Britains Ltd 25 Pounder Howitzer Gun

by GunnerJim

Britains Ltd started to make the 25 pounder  during the early 1960's.  Which would be about right when I acquired my first 25 pounder having the number of 9705.

The castings on the left and right was the first 25 pounders that Britain attempted to produce, which are similar to those of Lone Star in some respects as not being realistic enough.  Crescent and Dinky had produced the more realistic version, although Dinky didn't have any firing mechanism.   Crescent really got involved with their modeling, to include dial sights and range plate into their casting, while they also attempted to include the traversing and elevation wheels.  They also included the base turntable pivoting plate to sit the gun onto while in the firing position.  This enable the gun to be spun around in a complete circle, just encase the enemy slipped in behind the gun position.

These toy guns of Britains were designed to firer a lead or plastic look alike artillery round projectile.  As these often became lost in battles,  matchsticks would often replace the rounds and were set alight, so as to depict the actual firing of a gun with the tell tail vapor trail of the matchstick as it travelled through the air.  Well I did that and I know a lot of other young boys did the same thing.   If one wanted to really smash into the oncoming toy soldiers one could replace the matchstick with little ball bearings and that wasn't fair on the tin lead soldiers.  Ah then came those plastic ones.

The difference in the tooling is that the 25 pounder situated in the middle has the distinct deflective shield compared to the early versions.

In the middle of the picture the shield has the flap in the downwards position. The box trail has also been reworked, including the flash casting on the end of the barrel.  In all, I would say this is actually a complete new tooling of the die-casting mould made just before 1977.  Number 9704

The early 25 pounders had die-cast wheel hubs and rubber tyres while later in life, they were replaced them with plastic hubs with plastic tyres.

Just some memories of the real 25 Pounder.

The 25 Pounder Howitzer had a boxed trail riveted and later welded.  It had a quick firing slide breach mechanism, elevation from 4 degrees to 40 degrees while only having the adjust of 4 degrees traverse left and right of center-line.  Capabilities high angle firing and secondary anti tank when over run.  These capabilities was definitely proven in the Desert Warfare at Tobruk. Great little gun to work on and firer.

HE  shells with percussion fuse  and Air-bust time fuses were used for smoke and canister shot.  Different charges were contained in the shell casing and were taken out for setting the required charge by using the different coloured bags. White, Blue and Red being the smallest. When shooting over long distances all were used and if only firing short distances then the white bag of cordite was used.  Funny it used to feel like a bag of wheat, well it was in pallet form.

What else can I remember.  The Sargent would control the traverse when the gun had to be turned left or right by using a hand spike near the towing eye.  He would lift the trail up a bit and swing the gun as it pivoted on the turntable plate, then the Gun Layer would finalise the traverse.   The Number 3 being the Gun layer would trigger the firing mechanism near him on the left side of the gun when the gun was fired.
The breach loader Number 2, would open the breach while the round loader Number 4 would push up the 25 pound round into the breach by the slap of the open hand with fingers pointing downward, then the breach loader would ram the round home.  This is to stop the breach loader getting over impatient by slamming the breach closed.  If the loader or the charge loader Number 5 put their hands right in the breach then they may loose their fist. 

Number 6 would sort the charges set the time fuse or put the percussion fuse on under the supervision of the Bombardier.  My job.

Well that is all I can remember as that was so so long ago and I was really a 5.5 Gun BL  Medium Field Gunner anyway.

Bye GunnerJim.

Bought this on eBay for nearly nicks. Looks like someone was going to try and place a roof on this Dodge Royal Sedan No 191

Just sizing up to see if the Matchbox seating from the XJ6 Jaguar will fit. The Dodge and plastic window replacement part that I bought on eBay.  I suppose the replacement part was worth the price I paid for it anyway.

Stripped down parts testing to see if the seating fits.

So far so good.  Now to fit the window to see if it will sit on the body.  As this window replacement part should be inserted from the inside of the body and would rest against the die-cast roof on the original body.  Alas no roof for that to happen.  Also there was no allowance with the seating inserted into the body for the replacement roof to be inserted in that way.  So with some grinding so as to lower the profile of the roof and place it on top of the body was the only option.

Now to make the canvas roof top that will sit on-top of the window replacement part.

Heated plastic is pushed into shape with the male plug into the female mould. Simple method didn't even bother to place plastic into moulding frame.

This plastic was too thick for what I wanted so had to find something else.

Trial fit with the plastic canvas roof on-top of the replacement window and was definitely too thick.

 Eventually I found the right thickness I needed from a shopping bag insert base. Just ideal as this plastic is ready available in Australia from the green shopping bags that we must use instead of plastic bags. Environmentally Friendly they say.

Painting process has been dealt with many times.

Cleaned up base plate with some new paint and tyres.

Actually I wasn't going to put the strip at the bottom of the rear window. Should have cut another out I think. Too late as I had already glued it in place.

I was hoping for a lot cleaner finish although this conversion is within the ball park somewhere of not being to satisfaction of 100% that I would have liked. There is a slight twist in the front as the attached roof has a lean to the right. Never mind might fix it one day.

So what is your opinion like to hear anyway .


One of the joys of converting devastated diecast toys, that strongly indicates many hours of energetic play by the previous owner, which by impressions to ones eye, may be equivalent to going around the world in 80 days by rolling  it.  Or has been in the hands of Top Gear bandit trio for 24 hours at least.  This personal joy is to bring  back this particular dead and lonely toy, through exotic mind bending inspirations, that the original owner or designer could have never have imagined the toy to be, into something completely different exoticism.

Below is the belted up and tied looking K 113 Plane Transporter, limp and buckled wheels, plastic plane rack almost disappeared into oblivion and spit windscreen that had some paint  or something evil on it.

The box trailer has been cut down and joined together and designed to fit onto the rear of the K113.  Pre-fitting the Box frame and trimming out the wheel arches and I found super glue somewhat stronger than the Revell glue for this project. Bit of bog filler too helps.

The wheels and axle assembly has been made up from two halves, sourced from two no-name Peterbilt truck rear duels and assembly, is now sitting temporary into position. Good old rubber bands come in handy don't they.

Some paint prep and the sub-chassis and axle housing has been fitted into position. While the assembling of the rear door ramp which has been made out of bits and pieces from the scrape box is in progress.

Haven't decided to raise the floor level in the middle as yet. Although I have to have two pivoting holes for the bottom of the middle doors to be added in some how and looks like it will be the floor could be the way to which will hold them.

The rear ramp door is being held into position by the axle-rod which can be seen extending from the rear lower side. The holes from the existing box trailer are going to be used to fasten the box to the diecast frame then filled later with bog (Body Filler) and painted over.

Looks like the floor one the day and has been fitted into position by bogging it with body filler. Actually the plastic floor is made from some old cassette boxes which has a perforated surface just like checkered steel flooring does the job anyway.

The finished underside of the Bomb Squad Explosive and Recovery Transporter all painted and finished with home made decals.

The little robot tank with hydraulic movable lifting arm is made from a no-name China made tank while the lifting arm came from a Matchbox Cherry Picker.

Lifting up and the arm can be extend into the middle loading doors. Although a bit blurred the decals showing the Bomb Squad Explosive sign is just visible.

Placing explosive box in through the middle doors.

The ramp, still ended up a bit steep although the go anywhere robot tank can handle it with a bit of a shove.

Ramp is up and doors are shut ready to roll. Oops forgot to load the robot tank.

Top view of the Bomb Disposal and Recovery Transporter with mobile robot tank.  I hope you like this little inspiration of the conversion of the K113 Aircraft Transporter from bits and peaces. GunnerJim

Tin Trucks and Tractors.

by GunnerJim

Tin toys or should one now say Tin-plastic toys.
Tonka crane and low-loader. Tonka would almost be a household name when it comes to tin-plate pressed toys.

Tractor and trailer.

Front in-loader.

Wrecker or tow truck

Off road dump trucks Muscle Machines and Nylint.

What is left of the car carrier lost the trailer over the years.

BuddyL Off road dump truck kangaroo hunter.

Clover mix. The one on the right tin chassis the rest is tough plastic.

Matchbox trying to have tin toys. The firer-engine although mainly plastic it has tin bell.

Muscle Machines, tin rapped around plastic type is becoming the main theme these days.

Remco back hoe and off road dumper which  is mainly all plastic and was a remote control type.

Cookie or biscuit and a lolly tin toy containers made in China that are starting to show up on some antique dealers shelves and have a price tag of about $10.

Midget Tonka's bob cat and traxcavator.

I picked up this Rough Country at the Sunday Market last month and this has been added to my collection of dump trucks. Worldbond 1986 Hong Kong registered company. Truck made in China and packaged in Hong Kong. Length 150 x 55 wide x 65 high. Torco is written on the wheels.

Most of these toys were kept in the Toy Box in the garden shed for the grandchildren to play with, although some of the early Tonka's are now being stored away for a rainy day, as computer games have won the day. The crane and the tractor trailer is what is left from my own children when the boys were young.

Anyone else got some tin toys from their past and wish to share on Toy Collector then please do so.


Jayden's Favorites Nascar

by GunnerJim

My grandson "Jayden" came to stay for the weekend and brought with him some of his prized collection of die-cast toys, with one request in mind.  "Could you  please put some pictures of my favorite cars on Toy Collector".  Over the last couple of years Jayden would ask, what are you looking at on Toy Collector with keen interest. So I would show off my latest blogs and pictures. Jayden never fails to check out what is new in my collection and would ask questions about the latest finds.

Jayden said, I hope you like some of my collection. I play with them sometimes but I look after them, just like Pa does. I have lots of Hot Wheels and some Matchbox toys to play with. But these pictures are of my real favorite cars I would like you all to see.  Mikes Hard Lemonade I received this one for Christmas last year and the other two the year before for Christmas and my Birthday. I like collecting cars and drawing them.

Dinky Mighty Antar RAEME Crane

by GunnerJim

 The inspirations for this Dinky came from the Matchbox mobile crane conversion I did on a Mighty Antar tractor some time ago. Finding something compatible took some time around the traps ( Sunday Flea Markets) finally paid dividend with a plastic Kenworth from New Ray name brand made in China. The jib and the rear body looked like it would do.

So this is the basic parts that I started with. The jib hoist is still a little bent after a little heat applied.  So the cutting and trimming the rear tray body starts.

Making the rear mud guards and fitting them to the rear tray body. Notice I found some used spare tyres in the box of tricks.

Preliminary fitting to see just how the conversion will look like.

Fitting seats and steering wheel console onto the chassis. Making clear plastic windows and fitting into place. Notice the extension jib on the crane is missing the goose neck on the end where the pulley is supposed to be. I had to make one up for that.

Cleaned, etch primed followed by basic primer applied from the can. Three top coats then let to dry.

All back together well nearly. Need to fit pulleys and winding mechanism into the cradle and change the top part of the lifting gear which is frozen by painting.
Anyway didn't like the way it looked.

One can see the goose neck a little clear in the picture above.

Home made decals applied and only have to paint in the rear taillights and turning indicators. Also a little dab of silver paint on the front head lamps or headlights. Notice the bull-bar has also been added.

One can just make out the steering wheel through the window.  Pulley front jib made out of plastic, rear jib cradle top pulley made from pop rivets and same used for the lifting cable drum. Make good handles those rivets.

The hook is a little big and was made out of brass. Heated flattened and shaped around. Then filed to finish the hook off. Stabilizer legs on the rear of body only ones I had so two is better than none.

Flying the flag.

Time well like something like about thirty hours and that is not including waiting for parts or paint to dry.

So there you go just another Dinky Mighty Antar Tractor Code 3 or just a refit.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you all enjoyed this Customisation. GunnerJim.