5 Hot Wheels phrases a collector must know
Did you know that you can own more than 100 cars in a year? With Hot Wheels, you get all the cars of your dreams without needing to pay for road tax. Hot Wheels have been prized collections for more than half a century now since the brand’s release in 1968. Parent company, Mattel brought in a huge line up of diecast model cars (1:64 scale) of all shapes, colours, and features. As most Hot Wheels these days are made in Hong Kong, it’s no surprise that we see collectors (and aspiring collectors) race to get the most valuable and rare Hot Wheels toys out in the stores. If you’re starting out a collection of Hot Wheels in Hong Kong, you will need to know certain phrases that are regularly used by collectors. Let’s look at some phrases Hot Wheels collectors be familiar with.
The term “Treasure Hunt” was first heard in 1996 when Mattel released the first set of limited edition Hot Wheels. Limited to only 10,000 in the whole world, you would be lucky to collect one granted you found it. “T-Hunts” as they are sometimes referred to, can be tricky to spot. Hit the pegs at any local supermarket or shopping mall and you will find many mainline Hot Wheels, but rarely find a Treasure Hunt.
So how can you tell a T-Hunt from a regular mainline Hot Wheels? Theoretically, it is simple to look for a Hot Wheels Treasure Hunt. For starters, the T-Hunt’s paint job is different from the regular Hot Wheels car. Treasure Hunts usually have a paint that are flashy and bright as compared to their mainline siblings. Treasure Hunts these days also have an inconspicuous logo hidden in the car’s tempo and decal setup. Look closely and you may find the circle-flame logo hidden somewhere in the car’s body.
Super Treasure Hunt
If you think Treasure Hunts are cool, you must know about Super Treasure Hunts. Super Treasure Hunts are literally Treasure Hunt cars that are made to be more premium than the regular Treasure Hunt. Part of the Super Treasure Hunt’s attractive traits is the signature Spectraflame paint – a paint scheme that gives a metallic shine to the diecast model car’s outer body. Super Treasure Hunts were first brought into the market in 2007.
Along with the Spectraflame paint, the car is fitted with realistic Real Rider tires. Real Rider tires are the first rubber wheels with metal rims to be put on Hot Wheels cars. All Super Treasure Hunts come with these amazing tires. Many of these tire models have threads much like real cars. Just like regular Treasure Hunts, the Super Treasure Hunt car will hide the circle-flame logo somewhere in its casting. These days, you will also find a circle-flame logo on the card the car comes in.
Every collector knows that we are bound to find errors among the thousands of cars we collect. Thankfully, there is beauty in imperfection as many collectors are excited to find errors in their Hot Wheels. Errors range from having the wrong wheels (back wheels in the front and vice versa) to an upside-down car in the card to a wrong paint scheme. Errors are considered as valuable collectibles and are kept in mint condition without being opened. These can be then sold for a much higher price as they hold their value over time.
As you collect Hot Wheels, you also make friends. Part of making friends means that you will give as much as you receive. In the world of Hot Wheels, one must know the acronym RAOK. RAOK simply means Random Act Of Kindness. RAOK are where you would purchase a rare Hot Wheels model for a friend or a fellow collector without expecting anything in return. The joy of giving to fellow collectors beats the joy of keeping it for yourself. Especially if the collector has been looking for that particular cast of Hot Wheels, and you find it, it is your duty to RAOK it to him/her. The most popular people who receive RAOK are those who make reviews on YouTube and other blogging websites.
Free the piece
Hot Wheels are great when kept in their cards. They can fetch up to 5 times the original price when sold at a later time period. But in the end, Hot Wheels are just toys. And toys are meant to be opened and played with. Hence, the term “free the piece” is used to unbox the Hot Wheels model you have just bought. It is a common theme with many collectors these days to open the packaging to better view and appreciate the car for what it is. Many collectors even go as far to open their Super Treasure Hunts they find without hesitating. So next time you find a rare car, don’t hesitate to FREE THE PIECE!