I got a few new Dukes items and pulled a few un-blogged-about pieces from the archives for this latest post. Let's take a look.
Starting off we have the classic Knickerbocker Wrist Racers. These two are a little different as they are the Canadian versions that are co-branded as Knickerbocker and Ganzbros.
These cars are the same as the American version. The package is the only thing that is different. It uses the same graphics, but all of the text is in both English and French. Google tells me Ganzbros, now known as Ganz, is a Canadian toy company that has been around since the '50s. They have always specialized in plush toys and found a huge hit with their Webkinz line in the past few years.
The back of the packages also use the same graphics as the American release. There are tiny stickers that cover the country of manufacture on the Rosco car. The sticker says Hong Kong like the General, but I wonder what the original text said. I'm not peeling it off to find out. These cars were among the first Dukes toys to be released as they came out in 1980.
The first item from the archive is the General Lee bank. It is larger than 1/18 diecasts cars. The bank is made of a thick plastic and is hollow inside. There is a slot in the rear, and surprisingly no hole to get the change out. If you want that money, you have to cut into the Gen'ral. That three dollars and sixty-four cents isn't worth it to me. Actually, I have a few of these and they are all empty.
The stickers on the car aren't the highest quality and I've never seen one in perfect condition. It seems all of them have worn out stickers. The plastic shows little signs of wear, compared to the stickers. I have one with very bad stickers, so maybe I should recreate them and refurbish it. Perhaps one day.
The shell really has all the Charger lines and characteristics. The front does not have a push bar though.
The bank is made by the A. J. Renzi Corp. They are known for their "blow-mold" banks based on both licensed characters and generic animals and structures. I know of another collector that has a similar bank by the same company. It's orange too!
The trunk of the bank has a sticker that features the Duke cousins and the General Lee flying through the air. The instructions are to insert your coins in the gas tank slot. A nice idea, but we all know the gas cap for the Charger is beside the trunk, not in the back.
All the banks I've seen have the sticker with the photos on it. Just recently I was in Luray helping set up the new museum at Cooter's in the Valley (Grand Opening May 5!) and the bank in Ben and Alma's collection has a different sticker. These variations can drive a collector mad! I've never seen this version of the bank. All the other stickers are the same. Perhaps this is an earlier release or even a prototype. I'll be on the lookout for one to add to my collection, but this rarer version will be on display soon (in a very nicely displayed case if I do say so myself) when the newest Cooter's has it's Grand Opening in May. The store is currently open, but the museum isn't quite ready. But when it is, it's going to be the best one yet!
Next up is an item I just got. It's an empty box that once held the series 3 "rack packs" of the Dukes of Hazzard trading cards.
It came flat but can very easily be folded into a nice box. The graphics on the box are very colorful and the images of the cousins and Boss and very well done.
The Donruss Company released three series of Dukes "Bubble Gum Cards" as well as a series of just stickers. I think I'll write a post about all the cards soon. That should be fun. I still need a couple more boxes to complete the set.
The rack packs are value packs that have 24 cards in them. They are longer and that's why this box is so big. The box originally had 24 packs of 24 cards. That's nearly 600 cards in a box. Unopened boxes can go for several hundred dollars. Dukes cards are quite sought after.
I have all three complete sets, in a binder not shown, as well as several unopened packs and another box that I blogged about way back in 2012 in second ever DukesCollector post. Hmm, seems I've now been blogging for over 5 years. I'd say that's pretty successful.
Back to the archive. Ertl was on top of the world in 1981. Their Dukes of Hazzard line was the biggest toy out there. Proof of that comes from this awesome article I found while going through Dukes stuff at Cooter's over the weekend. Toy of the Year at New York Toy Fair is a big deal! I love everything about this article. Ertl had Sorrell Booke come to the Toy Fair in costume. The Gen'ral is jumping over the Rubik's Cube. This article is all about Dukes toys, which I'm all about. I love it. So Ertl sure had a hit on their hands with their Dukes line. If you have so many great Dukes toys out there, you have to have a way for the Dukes fans to carry them around.
Enter the Dukes of Hazzard Ertl Carrying cases. These were a staple of my childhood. I certainly kept a bunch of Dukes cars in my Dukes cases. I have since picked up a few more of these. They are the same except for the main picture. One has the poorly lit "back woods" picture of the Dukes family and the other features my favorite cast picture by the tree. Everything else on the cases is the same. They are marked 1981.
Inside the cases there are two shelves that each have a space for twelve cars. I have cases with blue shelves and cases with white shelves. I also have cases with a white handle and some with yellow handles.
Recently, I've been organizing a little more and figured what better place to store all these loose Ertl Dukes cars than in a Ertl Dukes car case. I've filled several and will probably fill more. Look at all the Dukes goodness!
Interestingly enough, I'm going to reference my second ever DukesCollector blog post for the second time in this post. In that article, I mentioned that the 2005 Dukes of Hazzard Wal-Mart pants drove me crazy. They are impossible to find for an item released within the last few years (well 12 now.) They sure have proven to be hard to find, because in the past five years of the blog, I've only gotten my hands on one other pair.
Back then I found the Boars Nest pair and now I have the blue 01 General Lee Pair. Unlike the Boars Nest ones, these are not still on package. They are new/unused though.
They are size XL and have a Dukes underlined Z movie logo on the tag.
Seann and Johnny are recognizable inside the Gen'ral. Along with several angles of the car, there are 01s and General Lee text. Notice the G is TV font, and not movie font. No one would notice that but me.
There are the two profile shots as well as a front shot, a passenger/front and a passenger/rear angle. The General Lee is well represented on these pants. I found a picture of another pair that I don't have and there may be more. I still don't know how I wasn't aware of these pants. I bought every Dukes hat Wal-Mart offered and the sleep pants are in the same section as the hats. Hopefully I'll find all these pants one day.
I've been buying a lot of these 12" by 15" framed pictures over that last few years. I bought my first one in early 2015 and now I have a bunch. These three came from the same seller. I originally thought there were only four different ones, but I was way off. Apparently there variations and ones with the flag and ones without, what fun.
The first one is a great shot of the three cousins. It has The Dukes of Hazzard in the corner in familiar Dukes font. The trio is in their most recognizable clothes and everything. This is a great picture of our heroes.
Next up is one that features Daisy. It was the least expensive of the three because it has some slight water damage. The damage is unfortunate, but I didn't have it so I was happy to add it to the collection. The corner features the Dukes as well as the words Daisy Duke.
The damage consists of a stain on the back and discoloration on Daisy's face. It's a shame the background couldn't have taken the damage.
Finally we have the jumping General Lee. You may remember I bought a similar one soon after my first 12" by 15" framed picture in 2015. When I bought this I thought the only difference was the lack of General Lee text and flag.
Upon further review, the newer (to me) one is actually zoomed out a little and shows more background.
And it does have the General Lee text, only quite tiny beside the Dukes text. I wonder why there were two very similar versions of these pictures.
So far I have six different ones and I am chasing a few more. Hopefully soon I'll have them all, and then once I think I have them all, a new one will pop up. I love collecting.
The final item in this post is, again, from the archive. The archive, of course, just means it was an item I already had in my collection, if I didn't make that clear earlier. The is the huge 36" by 40'" Ertl Dukes of Hazzard County Road Map. Seriously, it's huge.
Released by Ertl in 1982, the map is intended to have all the great Ertl Dukes cars driven all over it.
In the center of the map is the Dukes logo along with Ertl Replicas on a billboard.
In the top corner is artwork of the Gen'ral flying with Boss, Luke, Daisy, and Bo behind. It seems the whole map only used orange, brown, blue, and two shades of green along with black as the color palette so the characters were left uncolored. At least Boss's clothes look right.
This map wasn't generic. The iconic Hazzard Square is represented with the courthouse, the gazebo, Boss Hogg's bank, and Cooter's Garage.
The detail to Cooter's Garage is accurate, though it's a strange angle that we didn't usually see the building from. I wonder what reference material the artist used, probably just pictures provided by Warner Bros. of the backlot.
Other familiar buildings include the Duke farm and the Boars Nest. There is even a bridge that is out for the General Lee to jump. The Boars Nest looks great and even has the sign on top. The artist that made this map paid attention to detail and the result is a very fun Dukes collectible. These maps are pretty rare and can be pricey on ebay. I was lucky and found mine at a local toy show shortly before I started blogging.
Again, while going through a lot of Dukes stuff at Cooter's recently, I found Ben and Alma's map in one place, and the packaging in another. I reunited the two pieces and snapped a picture of the package for this post. Mine does not have the packaging and I can't remember ever seeing a sealed one sell on ebay. Ertl made a rare mistake and spelled Rosco wrong, but other than that, I really like the package. The kids seem to be having a fun time, but I'm surprised they used a picture where the General Lee toy is blurry in the boy's hand. You would think they would want a good shot of the centerpiece of the Toy of the Year line represented clearly on the package.