Collectables>> The Appeal Of Miniature

Collecting die cast cars is a dangerously expensive hobby. It’s also one of the hardest hobbies to explain to any person who might not share an interest in our automotive world. Often and wrongly dismissed as mere ‘toys’, some people just don’t understand the lengths that diecast makers go through to ensure their scaled replicas are as accurate as can be.

I’ve always believed that one of the main reasons we collect die casts is that it allows us to appreciate the original car which may be too rare or expensive or might not even exist anymore.

I’m sure we would all love a garage full of our dream cars but owning a collection of die casts which reflects our dreams is probably the next best thing.

Die casts also allow us to examine in pretty accurate detail cars of bygone eras. It also allows us to examine first hand the evolution of motorsport. As you may have noticed, these images highlight the evolution of the Ford rally cars, from the MKI Escort …

… to the Focus WRC. The pricely nature of die casts again rares its ugly head here as it seems this collection is missing a Sierra Cosworth and the new Fiesta WRC.

Where Rod is focused on collecting 1/43 scale Group 5 cars (BTW Rod, I noticed this has now been expanded to include Japanese Super Silhouette and IMSA GTX cars. Stay strong buddy, you must resist!) the McGrath household has no such restrictions. Although we do prefer die casts of the rallying variety, we (by we I mostly mean my father) show no discrimination to any cars looking for a new home. However with a collection rapidly reaching towards 1000 cars, space is becoming a bit of a premium. We don’t really need a kitchen do we?

So I ask you, what limitations have you imposed on your die cast collection? 1/43 or 1/18 scale? Have you any particular cars that you’ve searched high and low for to complete a collection but have so far been unsuccessful?

Paddy McGrath

Diecasts on Speedhunters

Collectables Special on Speedhunters



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First time replying to Speedhunters and I love your work guys, as for diecast, Paddy, as I am from NI, rallying is a bit of a thing in my collection, as are Fords, old and new, but anything that floats my boat will usually make it into my collection.


I have the all the Hotworks D1GP Diecasts in 1/24 scale. Ive many of the Sunstar WRC 1/18 models.


I'd like to confess: I am one of those that calls die-cast models "toys".


If I had the money to do so, I would probably collect 1/43 or smaller cars. I don't like models bigger than that to be honest.

Although it is cool having a fully interactive (IE openable bonnet, etc) pieces in a large scale like 1/18.

I really really want a 1/18 model of a Ford-Cosworth YBD though. I haven't got a clue on where to search for die-cast engine reps though.


1:18 is too big and 1:43 is too small, IMO. It would be really great if the 1:32 scale would really take off, but there only seems to be limited choices for it at this time. I am still waiting for it to take off... then I can begin hoarding


I collect hotwheels mainly and other die-cats too so I can understand to feelings.........


I used to collect 1/18th, in fact from time to time I still do. But in more recent times I'd diverted my attention to getting 1/43rds - the recession seems to have hit the model industry rather hard making what were (reasonably) cheap 1/18ths now quite costly. Besides I was running out of space in my glass cabinet anyway. And the 1/43rds have allowed me to start a gathering of GT1 spec machinery!

Great photos Paddy.


I'm not a collector myself, but if I were to start, it would be 1/18th scale only. I have a small apartment and a wife though, so this won't be happening anytime soon.


Im close to 60 1/18 scale peices, everything from street cars to vintage race cars. The rising cost of die cast cars has made it harder to obtain all the peices I wish to have, so I have resorted to cheaper used models that may be in need of some tlc, This adds a whole new aspect to the hobby and theres a real challenge in restoring and adding details to these lower quality peices and trying to make somthing special out of them!


i used to have almost 100+ 1/18s, but sold almost all of them off to fund a 1/1


Paddy, I'm a scale car nut. I have approx 300 die cast and 30 or so kits I've built(it s a small collection compared to many, I know). Started when I was a kid, put on hold once I got my hands on full size cars. Even though I've considered selling the whole collection, I sometimes find myself buying "just one more" that catches my eye. Your right, it is a great way to appreciate the original car.

I'm in Galway if your interested in buying a few more to add to your collection?


1:18 Mercedes and Mercedes-powered road + trackcars and trucks. started in my late 20s when I learned that all my childhood toy cars had been dumped ;)


if you like the pics above, or have any interest in 1/18 diecasts, please join our recently updated forum aimed at 1/18 collectors and modifiers. massive range of models from mk1 ford escorts right through r35 gtr, to lamborghini and veyrons! something for everyone interested in the hobby..


i used to collect diecast when i was studying but in the last few years i came back to my first hobby - 1/24 plastic car kits. i love die casts, (i still have a lot of them lying around the house) but in plastic i can be more creative :) props to everyone who appreciates the details in such small things. some of my plastic kits are posted here, along with others from around the world


I'm more of a Hotwheels collector. 200 and slowly (very slowly) increasing. BTW I'm 17.


I collect 1/18 scale models. Exotics, Rallycars, Le Mans Prototypes, GT-cars, Fast & Furious replica's. I also collect 1/50 scale models of trucks, mostly racetrucks and Dakar-trucks,


I try to stick to smaller die casts due to space but if a 1/18 I love such as a NSX comes along, I must have it !