Not often seen -1970s Japanese die cast planes

For toys made before 1980. Up to and including Aero Minis and the last of the Dinky Toy aircraft.

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Not often seen -1970s Japanese die cast planes

Postby grwebster » Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:03 am

In 1982 I added these MiniAir Commercial airliners to my collection. I believe they were made by Tomica, but am unsure. They were not sold outside of Japan to my knowledge and I obtained them from Rocky Tateiwa, a former TPN member now long out of contact, who sold lots of locally made planes around the world to collectors. The quality is as good as Aero Mini. I do not know if other airlines were represented and I have never seen these for sale anywhere. Hopefully some of you may have other examples and more information.
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Re: Not often seen -1970s Japanese die cast planes

Postby fliegerii » Thu Jan 28, 2010 9:17 pm

Mini Air was a trademark of Masudaya (T.M.).

Masudaya produced also the famous Aero Minis in Japan. Later the manufacturing of Aero Minis was transfered to USA due to illegal issues of planes by Masudaya with unreleased airline liveries.
I guess, that after that incident Masudaya tried to make their own line of Aero Minis and called it "Mini Air". The Tristar is very close to Aero Mini planes in terms of accuracy and scale. The 747 is rather clumsy and much worse then the Aero Mini issue. The Concorde is so so...

I don't know about all types, but at least the 747 was issued in several liveries. The Tristar I know only as ANA and the Concorde only as British. The British Concorde has two different types of Union Jack colours on the tail fin. A correct and a wrong one. I have both types.
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Re: Not often seen -1970s Japanese die cast planes

Postby grwebster » Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:07 pm

Interesting. There was a rumor floating for years when these came out that the Tristar was going to be the next aircraft in the Aero Mini series but when Aero Mini pulled the plug it was not completed. So putting 2 and 2 together, perhaps this model was the one. Can you confirm that these were only distributed in Japan? Where and when did you get your examples?
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Re: Not often seen -1970s Japanese die cast planes

Postby fliegerii » Fri Jan 29, 2010 9:09 pm

Yes, the rumor may be true. I also heard about Tristar and SST as next possible models from Aero Mini. That was maybe stopped after Masudaya lost the manufacturing business. The Tristar obviously was pretty advanced, so Masudaya just had to cast the moulds and finish it as Mini Air. The Concorde is eventually based on the SST idea, while the 747 is of course a 100% Mini Air, since the model already was issued by Aero Mini. I am pretty sure, that Masudaya just looked for another common type to sell.
What we call "retail" today is maybe not so easy to figure out for the models sold end 70's/early 80's. I think, during that time the toy companies did not have such a rigid retail system and fixed markets like today. For sure, in case of Japanese die casts, the home market was Japan. But I guess, that they also sold occasionally to smaller retailers in other countries like USA, France and UK, especially for sale at airports and gift shops (and not toy stores).
I got most of my my specimen from a French seller and one from UK.
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Re: Not often seen -1970s Japanese die cast planes

Postby dasimperator » Sat Jan 30, 2010 9:56 am

grwebster wrote:Interesting. There was a rumor floating for years when these came out that the Tristar was going to be the next aircraft in the Aero Mini series but when Aero Mini pulled the plug it was not completed. So putting 2 and 2 together, perhaps this model was the one. Can you confirm that these were only distributed in Japan? Where and when did you get your examples?


On AeroMini's printed boxes there was a listing of models that included an L-1011 'Tristar' and Boeing's planned SST...

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Re: Not often seen -1970s Japanese die cast planes

Postby grwebster » Sat Jan 30, 2010 1:01 pm

Thanks for that, rumor confirmed.
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Re: Not often seen -1970s Japanese die cast planes

Postby mtmartifacts » Wed Jul 06, 2016 4:03 am

I have nothing to add to this other than the Masudaya JAL 747 I just picked up from my buddy. Quality-wise it sits between Tomica and Aero Mini in my opinion...

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Re: Not often seen -1970s Japanese die cast planes

Postby MichaelB » Mon Jul 11, 2016 12:24 am

Nice enough, but it looks a little shortened...I thought it might be an SP.
Here's the Tomica 747.
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