Re: One problem with this
He also had a collection of expensive toys including Britain's model field guns with spring-loaded shell casings.
I had an extensive collection of those. From memory: The 155mm howitzer (with the aforementioned breech mechanism/shell casing) the 25 pounder, the Battalion Anti-Tank gun, the 105mm Howitzer, the 18th century cannon, the Ballista and the Catapult. Oh, and a Swappets 52mm mortar team with a working mortar.
Britain's stuff used to be great. Their Elephants (from he Zoo range) are eagerly sought out for wargamers to this day. I have the Livery Stable from the western buildings range they did and a bunch of American civil war stuff. Always wanted the Civil War cannon/limber and team.
The artillery pieces were all in a box that my father, gorblessim, lifted and the bottom fell out. The 155mm cannon had about a dozen separate bits. only about 8 survived to be passed back to me. Ditto the 105mm howitzer.
You don't see anything like those toys these days. I mean, the guns could be taken out of the swappets cowboys' holsters, and when you took the hats off there was no peg/hole - magnificent construction.