Thin Line Challenge Coins

I’m not quite sure if this set of coins celebrating US front line service personnel has a name, but I think that are pretty cool. Each one is a metal sculpt of the Millennium Falcon laced with a coloured stripe. There’s a Han and Chewie image on the flip side. There are several versions and each one denotes a different emergency service.

Thin Blue Line (Police)
Thin Red Line (Fire)
Thin Grey Line (Prison)
Thin Green Line (Ambulance)

There is also a Thin Pink Line for Breast Cancer, too.

Thin Pink Line (Breast Cancer)

I bought mine on Etsy and there was also a “Thin Gold Line” coin that I hadn’t seen before which represents the 911 Dispatchers.

I think that the Falcon looks quite nicely sculpted and will trying and get a complete set.

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Utah Challenge “Staff of Ra” Millennium Falcon Coin

Another interesting find in my search for challenge and geocache coins was this “Staff of RA” Millennium Falcon coin by Utah Challenge Coins. Created in both a Matte Gold and Antique Gold looks, the coin mashes together the staff of Ra from Raiders of the Lost Ark into the body of the Millennium Falcon. An interesting choice, which I actually think works really well.

Matte Gold Finish
Antique Gold Finish

I think that the details really pop on the Antique version and I’ll get two so I can display both the front and the back of the coin.

Alas, the matte Gold version has sold out, but the antique gold coin is still available and is only $17. Each coin is 2.5″ and has a 6mm red jewel embedded in the eye.

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Millennium Falcon Mega Mag from ATA Boy

I’d seen the Millennium Falcon Mega Mag in Mike Demaine‘s collection but never really saw them for sale anywhere. Fortunately, I was able to nab one from ebay. With shipping and import taxes, it cost me twice the asking price, but I think it’s worth it to add another vintage item to my collection.

Released by ATA Boy for the Special Editions in 1996, the magnet is made from a soft PVC or plastic material that’s magnetised on the back. It’s roughly 10″ by 8″. It’s a great item and I’m really glad I bought it.

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Escambia County Police Challenge Coin

Recently, I’ve been looking for more “Challenge” coins from the US Military and Police services and have co0me across a few interesting coins. The first (and my favourite) is this really nice Millennium Falcon Police badge style challenge coin for the Escambia State Police in Florida.

The coin looks nicely sculpted and I’d hazard a guess that it’s maybe 5″ by 3″

Sadly, it looks like this could be a very rare item and I wasn’t able to find out any information about it at all. I could only find this photo, which appears to be from an old ebay sale.

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Millennium Falcon Cutaways and Cross Sections (Part 2)

Merchandise

So, after looking at books and artwork showcasing cross sections of the Falcon, it’s only fair that we take a look at the merchandise. To my knowledge, there isn’t that much that can truly be called “Cross Section”, but there are a few.

I’ll start with my favourite collectible, the Attakus Millennium Falcon and Death Star Hall diorama.

Released under the Attakus Metal brand in 2005, at the same time as Master Replicas’s Studio Scale Millennium Falcon model, it never really stood a chance. At nearly two metres long and weighing nearly a quarter of a ton, it is an absolute beast and it’s a rare collector that has that kind of room and this must surely rate as one of the most ambitious collectibles ever. At the time, I rather wisely decided to go for the MR Falcon but I lusted after this for ten years before I was finally able to get one.

The detailing is exquisite but for the price being asked (2,400 Euros plus shipping), I think the decision not to include some lighting probably hurt their sales somewhat and it’s a shame that this was not a success. This was the first in a line of dioramas due to showcase a key scene in each film, in this case, A New Hope and the lightsaber duel between Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Vader.

The Empire Strikes Back would have been Luke’s training on Dagobah and a prototype was made, (Complete with submerged X-Wing and Yoda’s hut), but never made it to production.

Prototype for the ESB Diorama

The diorama came in 3 parts (Death Star Hall, the hanger base and the Millennium Falcon itself and shipped on a pallet. Limited to an edition size of only 400, there where also 13 figurines to collect separately. Each of the figurines had a larger edition size of 2500. Attakus have always received a lot of criticism for the likenesses on the human figurines, (which is off), but the troopers, Vader and the droids were great.

There were also two “exclusive” figurines, (Luke in the Stormtrooper disguise for the Falcon and the Mouse Droid for the Death Star Hall), which were redeemable with certificates enclosed with the diorama. Attakus promised to fulfill the exclusives, but only sent a few of them out, so they are both rare and are massive “grail” items for me.

I don’t think the figures made their full production run either, as I had a really hard time tracking down the Leia and Han Solo figurines. I did enjoy collecting them, though, and tracking Leia down and adding her to my collection was a lot of fun.

I must confess that I was slightly disappointed that Attakus chose not to sculpt other figures associated with this scene, such as Stormtroopers at attention or the scanning crew, as you’re limited in your diorama options. I always swore that were I to win the lottery, I’d commission Attakus to complete the rest of the Falcon. It’s a piece that deserves to be showcased and if I can make room, I’ll get an acrylic cover for it. Even now, 16 years on, I still get quite a few hits each month for this wonderful, if impractical piece. Bravo, Attakus.

Probably the most well known example of a Millennium Falcon cutaway is AMT/Ertl’s model kit (model 8789). Released in 1996, it could very well have been the basis for Brian Sauriol‘s cutaway painting. I didn’t have one of these at the time, which is just as well, as I would’ve butchered it. I have one now, though.

I don’t have the skills to do this model justice and I’m happy just to have one anyway. There are some great examples of pro built and painted models on hobby sites such as Starship Modeler. Incidentally, I’ve always adored the cover art on this kit. Does anyone know who the artist is?

I’m not sure whether this belongs here, but i think it’s cool and i like it. Thinkgeek had some weird and wonderful ideas for collectibles and one of their nicest is a set of coasters. Each coaster had a separate system, or level on it and when placed on top of each other, made a blueprint of the Falcon.

It’s of the ST Falcon and i would’ve loved an OT one. Still, I liked it enough to buy two so that I can use a set. Unfortunately, Alas, Thinkgeek is no more, but you can still buy these for around $20 Earth monies at places like Amazon or ebay. Get as set, they’re lovely.

I’ve been following QMX with some interest as their Firefly and Serenity line of collectibles has been beautiful. They released a cutaway model of the Serenity and i always hoped they’d be able to do the Falcon. At the 2016 SDCC, they showcased their take of the cutaway Millennium Falcon and it can only be described as as stunning.

QMX Prototype

It had a removable top saucer and was displayed on a nice landing platform style base. It was filled with wonderful details, such s Han Solo’s unspent reward from A New Hope, (which can be seen in a smuggling compartment near the ramp.) It was a very detailed piece and I remember reading speculations on how much it would end up costing us on the Rebelscum forums. I think we all put it around the $3, 000 mark. I would’ve paid it, too.

I’d hazard a guess that it’s about two feet long and I cannot see any lighting.

Alas, a prototype only, it never made it to production. (I suspect they wanted to keep the quality high for a mass produced market for a decent price.) Hopefully, QMX will return to this when things get better.

I’ve deliberately chosen not to include the DeAgostini “Build the Millennium Falcon” part work here. I feel it isn’t really a cutaway, although it does have internal sections and I have always seen it as more of a Studio Scale model.I’m not sure what other items of merchandise can be included in this post. Please let me know of any suggestions.

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Disney Gingerbread Pin

This rather festive Gingerbread Millennium Falcon pin was released for Christmas 2020 and has a sort of gold sparkle about it. I also think the Tie fighters are very well done as they genuinely look like gingerbread.

I’m not overly into the holidays, but I think this is a really nice pin. Approximately 2″ square.

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2019 Celebration Chicago Fridge Magnet

I bought this fridge magnet, which has been styled in the same way as an ad for a Pizza parlour.

It’s from the 2019 Celebrations Chicago event and is a nice item. Roughly 5″ by 4″ in size it has gone straight to my fridge door.

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Jumbo Dejarik Pin from Disney

Pin collecting is a pretty good way to keep the collecting up and i’m sure none of you will be too surprised to learn that i have a growing collection of Millennium Falcon related pins and badges. The Jumbo pins are a particular favourite, probably because i like the fact that they can be shown off while still in the box. This jumbo Dejarik table pin from Disney will be a really nice addition.

It’s 3 inches wide and 2.5 inches tall. With shipping it’ll be $100, but some of the creatures move, which is a very nice touch in my opinion.

Disney jumbo pins are usually limited to 500 or 2000 pieces, but i can’t find anything on the edition size of this one.

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2021 – Collection goals

One of my favourite sites is the SFFChronicles forum which discusses Science Fiction in all of it’s glory. One of the Chroners posted a thread asking what our reading goals were for 2021. A great question, and one that i should include into my hobby, seeing as how it takes up much of my time. I read on mighty Jabba’s wonderful collection blog that there are two types of collector. Those who collect for the sake of collecting, and those who enjoy and display their collection. This is my collection at the moment.

I do have some bits displayed, but my collection room is what can only be described as a flea pit of horror. It’s quite clear that I fall into the “acquisition” type of collector. 🙂 I need to tidy my collection and I think the next few weekends are the time to do it.

Paintings and prints to be hung and some shelves would really clear up the smaller items. The problem is the larger items such as the Attakus diorama and MR Falcon, which are hugely impressive and really need to be displayed. Cases are expensive. An acrylic case for the MR Falcon is £300, and I’m not sure how I can generate room enough to display them.

Another issue is my growing collection of prints. Most of them are in tubes and I really need to get a nice plan chest to flatten and store them. There are some decent ones on Amazon but again, can I make enough room?

I also think I’d prefer an antique plan chest as there are some lovely ones out there. Which ones do you prefer?

I’m not waiting for too much on the actual collection. JazzInc‘s impressive 1:6th Millennium Falcon cockpit diorama, (which I’m dreading as it is another beastie). I also have their hold expansion on pre-order.

I’m still looking for the the Attakus Metal figurines of Luke in Storm Trooper disguise and the Mouse Droid.

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Lucasarts Postcard for X-Wing: Alliance

Back in the nineties, LucasArts was a powerhouse of epic gaming, with many great titles under their belt. X-Wing (released in 1993), was an excellent “space combat simulator” well regarded by most players. It had two sequels in Tie Fighter (1994) and X-Wing: Alliance (1999).

X-Wing: Alliance box cover

In X-Wing: Alliance, you played as Ace Azzemeen, a pilot trader who’s family is killed by the Empire. Joining the Rebellion, you played multiple missions as a fighter pilot with the game culminating in you piloting the Millennium Falcon through the Death Star. I was genuinely useless at this game. 🙂 The games are still very enjoyable and you can download series from Steam for £22.

I won this promotional Lucasarts postcard on ebay for a princely £2. I believe that the seller has more available.

It’s good to see the RoTJ Death Star Battle as it’s one of the more underrated battles of the trilogy. The postcard itself is pretty dark, so the background is quite difficult to make out.

As furlough continues to take it’s bite, finding small bits like this are ideal to keep the momentum of my collection moving forward.

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