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[Member Spotlight] The Archivist’s Archive

[Member Spotlight] The Archivist’s Archive

Fighting 118th member The Archivist joined our great site at the end of 2013. Since than, he has been one busy member providing our community with a vast ongoing project to catalog all the 118th scale products we know and love. Please remember this is an ongoing project so not everything is finished. We at the Fighting 118th just wanted to let everyone know of this venture and ask to show your support for it. Once finished this will be a great asset for the community.

Links for his original threads are below. Each thread has the link to his database. Conversation is welcomed.

1:18 Action Figure Archive Main Thread HERE

Military Checklist Thread HERE

GI Joe Checklist Thread HERE

Marvel Checklist Thread HERE

Star Wars Checklist Thread HERE

DC Checklist Thread HERE

I also recently had a chance to have a conversation with The Archivist for a Q and A.

Q1 – How long have you been collecting and what is your main focus?

A –  I have been “collecting” since I was a kid I guess starting with the Ninja Turtles in 1990. I didn’t start re-collecting again until 1997 when the Shadows of the Empire wave came out. After that, I started collecting Star Wars pretty religiously. Now, I like just about anything in the 1:18 scale but I like fantasy figures and interesting alien creatures the best.

Q2 – What is your favorite aspect of the hobby? Customs, Photos, Collecting……

A – I enjoy everything about the toy collecting hobby (except scalpers). I mainly just collect the stock figures but I have customized a few here and there. I just moved to Atlanta so I’m hoping to get my workshop set back up to start customizing a little more than I have been able to in the past few years. I do always like reading through forums and looking at all the great work out there by very talented customizers and photographers.

Q3 – What drives you in this hobby? Some do it for nostalgia, some for the relaxation, some for the art, and some just for the coolness of the toys. What makes you click in the Hobby?

A – I don’t really have any nostalgic felling towards any toys other than maybe the Ninja Turtles. I have mostly always been an adult collector. I guess I do it for a little bit of all the other reason though. The toys are definitely cool, I am a huge fan of almost all 1:18 figures even the “kiddy toys” made by Chap Mei. Those are some of my favorites just because of some of their great designs. I also enjoy taking some of the figures and creating new ones and watching others do the same thing. Right now though, I am just focusing on cataloging and informing others of all the great figures out there and the ones that are coming.

Q4 – With your screen name, it is self explanatory as to what you bring to the Hobby. May I ask what started you into wanting to do your own archive? That is one massive venture.

A – I actually just created that name recently, probably a year or so ago. I had previously gone by the screen name Jayd for a long time, and still do on some select forums and in most MMOs or just read posts and didn’t really participate. About a year ago I changed my online persona to The Archivist, joined a bunch of forums, and bought the domain 118Archive.
The main reason I started a 1:18 exclusive Archive was to have a better way to keep track of figures from all the different 1:18 scaled figure lines. There are a lot of great resources out there for the main themes (Star Wars, GI Joe, Marvel) but many checklists and archives for other lines are incomplete, outdated, hard to navigate, or don’t exist at all. I just wanted an easy to use Archive to find what I was looking for.
I started with just an Access database and focused mainly on Star Wars to keep track of my personal collection and which figures would work best in which diorama scenes. As I started to add different lines into my Star Wars collection I started tracking those lines as well. As more and more figures were being released without good online resources I started “collecting” the press release photos of the figures to go along with my database
I attempted my first Archive about 6 years ago using a Joomla engine, but after the database started to fill up It started running very slow and it was very difficult to manage. I let that domain expire and just worked on my local Access database. Last year, when my wife went back to school to get a Master’s degree in Computer Science she agreed to help me develop the site you see now at 118archive.com as practice. Once she got the basic engine working I started entering all the records in my local database into the web-based database. For the past year I have been entering records and at this point I am up to 2500 figure records. I still have about 2500 more non-Star Wars figures in my local database to enter. Of course, I learn about new figures and lines all the time as I research figures to enter so that number is always a moving target.
The reason I structured my Archive the way I did was to learn about other figures that may be out there. That was why I structured some of the ways you can search for a figure by who the character is, what line they were in, what company made that figure, and what species they are. The novelty about how I structured my Archive is there are only 2 web pages, the Archive page and the figure results page. Everything that shows up on the page is what was requested. That makes it a lot easier to maintain because all I have to do is enter the data into my database. Once the record is in the database my wife’s code does the rest. So what may look like a lot of work is actually easier that it may seem. To detail how some of the functionality works I will give a couple examples.
If you are looking to find and compare Iron Man figures you can do a character search for Iron Man. That will display all Iron Man figures released in all the lines.
If you are looking to find a checklist of figures in Marvel Universe you can do a Line search for Marvel Universe and that will show all the figures in the Marvel Universe line. Also I named all Marvel lines with a sub header Marvel so you can edit the parameters in the address bar to only search for Marvel and that will display All the Marvel figures. There are a lot there so be prepared to let it load for a while.
If you are looking to find more figures released by The Four Horsemen, ZICA, or Boss Fight Studios you can do a Company search for them and that will return every figure released by them. I don’t have a way to search for a figure designed by a company and released by another so figures like Captain Action will show up only under ZICA and not Boss Fight Studios.
If you are looking for some Xenomorphs you can do a Species search for Xenomorph to show all the Xenomorphs from all the different lines they were in. I also separated Human – Male and Human – Female into different species to facilitate searching for either of them.
I do have a Category search but it has proven to be a little more difficult to implement the way I would like so for now each character can only be a part of one Category.

Q5 – Any other scales that interest you?

A – The only other figures that are not 1:18 (or play a 1:18 role) are Ninja Turtles but they are pretty close. The resurgence of the Ninja Turtles has been really awesome and I get to share my passion for them with my 9 year old daughter. She was a pink Ninja Turtle last year for Halloween and even got a matching figure I painted to match her costume I made for her. Other than the Ninja Turtles, I have no interest in any figure that doesn’t “fit” into a 1:18 setup. In fact I only have 1 figure in the 1:12 scale 

Q6 – You have the open floor. Anything you would like to add? Any updates on plans for your massive venture? Whatever you would like the public to hear, we would love to hear it!

A – Thank you for the opportunity to talk about my Archive a little bit. I really have a passion for the 1:18 scale and hope that more people can use my Archive to learn about all the great figures out there, even the obscure ones no-one cares about after they are off the store shelves. This can really be a great resource for collectors and customizers looking for good base figures.

Right now I am focusing on adding the rest of the pictures for the Marvel figures and completing the DC section. I am shooting for an end of October to have those lines complete with pictures. After the Super Hero lines have been entered I plan on adding GI Joe and Military figures and hope to get them complete by the end of the year. I will keep adding the more obscure lines as I go and hope to ave then done by the end of the year as well. Star Wars is the lowest category on my list since there are already really great resources on the internet for those. I do hope to have all the Star Wars figures in by June or so but that will all depend on how much time I have to keep working on this.
A couple features I would like to point out are the supplement lines I have and the playset species.
Since there are some large scale characters that are not in a 1:18 line I have created encompassing supplement lines to include them in the Archive. Right now I have some Marvel Supplement figures that were pulled from Marvel Legends or older Toybiz lines. These figures are going to be acceptable based on the preference of the collector but a good example would be Abomination. He has some 4″ figures, 6″ figures, and even a 7″ figure. He can work at all those sizes because be makes a good Abomination or could be a Troll for someone else’s 1:18 fantasy collection.
I am also using a species of Playset to easily be able to search for all the playsets. I don’t have a direct link for species yet but you can still use the search dropdown to search for them.

Some functionality that I have planned are:
- More direct links for Company, Category, and Species. Similar to how the links work when you click the “Show All” buttons for Character and Lines. Those links would then be able to be shared on forums, social media, etc.
- A Civilian flag that would show all figures that are human civilians.
- Height categories displayed so that you can know if a figure is 2″(5-9cm), 4″(9-12cm) or 12″. I will be using metric so learn those conversions . Every figure will be entered into one of the following 7 height categories 5-9cm, 9-12cm, 12-15cm, 15-18cm, 18-23cm, 23-28cm, and 28+ cm. These are just going to be guidelines and not exact heights.
I am always looking for more lines and figures to add so if I am missing any just let me know and I will get them added to the Archive as well. I can be reached here on the Fighting 1:18 forums or through the Contact form on the Archive.

And now for my totally random questions I like to call the speed round.

1 – Favorite type of movies? We almost exclusively watch Fantasy or Science Fiction movies.

2 – Beer, Wine, Liquor, or Soda? I usually just drink water but when I do drink Soda its Barqs.

3 – Diet or Regular? Regular water tastes the best. I can’t stand that aftertaste of diet water!

4 – Is the cup half empty or half full? Its always 100% full of something, whether it be liquid or gas.

5 – Fan of Heroes or Villains? Mostly Villains, they tend to have better personalities.

 

I would like to thank The Archivist for all his hard work and sharing it with the Fighting 118th. I would also like to thank the readers.

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