Today’s DLM features two T-Buckets, the Hot Wheels Larry’s Garage series #14 T-Bucket vs. the Johnny Lightning Street Freaks series #19 “American Glory” ’23 Ford T-Bucket.
The Hot Wheels version is much heavier, which is a direct result of its much chunkier construction. The frame rails are much heftier than in the JL version. The requisite supercharger is in attendance and 4-into-2 sidepipes on each side are a stylish touch.
A portion of the bellhousing is visible at the back of the engine, but mysteriously vanishes, leaving a gap in the driveline.
Low-profile, mildly staggered sized tires are not particularly appropriate for a hotrod of this type, although the wheels are classic 5-spokes.
Not being an American, the flame paint scheme and base colour is my personal choice between the two.
The Johnny Lightning version, although lighter in weight, is not delicate in hand by any means. Lighter in the context of these two diecasts is still heavier than is typical. This version also has a supercharger, with a more realistic intake scoop. The four individual exhaust pipes on each side are an authentic touch for this type of car. No hint of a transmission appears in the driveline.
The shift knob looks to be positioned pretty well where it would be leaning against your shoulder. Awk-ward!
Big meaty slicks on small rear 5-spokes are appropriate for a stoplight racer (or quarter-miler), as are the low-rolling resistance skinnies on lightweight wire wheels at the front.
Despite the lack of a transmission, the JL’s motor overall shows much finer detail, especially in the head/intake area.
The Stars and Stripes paint scheme is well-designed and detailed.
On the HW version, the brass radiator is a nice touch, but the supercharger belt is also rendered in brass as part of the radiator casting. Headlights are cast as a part of the radiator, and although there’s no cap, it appears that there’s what is intended to be a gas tank above the front axle.
The JL’s radiator, while not brass, is nicely detailed with a black core. The supercharger belt is a separate piece in the correct black colour. Headlights are shown on their own mounting stalks, and nice detail is shown for the front axle/suspension as well as for the suspension at the back.
Overall, the HW version, with its wheel/tire setup, seems to represent what might be built today as a comfortable street cruiser. The JL version, on the other hand, represents what might have been built in the ’50s or ’60s as an actual stoplight racer, with its lightweight exhaust setup and wheel/tire combo.