Friday, March 25, 2016

Ken-Box Matsuri Hong Kong

The day we have been waiting for finally arrived. Me and a friend are going to Hong Kong as event assistant for Ken-Box as they are holding their first event there. It will be held in Daboxtoys located in Causeway Bay.

When we reach our bosses' hotel room, we got a shock. I almost thought they shifted Ken-Box to this hotel room. The first question we asked is how are they going to sleep because Tomica are found every corner of the room. We had a small meeting on the next day as we will be helping to pack all 2000 Tomica for the event on 6th March. We target to complete the preparation by dinner time after our breakfast.

Next day arrived and we started packing boxes and boxes of Tomica. Eventually we managed to complete all by 6pm. It was very tiring but we had lots of fun.

Moments before opening of event, preparation work in Daboxtoys.

Boss working hard with us. I done my part, so I took photos.

Team work among us.

We are done and waiting for grand opening.
First batch of customers came rushing in. The response is over whelming and didn't expect collectors to queue up as early as 830am.

Each batch has 20 mins and limit of 10 cars per purchase.

We have members from Go! Go Tomica came from Singapore to support the event.
I saw many familiar faces from my group and requested them to take photos. I would say the event is a success and I might visit Hong Kong again in July if I have the time and money. See you again Hong Kong.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Best Tomica of 2015

 January 2015: Lexus RC F
 January 2015: Alsok Security Truck

 February 2015: Toyota Land Cruiser

February 2015: Lamborghini Veneno

March 2015: Hino Profia Nippon Express Truck

March 2015: Tommykaira ZZ

April 2015: Daihatsu Copen

April 2015: Isuzu Giga Fried Potato Car

May 2015: Honda Fit

May 2015: Lamborghini Aventador Dubai Police

June 2015: Subaru Levorg

June 2015: Yanmar Tractor

July 2015: Subaru WRX STI

July 2015: Toyota Auto Body Coms

August 2015: MLIT Lighting Vehicle

August 2015: Jeep Wrangler
September 2015: Daihatsu Move

September 2015: Mazda CX-5 Police Car

October 2015: Suzuki Alto

October 2015: Yanmar Combine YH590

November 2015: Toyota FJ Cruiser Police Car

November 2015: Toyota Alphard

December 2015: Toyota Vellfire

December 2015: JR Bus Tohoku

It's a busy 2016 from the start for me so I can only perform this "annual election" during the Chinese New Year. 2015 has many interesting models and the quality of models has return to previous normal form somehow. Previous years, I have ask friends and FB members to vote for the best quality cars but I have given up this year due to lack of time. Something I notice is that newer collector vote for their favorite model instead of the best built car. I have change the voting to be "Most Popular" instead of "Best Quality" after that. Anyhow, I managed to shortlist 7 models this year to do the elimination for the best of 2015. My bottleneck came when deciding 5th to 3rd placing. Models which will not be taken into consideration because they failed to follow Tomica roots I used to know of. Here are the results:

5th Place: Subaru WRX STI
This Subaru very much reminds me of the Honda Civic Type R. Let's be honest, the Civic Type R as Tomica quality has nothing to shout of. Some cars of the same year are much better off than the Civic. The WRX in this case got 5th because of the other models which had fumbled. The build quality is better than that of the Type R, at least that can be seen on the painting in detailing department.

4th Place: MLIT Lighting Vehicle

I have no special preference of such utilities vehicles but this one is commendable in terms of value. Tomica is known of having one opening / movable feature and I think this piece has done more than that although there isn't any suspension available. Note that the lighting covers are not paint over or stickers but are made of plastics which allows enthusiasts to custom real lighting in them. A fun project if you know how to do it.

3rd Place: Hino Profia Nippon Express Truck

This truck definitely has some "X" factor in it. If you have seen the real truck, you will love it more. Both sides of the container opens up. One of the nicer trucks made in recent years.

2nd Place: Jeep Wrangler

The first Jeep was sweet and this one keeps the legend going and with 2 extra doors. Jeep has a rear tonneau which of course made of plastic. The detailing are die casted on the mold, much appreciated than decals or painting.

1st Place: Toyota Land Cruiser
No surprise here. This Tomica model was first launched by Toyota themselves because this is supposed to be a promo car for Toyota. Promo cars usually do have better made quality, perhaps with exception of the Lancer EVO IV. This Land Cruiser is rescmincent of the Pajero to me but still not able to surpass the Pajero in my honest opinion. Anyway, this is the best car in terms of Tomica build quality and roots for 2015.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Japan Winter Tour 2015

This is my 2nd toy car shopping trip of 2015. This time was a little special because I chose to stay near to my friend's shop. Everyone should know by now who is Ken-Box after my super duper bombarding their shop in my Facebook group. The couple (Ken-Box) requested me to stay near either their home or their shop. I chose the latter as I can meet them easier in the shop and it is nearer to the station as well. They have a party held for me (I guessed) because it was supposed to be 22nd Dec but was brought forward to 17th Dec because I am leaving on 22nd Dec. This is the first time visiting their home. We have food, drinks (alcoholic) and make merry. It was a pleasant one of course.

We shopped for toy cars days before the event and finally the day arrived. We went in as exhibitor and the above photo shows that we are queuing to go into the event hall. We are excited as we see the whole operation of the event as we usually queued up to go into event. 

First to arrive was a old Fiat 500.

Starting to set up Ken-Box stall.

All cars finally arrived. Old American muscle cars, was hoping to see classic Japanese cars but these are nice cars too.

As usual, there are many Tomica up for sale.

And a little of other toy cars here and there.

Lunch time and my 2 friends from Japan brought us to eat Ramen Jiro. It's Atsushi San who has been wanting to bring me eat in this shop since last trip in June this year.

I ordered a small ramen and it turns out to be so huge and my friend ordered a large one. Can't imagine how enormous his noodle is.

No Skyline but Primera is fine. Atsushi San has a few classic Skylines.

A day before returning home. This is the most dreadful part, to pack into my luggage. I even had 2 big box ship back by Ken-Box. These took me 4 hours to go into my bags.

Ken-Box brought us to Hyatt Regency in Shinjuku for dinner. The display is fantastic because there are many toy cars in different jars.

We took a group photo to capture moment of our friendship.

On returning, ANA actually upgraded me to business class. It was really a luxury for me and this trip is one of my best. See you again Tokyo in 2016.