Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Straco Express Layout, Part 58 - Shioji Shell

The Shioji Shell Tanker.
Read all the installments of the Straco Express layout project here.

I know I just posted something very similar last week (Part 57- Data Dump). But the frequency just reflects the reality of the marketplace. About a week after I found the dump truck, another vehicle using the same chassis became available -- and became my latest acquisition.

I've also learned that these vehicles were made by Shioji & Co., Ltd. Osaka, Japan. Although these smaller, "penny toys" are unmarked, they did brand their larger toys with "SSS."

This Shioji truck is the fourth one I own, and it seems to be the newest. The biggest clue is the chassis, which is made out of much cheaper and thinner metal than the previous versions. My guess is that this represents the final version of this truck before the switch was made from metal to plastic (ca. 1963).

From left to right, oldest to newest: the Express van, dump truck,
covered flatbed truck, cattle truck, Shell tanker.

And the tank truck's different enough for me to revise my chronology.
  • First generation: Rivet head hubcaps, flat chassis bottom, six securing tabs.
  • Second generation: Solid hubcaps (cheaper to make and install), rounded chassis bottom
  • Third generation: Four securing tabs instead of six
  • Fourth generation: Thinner chassis in gun metal rather than black finish

That sag behind the cab isn't from excessive use. The gun metal chassis'
just too thin. It was most likely bent during assembly. 
The Shell tanker, like the rest of these Shioji vehicles look great on the Straco Express display layout. But they put the smaller 3" tank trucks to shame. And with five of these Shioji trucks on the display, I find that I'm having to use the larger cars to have everything look proportionally right.

The 3" Nomura Mobilgas tanker does not compare well
to the Shioji Shell tanker.

I never thought scale would matter with this layout!

Layout construction:
  • Pegboard: $4.95
  • Flathead Screws: $0.40
  • Molding: $2.49
  • SilClear: borrowed from a friend
  • Green Paint: leftover  from another project
  • Wood Screws: $3.60
  • Felt Pads: $1.99
Power Pack: $5.90
Small Houses: $3.00
Testor's Gray Paint for road: $1.29

Bandai Areo Station: $8.99
2 tinplate signs: $1.00
4 tinplate signs (with train) $5.99
Cragstan HO Light Tower $20.49
4 nesting houses $4.99
Tinplate gas station: $5.00

  • Two Japanese toy cars: $2.00
  • A.W. Livestock truck: $4.99
  • Taxi: $2.99
  • Ambulance: $2.99
  • Two Japanese patriotic cars: $6.99
  • Haji three-wheel sedan $3.00
  • Haji three-wheel tanker $5.00
  • 1950's sedan $2.99
  • LineMar Police Car $9.00
  • LineMar Pepco Truck $8.50
  • LineMar Bond Bread Van $8.00
  • LineMar Fire Engine $4.95
  • LineMar Dump Truck $12.99
  • LineMar GE Courier Car $10.98
  • LineMar County School Bus $9.99
  • Nomura Red Sedan $5.00
  • Nomura Police Car $2.52
  • Nomura lumber truck $3.48
  • 6 Nomura vehicles $16.99
  • Shioji Express Truck $10.00
  • Shioji Covered Truck $12.50
  • Shioji Dump Truck $9.95
  • Shioji Shell Tanker $10.50
  • Orange Sedan $10.99
  • King Sedan $9.95
  • Indian Head logo sedan $4.99
  • Indian Head (?) convertible $18.00
  • Yellow/red Express truck $9.99
  • Red limousine FREE
Total Project Cost: $290.30

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