• Pardon the dust while the boys rebuild the site.

    The board will be in a state of disarray as I get things sorted out, for a little while at least.

    The new incarnation is using Xenforo as the system software. It is much like what we are used to, with a few differences. I will see about making a FAQ to help point out the differences for the members.


    One IMPORTANT difference for all of us old timers is that the 'mail' system is replaced with what are called 'conversations'/

    There is no 'Inbox' or 'Out box' or 'Sent' folders anymore.

    Think of Conversations as private 'threads' or topics that don't exist in a forum, that you start with another member. NOTE: Conversations can include more than one member if you or someone else in the conversaion, likes.
    Takes a little getting used to but I am sure you all can get a hang of it.


    Only a slightly modified default default Xenforo style is available for now. Once the new SAG style is ready it will be available.

    All existing users should be able to login with their usernames and passwords once the site goes up.


    If anyone has difficulties logging in please contact me at sixthvanguard@gmail.com.


    Thank you for your support and patience. I know it has been a loooong road.

Hobby Can't be Dead


This is more of an observation than a question. Since I recently retired, I have had more time to spend in the 1/6 scale hobby. While reading through other forums I have noticed a lack of interest in the WW2 genre and more of an emphasis in Pop Culture based figures (Super Heroes, Fantasy & Sci-Fi, Anime etc...)

Is WWII in decline or gaining traction? The genre must still be viable since companies such as DiD, Face Pool, Ujindou and others continue to pump out some very high quality stuff. Honestly I cant afford these price points but someone can.

I just wonder what the true state of the hobby may be?

"It's not dead, it just smells funny". Honestly, I think the hobby has declined significantly since its heyday. I also think the price points on the figures is a part of the problem. Yeah, they are beautiful, but it's a long way from the $30 we were paying when this all started more then 20 years ago.

Like you, I'm somewhat retired now. But I haven't managed to focus on 1/6th stuff as much as I might. Hopefully, that will change. Back when I was working, I managed to accumulate a vast trove of figs and some vehicles and kits too, so I have an essentially infinite number of projects that I could be working on. That may be part of the problem. But I'm hopeful; at some point, I'll have more focus. But I don't think that there will be a resurgence to the level we saw before. The vast decline of membership and activity on all the boards is another indication of where things stand.

We'll see what the future brings!
My take on this, and there is no science behind this, just a gut feeling, is that its a generational / nostalgia thing.

Many of us older ones actually grew up with parents or grandparents from the WW2 generation, so we have a connection to it.

I recall my Dad mentioning how no one ever talked about the American Civil War like they did when he was little. He could actually remember interacting with Civil War veterans when he was young, and getting Civil War toy soldiers. There was a small country graveyard across the road from the farm he grew up on, and it had one Revolutionary War soldier grave and several Civil War soldier graves. His family would tend the graves and pull the weeds. This formed a deep connection for him. When I would read ACW books he would actually join me. There was a great series of books that I loved that had pictures of ACW battles depicted in dioramas. But we never talked about WW1 or even WW2. No nostalgia for him there.

WW2 was such a pivotal time for much of the world that I think it will always be a topic of fascination, but perhaps less so as time goes by. So much progress made in so short of a time it is astounding. To think air forces were still flying canvas covered bi-planes when it started, and jets when it ended is quite amazing.

For the 1/6 WW2 hobby add the fact that costs have sky-rocketed (figures, material, etc) and the audience is bound to diminish.

Also, let's face it, many of our hobby brothers are just no longer with us :(
Spot on!

Those of us who were old enough to open our first GI Joes on Xmas morning, 1966, are are the nucleus of the hobby. We, who still crave the 1/6th scale excitement, have already become fully saturated with hundreds of figures and bits of gear. We are truly living out our childhood fantasies. The younger generations had different toys, and different scales, and they have neither the money, nor the room to store alll the figures and vehicles. The inflated modern price tags and lack of original subjects have put us off. Also, I think the loss of Dragon crashed the hobby.

We, the 1/6th core, haven't abandoned the hobby. I guess we are just playing with our toys. Here is the proof: Of all the fantastic custom figures and vehicles that have appeared on this and other boards - that you would still recognize - have you seen any of them put up for sale on EBay? I haven't.
Those of us who were old enough to open our first GI Joes on Xmas morning, 1966, are are the nucleus of the hobby.
It was probably more like 68 or 9 when I got my first one, but you hit an important point. When things were getting started 20-25 years ago!???!!) with TUS and then Dragon, there was also a wave going through popular culture (SPR, BOB, Empire of the Sun, The Thin Red Line, Enemy at the Gates, etc) of WWII nostalgia. That's all gone now.
It was probably more like 68 or 9 when I got my first one, but you hit an important point. When things were getting started 20-25 years ago!???!!) with TUS and then Dragon, there was also a wave going through popular culture (SPR, BOB, Empire of the Sun, The Thin Red Line, Enemy at the Gates, etc) of WWII nostalgia. That's all gone now.
Absolutely a great point :!:
I think there's a lot of factors. Is the 1/6 hobby dead? I don't think so. I think there are more option today than ever before.

Its a niche size and scale. It always has been. Back in the day, 80-90's there were virtually no options for 1/6 except some simple GI Joe. Today there are nice 3D printable models, there are all kinds of vendor making 1/6 RC models, figures, custom head sculpt whatever. Are some of them expensive? Heck yeah. But you just have to look.

Another factor at least in US, we expect to buy everything. We've become a country of buy instead of make. The number of youth who can actually make something from scratch has decreased. When I was a kid if I wanted a toy (ariplane, ship, gun, tank, bulldozer) - I would go out in my dad shop and make it out of wood. I made some toy guns (for playing army) that after painting would pass for real. Today few kids have shop in school, there is no sense of "I can make that" - very sad to see.

I see no decrease in interest, shows, venues and makers in Europe, Asia where 1/6 models are built and run. There is some truth to the generational thing. The WWII generation (kids from 60's and 70's) who remember and interacted with vets is getting older and perhaps passing away. The number of shows, venues in the US especially has gone from few to none - in part thanks to Covid. The number of museum where models can be displayed and run has dried up. Getting people together to run RC stuff has not died - but its definitely more difficult, especially after Covid. Covid has caused a culture change in ways we're still realizing.

To have and own 1/6 vehicles is a huge commitment to time, money and space. Not everyone can afford it or have the space or ability to make them. To make a 1/6 vehicle from scratch is a rather daunting task. To make 1/6 vehicle to sell as a business is even bigger challenge - esp after Covid. Raw materials, electronics, have all skyrocketed in cost and lead time.

Is it dead, no? But its an ever evolving landscape. There is plenty of stuff out there.
"When things were getting started 20-25 years ago!???!!) with TUS and then Dragon, there was also a wave going through popular culture (SPR, BOB, Empire of the Sun, The Thin Red Line, Enemy at the Gates, etc) of WWII nostalgia. That's all gone now."

And hopefully the kids who grew up with these will be making their way back into the hobby in a few years as we did 25yrs ago, and share it with their children as we did
I'm actually just getting back into 1/6th now that I have a 3D printer. I'm actually printing a 1/6th KV-1 I've scaled up from a 1/10 set of files I purchased. In it over 10kg of filament so far and I haven't even printed any tracks for it... :) I found a Dragon Sherman kit and bought all the Spyker upgrade files for it. That is another 1/6th project for the future. With the availability of the Hetzer in 1/6th to print and the coming Cromwell in 1/6th, I'm surprised more people aren't just printing their own vehicles. A nice 1/10th tank can be upscaled to 1/6th pretty easily. I have a new X1C high speed printer and without the speed of that printer I wouldn't even attempt to do a 1/6th scale tank with it. With all the 3D printable files out there, just about anything is possible. The days of buying a rotomolded shell with very little detail are being replaced with the ability to print models with flame cut armor panels and even weld beads right in the print.
I'm glad I stopped by because I have a unique perspective to answer the question. The 1/6th hobby is not dead but it's likely on life support.

I got my original action figures for Christmas in 1965, I had just turned eight. My Dad was a Marine Corps Officer, so I only got Action Marines, but I got seven. A four-man fireteam, a two-man gun team and a communicator. All had a complete issue of 782 gear, including tents and ponchos, so I got a bunch of accessory packs. Dad went back to Vietnam in late '66 for his second of three tours. While he was gone, since I liked my GI Joes so much, the aunts, uncles and grandparents got me the other services and their stuff. My grandfather was a WWII vet as well as three uncles, two more were Korean War vets, so yes, we were more familiar with the era, plus Combat and Rat Patrol were a popular TV shows and many of the movies were WWII themed. By the time my brother got old enough, GI Joe had become the Adventure Team guy, and they eventually went away.
Fast forward to the mid-80's, and I have two boys, the older one is into 3 3/4 inch GI Joe's. My wife begs me to get him some, I refuse. I come back from a deployment and am looking for a gift for the boy, I see the GI Joe Skystriker (F-14 Tomcat) I buy it, he becomes addicted and over time we buy just about everything else they produced. While playing I would tell him "I wish you could have had the old 12" Joes" then I'd regale him with stories of Joe Wars past. Then Hasbro released the 12" versions of some of the 3 3/4" figures but they weren't very playable. Then 21st Century came along The Ultimate Soldier, with WWII to modern figures that were detailed, playable and affordable. Both the boys were in heaven, and we had many a "Big Joe War". We had a Vietnam hill fight that lasted 3 days once, we only went in for headcalls and meals.
Fast forward to the early 2000's, the War on Terror starts, one son drops out of college to enlist and go fight in Iraq, the other can't wait to graduate high school so he can enlist. (He'd eventually serve in the big Sangin Afghanistan fights in 2010). While in Iraq the older son says he thinks a lot about how much fun our Joe Wars were, and he'd like to do one for old time's sake once he gets back. He was in Iraq during one of highest casualty periods. We'd get calls from the Family Readiness Coordinator at night saying the unit had suffered a casualty, but it was not our Marine. They'd also say that status and name(s) were being held pending notification of next of kin. Doesn't do much for your peace of mind if you see 8 or 10 or 12 Marines were killed in Al Anbar that day, and the phone doesn't ring. Is it your unit wasn't involved or you're the one waiting on the next of kin notification.
In order to stay busy, I started collecting WWII Marines. I kitbashed most. It was Dragons heyday and loose bodies and parts were plentiful and reasonably priced, full boxed figures were $30-$40. dollars. Cheap enough you could buy them to be played with. We ended up with a full-strength infantry company (+), with attached engineers, special weapons, tanks and artillery. I got two Dragon Pack Howitzers, two 37mm AT guns, a Hasbro M3 GMC, a Hasbro and 21st Century Jeep (before Dragon released theirs), a couple of 21st Century Stuarts, a WC52 and a bunch of things I likely don't remember. We had three or four "Big Joe Wars" with the Marines, some multiple days, when we had the boys home. I only got good pictures of one. Here:
I scratchbuilt two LVT-2's but never managed to figure out the front sprocket and tracks. Now, my sons both have sons, the older one has a boy just getting to the age he could play a "Big Joe War" soooo...he texted me today about a multiple day's battle in March 2024 when his son is on Spring Break. He's trying to assemble the grandson a good-sized Marine unit, but the costs and scarcity of the parts is almost prohibitive. The boxed figures are nice but at $170. to $299. and up it makes them collectables not kid toys. The next generation that had the Ultimate Soldier and then Dragon figures as kids now have boys coming of age. If someone hits the market with a reasonably priced option, we'll have another era of plenty. If not, this generation won't have the memories to pass on to their sons. Collectors are not a big enough market to support a major manufacturer, you have to have the sales to kids to make it profitable.

BTW, I'm currently building a Dragon M4A3 for the next battle, and I'm going to need help. I'm going to start a thread about it, please stop by and give me pointers. The older son is building an LCM-5 and he's bought a couple jeeps, a Stuart, and an M3 GMC for his son (he has a second son coming up as well, about 2 years out).
I bought the grandson a ROC Hobby MB Scaler for Christmas two years ago (2021). It was so cool, his Dad (my son) got me one and a jeep trailer (2021), I got that son the Jeep and Trailer last Christmas (2022). The MB Scaler is excellently detailed, as good as the Dragon, is RC, and very durable. It's a bad little jeep with plenty of torque, a metal frame and a realistic suspension. The trailer is the same, an excellent scale model. If anyone is in need of a reasonably priced WWII Jeep this is a good option; the old 21st Century or Hasbro jeep is $225.-$300. on E-Bay, the Dragon kit is going for $190. plus on backorder (cheapest I saw) but commonly is $250.-$300. when you can find them, so at $330. new, the RocHobby jeep is competitively priced, plus it's RC .


Like others here, I got my first GI Joe in around 1967.
Started building models in the 1970's, served in the US Army (Tanker;)) in the mid to late 70's.
I got into this 1/6th hobby late, only less than 10 years ago.
Now, I just retired in June, and am having to downsize everything.
Which forum is appropriate to list items for sale?
I would rather offer them here first to people who appreciate them, rather than going the ebay route.
Like others here, I got my first GI Joe in around 1967.
Started building models in the 1970's, served in the US Army (Tanker;)) in the mid to late 70's.
I got into this 1/6th hobby late, only less than 10 years ago.
Now, I just retired in June, and am having to downsize everything.
Which forum is appropriate to list items for sale?
I would rather offer them here first to people who appreciate them, rather than going the ebay route.
Rob, you can list items to trade or sell here:
Is the 1/6 WWII Hobby Dead....

That is a question I've been wrestling with for the better part of five years and the whole hobby in itself. Can anyone put a finger on what was the catalyst that caused the hobby to see sufficient decline in participation over the last decade? No. But there were some very contributing factors; Dragon Models withdrawing from new releases (not counting the re-release figure sets they've been releasing recently), the steady increase in prices that makes squad building extremely costly, members entering parenthood, popular boards shutting down, real life issues to name a few. And of course, many of our older, retiree core members have passed on.

And, of course, there is the generational shift and their interests. I started off in this hobby back in 1998 when I found the first Ultimate Soldier sets at a comic bookstore so my GI Joes were the smaller 3.25 inch figures. My youngest is always watching me work on a figure or two and always keep asking me to allow me to help me. I bought him a few of the older Dragon Models releases (Hans, Dave, Scott, and Klaus) and help him set them up. He loves them and always wants me to play 'Army guys' with him. My older kids roll their eyes and say, 'Dad is playing with his Barbies again' when I head off to the 'shop' while watching Youtube on the phones. I've built up a considerable amount of 1/6 loose pieces and have been grabbing up any 'good finds' for old DML figures that have been popping up on eBay. On one hand, I'm glad to be able to find more of the boxed Dragon Model releases (whose later pieces have stood up to the passage of time), however, it usually means we lost another member in the hobby that their collection is now being liquidated.

In closing, the Hobby isn't real dead, it's just moved on from mainstream of Toys R Us Ultimate Soldiers / early internet Dragon Models days to the current niche group of euthenists.
This is a great thread topic and obviously from the responses one near and dear to many SAG hearts. I think everyone here has hit various nails on their heads in terms of the reasons why.

For my two cents, and with the World War Two era my favourite in terms of 1/6th (noting I do stray on the odd occasion with Hot toys Indiana Jones, Redman's Good,Bad & Ugly, and the more recent 'Big Lebowski' - no apologies ref the latter, could not be helped) I feel there's still lots on offer albeit in a very pricey range compared to the BBi, Ultimate Soldier, DML glory days. Lots more in terms of 'pop culture' war movie figures these days but then I recall DML CHE did likewise back in the day (Kelly's Heroes, Saving Ryan's Privates, Dirty Dozen, Wind talkers, John Wayne).

Generational change is a contributing factor and much like scale model kits (something that as a kid was all the rage amongst my schoolyard peers, backed up by a sound volley of 'Commando' comics amongst us military-mad), marbles and the detail of plastic soldiers back in the day there is indeed a declining interest in 1/6th but then again every time I put a 1/6th scale diorama series at the annual local model show I see things that makes me think otherwise - the large number of scaled plastic models I see on competition, the number of supply vendors selling their wares and just the number of interested visitors; all indicative that perhaps things aren't as dire as I'm led to believe.

The almost insane purchase costs these days are due mainly to the advances in head sculpt, figure pose-ability and textiles/materials technologies; all far superior to those of two decades ago. These, in-turn, lead to fewer production batches which then generates what we term today as FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). I'm probably like most of you out there in that I'm now more particular with the choice of the figures I purchase. Though I was doing similar back in DML's heyday when they were just seemingly pumping out figures non-stop which only got worse when CHE joined in. My credit card took some severe hits back then until I realised that the only way to curb the debt was to be more discerning, do I really need seventy German figures when the only difference really between each was a minor change in uniform detail.

I've so many boxed figures from all manner of brands with the intent that one day I'll put them together and quite a few DMLs (boxed figures and carded accessory sets) for future projects as well as all the figures and gear from previous diorama series that I can re-purpose if need be. This must surely indicate to me that I'm still keen as I was when I purchased my first 'Hans' figure back in 1999 and that can only mean that I've still years of the hobby to go.

The question of a 'dying hobby' is a discussion point I had with several fellow collectors during the demise of DML's range back in 2012 but given it's now almost 2024 then it is a slow-dying hobby to be sure but then again as long as we're all still enjoying what 1/6th brings then I reckon it'll never really be dead in the true sense of the word as long as we're still either collecting, kit-bashing and posing the stuff. Cheers, Steve