The Airfix Tribute Forum is a fantastic place for Airfix fans and builders to connect and discuss Britain's favourite model kit brand and has grown in leaps and bounds under Richard Linnell, the man currently in charge. But as well as running this highly successful forum, Richard has a fascinating toy-related life story, as he, his father and his grandfather all worked for Mettoy in Northampton. We caught up with him and for a Q&A about Mettoy and the forum!
John Nijhuis is a Matchbox renaissance man, having founded the Matchbox Forum (www.mbxforum.com), an international not-for-profit organisation of Matchbox collectors in three divisions worldwide: North America, Europe and Australia. However, he also designed and maintains the club's website and has made it one of the first and foremost web-friendly diecast organisations in the world. We caught up with him and discussed collecting, Matchbox distribution and the effect of the internet on collecting and buying in general.
As I mentioned in my piece on our trip to the Houten fair, we stopped off the night before the event to visit with Henri Kroeze of Tiny Toy Cars at his extremely cool shop in Gravendeel.
Back in 1989, a book came out which went straight to the top of all Corgi collectors' Christmas lists. Authored by former Mettoy Chief Designer Marcel R. Van Cleemput, who had prepared the very first designs of the very first Corgi cars in 1956 and had subsequently been involved in every single model that followed, The Great Book of Corgi was the definitive guide to the Mettoy-produced brand, covering its history from '56 up to Mettoy's bankruptcy in 1983.
It's hard to believe that 21 years have passed since the original book was published, but while Mettoy never came back to life, Corgi most certainly did, and that's 21 more years of new models that weren't covered in the original book. And which Marcel has now updated the book to cover for the new 2010 edition, due out this Autumn. On the occasion of the new book's announcement, he very kindly agreed to talk to Toy Collector about it and, of course, about his amazing history with Corgi.
You will, of course, remember Egidio Reali's LookSmart and MR Collection models played a huge role in our recent Lamborghini Retrospective feature here on Toy Collector, so we were very pleased to be able to grab the chance to have a conversation with Egidio himself on the LookSmart and MR Collection stand at the Nuremberg Toy Fair this year.
LookSmart is in the enviable position of being "official" modelmaker to Lamborghini, Bugatti and numerous other high-end car makers - when you order a new one of these cars in 1:1, two months before your car arrives you'll receive an exact LookSmart model of it, incorporating all the options and colours you've specified. In addition, the company has exclusive rights to model all the Audi concept cars in 1/43 (Audi even lent Egidio the A1 Sportback concept to display on the LookSmart stand).
Having a passion for construction equipment started when I was very young. Looking at construction places to watch draglines, scrapers, dozers, loaders and dump trucks. I could spend hours just to watch them. I got in 1975 a training for service engineer for a Dutch Bobcat dealer and from that time my favorite machine had a white colour. Traveling from January up to December in Europe, Africa, Middle East and Russia means meeting many people with same passion as me namely collecting construction models. I visited many collectors over the world to see their collection. To see and to learn about displaying models.