My Final Village Flea Market Hot Wheels Finds

After 42 years, the Village Flea Market in Wichita has closed. It was reported that the owners had decided to convert the massive building at Pawnee and Meridian to a storage facility for their real estate development company. I’ve made some nice finds at the Village over the years, including this bunch of Hot Wheels blackwalls I picked up on my last visit back in May. These were at a table in the open area out in the middle. When he saw me looking at them, a little boy took some interest, so I stepped away to let him check them out. Fortunately for me, he quickly got distracted and walked away. The man was asking $2 each, but he let me have these four for $5.

This Hot Wheels Old Number 5 was first released in 1981, but this Malaysia casting is from 1982. As with all of these cars, all of the plastic parts are intact – I only had to clean off a layer of dust to find some really sharp cars.

1982 | 1695 | Old Number 5 | red with red painted base, black and yellow trim, louvers on hood | MY | bs

The Hot Wheels ’37 Bugati and Auburn 852 are both from 1981. I knew I already had them in my collection, but when I got them home, I discovered both of these are made in Malaysia, whereas the two I already own are cast in Hong Kong. I have a few other variations of the Auburn 852, including the 1979 first casting.

1981 | 1696 | ’37 Bugati | black w/red sides and hood | MY | bs

1981 | 2505 | Auburn 852 | yellow, dk. brown plastic fenders | MY | bs

This Hot Wheels ’35 Classic Caddy is the first release from 1982 and the first variation of this casting I’ve added to my collection.

1982 | 2529 | ’35 Classic Caddy | tan | MY | bs

 

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2017 Johnny Lightning Musclecars USA 1968 Chevy Impala Convertible

The packaging for the 2017 Muscle Cars U.S.A. series from Johnny Lightning features vintage ad photos and color chips for the factory-matched paint. Cars in the series include two versions each of a 1970 Ford Torino GT, 1969 Dodge ChargerR/T, 1970 Chevy Camaro Z28, 1970 Olds Cutlass S W-31, 1969 AMC AMX and this sweet, Grotto blue 1968 Chevy Impala Convertible.

JLMC003 | 2017 Musclecars USA R1, Version B | 1968 Chevy Impala Convertible | Grotto Blue

Auto World 2017 Vintage Muscle 1970 Chevrolet Impala

The summer before my senior year in high school, I did some work for my older brother, Joe, to earn a car to drive. The Impala he loaned me to use was similar in some ways to this Auto World 2017 Vintage Muscle 1970 Impala. But in many ways, it was very different.

This is a 1970, the car I drove was a 1969.

This is a two-door, the ’69 was a four-door.

This Auto World model – Vintage Muscle Release 1, version A – is painted a beautiful Mulsanna blue. My brother’s car was brown with highlights of rust.

This has a black top. The car from my youth had a tan vinyl top that was peeling off in places.

This car has a nice, clean, straight body. The car I drove had been rear-ended by a tow truck and the trunk was held shut with a bungee cord.

Even though my high school Impala was not as nice as this, this model brings back some fond memories. And at the time I sure appreciated having the use of it that old Impala – that is, when I could manage to get it started.

Vintage Muscle Premium 2017 R1 Version A | 1970 Chevrolet Impala | Mulsanna blue with flat black roof

Splurging at the Antique Store

Antique stores and art galleries are two things I really enjoy. In downtown Wichita, Vertigo 232 is on the second floor of a building that also houses Shopkeepers Antique Mall. Even better, you have to enter the antique store to access the stairs up to the gallery, a situation that gives me opportunity to browse the cases for cars.

While delivering work for a recent show in the gallery, I saw these four cars in the case. I tend to resist buying from antique stores – as opposed to garage sales – because I feel like someone else has made the find for me and I’m paying extra for it. But, at $2 and $3 each, these cars weren’t too bad a value. So I told myself that if they were there the next time I came in, I would pick them up.

When I came back to the gallery at the end of the exhibition to pick up my work, the cars were still there. So I splurged.

This Hot Wheels Porsche 959 is the 1988 first release of a model that’s been released in a few dozen variations since. I really like this paint and tampo combination as well as the Ultra Hots wheels.

Hot Wheels 1988 | 4631 | Porsche 959 | metallic dark red with orange and yellow trim | MY | UH

There are at least a dozen variations of the Matchbox BMW M1, which first came out in 1981. But this metallic gray version, with its opening hood (trunk?) and lack of rear wing and ground effects, appears to be a different casting altogether.

Matchbox 1981 | 52 | BMW M.1. | metallic gray, black 52 and stripe, hood opens, clear windows | Eng. | Superfast wheels | 1:57

I still have a bunch of nice Tomica models from my childhood, so I’m happy to acquire more when I’m fortunate enough to find them. The Tomica Maserati Merak SS and Porsche 928 are both red and both from 1978.

Tomica 1978 | F45 | Maserati Merak SS | red with black trim | 1/62

Tomica 1978 | F53 | Porsche 928 | red | 1/63

2009 HWC Neo-Classics Olds 442 Security Car

The Hot Wheels Olds 442 Police Cruiser from my childhood was a favorite. Despite lots of playtime, it survived in reasonably good shape. It’s always fun to find variations of the cars I had when I was a kid (you can see some other Olds 442s here). So, a few months back, when I saw that the Hot Wheels Collectors website was offering the 2009 Neo-Classics Olds 442 Security Car at half price, I ordered one.

This recent version has had its light bar retooled, but the 442 is pretty striking in this Spectraflame red and chrome combo. And though a security car seems a step down from the Police Cruiser of my youth, you have to admit working security for Mattel would be a pretty cool job!

P2139 | 2009 HWC Series 8 Neo-Classics | Olds 442 Security Car | 3882/10,000 | Spectraflame red and chrome with white, red and black Mattel Security trim | Neo-Classic RL

I also have HWC variations of my childhood Super Van, Heavy Chevy and Ford J-Car.

2016 Racing Champions Mint 1966 Chevy Novas

I recently found two more of the Racing Champions Mint 1966 Novas from Release 2. The white model is Version C and the blue one is Version D. I previously found the green Version B, so the only one I am missing is the pale yellow Version A.

2016 | Racing Champions Mint R2 | 1966 Chevy Nova (Version C) | white

2016 | Racing Champions Mint R2 | 1966 Chevy Nova (Version D) | blue