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FAB1 4 years ago #1

Senior Boarder
Hello all

I've recently been looking at lots of listings on eb*y for Dinky FAB1's & at images of it in general.

Something however is puzzling me.

On some models the sliding portion of the plastic canopy seems to sit very low at the front where it joins the front windscreen (so there's a big gap) whilst others are ok. Are some just like this, or does it indicate damage/ a fault & something to be wary of?

Any advice much appreciated.


Last Edit: 4 years ago by Webley.

Re: FAB1 4 years ago #2

Platinum Boarder
Old Dinky tend to be heavily played with.
Also keep in mind tgat the plastic from the 1960s hadca tendenc to become hard and brittle in a matter of years.
The spare parts that are available are copies from the iriginal or more likely from remanufactured tooling such as sand casting.
Its never quite the same.

If yiu compare corgi/carlton with Dinky you will see some fasscinating differences.
And ofcourse there is Matchbox and Tomica

Re: FAB1 4 years ago #3

The sliding canopy part of the Dinky FAB1 is prone to warping. It's a weakness in the design of the original moulding and means that most surviving examples (including unplayed ones) have a degree of distortion.

The FAB1 is one of my favourite models but in my opinion illustrates the gulf between the original intention of these items and how they are appraised now. It was made for 10 years (1966-76) as a toy replica of the famous vehicle from Thunderbirds; when I was a child many kids had one.

Nowadays, it is one of the more significant collectable models of the classic diecast toy era, worth few hundred pounds in mint condition, and so grown men stand around with serious expressions debating every little mark and distortion on a given specimen like they were appraising a work of fine art. To me, the condition I want is 'as made' but I do not seek a perfection that simply does not exist on these models - so, as long as it is not cracked and is original, I have never bothered about the slightly wonky canopies that pretty much every single Dinky FAB1 has - that's simply a result of the way they were made.
Last Edit: 4 years ago by andyman7.

Re: FAB1 4 years ago #4

Platinum Boarder
Additional to what Richard and andyman7 says above, the plastic warps and shrinks with age allowing the sliding canopy to not fit very well, it tends to want to rock backwards and forwards, which when closed upto the windscreen as far as it can go, often does sit lower at the contact point.

There are a lot of differences between the Corgi (Carlton are the Thunderbirds Lisense holder at that time of the Corgi's introduction) and the original Dinky as they are entirley different tooling.

The Dinky has Four doors by mistake. The Corgi has the correct Two doors.

We have a ''FAB 1'' thread somewhere.


Re: FAB1 4 years ago #5

Hi Rollerman, the four doors aren't a mistake, the original series props included both versions over time.

Re: FAB1 4 years ago #6

Platinum Boarder
Only the puppet car looks like it has foour doors, the front Two panels on both sides of the car are designed to be removed for camera close up work, they are not actual doors.

They even copied the car from a publicity picture to create the box artwork, shown below.


Re: FAB1 4 years ago #7

Platinum Boarder
Here is one side of the 9 foot long puppet car.

The front panels are removable for the camrea equipment to get in for close up work, they do make the car look as if it has Four doors, but this is not so and as I mentioned above, Dinky also thought they were doors.


Re: FAB1 4 years ago #8

Thanks, it is indeed the puppet car that Dinky based their model on but I think that reinforces my original point that is was a toy and not an attempt to create a perfect scale model. The Corgi Batmobile is a good case in point, again nowadays a top-notch collectable, and yes it is a lovely toy, but the proportions are significantly distorted from the original George Barris crafted TV prop.

Re: FAB1 4 years ago #9

Platinum Boarder
George Barris did not exactly craft the Batmobile completely.
It was originally designed by Ford as the Lincoln Futura, one of those strange concept cars from the 1950s.
After getting the Futura for a dollar it stayed in his workshop for a wee while longer until he got commissioned to create a Batmobile.
The car got a bit of an overhaul as well as the body was extended to fit on a Ford Galaxie chassis. Fins were added and all sorts of other gadgets.

If memory serves fibreglass was the in thing for surfboards as well as the infamous Trabant from East Germany. Barris created fibreglass copies of the original Batmobile to use in the series and consequential movies.

Later because of demand more bodies were madecas a side business for Barris tonprofit on the iconic car.

Little bit of research done

Re: FAB1 4 years ago #10

Yes, you are correct, Barris was a customiser but I would contend that that 1966 TV Batmobile is his work, regardless of the base vehicle.....anyhow, the point was that as toys, neither the FAB1 nor the Corgi Batmobile slavishly modelled the originals. And of course DInky later went on to make a number of other TV related toys which often used colours not featured on the originals.

Re: FAB1 4 years ago #11

Platinum Boarder
Gerry Anderson and Derek Meddings are responsible for the 'Classic' ''FAB 1'' we saw in the TV series and the Two films. The smaller 6 inch and 2 foot long models were built by 'Space Models Ltd' in Feltham, Middlesex. The 9 foot long puppet model was a collaboration between Space Models and the studios in Slough, Berks.

Last Edit: 4 years ago by TheRollerman.

Re: FAB1 4 years ago #12

Senior Boarder
Excellent info' both on my question & FAB1 in general. Thanks very much to all.


Re: FAB1 4 years ago #13

Platinum Boarder
Sorry for the delay. Was busy making a slide show video for my Dad's sendoff. He passed a week ago.


Ok, here are the two Corgi FAB1 I have and they are identical.

Only difference are that Corgi dropped the name Carlton from the 2003 release and modified the rockets to be safer like they intended it to be a toy for children to play with and totally forgetting about their staunch geriatric following. Not too unusual for marketing to be out of touch with customers.

Richard k

Re: FAB1 4 years ago #14

Platinum Boarder
Again, condolences on your father's passing.
These are great models, had an early one but sold it off to Rob (Oldtruck56)
Last Edit: 4 years ago by Nobleco.

Re: FAB1 4 years ago #15

Platinum Boarder
Those would be the classic Dinky Toys Jim, still have couple of those.

Kinda back at work again.

Anyway. Two cropped photos of the main difference between the 2003 Carlton Corgi and the new 2015 Corgi apart from the box and the dropped partner firm.

The rockets were made kid friendly. They never fixed the spring release. 

Richard k

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