Are you in need of a
1:6 Scale “Quick Fix?”
Builders of 1:6 scale dioramas are always on the lookout for new props and accessories. No matter what the item’s original purpose, if it fits into our marvelous miniature creations, we’re definitely interested. If you’re such a collector-customizer-creator and the current dearth of “official” 1:6 scale merchandise has you feeling a little down, we want to help you out. Here then, are a variety of new “1:6 finds” that you can pick up online and at stores near you:
1:6 Scale Games
Games are always good items for dioramas. They help create an instant scene (see photos above) or work equally well as background “fodder,” helping to establish a mood in any scene or environment. The first two finds we’d like to recommend are a pair of Christmas tree ornaments. They’re actually little sculptures of games, made of a dense plastic that closely resembles painted wood, are highly detailed and ready to use. The tiny marbles and checker pieces are all part of the sculpts, so you’ll never lose them. Simply toss the ornament hooks, place the games into a diorama scene and you’re done! A nice contrast to all the plastic-n-sticker keychain games out there. Price: $7 each. Rating (out of 5): ♦♦♦
1:6 Scale (Keychain) Tools
Let’s face it. Whether 1:1 scale or 1:6 scale, you can never have too many tools. If you’re not aware of these already, you need to know about a new series of hardware store keychain mini-tools (see wrench version above) currently available in stores and online. We can’t show them all here, but each tool is cast in solid metal and features superb details. So far, we’ve seen an ax, wrench, hammer, screwdriver, power drill and pliers. Great for GIjOEs. Price: $4 each. Rating (out of 5): ♦♦♦
(Almost) 1:6 Scale
Apple Laptop Pocket Mirrors
We stumbled across these on the internet. They’re little mini-mirrors for women’s purses that are made to resemble an (almost) 1:6 scale Mac laptop computer. At first glance, they seem too big to use with GIjOE, and probably are if you’re a perfectionist. But open one up, set it on a table next to a Joe and it looks pretty darn good! We were pleasantly surprised how quickly it “fooled the eye,” and we’re sure creative customizers out there will quickly cover the mirror with a nifty high-tech computer graphic, furthering the laptop illusion even more. They’re a tad pricey, but that ultra-detailed keyboard and Apple logo make it a superb prop for any diorama. Price: $10+. Rating (out of 5): ♦♦♦
1:6 Scale Coca-Cola Ice Bucket Christmas Tree Ornament
It pays to check out that Christmas tree ornament aisle, you never know WHAT you’ll find. For example, these outstanding 1:6 scale Coca-Cola ice bucket ornaments were originally released a few years ago, but they must’ve sold really well because they’re back in stores again for Christmas 2013—and it’s only July! These beauties are perfectly sculpted, painted and detailed with professional decals. There are even two metal handles on either side to pick it up with. Remove the tiny eyelet screw from the center bottle and it’s ready to use in any diorama. Highly recommended, but we advise that you wait until they’re on sale and snag one (or more) at half-price! Price: $15. Rating (out of 5): ♦♦♦♦
1:6 Scale Flowers for
the Love in Joe’s Life
This next find might fly under the radar of many 1:6 collectors because the subject matter may seem too…”girly.” But when we discovered them hanging on a peg at our local Hobby Lobby, we knew we’d have to pass them on. These superb miniature roses are part of a line of miniatures made by Mayberry Street and are intended for use in 1:12 scale doll houses. However, we noticed that the flowers were actually oversized for that purpose and would look more “at home” in a 1:6 scale setting. Each bouquet comes with 10 roses, assorted greens and a shiny porcelin—not plastic—vase. A great gift for any 1:6 scale sweetheart. Price: $7. Rating (out of 5): ♦♦♦♦
Every Adventurer Needs a Globe!
Finding a good miniature globe can be difficult. Oftentimes, they’re either too big, too small, have a big coin slot in the top, or are, well, too “tacky.” But we think we’ve found the answer to this vexing problem.
On a recent trip to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Illinois, we were “navigating” our way through their gift shop when we came upon this little all-metal gem. A superb 1:6 scale “old world” globe (pencil sharpener).
Its detailing is striking for its size (just look at the photos), the materials are excellent (“antiqued” copper) and the globe graphics are sharp and solid. Place it anywhere in your AT Commander’s office and watch his eyes light up! Price: $8. Rating (out of 5): ♦♦♦♦
A Lantern For Every Occasion
When the power goes out, Joe will always need a trusty flashlight or a 1:6 scale lantern. Problem solved! Go back to that same “girly” aisle at Hobby Lobby and pick up one or two of these sharp little red lanterns. Again, they appear to have been mistakenly marketed as something for use in 1:12 scale doll houses, but (fortunately for 1:6ers) are actually much closer to 1:6 scale. They’re all-metal and painted bright red and glossy black. The glass portion has some sort of bubble in it, but that doesn’t detract from it in the slightest. Not perfect, but a very versatile prop that you can use in any number of eras and/or dioramas (even German WW2 bunkers). Price: $4. Rating (out of 5): ♦♦♦
Real Metal 1:6 Scale Trash Can
Finally, when Joe wants to clean out the barracks, he wants a full-sized, 1:6 scale trash can. And all those cheap, undersized, plastic versions just won’t cut it anymore. Wa-LAH! We have the answer once again. Head on over to Toys ‘R Us online (or a brick-n-mortar store) and pick up one of these “Trash Pack” jigsaw puzzles. Tear off the wrap-around label, give the puzzle to some deserving little one, and give the shiny, 1:6 scale metal trash can to your hard-working GIjOE. The “Trash Pack” logo is embossed on one side, but that’s easily solved by turning it around. Price: $10. Rating (out of 5): ♦♦♦
Bottom Line: In a time when “official” 1:6 scale products are on the wane, collectors and customizers have to rely more on their intuition and imagination. All of these products are widely available, both on the internet and in a variety of brick-n-mortar stores nationwide. Happy hunting!