This is the Ambassador’s Report from the Matchbox Gathering, July 22nd, 2015. Lots of new models were announded for 2016, some of which you can see below.
By Larry Scaduto
Good day to everyone! This report is the one you have been waiting for! We all get to see the new product for the rest of this year and into the following year. 2015 has been a year of change! There’s a new Matchbox Team in place, although the faces may have changed, the desire to improve the brand has never been more of a priority than it is today. Dave Weise, Michael Heralda and the rest of the gang set the wheels in motion to put Matchbox back on track. Gerry Cody and his team will keep going what these fine gentlemen started. 2016 models are already selected and 2017 is now the focus with collectors in mind. The proof of this is in the desire of Matchbox to listen to our ideas. The results of the Collector’s Poll are in this report. These are the models voters decided they would like to see made and the candidates will be posted in the War Room for consideration. Well I’ve talked enough for now. Onto the Gathering Report.
Thank you for reading…..Larry
2015 Matchbox Gathering Report
2015 & 2016 are looking great by what I’ve seen and heard. Not only did the dinner presentation provide us with a lot of information, but the seminar before that hosted by the Matchbox Team was an informal meeting of the minds that revealed even more information! Let’s jump right in shall we???? Matchbox is now under a new umbrella (or group) that is called The Toy Box! What that means to us is that we are no longer associated with the blue brand and that will give us freedom to pursue just about any model we wish without approval from them. Now it’s up to Mattel to let MBX accomplish this without restrictions. Are you listening Mattel??? To start out in mid-August there will be an exclusive Jeep Collection available at Wal-Mart.
These models will have realistic decos and a picture blister card. The Power Grabs will be changing for next year. They will no longer be the blind bag assortment of 24 models. Now they will be a complete collection of all 125 models from the 2016 Basic Lineup. The big difference is that the models will be in collector’s inspired picture boxes with a counter display that will make this series easy to place in areas other than the toy isle. I’m impressed!!! 2016 will feature 25 new tools. Also in spring of 2016 there is a new premium series called Best of the World that will feature 10 models such as the Cadillac One, Austin Mini Van, Dodge A100, Routemaster Bus, and the Fox Body Mustang. This series will feature 2-part wheels, premium decos, and a collector’s box. And another series is coming in 2016 for the 75th Anniversary of the Jeep brand that will feature collector’s boxes if my memory serves me correctly. For 2016…..(8) 5-Packs, (9) 9/10-Packs, (6) Sky Buster Mission Force Sets, and 5 new toolings for the Sky Busters Range: A new Bat Plane, Honda Jet, Speed Seaplane, Heavy Metal Bomber, and a Multi Rotor Devise.
If you were one of the first 75 to register and pay for your dinner you would get the Mack CF Pumper without roof tampo upon entry to the dinner/charity auction. The remaining 125 with roof tampo were sold to anyone else that paid for their dinner after the first 75 registrants. As you can see this model is exceptionally well done.
Next up is the 2015 Gathering Dealer Model…. It is the Ford Bronco 4×4 in purple with the Gathering logo on each side of the model. The hood reads 13th International Collector Gathering. This model was sold to the dealers who purchased tables at the toy show on Sunday. A big Thank you goes out to Jim Gallegos for getting these models made for the event.
2016 Models Preview
Wow…where do I start??? It looks like there is going to be at least 25 new castings for 2016 with at least 11 being licensed. I’ve pictured all the models that were at the Gathering and at the end I’m featuring a poster that was handed out by the team. There are pictures of other vehicles that are being made as well. The models pictured below are early mockups and are subject to change when released. hobbyDB has a look at most of the upcoming models. Here is the list of models to be released in 2016 that are not pictured here in this report:
All images and articles are presented here with the consent and permission of Mattel and the Matchbox Team.
For Collectors worldwide….check out this website!!!!!
www.hobbydb.com, is a new site for collectors that aims to combine everything you need to build and maintain your collection.
First off, it’s an information database for cataloguing collectibles (one which any user can edit or add to, just like Wikipedia). It was designed to cover all the most important data points for different collectible types. For Matchbox, that means when you create an entry for a car, you can record the baseplate material and color, wheel type, window tint color etc. And everything is interlinked, so you can see with one click which models had gray plastic wheels and which had black. Variants are also linked to each other so they appear on each other’s’ pages, making it equally easy to see how many different versions of a model were made.
As well as cataloguing individual products, there are also pages on subjects like Matchbox itself or the Superfast series or designers and personalities like Jack Odell – with all the items related to them also linked, so you can browse and discover what’s out there.
On top of the catalog, however, there’s also a collection management system. If you’re tired of losing track of what you do and don’t have and find keeping written records or Excel spreadsheets time-consuming, you can easily and quickly keep tabs on what you have by finding it in our catalog and clicking the “Add to collection” button. You can quickly fill in some useful details like price paid, condition and where you store it, upload a picture and click save. Handy for events when you’re not sure if the Pontiac Firebird you have is in better or worse condition than the one you’re thinking about buying – just grab your phone, surf to hobbyDB and look yours up! You can also add items to your wishlist to keep track of what you need to find.
Lastly, you can also use hobbyDB to buy and sell. If your collecting interests change, just go into your collection, find the items you want to list for sale, click the “Sell” button and enter a price. Hit save and it’s up for sale. As soon as anyone buys it, it automatically moves to their collection too and hit the button. If you have stuff you just want to sell you can also list it straight from the item page by clicking the Sell button there without adding it to your collection first too. Pretty soon you’ll get an email alert whenever anything on your wishlist comes up for sale, so you don’t miss it!
The site is live, but Andrew (known from the forums as Baskingshark), Christian, Ron and the others are still working on lots of coming features (almost all of which have been suggested by other collectors). They had lots of great people helping with this project including Charlie Mack, Christian Falkensteiner and Jim Gallegos & love feedback so please check it out and let them know your thoughts and ideas at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Farewell and Thank You
Well we have arrived at my last Ambassador’s Report. This year has gone by fast!!! It seems like only yesterday I was introducing myself and now I’m saying goodbye. To say a lot has changed with regards to the design team would be an understatement!!! They say change is inevitable, but I wish it would not have happened on my watch (as they say). But I have forged a good friendship with David & Michael and now Gerry that extends past this wonderful hobby and that is more important to me personally. I set some personal goals when I first became ambassador and I felt I have achieved them! I said I would be accessible and approachable and I held true to my word. I know these reports could have only been a few pages long and just about the new models, but I had the attention of the Matchbox Team and I wanted to show them just what makes us crazy collectors so passionate (and sometimes frustrated) with regards to this hobby. There is a legacy to live up to and a wonderful history behind Matchbox collecting that I wanted to show them and the newer collectors reading these reports. So our new ambassador for 2015-2016 is Dirk Schleuer. I congratulate him on becoming the newest person to bring you the information from Matchbox. I just met the man this weekend and I’ve heard a lot of good things about him and wish him luck and good fortune. It has been an honor to serve as Matchbox Ambassador and represent the collector’s community. Thank you to all who wrote to me and sent in stories and pictures. A big Thank You goes out to Chuck Wiersma (Our 6th Ambassador) for his wonderful and in debt articles about gift sets and models from the past. I end this report with a collection of pictures from the gathering. Take care and thank you……. It’s been a blast!!!!
(Your 10th Ambassador)
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