Army Gear Canteen – Random Toys
1988 gave us the Army Gear toy line from Micro Machine toymaker, Galoob. One of the most common (but also favorite of mine) items from this line is the Army Gear Canteen Aircraft Carrier. Join us as we take a closer look at it in this week’s Random Toys.
All of the Army Gear boxes were designed to look like wooden supply crates & have a flap that lifts up to show the toy inside in it’s two different modes. The back of the box also features all of the other items in the toyline.
The Army Gear Canteen looks like a large canteen. It’s fully plastic with a screw on cap & belt clip on the back. It can split in half & creates an Aircraft carrier deck. You can lift up the deck plates to find storage for all of the included pieces.
One of the parts I love about the Army Gear Canteen is that, like all of the Army Gear items, it functions as the actual gear it’s based on! There’s a small, water tight bladder under one of the deck plates to allow it to be used as a canteen. This is what the screw top lid attaches to. The lid also holds the bladder in place in the canteen.
The extra pieces under the deck plates includes a Control Tower, Antenna, Guns, F-14 Jet and Crew Members to operate it all. The tower has a few moving pieces (a large side door that opens, plus the two Guns/Cannons can rotate around and up & down) The very top of the antenna features a flag piece. All Army Gear items have two flag pieces and two different flag faction stickers so you can make the playset for the good Army Gear guys or the bad (Serpent?) guys. The bad guys are never given an actual name that I have found, but their flag looks to be an evil looking serpent. Of course the flag stickers (along with many other details for the playset) are included on a sticker sheet so it’s always possible to have a set with no (or very few) stickers applied like the set I have here. The stickers were also not the best so they have been known to dry up and fall off the toys after some time as well.
The F-14 has rolling wheels, fold out wings and an opening canopy so you can fit one of the figures into the cockpit. The F-14 is simple, but with enough detail and movable parts that it’s a fun toy by itself even without the Army Gear Canteen.
This set comes with 6 small figures (4 green good guys & 2 grey bad guys) The figures have a hinged waist to allow them to sit or slightly bend over, but they are mostly pre-posed. The detailing is nice & gives them some character.
There are also two rubber figure stands with holes that can only fit certain leg types. In the entire line there were 5 unique stands but no set ever came with all stands. It’s also unclear which sets include which figures and stands unless you find an unopened set.
The entire Army Gear toy line is fun for those who enjoy miniature playsets like Micro Machines and Mighty Max. The real world play gear is a cool idea that in cases like the Army Gear Canteen, worked well. I always felt this set had a lot of play value since it’s a larger set and a typical setting for military action movies like Top Gun and The Final Countdown. Since this is a more common set you should be able to find one easily, but you may not get any figures. Thankfully there was also an army builder figure set released that’s pretty easy to find still carded.