362: Trident Starfighter

DINKY 362 TRIDENT STARFIGHTER (1978-1980)

The Trident Starfighter was released in December 1978 to fill the appetite for Space toys and was introduced in the 1979 catalogue and then produced until the factory closure later that year.

It’s not pretty. It’s a solid looking two piece block with a silver painted cockpit and crude paper stickers.

362 1 3_4 .jpg

The model had one firing ‘Stellar’ missile at the nose, the two missiles on the wing tip were dummies, presumably to keep the cost down. In addition there was a drop down stairway that also served as the front leg. Three spare missiles were provided loose in the box.

362 1 Side2 .jpg
362 1 Back and Front .png
362 1 Top3 .jpg
362 1 Bottom .jpg

A special gold very limited edition was also produced (see below).

362 Trident Gold and Black.png

VARIATIONS:

There were no known commercially available variations.

PROTOTYPES AND PRE-PRODUCTION:

A pre-production version was sold by Vectis Auctions. Note the different wing and tail stickers

Pre production version sold by Vectis Auctions
Pre production version sold by Vectis Auctions

A resin prototype sold at auction in 2017.

Pre prod resin COMP2.png

ODDITIES AND RARITIES:

A rare gold version of  the 362 Trident Star Fighter was especially produced to commemorate The Airfix Group dinner dance at the London Hilton on 18th September 1979. The orange plastic steps, missiles and legs were now black.

362 Trident Gold.png

The box had a white sticker affixed to the front signed by Ray McNeice, the last Managing Director of Meccano Ltd. Note: Airfix owned Meccano who owned Dinky!

The Binns Road factory was closed a few weeks later on the 29th November 1979.

362 Trident Gold Box & Label

362G 1 Side .jpg

BOXES:

The model came in a Window Box with some excellent cover art on the rear and on the insert. The earlier version box had a ‘Trident Starfighter with firing stellar missile’ text on the bottom right as well as notifying customers about the instruction leaflet inside. The later box version had the firing and safety instructions on the bottom of the box, with text advising this,  and just a ‘with firing stellar missile’ text on the front of the box.

Box front stellar and other.png

The rear of both boxes displayed a battle scene with the Trident Starfighter and the initially misnamed ‘Galactic Space Battle Cruiser’ which was then changed to ‘Space Battle Cruiser’, the actual name the 367 was released as.

Box back2 x2.png

Early boxes came with a separate instruction sheet but this was removed and replaced with printed instructions on the bottom of the box.

Later boxes had firing instructions on base
Later boxes had firing instructions on base

The model was attached to the polystyrene inner with elastic bands.

Box sides and poly COMP.png

CATALOGUES:

The 1978 UK Trade Catalogue shows a green ‘Trident Space Fighter’ which was renamed as the Trident Starfighter on release.

1978 Dinky UK Trade Catalogue.png
1978 UK Trade Catalogue
1978 UK TFP 112_113_361_362_367.png
Dinky 1978 UK trade fair leaflet

The 1978 consumer catalogue showed the Trident Starfighter in its correct colour.

1978 UK C 362_367.jpg
Dinky 1978 UK consumer catalogue
1978 UK Trade Catalogue
1979 UK Trade Catalogue

3 thoughts on “362: Trident Starfighter

  1. If you look carefully, the main body and tail fin are S.H.A.D.O. Sky 1 Interceptor. The Cockpit is their also. The tailfin had to be chopped for safety. The main air intake, is now converted has the missile launcher. Finally underneath are 2 Plastic Skids. The are on Sky 1. Derek “Magpie” Meddings, probably got that ides from the Convair F2Y Sea Dart project.

    The Wings have nothing to do with Sky 1.

    But the Sky 1 Wings were actually used on the Space Cruiser model. (Itself the Gunship, from Gerry’s failed “StarCruiser Concept)

    As were Sky 1’s underwing Rocket Packs. Which are either SNEB 68mm or UB-57mm.

    Like

  2. Interesting theory! I think the many similarities to the Airfix Starcruiser Interceptor model suggests that this was the source of the 367 Space Battle Cruiser but perhaps Sky 1 influenced the Airfix model, after all the Anderson team was involved with both. I agree that there are similarities between Sky 1 and the 362 Trident but again a bit of ‘copying’ or perhaps ‘artistic licence’ was done at the design stage. Is this theory of the Sky 1 connection recorded elsewhere? Cheers Kevin

    Like

  3. It always reminded me of ‘The Nautilus’ from Disney’s ‘20,000 Leagues Under The Sea’ (1954) – the pointed nose, serrated fin, and domed bridge with a viewport like an eye each side.

    Liked by 1 person

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