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Saturday, October 18, 2014

Action Casting - Toy Soldiers

Action Casting is a small US firm founded by the son of John Stengel, the Marx-Man, a popular toy soldier dealer in the US. Action Casting is 100% a home operation from sculpting to casting. The sculpting happens to be very good in my opinion, while the casting could still use some improvement so that pockets of air can be avoided in the final product. For now, I have seen two sets from this firm. The German Paras shown below, and a set of Vietcong troops. The sculpting on the Vietcong troops is also quite good. According to Action Casting's proprietor, he plans to release additional poses of German infantry, something I am looking forward to. I really hope Action Casting can get its manufacturing process up to a competitive level as I seriously think that the sculptor has very good skills and a good sense for how to pose figures. 

Action Casting German Paratroops
These are some nice and interesting figures. In particular, I like the man throwing the grenade. It is nice how he is leaning back while his lower legs lean slightly forward. The level of detail on these figures is also quite good, with quite a bit of gear on the figures accurately represented. If you pay attention you can see some of the casting imperfections, but I hope that once they are primed, painted and they get their protective coating, those will be less obvious.

6 comments:

  1. They are quite nice. If he releases more and they are equally good, it may be time for a re-do on your fallschirmjaeger company. I think at the time, the Pegasus 1/32 fallschirmjaeger were not yet available. I remember that you were rather less happy with your German Airborne Company than with your regular German infantry company. And of course, TSSD has just released 4 new poses of regular German infantry.

    Thinks seem to be looking up, but slowly!

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    1. Yes! I need to get around to painting the Pegasus paras and these new guys. They will give a nice and welcome variety to the Airfix Paras!

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  2. Hi...I just found your comment on my blog about the Lido GIs. Sorry I didn't give you due credit. I have added a link to your blog. Again...my apologies.

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  3. I saw it in person. Personally I don't like the material, resemble first Barzso raisin type figures, too many pores and residue edges on surface, poses are fine and action realist based, weapon detail is not that good -sample :MP40 scale versus figure’s hand too small in one pose; unless the para is a 14 years old boy. Other MP40 is right but again compare to other figure with smaller weapon!!!.Mauser karb are poor detailed and one is too short versus other.Net camo on helmet should not reduce detail of helmet edges as it do not cover helmet as cammo fabric cover did. Three of the poses are the same on Airfix and Pegasus sets. The mold casting uses a 2D designed sculpture that still uses same old style of not free arms and kept the arms to close to body, living little space to innovation/cut and convert. Still a nice add on sets figures, not too impress . My first opinion and critique.
    About producer and maker. Stengel Jr is one more of the few to dare produce limited figures and in the limited business /customer field made in US by him only. I personally know him and like his spirit, attitude and noble feeling towards this hobby. I should applaud him for this dare enterprise and wish the best on his future
    But like me he is scratching to get this out. We are not rich and unfortunately not a single rich person appears yet to produce figures. Most of new producers are low income/low money person using loan/else to do something. Then you see these rich people spending millions in metal figures or plastic figures on eBay/shows else and none offer a fraction of his/her money to help/loan us. Those demanding in plastic need to understand the effort of this man and help/promote more by buying as we can from him/others. Unfortunately like many it will go slow to see much more faster as we expect but hopes go as suppose to be for the sake of the plastic toy soldier world. Sad but true. My humble opinion.

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    1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, I think this is a very good and fair assessment of the figures and the attempts of small manufacturers to innovate. I am hopeful that new technologies like 3D printing will make it more affordable to produce higher quality figures both in terms of detail and the range of poses. We just need to wait a bit longer for the 3D printing prices to drop and become more of a mainstream manufacturing process. Then anybody with a good sculpting hand and good imagination will be able to innovate without having to rely on having deep pockets to fund his operation.

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