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In depth review of new Spin Master diecast

 
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Billy Kingsley



Joined: 26 Jun 2004
Posts: 10418
Location: NY

PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 4:27 pm    Post subject: In depth review of new Spin Master diecast Reply with quote

Keep in mind guys that this was written for diecast boards and pasted over here.

Well, the hotly awaited new Spin Master NASCAR issues have finally made it to New York, and my brother was able to snag all six from the first wave on the way home from work yesterday. It's not too often you get to add a new brand to the collection, the first time since 2008, and it's the first time a new brand has issued NASCAR cars since 1999! (CFS, which debuted is 2007, is NOT a totally new brand, and doesn't count as such)

Overall, I am very impressed, but there are two things that could use some improvement.



I actually like the packaging. For the most part the packaging is uninspired and monotonous- not the case with Spin Master, each car has specific packaing- even the different paint schemes for the same driver- and they have silver foil. Nice touch.

Upon getting the cars out of the package (which can be a bit of a challenge), the first thing you notice about the cars is that they feel a little slippery. Not greasy or anything like that, just...slippery. The next thing you notice is that they seem wide. They are wider than Action cars, and at first it takes some time to get used to- we have basically not had anything to choose from other than Action since 2006- but the Car of Tomorrow, when it was introduced in 2007, IS wider. And although the cars have lost the wing and nose shelf, they are still essentially COTs.


Action's COT is actually a little on the small side, being that they are the same length, height and width as the cars they replaced- so they aren't totally correct in that regard. And the width isn't that much different. I was surprised to find that the roof rails on both Action and Spin Master cars line up perfectly, as do the wheelbases. Yet, the Spin Master cars are longer. That is pretty much all in the nose.

This shot came out badly- blurry and doesn't show the roof rails lining up. Best I could do.


Overall detailing on the Spin Master cars is well done. Forward of the rear wheels, the bodylines look right. The nose is the best part of the cars. Despite what some of the pundits say, each brand of the COT is very different in the nose, and Spin Master got them right. The splitter is, surprisingly, part of the chassis, not the body. Some of the details are obscured because they use a decal-like system on the cars, they are not painted. Racing Champions, Action and Team Caliber all went to this system in mid-2005 and almost every single NASCAR issue has been done that way since then. It's not as good as paint, especially as it tends to be very thick, look textured, and bubble and or chip around curves- not even compound curves, I'm talking about the indented lines for the hood and trunk or roof flaps. That's a bit of a dissapointment. But it is a minor one.


You can see here how the countours of the nose are very well done. The lower grill probably should have been done as a decal. It's left blank on each and every car, when it shouldn't be body color- also, the decal system mentioned above tends to look very poorly in this area because it's just hanging there. You can see a bubble in the decal at the curve of the L in Lowe's. Also, the blue should be metallic, not solid blue. I'm not sure what the 2012 (all blue) scheme should be yet, but the 2011 car was definitly metallic. Action didn't get it right either.


The chassis are kind of blocky looking, but eh, who cares, unless you are going to build a Daytona or Talladega diorama you'll not see the chassis often.


The wheels are nice. The minor flaw with the cars is that they are made so the tires stick out past the end of the fender. If you see that on a NASCAR track, it means the car has either crashed and broken something, or something just broke on it's own. The wheels are nice and thick, probably the closest to actual scale thickness ever, in fact, and the wheels are much better than Action's flat generic things. Unfortunatly, they aren't too accurate- NASCAR wheels are nine hole, and the spokes are much thicker. Eh, close enough, I suppose. You can see, again, how the decal system just kind of sticks off the front fender instead of actually laying over it. If you poke at it with your fingernail, it will break off.


What's baffling...They actually took the time to put the Toyota logo on the side window. That's surprising. But if they are going to go through the trouble of painting the window (and it is paint- not decal)- why not put the black lines around the windows, that have been on EVERY SINGLE NASCAR race car since the 1980s? Racing Champions had them on every car from 1998-05, even put them on the 1/144 scale cars they did in 98. For Action and Spin Master to leave them off is pure lazyness, especially as these cars cost about double what the Racing Champions cars did. Also, it would have been nice to have the dashboard molded in black plastic, but I've pretty much given up hope that any company will ever do that again. That's one thing that Team Caliber/CFS actually does better...but it's the only thing. I'm not even sure if CFS is still in buisness, they have not released an actual release since 2009, and they have not done a promo since January of this year.


Now, the big complaint I have with the cars. It's the rear end. From the rear wheels back the otherwise very accurate cars loose their accuracy. And that's a real big shame, because they blow Action out of the water otherwise. The car, as noted earlier, is wider than the Action cars- but when you put them tail to tail, the Action car is wider; the Spin Master car just tapers that much. In fact, it's so narrow, on both the Chevrolet and Toyota, Spin Master actually had to modify the shape of the trunk opening! If they had left it straight, like it should be, it would have been practically going down the side of the car. In addition, the rear end is too short. It gives the car a bit of a funny look when you look at it from 3/4th view rear. I'm hoping that when NASCAR introduces the new car designs in 2013 that they will not make the rear shrink so much on those toolings. And while the Ford and Dodge have not been seen yet, I'd guess they will also have the overly tapered rear end. You can really see the poorly done trunk line in this image, compare the new Spin Master car in the middle, with the old Action COT on the top and the new Lionel/Action generic body car on the bottom. Especially compare the left side trunk opening on the two 88 cars.


This side image shows how short the area behind the wheels are- in a car larger than Action in every other respect, you can see clearly that it's shorter, and that's just wrong. But you can also see how the car is just about perfect in every other regard!


Overall though, I am very happy with the new Spin Master issues. My gut feeling is telling me that this is going to be a great thing to happen to our hobby, and hopefully they will do it right- we want a wide variety of paint schemes, not just the same less than 10 select few in a half dozen packaging variants- and the fact that in some parts of the country they have already sold out the first wave- which only came out last week- will convince them to do just that. I can't wait to see what else they do, and I also can't wait to get my hands on some Fords and Dodges as well!
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Dave Van



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 4:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What kind of $$$ are we talking??? Thanks for the info...
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Billy Kingsley



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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 1:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dave, they retail for $4.97. Some stores have been reported to have priced them at $5 and change...but our local store was $4.97. And then NY's 8.25% sales tax...
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Rob Spires



Joined: 27 Feb 2003
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 2:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't know these were coming, so I was happy to see them while out doing Christmas shopping.

The sport needs toy cars for kids to play with. From what I understand, Lionel is rescuing the die cast collectibles market by running extremely limited editions, which is fine and good, but there is a need for mass produced, easily obtainable, toy cars. For the last several years, there has been nothing to attract kids to the sport.

My passion for NASCAR started with the old Days of Thunder toy cars. That collection branched out into collecting the Matchbox and Racing Champions cars. Only after I had a couple dozen of those cars did I ever see my first race. I think it's safe to say that without the NASCAR toy cars, I might never have developed an interest in the sport.

Hopefully, in 25 years, someone will say the same about this series of cars.
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PenngwenHobbies



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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 4:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the pics, Billy, glad to see someone doing some 1/64th scale stuff again. And from the list they had as to who was on board, looks like we'll be getting a LOT of cars in the next year!
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Billy Kingsley



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PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 6:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm with you Rob, I discovered the sport via a big box of Racing Champions cars as a Chrismtas gift in 1992. Who would have thought it would turn out to be the biggest thing in my life?
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nascarillustrated



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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Was there a licensing issue? If I read correctly, these were the first six, so why did they do two #48's and two #'88"s and not a bigger selection of drivers?? Just curious, that's all.

They look nice.
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Billy Kingsley



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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 4:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not that I know of, more are coming...I figure wave 2 will come out sometime in January...they were not scheduled to ship until January anyway, so it's a logical conclusion.
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AceofBass



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Where can I get these?
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Billy Kingsley



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

First showed up in Wal-Mart, some Targets have them now as well. Eventually they are due to be in every Wal-Mart, Target, Toys R Us, Kmart, and probably other places as well.
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AceofBass



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PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2012 4:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cool! I'll have to check the Target at which I work, 10% discount!! Thanks Billy!
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AceofBass



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PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 9:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just bought all but the green Jr. car today (Target didn't have it). These are awesome!!! I immediately emailed Spin Master to tell them to keep 'em coming! I'm going to have to pick the transporters as well; I've been kicking myself for not buying more diecasts when they were available in '08.
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AceofBass



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PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 10:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Spin Master replied to my email this morning! Here's what it said:

Thank you for contacting Spin Master's Customer Care Department.

We're so happy to hear that you're happy with our NASCAR cars. We have big plans for this line. Get excited!

Sincerely,

Spin Master Customer Care


I'm excited.
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Billy Kingsley



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2012 2:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That sounds good- I predict greatness for them. Really looking forward to seeing what they do in the future. They sure started out right!
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Dennis
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 12:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

picked up a Gordon AARP car few days ago at Wal*Mart, they had the 14 the 18 the 20 the 48. looked at the transporters too and they look pretty good
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Billy Kingsley



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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 9:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any chance you could get a shot of the Kyle Busch car? No one has seen that one before on the diecast board. A cell phone pic in the store would be acceptible, too :)
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AceofBass



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PostPosted: Sat Mar 03, 2012 6:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just picked up Jeff Gordon's DTEH and Tony Stewart's Mobil 1 cars yesterday. SO happy to have a new Jeff Gordon car!!

Anyway, I just realized a few days ago what's "wrong" with the rear end of these cars. They're Nationwide from the back edge of the rear wheelwell back. The spolier is Cup, but it only has 5 'braces' when it should have 6. Just a thought that occurred to me as I was picking more of these up. They are still awesome nonetheless and I can't wait for more!
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Billy Kingsley



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got three more this week- Tony's Mobil 1, Jeff's Drive to end Hunger, and Joey Logano.

The rear is way too tapered- I discussed this in the original post- the trunk lines should not be a compound curve like they are.
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vintageracr59



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

braille scale?
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Last edited by vintageracr59 on Tue Mar 06, 2012 8:32 pm; edited 3 times in total
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Billy Kingsley



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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Troll.
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AceofBass



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PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2012 4:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, really. That was uncalled for. Thanks, Billy.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 3:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for the edit.
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