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The Sparagen Collection: Overview
by Marc Sparagen

Overview | Chogokin | Popinica | Mecha


Overview:

My collection represents in part the rebirth of my childhood interest in Japanese toys. It also represents a shift in focus from quantity (hoarding) to quality. Over the past year, I established my collecting criteria as:

1) Ingenuity of design and engineering

2) Combining, transforming, and other features (unexpected and/or spring-loaded preferred)

3) Impressive and elegant looks and materials

4) Production quality and condition

To the best of my knowledge, I have put together an optimal assortment of pieces fitting these criteria. Some are well-known and agreed-upon classics, while others are completely obscure, and a couple arenít even Japanese. Most are in mint condition, and mechanical features are functioning perfectly unless otherwise noted. Boxes are in storage.

Display Case:

The Pulaski Corner Curio (cherry finish, mirrored inside walls, curved glass doors, top and bottom lights) until recently was available on furniturefind.com. Pulaski Furniture is located in Pulaski, Virginia. I had the door glass tinted, with the aim of balancing solar protection with transparency.

Photography:

Photos taken with an Olympus D-320L digital camera. No zoom, not the most intelligent flash system. Closeup blurring, misalignment, and poor exposure were inevitable. MS Imager, Paintbrush, and Photo Editor helped to some extent.

Challenge:

Since I donít speak Japanese and have never been within seven time zones of Tokyo, there is a chance, however small, that I have overlooked some gem of a toy that I would rate higher than the ones I already have. In this interest, I would like to offer a $100 finderís fee to anyone who can convince me of such a pieceís existence. Finding a specimen is not necessary; only evidence of one. I would then (try to) go get one, and update my page if successful.

Here is a categorized (some unorthodox categorizations) list of my collection and also-rans (italicized), so that anyone taking me up on this challenge knows what not to look for. Pieces mfg. by Popy/Bandai unless otherwise noted.

Chogokin:

Transforming: None (transforming mecha are better)

Certain DX Chogokin (Dangard Ace DX, Leopardon DX, etc.)

Combining: Voltes V DX, Daltanias DX

Combattra (DX and SOC), Other DX Chogokin, Clover / Ark / Nakajima / Bullmark diecast,, Power Ranger Zords

Other features: Gardian DX

Same as combining Chogokin

Mascots: 8Chan, Mechanic Lightan, Daltanias Dell Fighter, Bullmark diecast Ghidorah

Robocon figures, other Lightans, other figure-based Popinica, other Bullmark kaiju, SD Chogokin, Shensei Brain-3

Popynica:

Transforming: Tiger Mask II Tiger Hurrycane, Galoob Double Takes Death Star

(?) Science Team Tansor vehicles, Muteking Saizance, other Galoob Double Takes sets

Combining: Ulysses 31 Astronave

Gatchaspartan DX, Takatoku Gattiger DX, Takara Microman vehicles

Other features: Big Scale Yamato, Fordam G

New DX GodPhoenix, Grandizer base, Nakajima UFO base, other Popinica

Carriers (Chogokin + Popinica): Sun Vulcan DX + Big Scale Jaguar Vulcan, Battle Fever DX + Big Scale Battle Shark

Grandizer DX, DaikuMaryu DX, other Sentai / Power Ranger carrier vehicle combos

Mascots: Gatchaman Horned Tank (motorized), Muteking Conchuter

Goranger Varidorin, Shigcon Jet, Shigcon Tank, TFO, other Popinica

Mecha:

Transforming: 1/55 Strike Valkyrie, Takatoku 1/40 Olson Special Orgroid

Other 1/55 Valks, 1/72 HCM Valks, Takatoku Dorvack, Gakken 1/35 Mospeada Legioss, Takara Transformers / Beast Wars, GoBots

Combining: None (combining Chogokin are better)

Takara Gestalt Transformers, Takara Microman and kin

Other features: Gakken 1/8 Mospeada Cyclone, Takara 1/24 Votoms RSC Scopedog

Takara 1/48 Dougram, 1/100 L-Gaim, other Takara Votoms, smaller Gakken Cyclones, Tomy Armatron

Model/Toy Crossover: Tomy 1/24 Zoids Gorem, 1/60 Gundam Wing DX

Tomy 1/24 Zoids Deathpion, Academy MKII Gundam, Perfect Grade Gundam models, Clover Gundam DX set, Wing Gundam Zero Custom model, otherTomy Zoids, other Gundams

Mascots: Galatt Kamige, SD VF-1S Valkyrie, SD Motorized Dragon Gundam

Other Galatt, SD Valkyries, SD Gundams

Thanks to:

Alen, Matt, & Dr. Evil for all the help and advice, the generous use of the server, and the incredible site! RogerHCM, alex-01, TedT, TomGreek, cwlouis, catman-pat, TomV, LeMel, heinel, martianspyboy, and all the other Toybox folks. Also Steve Agin, Gerry Bunker from Robozone, Tom Franck and CJT, Felix Lu from Fantasia, Fabio Madiai, Storm Peng, Yu Tak Ming, and Mike Z. from Day-Old. God Bless Bandai and eBay.

-- Marc


Overview | Chogokin | Popinica | Mecha

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