Tell us what this hobby means to you? 14 questions answered by you, Dimitrios Anagnostopoulos from Athens, Greece.
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1) What first got you collecting diecast? How long have you been collecting? What is your total model count as of today?
I was fond of cars for as long as I can remember and thus I received my first model, a MATCHBOX back in 1962, which continued for a few years (This old collection is still existing ). Later on, I received a FERRARI 288 GTO in 1:18 and decided this would be the scale I would concentrate on. So from 1984 till today, I have 188 models in 1:18 and about 15 models in 1:24.
2) What was your first diecast or memory?
My first diecast was a diecast Matchbox car still preserved, whilst in the 1:18 scale, it was A Ferrari 288 GTO by Bburago (Made in Italy ).
3) What is your favourite scale, and why?
My favourite scale is 1:18 since a lot of details can be depicted, whilst at the same time, the displaying space can be kept in reasonable size although as the collection grows over years, the area is becoming a critical parameter. Besides having been a collector for some 37 years you see the progress made by Manufacturers in the detailed depiction and the improvement in quality.
4) What are some of your favourite models to date? Did you share any photos with us?
Well, difficult to answer this as the original purchase is always based on models selected on personal criteria but if I had to answer this question, I would say RR Phantom VI, RR Phantom EWB and RR Ghost, all by Kyosho, Lamborghini Espada, Maybach 57, Lancia HF and finally Jaguar MKII 3.8 and XJ6 4.2 by Paragon.
Some photos have been uploaded.
5) Is there a model that has eluded you, a holy grail of sorts?
As I collect on basis of themes such as brands from 1950 – 2010 I missed the Ferrari 365 GTB4 Daytona and Ferrari 512 BB, and RR Wraith and Dawn.
6) What is your favourite brand/manufacturer, and why?
Well as conditions prevail at moment, I have put a limit of Euros 300 as the maximum for one model and thus I think that Kyosho (older models), Norev, PAatagon are still providing models with adequate details at a reasonable price. Further more I don’t purchase resins models (at least up to now), whilst trying to have models opening all around with maximum detailing.
7) Describe your current theme and what your overall goal is?
Well, I am not interested in racing cars of any type, neither resin models and thus I have a rather complete collection of Mercedes Benz cars (1930-2015), Ferrari (1960-2010), Lamborghini (1963-2016), British Cars incl. RR, Bentley, Jaguar, Daimler and Aston Martin and finally a series of Japanese SUV’s mainly Toyota and Lexus. The target is to have a full presentation of the above-referred groups.
8) Do you display your collection? If yes, how?
Well, Yes and No. As currently, I reside outside Greece, I have some models displayed since long ago there, whilst there are two IKEA glass cabinets in my current country of residence with also two models displayed. Hopefully, after returning to some normal travelling conditions due to COVID-19 the display area in Greece will be modified and enriched, so a better placement of most of the cars is to be achieved.
9) Do you have any other hobbies, passions or addictions?
At first, my hobby for model cars is not only to collect them but to gather all kinds of available info on each model and subsequently keep the corresponding notes. I am also fond of Civil Aviation and everything related to it and classical music as well with many vinyl records from the ’70s and CDs.
10) What do you think about the diecast hobby as it stands today?
For sure, marketing through Internet, Youtube etc had its toll on aficionados as we are as demand grew up and supply rushed in to cover this hobby, whereas many people looked for quantity and not quality. This created greed for extreme profits by manufacturers (Okay! I don’t forget R&D costs) neither the increase of royalties asked by original cars manufacturers, whilst years ago it was a direct advertisement for each one of them, some of his models to be reproduced in some scale and enter every home. Furthermore, with globalization and the internet, I don’t see new generation people entering this hobby due to a shift of interests and of course the cost involved in collecting model cars.
11) If you could change one thing about the diecast hobby what would that be?
Quite a hypothetical question as we, the ‘consumers’ can do very little to influence their strategy overall but yet Forums as this one can through unbiased presentations and constructive criticism can improve the offered products at reasonable pricing and the improvement of offerings is greatly viewed for someone that has witnessed the evolution for so many years.
Based on the above I risk making a prediction: Quite soon many independent Chinese manufacturers will offer outside the brand names many diecast models with a tremendous amount of details, High-quality standards and at reasonable prices, not exceeding the USD $250 limit (see Keng Fai, Paudi Models and Sam’s etc.)
12) Do you modify cars? If yes, what are some examples?
No, never as I have neither the time nor the required skills.
13) What does your spouse, partner or significant other think of your hobby and your collection?
Not really a problem as I live alone now, whilst back in the country I have my own space for my hobbies.
14) What is your daily driver?
Living for a long in the Middle East area, I select always Japanese or Korean cars and my present car is a brand new (2 months old) KIA K5.
Looks like you have some very nice quality pieces there. Congratulations, Dimitrios!
Great collection Dimitros, thanks for sharing it! I completely agree with you on where the hobby stands today and that too many collectors are chasing quantity over quality.
Dear Dimitrios, that´s a really great collection, you´ve got there. I can relate very well to your collection theme. And I very much share your views on the future of the hobby: Chinese no-name-manufacturers, usually sold as dealer models for real everyday cars, continuously improve their level of perfection without asking exorbitant prices for their models. In addition to Kengfai and Paudi, LCD definetly deserves to be mentioned in this context. I believe, your Range Rovers are made by them?
Indeed they are LCD and I admire their details . Furthermore I acquired recently the RR CULLINAN and Lincoln Navigator , both in 1/18 scale , manufactured by unknown firms and their details and overall quality is astonishing . It seems to me possible that Chinese Car dealers believe they can boost their sales by promoting the models with 1/18 (or smaller scale) diecast models with full opening and fully functional and hence the unknown manufacturers .
RR Cullinan is 360 access? Asking for a friend..:)
Yes 360 openings and with many accurate details (even the RR logo on the seats headrests) .
“Chinese Car dealers believe they can boost their sales by promoting the models with 1/18 (or smaller scale) diecast models with full opening and fully functional and hence the unknown manufacturers”
They definitely do – there seems to be more appreciation for these everyday cars in China than there is here in Europe. In China, it´s obviously something to aspire to or dream of and hence to have in scale. I drive a 2015 Ford Mondeo and have bought a 1/18 dealer model from China https://www.1-18-karmania.de/my-collection/1-1-cars-in-my-life/ Ford Germany only sold 1/43 models.
I guess, you´ll have your Kia, too?
Nice feature, m8..like the Range Rovers..
Hello Dimitri, very nice collection you got there and I am very happy to see someone also from Greece, to have such a big and vast collection of model cars. I have also 200+ 1/18 cars and I started collecting them back in 1992 when I was a little kid. I am very happy to have many beautiful and rare models like you in my collection, of cars that I loved from a very young age.
As you already know in our country nowadays this hobby is quite rare and sadly domestic retailers are very few. I wish you to acquire in the future any rare model cars that you have missed in the past. All the best Dimitri!
Dear Kostas many thanks for your kind words .
Indeed very few retailers have survived whilst the most important is that due to mounting costs , I don’t believe younger people will follow in the path we have chosen long ago. As for myself i usually buy directly from China or major European retailers .
I wish you a Happy New year and all the best with your collection .