Scelidosaurus (British Museum of Natural History by Invicta)

Back in April of 2009 the creator of this dear blog posted two pictures of the Invicta Scelidosaurus model with the promise that “a full review of this figure will be added at a later date”. Well that later date is here folks, probably a bit later than originally anticipated but better late than never eh? It is easy to see why this tiny, very outdated model of an obscure genus never got its full review here. Where the Invicta line is concerned this is a rather underwhelming addition to the collection. That said, it is a model of some importance. It would appear that this figure is among the first of the Invicta line, with different sources giving different release dates of 1973 and 1974. This is also one of only two serious attempts at Scelidosaurus models of which I’m aware, the other being the much more recent CollectA Deluxe model. Since only two models of this dinosaur have been produced, and it is an obscure genus, it seems only fitting to give a little bit of an overview of the animal itself. Scelidosaurus is an often overlooked dinosaur. An early member of the thyreophoran group it lacks the impressive size or armor of related animals such as Stegosaurus or Ankylosaurus but it is a significant animal. Hailing from early Jurassic England it is said that Scelidosaurus is the “earliest complete dinosaur” known to science, and I suppose it is at least one of them. It is also important for being such a basal member of the thyreophans.

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Although not a popular dinosaur it is not too surprising that Invicta would tackle it for the British Museum line. It is after all, a British dinosaur and Invicta sculpted quite a few of those. With the Invicta line mostly being in the 1/45 scale and Scelidosaurus only being a 13’ animal it makes this model also among the smallest in the Invicta line. With this being one of the oldest Invicta models it should come as no surprise to our readers that it is also one of the most dated. Scelidosaurus is known to have had hind limbs longer than the front and although this means that the animal probably had a posture similar to Stegosaurus with its rear portion and tail raised up off the ground this model shows the animal with its limbs splayed out to the sides and the tail awkwardly bent down and dragging along the ground. The feet also seem unnaturally large but maybe that’s just me? Though inaccurate today this posture is in keeping with older reconstructions of Scelidosaurus. The armor arrangement is also in keeping with older reconstructions but outdated based on today’s knowledge. While most of the scutes on the model are of a similar size and shape we now know there was some variation with the scutes. One feature of note is the hind feet of the model which show the elongated four-toe arrangement of the actual Scelidosaurus, with the innermost toe being the shortest. Tiny details like this show that Invicta was doing their best to make an accurate model with the information they had at the time.

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Though not as awe inspiring as the Invicta Brachiosaurus or as elegant as their Lambeosaurus there is a lot to praise here. Outdated reconstruction aside this is a commendable first model for the company. The model only measures four inches or so long but its tiny head still has a tiny sculpted mouth, eyes and nostrils. A wrinkled dewlap adorns the throat while each tiny scute on the nine rows down the body is meticulously sculpted. This detail work shows up much better on the unpainted chocolate brown version of the model which I unfortunately do not have. The painted version isn’t bad either though with a brick red base color, black back and white underside. Some of the scutes along the sides are painted black as well.

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While Invicta would go on to do much bigger and more glamorous prehistoric animals it is important not to forget this early model as well. Completest will get it to finish their collection but this is also a finely detailed, historic model of an important fossil animal that we seldom encounter in this hobby. All this and more make the Invicta Scelidosaurus a worthy addition to any collector’s shelf. As with all the Invicta models this one is no longer in production. Luckily, it is not particularly rare and can be found on eBay for a reasonable price.

2 Responses to Scelidosaurus (British Museum of Natural History by Invicta)

  1. Pingback: Scelidosaurus (Paleo-creatures) | Dinosaur Toy Blog

  2. From my point of view though it was a fairly small figure, it is better made than the relatively recent figure Scelidosaurus of Collecta.

    Admittedly head Scelidosaurus Invicta is more proportionate.

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