16 August, 2012
1/43 scale vehicles are just ridiculously huge. No one, of average height, should risk being hit in the side of the helmet by the sideview mirror of a sedan. I have some 1/43s but they were to support my Honourable Lead Boiler Suit 1/48 Ultra Moderns - a line that is no longer supported. Cheap 1/43 diecasts are less common than they used to be, and most of them vary significantly in scale from 1/48 to 1/32 (1/32 is plastic army men size BTW). It also shouldn't be a 20ft movement to cross from the left fender to the right.
Hot Wheels put out a load of 1/50 scale diecasts over the last decade. "1/50" was more of a label than an accurate scale - they were made to fit the package (my Rat Rods '52 Beetle is closer to 1/43, and the DropStars Maybach is about 1/55, with most everything else somewhere in between). They were mostly muscle cars, all of them pimped out, but they tended to be exaggerated in width making them a pretty match for many larger 28mm minis. Yes I said larger 28s. Few 28s are actually 28mm, most modern lines are in the 32mm+ range. Anyway Hot Wheels abandoned mid scale diecasts (Rat rods, G Machines, DropStars) a couple years ago and, with the Hot Wheels collectors' market, they've become rather pricey.
I've discovered over time a number of other 1/55 scale cars, older Majorettes, Matchbox and Hot Wheels casts of sub-compacts, and a number of "1/64" scale Jada releases. I'm not sure why Jada calls them 1/64 - they are much closer to 1/55 - marketing towards collectors I suppose. I started picking up a few cars here and there that looked right. Then Battle Machines came out and I got all of them except the rigs. A little small (1/58 or so) but close enough. Then came Hero Patrol.
In addition to civilian and police cars, I've tracked down a couple Chinese made diecast BTR-80s, two Russian army trucks, a New Ray AH-64 Apache gunship, and a couple M-48 Patton tanks (plastic army men tanks are spot on - look for older Timmee casts that are much more detailed), all in 1/55. I've also added a pair of MotorMax Hind Ds and a few New Ray UH-60 Blackhawks in 1/60. I find that larger helicopters can be a bit smaller scale on the table top and not look ridiculous. I'm also looking to pick up a couple New Ray CH-46s in 1/55, and maybe their 1/60 scale Chinook.
Imagine trying to field those in 1/43 or 1/48 scale... there'd be no room for the minis to move.