Friday, 23 September 2016

A tale of two colours

I thought I had a pretty good knowledge of Land Rover colours and had managed to acquire examples of each so I was delighted but slightly astonished to find another shade of metallic green. There were two items for sale from different vendors - one with Whizzwheels and one with cast wheels. As the Whizzwheels one was only a few pounds and available to buy rather than bid for I paid there and then.

It looked like a distinctly more golden, rich shade of green to the blue-green that I already had. I unwrapped the parcel that came today and it looked a bit worn with some scratches on the roof and had a broken screen that I hadn't noticed but, "Never mind," I told myself, "it was not expensive and it's a nice new shade."

I was about to take some photos of this new addition to the catalogue when I paused and wondered. Was it really different? "Yes, of course it is," I said to myself. To settle the matter and, indeed, to demonstrate the new shade in an article I would be writing soon to tell you all about this, I went and retrieved the other metallic green Whizzwheels Land Rover that I had.

As I took it out of the cabinet and headed back to my desk I remember thinking how much more of a turquoise-blue-green the one I carried was compared to the golden green of the other that was sitting on the desk. I set them down next to each other. Oh. 

They were exactly the same colour!

I mean exactly. Not a shade more blue nor a shade more golden. These were both the familiar blue-green metallic shade. I had bought a second and rather tatty example of something I already had. And it hadn't been until actually placing them side by side that I had realised.

So there's a warning for us all! The photos above are of my stock item and, from Ebay, the 'richer, brighter green' shade I thought I was buying. I guess the cream-yellow paper that the vendor's model was sitting on had affected the image. I can just hit remove colour cast in my software but most people these days just take some snaps and upload them without paying too much attention to what they look like.

The new one does have a black plastic tow-bar as opposed to the grey of my other one so I suppose it'll have to stay but you won't, I am afraid to say, be getting an imminent article of new Land Rover shades after all.

I am still convinced that there is a fairly 'normal' green 438 with normal wheels as well as the dark green shades I have so maybe that will turn out to be real after all and I can write about them instead. I read that a version for the Agricultural Set was what QDT described as a 'correct' lighter shade but it might have merely meant that the set had the green 406 rather than the dark green 438. I have one possible candidate to buy so, as I said, there may be an article after all.

On the subject of colours of Land Rovers, my friend Anders in Germany spotted this a couple of days ago. It looks like a nice 416S in Tours Secours mode, the Belgian equivalent of our RAC. 

This is my old 416 version. You would have expected the revised version to use the same colours now wouldn't you? It did strike me as remarkably like someone had taken a fawn 438 from the later Gift Set 2, detached the pony trailer, added some transfers and an aerial and a grey canopy. In fact, I was so sure that this had been the case that I had a go at making one myself.

I sat back to admire the excellent job I thought I had made and then realised that there, on the bonnet, was a pretty damn obvious difference! So, after all, it would seem that the advertised model is real. Incidentally, it is currently only £82 but by the time you read this it will probably have sold for many times that figure.

Returning to the metallic blue-green colour now, where we started this article, I feel I must share with you my frustration at the prices people ask for the 'LEPRA' version of the Land Rover. Now this is, surely, something I could put together in a matter of minutes? The transfers are easy to find and only need to go on the canopy. Unless I am missing something again, the vehicle is identical in every other respect to the 438 that I now have several of.

This is one currently advertised at several hundred pounds. It may be real but how on Earth will anyone know? I accept that the 'LEPRA' may well be super rare but I would want some definitive proof that it was genuine before buying one. Did it not have a special box?

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