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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Pyro Army Service Truck - OD HP

Welllll, it's safe to say I've been a tad busy. Haven't had much time to sit down at the keyboard and type up posts but I have managed to take and edit a gazillion photos. We'll continue our interrupted look at Pyro's series of hard plastic Army vehicles which came out in the early 1950s with this 'Service Truck'. The 'Service Truck' designation was given to most of the trucks in the series and at least in this case I'll leave it at that. It's not quite a stakebed truck - unless you consider it a 'closed' stakebed, and it's not quite a dump truck but it is definitely a hauler. It measures 5 3/8" (13.65cm) L x 2 3/8" (6.03cm) W x 2 5/8" (6.66cm) H with white heat stamped lettering. Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina

















Saturday, August 12, 2017

Conte Viking Set No. 2 - Part 9 Playing With Vikings and Knights

Although I have precious little 'me' time - although you may not know it by the amount of posts I still manage to accomplish - what I do have is a system (sort of). During the hour or two a week the grand baby is out with her mother, I go in The Cave and take photos. It takes about 2 minutes to do a series of 12-18 shots/toy and I was able to do all the photos for this series in about forty minutes to include unboxing them, sorting them out, etc. Then, when the baby is home, us two will watch kiddie videos on Ya'All Tube and I'll have Microsoft Office Picture Manager opened up in a minimized screen to the right. I can edit all my photos and still watch the videos and interact with my Little Schatzie (of course sometimes she just wants to play outside, or play on the floor - then nuthin' gets done hahahaha). But that's okay. Then, there's the roughly 1/2-to-1 hour of time I might have before going to work. Unless of course she wakes up early :-). Can you tell we're kinda joined at the hip? That's okay, cuz I love the little stinker hahahahaha

Okay, this series of 'play' shots took about 45 mintes to do. I took out the display base built a couple of years back, grabbed the backdrop painting that was made for the ACW diorama, had to find and reassemble the Built-Rite cardboard fort, pulled out Britains Knights, the Tehnolog Vikings, and of course the Conte Vikings. After taking the photos it was a couple of days before they could be edited. In any case, all of this is just to emphasize that if you really want to pursue your hobby just go for it. Pressed for time? Null problemo. Work out some kind of system and I'm sure you'll be able to have a little fun no matter life's other priorities. Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina 

As mentioned, and as you can see in the photos, there are a bunch of Britains Knights. Slowly-but-surely the Knights, Saracens, Turks, Vikings portion of the collection has been growing as has my selection of castles, none of which have been blogged yet. As I sell more stuff out in The Cave I hope to have room to display some of these. Also, there is a shelving system available at Lowe's (which happens to be real close to the house) that will allow me to install shelves up to perhaps 24" deep - but that's kinda like a major project right now and is sort of in the planning stages.

Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina

Not a very professional set-up perhaps but it manages to get the job done.


This scene can best be described as a skirmish because really, there's not enough warriors to warrant a full blown battle





The Built-Rite Fort resembles a small castle outpost and to be historically accurate one wouldn't have seen so many mounted Knights in armor at a puny little Burg like this - unless they happened to be there during their rounds of the territory. At one time in Europe, castles dominated the landscape and many of them were simply small walled enclosures housing a garrison of men who's job it was may have been to watch a road in-&-out of a region, or to collect taxes. Knights in armor would actually have been the noblemen in control of the region and they would be housed in their more stately castles or manor houses because only they could afford the horses and armor and support team necessary for upkeep of their gear and stables.

Burg Hartenfels
(Rheinland-Pfalz)

This very small castle ruin is what we used to see from Bettina's kitchen window!! (albeit from a different angle and a little farther away). The 23m high tower - dubbed in the local dialect "Schmanddeppen" (butter churn) - is situated on the Hohen Straße (High Road) and lay along the important Handelstraße (Trade Route) between Frankurt am Main and Köln (Cologne). First mentioned in 1249 and overlooking Hartenfels and Maxsain, like most castle's it was built on the high ground.

Courtesy Wikiwand

As you can see by this overhead shot the castle complex is tiny. The men were more than likely garrisoned in town and manned the castle during their shifts. Size-wise, the Built-Rite Fort probably would occupy a very similar foot print on the real estate.

An interesting note: Legend has it that there was a 4km long tunnel between Burg Hartenfels and the monestary at Marienheim in Herschbach. To-date no tunnel entrance has been found.

Courtesy Wikimedia Commons








If you look closely, the Knight on horseback is exiting the castle down a sloped ramp. The original Built-Rite Fort did not come with a ramp so I built one of carved Styrofoam and globs of thick brown housepaint :-)














Friday, August 11, 2017

Conte Viking Set No. 2 - Part 8 Wounded

If there's a battlefield, there's casualties, and in our miniature battle scenes we almost can't have enough of them. I was tempted to call this figure 'gut shot' but there would probably be an arrow sticking out of him. Nope, instead I think this guy got run through either by sword or dagger. 

Along with the attention to the clothing details I also really enjoyed that each figure has a different motif on their shields. A BIG thanx to Robert over at trainsandtoysoldiers.com for the opportunity to review these figures. Our next post will show you how I played with these. Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina