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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Tim-Mee - Toy Soldiers

Tim-Mee Toys was an American firm based out of Aurora, Illinois that produced plastic toys starting in the late 40's and into the 80's. I don't relly know if they ever went out of business. In fact, the brand still seems to be in use today, under the company name Processed Plastic, selling slightly modified versions of the figures that were so popular in the 80's. Tim-Mee produced not only soldiers, but also cowboys, indians, farm figures, clowns, knights, and so on. In terms of toy soldiers, they produced a few series modeled after WWII, and later on, came up with similar figures, adapted to the Vietnam era. I must say that I found the latter much better.The fact that I have a few hundred of them and that I have included them in this blog which is technically dedicated to WWII is a sign of how much I liked them.  Let's take a look at them. 

TimMee US Infantry Series 1 - Part I
These guys are actually 60mm figures. I believe that the same figures were later released in 54mm by Ideal. These 60mm figures say TimMee on the bottom of the base. These guys are not the best sculpted figures out there, but they hold a special place in my collection simply by being among the oldest. I'm sure that once they are painted they will look just fine next to the rest of the men.

TimMee US Infantry Series 1 - Part II
The prone guy is actually a Lido figure but he came with this batch of figures when I bought them so he ended up sneaking into the picture. BTW in this set you can already see some of the poses that would evolve into the Vietnam Tim-Mee figures: the mine sweeper, the kneeling radio man, the bazooka man with a straight back, the machine gunner...

TimMee US Infantry Series 1 - Part III
The rest of the gang. Again, you can recognize a few more of the guys who evolved into the Vietnam set.

TimMee US Infantry Series 2
These guys are also 60mm figures. They are a bit bulkier than the Series 1 figures, with better sculpting. The highlight of this set is the motorcycle man. The man in the middle seems to be wearing a German helmet so I need to do a bit more research to find out if he is really a GI. It came with the rest of them, so I am giving him the benefit of the doubt. Also, is it just me or the second guy from the left looks like he could be Japanese?

TimMee US Medical Team
One of the few sets that include a woman. Even though the stretcher is missing, I was still quite happy when I ran into this rare set. I am sure I can scratch-build and improvise a stretcher. Once they are painted, they will go great with the ambulance I just got from FOV.

TimMee Vietnam US Infantry - Part I
TimMee produced 13 poses for this Vietnam era set. You can see that they are definitely Vietnam figures as they are equipped with M16s. I find that most of them evolved from the earlier TimMee WWII poses, but with much better sculpting. The level of detail and the fluidity of the figures' movements are far superior than that of their predecesors.

TimMee Vietnam US Infantry - Part II
This is the other half of the set. If you are paying attention, there are a total of 14 figures in both pictures. By now you have probably realized that one of the guys is featured twice, but with a slight variation. If you like to solve those magazine puzzles in which you get to find the differences, go ahead and take a moment to do so, before I spoil it for you... The guy in the lower picture is throwing a grenade, whereas the one in the upper picture has his hand open. My understanding is that the one with the grenade was the original pose, which was later modified to have his hand open. I guess it gives him more of a commanding attitude, so much, that for years I thought he was the officer leading the men. I did not learn about the earlier pose until much later. BTW, the marching guy, third from the right, is a bit hard to find so if you have any of those, hold on to them. Out of a new bag that I recently got with about 40 guys, I only found one of them.

TimMee 60mm US Air Force - Part I
This is an interesting set. It is supposed to represent a ground crew, a couple of pilots and officers from the Us Air Force. Since I don't really collect airplanes in this scale (or any other) I don't have much use for them, however I think some of these guys would work really well as a tank maintenance crew. Even the pilot, second man from the left, could pass as a tank driver.

TimMee 60mm US Air Force - Part II
In this picture you can see that these figures represent post WWII Air Force guys. The pilot seems to be wearing a helmet with an oxigen mask, the kind that a jet pilot or a high altitude bomber pilot would use. He is not going to make it into my tank crew scene for sure. About the bugler, doesn't he seem like an odd figure to have in this set? 

Click here to see a post about US Infantry
Click here to see US Infantry in action

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