M*A*S*H: 613 Jeep, 688 Ambulance, 737 Helicopter and 301 Gift Set

The 301 M*A*S*H gift set was advertised in the 1979 Trade catalogue and like the vehicles it contained, was never actually issued. It was licensed and produced to cash in on the very popular TV series, M*A*S*H. (Mobile Army Surgical Hospital) that ran from 1972 to 1983.  The gift set was made up from existing but now rebadged and renumbered models and and an updated version of the 303 Commando Squad gift set

The 737: M*A*S*H. Helicopter, 688: M*A*S*H Ambulance and 613: M*A*S*H Jeep looked as though they would be sold as separate items as well as in the gift set 301

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Dinky Trade Catalogue 1979

The catalogue numbering above is incorrect, the Jeep should be 613 and the Helicopter 737. The stretcher on the jeep came from the 288 Cadillac superior ambulance with the blue blanket now a more sober khaki.

M*A*S*H TV Series

M*A*S*H was an American television series, adapted from the 1970 feature film MASH (which was itself based on the 1968 novel MASH: A Novel About Three Army Doctors, by Richard Hooker). The series, which was produced with 20th Century Fox Television for CBS, followed a team of doctors and support staff stationed at the “4077th Mobile Army Surgical Hospital” in Uijeongbu, South Korea during the Korean War. The television series is the best-known version of the M*A*S*H works, and one of the highest-rated shows in U.S. television history.

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The Ambulance, Jeep and Helicopter used in the TV Series

The Bell helicopter and jeep were faithfully represented by the Dinky models but the truck was a Dinky creation, part of the ‘Convoy’ series and looked more 70’s than Korean War vintage.

The M*A*S*H gift set was only ever featured in the 1979 trade catalogue, the last trade catalogue produced in 1980 did not feature the set.

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1979 Trade Catalogue. The M*A*S*H and Emergency Squad gifts set were not issued.

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The 303 Commando Set, introduced and released in 1978,  featured #267 Convoy Army Truck, #676 Armoured Car and a repainted #732 Bell Helicopter, which was only available as part of this gift set. In the 1980 trade catalogue the set was renamed to Combat Army Set presumably to make the appeal more international

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To convert the Commando Squad to a M*A*S*H gift set required a different set of stickers and a new box.

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Dinky 1979 Trade Catalogue
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Factory prototype