Just when you think you have got your head around the different colour variations on some of the smurfs, someone asks you a question that stumps you. Is the Scot smurf with brown pipes on his bagpipes, is this genuine or just a repaint? I am not sure why they had to ask me this question as I have never claimed to be an expert, but here goes……
Scot was first produced by Bully back in 1979. Wearing a red and green tartan gown and hat with a green pompom while playing the bagpipes. This version we also see Scot with white socks.
When Schleich started selling Scot they started painting the socks green and gave article number #20105. Schleich sold this with Bully markings until 1984 in Germany. After 1984 they were able to add their own Schleich marking to the smurfs and sold Scot until 1989. Oddly enough, the Schleich marked one with green socks is typically considered rarer compared to the Bully marked one with white socks.
Scot was also produced out of Hong Kong with white socks. The Hong Kong made Scot can be found with W.Berrie and without. So quite possible it was also in other countries apart from the USA. Wallace Berrie only sold Scot for two years between 1981 to 1983 and referred to as Bagpipe.
Now before I answer the big question – Is the Scot smurf with brown pipes on his bagpipes, is this genuine or just a repaint? It’s important to understand a little a bit of smurf history that I feel is pivotal. In 1979 Bully lost the rights for the smurfs and was not allowed to make any more smurfs after 31st December 1979. From 1980 Schleich were they sole worldwide maker and seller of the smurfs. We first see a picture of Scot with brown pipes on his bagpipes in the 1980 Schleich catalogue. So there is a good chance the pictures for the catalogue were taken some time in 1979. It is also highly likely that Schleich were experimenting with different colours or accessories on some of the Bully marked smurfs around the same time as they had just won the rights to produce the smurfs.
So in my opinion, yes this variation of Scot is genuine and exists as it can be found in 1980 Schleich catalogue. It is just a pity there are some rogue people out there who are taking advantage of their rarity by adding their own paintwork. After all its up to you and the kind of smurfs you like to collect that really matters.
Keep on Smurfin
It’s always fascinating to see some smurfs that were painted one way in a catalogue and for any number of reasons was never actually sold like this. What I would like to know is do these smurfs actually exist? To give you some idea of what I am talking about, I have added pictures from particular Schleich catalogues. These catalogues can be found on the Blue Cavern Forum site and is well worth a visit if you love your smurf history.
Fancy car with gold steering wheel
In the 1979 Schleich Dealer’s catalogue we see the Car Driver, #40210 with a gold coloured steering wheel. In Europe Car Driver was typically found with a yellow steering wheel and in Australia & USA it was commonly found with a brown steering wheel. The wheels also look a little different in the picture. In the same catalogue there is a picture of the Cyclist, #40501 where the spokes are painted white and the tyres are painted black. Once again this was later sold with grey tyres. More recently I have seen a picture of a Cyclist with black tyres but I could not tell from the picture if this was genuine or not.
#20105 Scot – brown pipes on bagpipes
In 1979 Bully lost the rights to produce smurfs and by 1980 Schleich was starting to show both Bully and Schleich made smurfs in their catalogue. Little changed with the Bully smurfs pictured in 1980 Schleich catalogue to what was actually released except for Scot, #20105 which was pictured with brown bagpipes and sold with yellow bagpipes instead. What is a mystery with this smurf, was it Bully or Schleich who changed the colour of the bagpipes. To complicate things, Schleich never changed the Bully markings on Scot between 1980 to 1984 due to some legal agreement made between Bully and Schleich.
1988 Schleich Dealer’s Catalogue
In the 1988 Schleich Dealer’s catalogue, the Foreman #20229 had a white hard helmet which was later changed to orange. It is also interesting to see that Hula Smurfette and Fitness were only hand drawn sketches. By 1989 the actual figurines appeared in the Schleich catalogue. It should also be noted at this point that in 1988 and 1991 there were no new smurfs produced by Schleich.
Even in 2017 Groom Smurf, #20796 was originally pictured wearing a black suit and top hat. So imagine my surprise when I received mine wearing a grey suit and top hat. My guess is that they decided to change the colour of the suit so Groom Smurf would not be confused with Bride & Groom, #20746 released in 2013. I think I prefer the Groom wearing a black suit.
Then there is always the infamous Christmas Bell Ringer shown in 1984 Schleich catalogue or the Fireman with the red hose in the 1992 Schleich catalogue……….
Keep on Smurfin