Thanks to a horrible fight with the flu, I haven’t been able to get this together until now.

2018 was a big year for me diecastwise, as I got seriously into the hobby after dilly dallying with it since I was a kid. I started watching tons of YouTube videos on restorations and customs, checking flea markets, and joined this wonderful community. And I’ve loved every moment.

So here, in no particular order, are my favorite finds of 2018.

Best 1/43 Alfa Romeo TZ2

The TZ2 was one of Alfa’s most iconic racing cars. The diminutive Zagato-designed car was a mainstay of sports car and endurance racing in the mid-1960's. This particular car was the 4th-placed finisher of the grueling 1966 Targa Florio. Enrico Pinto and Nino Todaro were at the wheel to bring the TZ2 it’s biggest overall result. This model is slightly undersized, but the detail more than makes up for it.

Johnny Lightning 1/64 1966 Ford Fairlane

I found this at a local hobby shop for $2 and I adore it. The metallic paint is deep and beautiful, and I love the satin vinyl top. The Fairlane is one of my favorite shapes, and JL did a great job with this. The hood doesn’t stay open, but I prefer it as it lets me admire that body.

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Johnny Lightning 1/64 1969 Dodge Super Bee Rebel Riders

This is normally something I’m not into, but I love the Super Bee body and the orange paint and trunk band are just gorgeous. I found this at the same shop as the Fairlane, for $2 as well.

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W.T. Toys 1/64 Ligier JS3 Restoration

I covered this one before. It started life as a beat up top in a flea market, and with some leftover decals, Matchbox tires in the rear and Minecart wheels in the front, it turned into a fun, semi-accurate rendition of one of 1970’s sports car racing’s forgotten prototypes.

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Yatming 1/64 Penske PC1 Conversion

Another car covered previously. I found an old Yatming Lola earlier in the year and used IndyCals and plenty of Dremel and putty work to turn this into one of F1’s few American successes.

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Best 1/43 Ferrari 512 BB/LM

The dramatic 512 BB/LM was one of Ferrari’s less-successful endurance racers. While the Flat-12 had plenty of power, the large 512 BB was too large, heavy, and unreliable to be a regular contender. But damn did it look cool. Rosso Racing campaigned this car twice in 1980. The model depicted shows the car as it finished 7th in that year’s Silverstone 6 Hours. It was to be raced in these colors at Le Mans, but did not start due to a fatal engine issue.

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Yatming 1/64 Porsche 917K

This gem came from a big lot of cars I got on eBay a couple months ago. This 917K is an extremely accurate casting (excepting the velocity stacks) and has an inaccurate Gulf paint scheme. I am still undecided as to whether I’ll restore it to an accurate scheme or keep it as is.

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Speedy 1/64 Chaparral 2F

As a proud Texan, Jim Hall is a personal hero. With help from Chevy, he ran Chaparral cars, one of the most innovative racing teams of the 60’s. The 2F was a very successful design and I was thrilled to pay $3 for this at a flea market. It comes with rubber tires and the body has a ton of detail. I will be restoring this to the classic Chaparral white livery.

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Unknown 1/64 1969 Porsche 917

This is another one I’ve covered previously. This came with the same eBay lot as the Yatming 917. This is a neat model as it covers the very rare short-tail 1969 917. I did some restoration work and will be adding another one very soon.

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Lionel 1/64 Matt DiBenedetto #32 Ford Fusion

Matt DiBenedetto raced this awesome car at the 2018 Southern 500. It’s a throwback to Jeff Burton’s #99 Exide Battery car from the late 1990’s, a true classic. I was super thrilled to find this one on the shelf at my local Target.

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So that’s my best from 2018. Looking forward to a productive 2019!