Tag Archives: Iguanodon

Dinosaur Boxset 2 (Toyway)

Review and photos by Indohyus, edited by Suspsy

We’ve all seen them. The crude dinosaur toys that you get in small museum shops for extremely cheap prices, normally just bought by parents to keep their children quiet for a while. The last thing you’d expect is to put six of these together and sell them as a box set. Yet that is what Toyway did. Granted, their wildlife sets are extremely well made and varied. Their dinosaur models, on the other hand, are more . . . Chinasaur. Do any of these toys shine in spite of this? Well, let’s see . . .

First is this odd green and yellow quadruped. You’d be forgiven for thinking it was an early ankylosaur with inaccurate teeth. At 5.1” long and 2” high, it looks like a small herbivore. But then I looked up what it was I was quite surprised. This is meant to be a Postosuchus!!! It is too wide, the head is all wrong, and the front legs are much too long! This dreadful figure really is the worst of the set.

Next is a small ornithopod, Camptosaurus. Another small figure, 3.5” long and 2.2” high, it stands out with its dynamic, sweeping pose. The problem is that it can bend out of shape, causing stability issues. The colour is quite subdued: muddy brown and dark greens, good for a herbivore that wishes to stay camouflaged. The main issues are that it is a bit thick in certain areas, like the neck, and the front limbs are too long. A mixed bag.

The hadrosaur in this set is Corythosaurus, a classic. Posed in a strange quadrupedal stance, it certainly looks retro, very lizard-like, though with a rather unnatural dip in the neck. The subdued colours from the Camptosaurus return, but with lilac instead of green, and a garish lime green underbelly. At 4.5” long and 2.4” high, it would suit for a youngster among its kind.

Now, for even more retro, it’s Iguanodon. Between the upright stance and iguana-like head, it will certainly appeal to fans of older dino designs. With a light red colour, it certainly stands out, though. At 3.5” high and 3.9” long, it is one of the bigger figures in this mini set.

Euoplocephalus is the ankylosaur of the set, and one of the best in the bunch. It has the traditional stance of defending itself from a predator, pulling it off quite well. Its brown and turquoise colouring is odd, as is the club design, which is too spaced out. The body is too thin as well, and not squat enough. Again, good for a juvenile at 4.5” long and 2” high.

The final member of the set is the biggest surprise: Placerias, a dicynodont from the Triassic. This figure is well made and really accurate, and it’s hard to find anything to say against it. The green and beige colours work well here and, though the pose is a bit stoic, it still sticks out. At 4.3” long and 2” high, it certainly works as a small reptile among its contemporaries.

Now, here is the final twist. As most of these are cheap, small figures from museum shops, few tend to put these on eBay, except rarely in sets with other figures. As a result, outside this set, they’re surprisingly rare, especially for the Placerias, as it is one of only a few representations of this figure. And the price for it can range from £8.00 to £64.00! If you can find it cheap, it would be worth it, otherwise I can’t strongly recommend it too highly.

Iguanodon (Naturecraft)

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The Naturecraft Ltd. company was founded in 1931 in Congleton, Cheshire, UK. It was one of Congleton’s oldest companies, and was headed until its buyout by Managing Director Peter Tomlins. Naturecraft England originally produced figurines such as dogs and other animals, as well as caricatures and other wall art. All items were originally made in the UK. Among the many, many figurines Naturecraft produced was a series of dinosaurs. I own their Iguanodon, their Apatosaurus and their Brachiosaurus, but there is a Parasaurolophus, too, and possibly some others I am not aware of.

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Today I´d like to introduce to you their Iguanodon, which most probably is the best Iguanodon I have in my collection and which definitely can keep up to much more expensive dinosaur artwork sculptures.
Iguanodon itself does not need further introduction since this omnipresent “Mesozoic cow” is one of the most popular plant eaters being depicted as toys figurines or paintings. This extremely detailed and well-made statue is made with cold cast bronze. The special production process of this piece uses actual bronze powder mixed in the cold cast resin in order to ensure a richer and more authentic presentation.
It is a fairly heavy figure and stands 14,5cm tall and is about 22,5cm in length. Felt is attached to the underside of the base in order to go easy on the furniture it stands on. Naturecraft Iguanodon looks good on desks, bureaus or in cabinets as a fitment on its own.

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The detail in this figurine is overwhelmingly beautiful. The scaly skin, the fine and right proportions, the pose, everything is amazing. The main color is dark bronze. Bright bronze stripes run from the neck to the tail. This dinosaur figurine depicts Iguanodon in a bipedal pose but as an optional quadruped. The animal seems to head towards the rest of its herd, trying to keep up with it. Its muzzle is open, one can see a tongue in it.
The base reveals a finely detailed stony underground with some ferns growing in the background. At one side the companies name and the year of the production “NATURECRAFT 2004” has been impressed.

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I don´t want to describe each and every detail, since I hope the pictures do the talking. Also, my English is not as good as it once was due to a painful lack of native speakers to help me maintain it fresh and colloquial. However, I have left one special information: If you wet your fingers and touch the figure and then smell at your fingers they will smell like brass! This is due to the bronze powder used in production , see above. The smell really reminds me at the time when I worked at a brass valve factory.
As a conclusion I recommend this figurine to every collector, since this model shines in every surrounding without looking too edgy or overly exclusive.

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I do not know how common Naturecraft dinosaurs were and are; I´ve seen their Parasaurolophus being offered for 50 pounds on amazon.co.uk but the Iguanodon seems to be a little more rare.

Iguanodon (CollectA)

Discovered in England by Gideon Mantell in 1835, Iguanodon was the second dinosaur to be formally named. Over the years, it has been depicted by paleoartists as a huge and horned lizard, then as an upright and rather dignified-looking biped, and most recently, as a quadrupedal browser that was capable of rearing up on its hind legs.

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The CollectA Iguanodon dates all the way back to 2007. It is reared up on its hind limbs with its head turned sharply to the left, as though there’s a predator incoming and this individual is preparing to defend itself. This stance gives the toy a height of slightly under 10 cm and a length of 16 cm. Main colours are peach and dark brown with thin white stripes, very dark brown claws, and beady black eyes.

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The sculpting on this toy is only average. A multitude of heavy wrinkles throughout, with muscular limbs and slightly arched vertebrae. Nothing to write home about. And while the hands have the correct shape, with the middle three fingers fused into a “mitten,” there’s a glaring problem. You know those thumb spikes that Iguanodon is so famous for? The ones that it may have used to defend itself against the likes of Megalosaurus? Well, the spikes on this toy have been painted just like the rest of the digits, making them look like regular old thumbs. Needless to say, that’s quite disappointing. I may head to the hobby shop sometime and see if I can touch up these spikes with a little paint.

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As well, the Iguanodon‘s neck is too long, its tail is too short, and its hind limbs look too stiff and straight. Also, the back of the head is so flat and straight, it’s almost at a 90 degree angle. On the plus side, the animal does have a rather friendly smile on its face.

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CollectA most definitely ranks at the top nowadays, but many of their earliest prehistoric figures are pretty sad. This Iguanodon is probably not the worst of them, but it certainly would be nice to see a new improved version someday. In the mean time, give this one a pass.

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