Ask Brad

Ask Brad #3: I sense a theme here… BOTTOMS UP!

Lately, I have been getting a ton of questions in the comments section of various articles. It been really hard to chase those down, so I am starting up the “Ask Brad” column again. The reason that I have really slacked on the #Ask Brad segment of this site is that I always try to find relevant pictures and/or create graphics to assist in answering your questions. That creates a logjam in articles for this site and my ability to answer your questions in a timely manner. I am officially going to start this again — with little to no images — and I hope to do better at getting you some answers. The questions below are from last spring, so hopefully the readers that took the time to ask them are still around. If you have a question for the next article, make sure you fill out the form at the end of this article.

Another round of questions via the #Ask Brad inbox. I was waiting for more before publishing the article, but I guess this will be it. This was a very challenging round of questions, as three of the four had to deal with the chassis. Here are your answers: 

Chris Rodgers • Notasulga, Alambama
Q: I have found two RLC Selections Bone Shakers from 2007 with a screw base and this came from the club when the other bone shakers had rivets holding the base together. I am wondering if you know what the reason for the screw base variation would be and if you might know about how many were made with the screw base out of the 10,442 total of the Selections Bone shakers made?
A: I have no idea how many of the screwed base 2007 sELECTIONs there are versus the riveted base — let me just say that. However, I do recall that the collectors that did receive these tended to be the ones that ordered these after the credit card declines were placed back in the HWC shop. There is speculation that these were previously released Bone Shakers that were repurposed. That may be the case for the screw. I do remember there was a slight problem on the paint on these, so maybe these were paint sample rejects that had to be re-painted. There is also an outside chance that the factory simply riveted these incorrectly. The point is, I don’t know and I don’t think many people outside of those involved in the manufacturing process that know the story behind this one. Personally, I wish I did.

Orange Track Diecast

View of the base variation on the 2007 RLC sELECTIONs Bone Shaker (screw vs. rivet)

“Drpsnwbrdr” • Bay Area, California
Q: Which RLC car with neo classic redlines wheels came with the u-shaped axles? I thought I remember seeing a video where I thought you mention bent axles, but I went thru some of my cars and thought the only one with the old style axles (labeled ‘torsion bar’) was the white Camaro, with the square holes on the base. I didn’t think I saw it on the pink batmobile nor the 510 club car, could you list other recent rlc cars that have these axles? Or did they all get them and the square holes are not an indication?
A: I don’t think there is a list of HWC/RLC cars that have bent-axle suspension — or “u-shaped axles” as you phrased it. A good indicator are the vehicles with the square-holes in the base (like you mentioned). If you can see the axles through those slots, it has bent-axle suspension. If it doesn’t, then it has straight-axles. Torsion bar suspensions use a bar attached to the base that hold the straight axles down, giving more of a feel of a suspension than traditional straight axles that are crimped in place. Many of the O16 castings the RLC released do have the bent-axle suspension, whereas the newer castings like the ’66 Batmobile and Datsun 510, don’t. I hope this helps.

Chris R • New York
Q: I just stumbled upon some Larry’s garage cars with full signatures on the bases instead of just initials. Do you know which cars came with the full signature or was it random? Also, were there full signature Phil’s or Wayne’s cars?
A: Larry’s Garage was a 2009 product line, followed by the Hot Wheels Garage (Larry/Phil/Wayne) in 2010. Its a line that I didn’t really collect at the time, nor did I chase down the signature base variations — so I am not real confident on going into the specific details when it came to the signatures beyond the fact that they were chase pieces. In terms of online resources, I believe HobbyDB has the best archive of these so that may be the best place to start.

“N” • Florida
Q: Do you know when the Lambo for RLC will go on sale?
A: Despite you asking this question way back in February (I think), we still don’t have a sale date for that one. I do update the Upcoming Sales page here quite often, so make sure you keep checking that.

Marilyn • Kansas
Q: I have a vintage 2002 Flight 03 hot wheels car. It has dark red metallic flake paint with black and silver for the designs. It has what kind of looks like the head of an eagle on each side(silver & black). It also has some lettering that I’m not 100% certain of what is says(hard to read) but here it is the best I can make it out. It starts at the top with NS. Below that it looks like KD Ignition, then below that what looks like Delany C Vaughn. I’ve looked and looked and I can’t find another one like this or anything on this Delany c Vaughn. There isn’t a space between the C and the V. I’m not even for sure if that’s exactly what it says, but that’s the best I can make it out. Darn fancy lettering! Anyway, if you’ve ever seen anything like this or it rings any bells I would be so grateful for your input. Thanks very much
A: That would be the 2005 Gorilla Attack 5-Pack release of the Flight ’03. Check out the resources below as they are what I use when looking up certain releases. I have had a hand in building both, and are great reference points. As far as the tampos (graphics) of the names, the Hot Wheels graphic designers will often fabricate unlicensed sponsor logos to put on cars to avoid licensing. These are usually centered around the names of Mattel employees.
HobbyDB Release PageHot Wheels Wiki Casting Page

Rick • Hollywood, Florida
Q: How far in advance does Mattel publicize the collector’s day Hot Wheels events at Kmart and Target and are there any scheduled for Target this year (2019) ?
How many a year are there?
A: Rick… sorry that I didn’t get to this sooner. BUT, for future reference, there isn’t a set date that Mattel publishes that information ahead of the event. The plan is always to have the information out as soon as possible, but the legal aspects of the articles on are often the reason for the delay. There is A LOT of communication that goes on behind the scenes between Mattel and the retailer having the event, including having to come up with a list of participating stores. Often, I am able to break the news quicker here on OTD, as the pieces have already begun to show up online and details have been posted by the retailer. As with any breaking news source, its often incorrect and incomplete — I at least wait until I know the information I give is correct, despite not having all of the details. As you already (now) know, there were 2 events in 2019 — one at Kmart and one at GameStop. Kmart Collectors Days are (un)officially over. The GameStop events seemed to have went over well so hopefully those will continue. And, of course, the Hot Wheels Legends Tour Events will continue into 2020 — which is a great way to get the ZAMAC Collector Editions (“Mail-Ins”). 

Mike Nisotakis • Crete, Greece
Q: I’ve been thinking. Since there’s a metal body/plastic base and plastic body/metal base version of the Evo X, why doesn’t Mattel make a metal/metal Evo X in Car Culture? I know you don’t work for them, but it seems rather unorthodox that they didn’t do such thing yet…
A: It may seem crazy, but with a casting such as the #’08 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution that has metal/plastic & plastic/metal versions, simply pairing the metal aspects of both tools, and insert it into a premium line, is not as easy as it seems. I believe that in order for Mattel to use this casting in a premium line, a metal/metal tool would have to be created specifically for premium use — at least, that is how it works today. I think the primary reason why that Evo hasn’t appeared in Car Culture is due to lack of interest, but its because the casting has a reputation for being a little too large. Granted, that hasn’t stopped the usage of the Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe with that comically large rear wheel… so who knows… I will reach out to Mattel and see if I can get a more precise answer.

Despite the delay, THANK YOU ALL for your awesome questions! Keep them coming. To be part of the #Ask Brad segment, please fill out the form below.


Categories: Ask Brad

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