on the ground and proceeded to put socks and the new boots on this man. The officer expected NOTHING in return and did not know I was watching."

DePrimo said buying the boots "was something I had to do." He tried to persuade the man to get something to eat, but he declined. "When I brought out the shoes, it was just a smile from ear to ear," he said. "It was a great moment for both of us."

“I think it’s an important reminder,” he said. “You see something like this and you remember that people have it worse.”

Link of the Week 30nov2012 Scale Model Addict

Our link of the week for Novemeber 30th goes to Scale Model Addict modeling forum which is an excellent online community of scale model builders. Within this site you will find work's in progress and completed builds covering many genres including Armor, Aircraft, Automobiles, Science Fiction, Dioramas and much more. There are also lots of tips and techniques posted daily by members. The premier issue of Scale Model Addict Magazine will be released in early December 2012. Both the forum and magazine are highly recommended.

To reserve a copy of the premier issue click here

November 28, 2012

W Britains Announces Battle of Fredericksburg Range

Britains has released details of their all new Battle of Fredericksburg 1862 American Civil War Range. The initial releases scheduled for February 2013 include 15 figures and two scenic details. I was fortunate enough to see pre production samples of these figures in person upon a recent visit to sculptor Ken Osen's house. I have to say they are spectacular and among the best figures Ken has ever done. The Irish Brigade flag with photo-etched battle honors is simply stunning. Also of note is that Ken has sculpted a new Angle of Marye's Height set for the series. Those who have followed him will note that he did this same set way back in 1996 during his first tenure at Britains. What a difference 15 years or so makes. It shows just how far this hobby has come. To round out the range Ken has sculpted two sets of scenics to make up the sunken road at Marye's Heights. My hat's off the Ken & Richard Walker for developing this exciting new range of figures. Click Here to Pre Order the Fredericksburg 1862 range

The November 2012 issue of the Britains Collector Club magazine 'The Standard' contains a feature on the new range as well as a feature by Ken on how he crafted the series including the use of living historians in period dress, background on winter clothing during the Civil War and the actual sculpting of the figures. 

Another great feature in this issue is an article by Craig Appleton on Germans on the Somme in WWI. Another new range to be released by Britains in early 2013. 

The Standard is only available to members of the Britains Collectors Club. I highly recommend joining. Click here for details

November 23, 2012

Link of the Week 23nov2012 Plastic Soldier Review

Plastic Soldier Review
Plastic Soldier Review is a site dedicated to providing a central source of information on all the major 1:72 scale plastic soldier sets currently and previously available. This site is privately run and funded, carries no advertising, and is completely free to all visitors. It is independent of all manufacturers and has no financial links with any body, manufacturer or otherwise, that has a commercial interest in this hobby.

The hobby of plastic soldiers has recently experienced a second 'Golden Age', with a rapidly expanding range of figures and several new manufacturers. This site aims to encourage and support the hobby by highlighting the available sets, and particularly new sets as they become available. It also aims to promote the highest possible standards of quality by providing as much information as possible so that customers can decide which sets are worthy of purchase before parting with their money.  Visit Plastic Soldier Review

Picture of the Week 23nov2012

Another fantastic Civil War image recently featured in Civil War Times magazine gets Picture of the Week for 23november2012.

Ambrotype of the Pattillo Brothers, Company K, 22nd Regt. Georgia Volunteer Infantry

The four Pattillo brothers were from Henry County and enlisted together on August 31, 1861, in Company K, 22nd Regiment of the Georgia Volunteer Infantry.
Benjamin is seated on the far left and appears to be holding a Confederate hand grenade. On August 30, 1862, during the Battle of 2nd Manassas he was shot in the stomach and died the next day in the General Hospital in Warrenton, Virginia.
George, who is seated second from the left, was assigned for making shoes for the Confederacy at Augusta, Georgia from November 1862 until the end of the war. He was the only Pattillo brother to live through the Civil War without sustaining any injury.
James, seated third from the left, was discharged in March of 1862 and later reenlisted. During the Battle of Second Deep Bottom on August 16, 1864, he was shot in the foot. He had to have his third toe removed due to this injury.
John, seated on the far right, suffered from a case of Dysentery and was admitted to Chimborazo Hospital #2 in Richmond, Virginia on May 31, 1862. He was released from the hospital and returned to duty on June 14, 1862. Not long after returning to duty he was wounded during the Seven Days' battles near Richmond, Virginia, on June 28, 1862. He never fully recovered and pension records show he was discharged from service on account of wounds in March of 1863. Courtesy the David Wynn Vaughan Collection.

November 21, 2012

Black Hawk Toy Soldier Debuts O.K. Corral Series

Black Hawk Toy Soldier has released images and pricing for their new O.K. Corral collection featuring the eight combatants the participated in the famous gunfight. BHT which is an off shoot of Andrea Miniatures features the meticulous and beautiful sculpting that Andrea is famous for. We had a chance to look at the figures at the Chicago Toy Soldier show in September and this promises to be the best Black Hawk series yet. Available for pre order now and expected in early December.

Check out the You Tube O.K. Corral preview video


Production Images for Expeditionary Force Plastic ACW Figures

Scott at  Expeditionary Force has sent along images of the production sets for the American Civil War. These are 1/32nd Scale plastic figures. There will be eight sets. Union & Confederate Infantry (9 figures in 3 poses per set, with two head variants per figure), Union & Confederate Dismounted Cavalry (9 figures in 3 poses per set), Union & Confederate Cavalry (9 figures in 3 poses per set) and Union & Confederate Artillery (2 cannon teams, bugler and mounted officer per set).  We except these sets the first week of December or so.

Link of the Week 16nov2012 Alan and Marion Ball. Sculptor and Painter Respectively

MB Miniatures- Alan and Marion Ball.
A site full of inspiration to all figure painters, sculptors and modelers. 

About the Balls:
We are Marion Ebensperger-Ball , a painter, and Alan Ball , a sculptor. We have both been involved in the making and painting of Miniature Figurines for several years and have exhibited in both Europe and the USA. Originally from Liverpool in the UK, Alan started modelling a long, long time ago and has also won medals at various shows in Europe and the USA, he also works for several companies as a sculptor, producing masters figures for companies like United Empire Miniatures, Michael Roberts, Corgi, William Britains Toy Soldiers , Meteor production, Seil Models, Der Bunte Rock, Golden Helmet amongst others. He has also made many pieces for individuals and collections, producing original figures both for people to paint themselves, and for Marion to paint as a finished article for collectors. We share a workroom and spend most of our days sitting at two converted computer tables , one full of paints and brushes , and one with modelling putties and sculpting tools.

November 18, 2012

Scale Model Magazine Premier Issue Coming in December

 December will see the debut of what promises to be an exciting new modeling magazine. We are pleased to be a advertiser and sponsor of Scale Model Addict Magazine and support this great new magazine. Each issue will feature "4 Awesome Columns" including Kit Bashing & Scratch Building, Diorama & Vignette Details, Ground & Terrain, Wargaming & Braille Scale.

Issue 01 of Scale Model Addict Magazine features Rick Lawler’s Burden of Sorrow, an incredible and thought provoking diorama. Join Rick as he takes you through the details, and trials, of bringing this incredible, award winning, work of art to life. Also featured in this debut issue are six other jam packed articles, four tutorial driven columns. 

We will be carrying the magazine at MichToy and you may also subscribe direct through the Scale Model addict website which also offers SUBSCRIBER BONUS ONLINE VIDEO- As a subscriber to SMA MAGAZINE you will receive bonus online video tutorials, no less than one per issue. These videos will be made available to you through your subscription account on  

We also highly recommend a visit to the Scale Model Addict modeling forum.

November 16, 2012

Picture of the Week 16nov2012

About The Longest Bowie Knife you are likely to see, and in a yankee’s belt
This sixth plate Civil War tintype photo shows a Federal infantry private who decided to take no chances in front of the camera. Wearing his forage cap tilted slightly back to show clearly his entire face, he holds a bayonetted musket at his side, and tucked into a waist belt are a revolver to the viewer’s right and a bowie knife on the left.  This wicked thing has a simple crossguard and handle, and has a clip-point blade that must be 16 inches long!  This fellow is one dangerous hombre.  He is taking no chances.  A simple backdrop suggests this was taken in a primitive studio or in the field.  A good CW fighting man image!

Friday Food for Thought 16nov2012

November 13, 2012

Early 2013 Troop Surge Planned by Caesar Miniatures

Caesar Miniatures has announced no less then 12 new set of 1/72nd Scale figures for release in early 2013. 5 sets are in the regular historical range of soft plastic figures while there are 7 new WWII sets billed as the 'Assembly Series'. We assume these will be multi-pose style figures since the box list the number of parts rather then the number of figures. More details as they become available. View and Pre order by Clicking Here

November 11, 2012

FIGURE OF THE WEEK 11nov2012: Nardi Confederate

Nardi Confederate, 54mm Plastic Circa 1960s
This week’s offering comes from Italian company Nardi. Produced in the ’60s, he was used to represent officers from the American Civil War as well as from the Afrika Korps. With a curious mix of uniform and equipment (note the German belt, holster and canteen and the Civil War kepi and Western revolver) this fighting man would be ready for action no matter what scene you put him in. 

Product Spotlight: Excellent New Book for Figure Modelers

A MichToy Recommendation
Getting into figure modeling can be an intimidating process for the beginner. The new book by Auriga Publishing- 'Static Model Manual 5: Painting Figures’  can take help away the intimidation factor and is an excellent starting point for anyone interested in the hobby figure modeling. Written by Aleksander Michelotti this book is designed to clearly explain the procedures for obtaining  excellent figures. Step by step photos, secrets, tricks, shortcuts, anything goes and  everything is here on these pages to help you acheive the best results! The 100 page book is printed on gloss paper and has a glossy flexible cover. The text is in both English (
in Italics) and Italian (in bold ).
 We have offered many figure books in the shop over the years but if I had to choose just one to recommend to a customer this is it.
Click Here to view
  • Features:
  • Written by Aleksander Michelotti
  •  Full-color step-by-step instructions
  • Printed on glossy paper
  • Figure preparation
  • The use of acrylic and oil paints
  • Covers the painting of: faces, skin, eyes, cloth, metal, medieval armor, shading, highlights, shadows
  • Constructing small display bases
  • For all ages and modelers

    New at MichToy- Eduard Pre Painted Photo Etched Scenic Details

    We are pleased to now offer the Eduard Pre Painted Photo Etched Scenic Details for diorams, models and figures in 1/72nd and 1/35th Scales.

    Eduard Model Accessories was formed in 1989 in the basement of co-owner Ctirad Kuraks house in Most, Czechoslovakia (now the Czech Republic). Two years previous, Mr. Kurak and Vladimir Sulc had started making photo etch for themselves and had decided that it was possible to sell to shops, so in 1990 the first photo etch, a 1/48th scale Su 25K, was produced for sale. In that year many more sets were made and sales were so good that they moved into a proper office and opened up a production line in 1991. Eduard have continued evolve and are always looking for new ideas and technologies to improve their products. Click Here to view the current range

    November 10, 2012

    Hobby Master to Release First 1/72 Scale Metal Model Kit

    Hobby Master product number HMK101 is a WWII Bedford QL Aircraft Refueler, of the British Royal Air Force and will feature a metal chassis and driver's cabin, rubber tires and plastic parts with a decal sheet for 3 color schemes.

    Click to Pre Order Now

    November 07, 2012

    Little Green Army Men

    Came across this great old Seinfeld clip on You Tube which reminded me that...we have these! Of course the days of the .99¢ bag are long gone.

    Classic Green Army Men Jumbo Pack of U.S. Soldiers 54mm
     40 Piece Soldier Set of Classic "Green Army Men"

    The proper way to eat an Oreo

    November 06, 2012

    Now at MichToy Battle Buckets of Plastic Soldiers

    The playset is arguably the greatest present ever invented and just in time for the Holidays we have a new selection of Battle Bucket Playsets chock-full of cool soldiers and other assorted goodies to start you on your playing/collecting ways. Each comes in a clear 7" plastic bucket.
    BBF-00632 Battle Bucket - Knights, Crusaders, Saracens 57 pcs.
    BBF-00633 Battle Bucket - Vikings 50pcs.
    BBF-44501 Battle Bucket - American Civil War 73 pcs. 
    BBF-42501 Battle Bucket - Wild West Cowboys And Indians 104 pcs. 
    BBF-43501 Battle Bucket - Pirates 52 pcs. 
    BBF-46010 Battle Bucket - Space Exploration Bucket O' Fun
    BBF-40501 Battle Bucket - Attack Force World War II 202 pcs.
    BBF-40502 Battle Bucket - Combat Force World War II 110 pcs.
    BBF-00635 Battle Bucket - Sea, Space, Fire and Police 202 pcs.

    View all our Battle Buckets and Boxed Playsets by Clicking Here

    November 03, 2012

    Lincoln & Custer in November

    November is an exciting month historically speaking as two of my favorite historical figures are getting special treatments. Can't wait for Steven Spielberg's Lincoln the biographical war drama film. Spielberg directs two-time Academy Award® winner Daniel Day-Lewis in “Lincoln,” a revealing drama that focuses on the 16th President’s tumultuous final months in office. In a nation divided by war and the strong winds of change, Lincoln pursues a course of action designed to end the war, unite the country and abolish slavery. With the moral courage and fierce determination to succeed, his choices during this critical moment will change the fate of generations to come. Visit the Official Website for more:

    Also looking forward to picking up the new book 'Custer' by Larry McMurtry of Lonesome Dove (the best TV show ever!)  and Brokeback Mountain fame. 

    McMurtry has long been fascinated with the notorious general and his long flowing locks and has finally done something about it.

    After turning down the opportunity for years, the acclaimed Pulitzer Prize-winning author has finally written his own take on Custer and the legendary battle that brought him down. Aptly called Custer, McMurtry's book does what dozens of others on Custer have not.
    It cuts through many of the myths, including what was actually said at the battle on June 25, 1876. McMurtry doubts, for instance, that Custer's famous cry, "Hurrah boys, we've got them," was ever uttered.

    McMurtry tells the story of one of America's most famous — and important — battles in his unique and personal style in a series of short chatty chapters that are accompanied by lavish illustrations and historic photographs.
    In short, it's entertaining and educational at the same time. McMurtry states his case early on.

    "No matter what I write here, Custer's fights will continue to engage historians," he writes. "One of the duties of a short life is to bring clarity to the subject."
    And McMurtry does, not only zeroing in on the idiosyncratic Custer, but the rest of the colorful characters — Indian leaders Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull; military men Sheridan and Sherman and Grant; such legends as Buffalo Bill Cody; and Custer's widow, Libbie, who was his PR agent for years after his death.

    Perry Miniatures Announce New 28mm Plastic Sets

    Perry Miniatures has announced that the next set of 28mm plastic figures will be American Civil War Confederate Infantry 1862-65 and will be available by mid-December! There will be caps and slouch hats for all to be equipped with either. Equally, like the Zouave set, there will be enough arms to have all the figures at the charge or at ‘right shoulder shift'. 

    Other announced plastic include their first WWII figures  covering the war in Africa. No release dates have been posted but look for these in early 2013.

    WWII German Akfricakorps
    These are six of 14 different torsos that will make up the box set.
    The box will contain enough figures for a Zug or Platoon plus command section and support. They will have separate arms, where possible attached to weapons as well as separate headwear. There will be enough steel helmets for all as well as half the amount of tropical cork helmets and field caps. As well as Africa they could be used for Italy and other Mediterranean campaigns.

    WWII British 8th Army
    These are the 14 different torsos that will be in the forthcoming box. The box will be made up of three sections, command and support (2”mortar, Boyes AT rifle and extra Bren). As with the Africakorps arms and helmets are separate. There will also be a choice of additional heads on the frame, which will be SAS/Long Range Desert Group. The figures could also be used in parts of the Italian campaign

    American War of Independence 1776-81
    These are the first in the AWI plastic series there will be American militia and Continentals too. Shown here are just four out of the five figures for the infantry sprue, the command sprue will probably contain 6 figures. The figures are depicted in cut-down coats and one piece overalls which serves them for the 1776-81 period. All the figures will have a choice of three pieces of head gear, fully cocked, slouch/half cocked hats and the ‘Saratoga’ cut down hat which should cover most theatres of campaign in America.

    The hats rather than the heads (which are attached to the bodies) are separate as this is the best way to get the proper shape when tooling them in plastic. Three types of head gear are all that will fit on the frame, in case you were thinking why not make grenadier or light infantry heads. As these last two troop types had their hair clubbed as opposed to a simple queue for the centre companies which would need to be carved off. It maybe something I could do as an additional sprue later on……

    They’re carrying the regulation kit including the tumplines (rolled blankets), which would have been the typical look of British infantry in America. The choice of arms include the ‘at trail’ pose which again was typical of troops moving through a mostly wooded terrain. They will also all get arms for a more aggressive charging unit.

    There will be five infantry bodies with fixed heads and separate headgear and six command bodies, plus two casualties.