Alright, it’s confession time. I really have a thing for ankylosaurs. Or at least, toys and models of them. Generally speaking, I’ve never really been a big fan of the group, not that I had anything against them, I think they’re an underrated group of dinosaurs overall. When I started collecting I had no particular preferences but now that I’ve been at it for awhile I find myself more and more drawn to models of this particular group. Maybe it’s because I mostly ignored them in my younger years. So with that said I’m naturally pretty excited about the upcoming Safari Sauropelta and Battat Gastonia! Those aren’t out yet but I did just manage to acquire a resin Euoplocephalus by Galileo Hernandez to hold me over. It’s a spectacular little model, in part because it’s not labeled as Ankylosaurus. Euplocephalus as it turns out is perhaps the genus of ankylosaur most often reproduced in the model industry but is often incorrectly labeled as or hybridized with Ankylosaurus on some of the more mass produced figures.
Measuring about 7.5” in length and 2.5” in height this model is in the 1:35 scale range. We actually have a lot of material attributable to Euplocephalus so achieving a fair level of accuracy with this dinosaur shouldn’t be too difficult and I’m sure Galileo did his homework on this one. Comparing it with other restorations and skeletal diagrams it matches up very well. The manus has the correct number of five digits while the feet have three. The body is appropriately wide and portly, something often neglected in a lot of the more mass produced toys out there. The armor arrangement and osteoderm placement matches closely with Greg Paul’s skeletal drawing (which is what I compared it to). The head is particularly well done. Although I didn’t compare the unique pattern of bony armor on the head (I’m not that dedicated) I did notice the correct placement of the nostrils, Euplocephalus is known for its slit shaped forward facing nostrils. But discussing accuracy in this case is probably not even appropriate as I’m certain Galileo Hernandez knows considerably more about dinosaur anatomy than this humble reviewer. But accuracy always needs some sort of acknowledgment in these reviews. Suffice it to say that to my untrained eye there is nothing to complain about in this department.
I don’t think I need to point out that this model it not a toy, it’s a proper model or figurine. Quite breakable too if one were to treat it too roughly. So needless to say the level of detail on this little fella is quite high. Aside from the mandatory armored plating and osteoderms the entire body is meticulously detailed with scales, bumps, wrinkles and musculature. I already mentioned the head on this figure but I need to stress again how much I love it, aside from the detail and accuracy it is actually kind of cute. I wonder if the actual Euplocephalus was as adorable? I like to think so. As for color, my particular model was painted up by the sculptor and you can purchase it that way or buy it unpainted and tackle it yourself. I’m not much of a painter which is why I often shy away from these resin models. My model is dark brown dorsally which fades into lighter shades down the sides and towards the belly. There are some dark brown spots along the sides and the feet are also dark brown. There is a purple flush along the sides of the neck. The tail club is a lighter shade of brown. Personally I like to think ankylosaurs had colorful tail clubs to serve as warning signs but it is what it is and it works for this model, conservative but lifelike. The pose is not very dynamic but I doubt these living tanks were capable of much flexibility anyway. The model is striding forward while looking towards the left, the tail swings towards the right. Though pretty basic in pose the model is appropriately powerful looking, mostly due to the excellent craftsmanship involved.
I must admit that I’m new to the whole resin model side of collecting but this Euplocephalus is serving as a great gateway into this other side of the hobby. Although comparable in size to a lot of the mass produced toys out there this model has a lot of what they don’t, including an astonishing level of detail and accuracy you would be hard pressed to find elsewhere. Since it is a sculpture and not a toy you’ll be looking at a higher price tag but you won’t have to break the bank for it. It’s quite affordable for the quality and craftsmanship presented. And if you’re a burgeoning ankylosaur fan like me you wouldn’t want to miss out on this charming little fellow. You can buy it painted up over at “Dan’s Dinosaurs” or if you want to have a crack at painting it yourself you can buy it over at “Geene Models.” If you do decide to paint it up yourself make sure you share your work over at the “Dinosaur Toy Forum,” we would love to see it!