Remember the time when you would be playing with your favorite toy car? You know every scratch, every nick and would be bragging to the kid next door that yours was the fastest car around. You would even sleep with it and when you grow up, you promised yourself that you would want to own the same car you were playing with… 30 years later we still dream of that car we used to play with. There are those who would consider those small cars as something just to be given to little boys just keep them busy. I beg to differ… I consider those times important to me as it helped forge my interest in cars. As a kid, I could name all the cars I could see on the road. I would also read anything about cars I could get my hands on. Even to the point it would occupy my time for reading school books. Never did that well in school…
At my age, I still collect those small die-cast cars. I choose cars that only appeal to my line of interest. Volkswagens are the dominant subject in my small collection. It has a special appeal to maybe because our first family car was a split windshield, 23 window kombi.
My first car given by my parents was a VW 70 standard Beetle. During the time I had a Beetle I was very active in the VW community. It was amazing how many people at one point in their lives had a VW. And you could spend long hours exchanging stories having the car as the center of interest. It was also the first car I practiced my mechanic skills on. Tune up, change oil, valve adjusting… one thing I enjoyed while collecting these miniature replicas was the books and vintage brochures that I would come across. The cars would usually depict a specific year model of a certain model car. At the time, Brekina, Wikinn and Herpa were the brands I would look for. There were others but I preferred these brands because the details were good for their size.
Some cannot afford to keep or maintain certain dream cars but having a small representation would be enough to satisfy the craving. You would be surprised by the knowledge some of these collectors know about certain marques. They sometimes would rival the knowledge of the car owner. Some would collect because there are some car marques that would be next to impossible to own, either there is less than a handful left or the price to own one would rival a commoner’s lifetime salary plus his soul. I have to admit at my age… when I get a chance to pass by a toy store. I go to the area where they sell the HOT WHEELs, TOMICA and MATCHBOX miniature cars and I look at what is on display. I never know what I might find. Although there are shops in Greenhills that offer higher end brands with far better detail. For one, their price tags are a bit steep. But if you don’t have the patience to build one from a kit… these are a good alternative.
I think… being a car nut does not necessarily mean that you would have to own a car. A car nut is a person who loves cars. Regardless if it was full-sized or something that can fit on a desk, or viewing it from a book. It’s the fans that make the car a classic.
Note: The hard part of collecting (not hoarding) miniature cars is not what subject, scale or what brand you want. But how to convince your better half that it is an essential part of being a car enthusiast (We will refrain from using the term ‘car nut’ as it may pertain to some people who have a mental disorder).