Does anyone remember the Reginald Denny's hobby shop that existed in
the Hollywood area until the late 70s? I learned from a website
devoted to Reginald Denny that he opened his hobby shop on Hollywood
Boulevard in 1935 and sold it to a Colonel Tom in 1963. A visitor to
the site emaailed its manager, stating that he was born in 1956, and
that he remembered buying models at a Reginald Denny's hobby shop
(perhaps not the original) until at least 1966 and possibly and
possibly until a few years after that.
Well, I grew up in the Hollywood area (on the same street as the guy
who sent that email to the site manager, no less), and I remember
buying armor models at a Reginald Denny's (I don't *think* it was on
Hollywood Boulevard) until 1977. I recall that the guy who usually
worked there was a curmudgeon who wouldn't sell me model glue (unless
I also bought a kit) and who wouldn't allow me to read the store's
magazine's ("This isn't a library," he growled) even though I was a
regular customer. I learned that the shop closed in about 1980.
Anyone have any further history on this shop?
You won't believe this, but I have his business card in front of me. It
says (in part):
Wood & plastic kits
Airplanes - ships - cars - trains
Complete hobby supplies
Wood structural shapes
Complete Model Shipways line
To reach us by phone
dial one word
462-2437 (note the lack of area code)
5905 Hollywood (at Bronson)
They take BankAmeriCard & MasterCharge
I remember buying a kit & several books at the time. I only went once,
since I lived in the South Bay area & it was all the way up in
Hollywood. This was probably in late '76.
Is the shop still there?
I remember it vividly, and I'm from the SF Bay Area. A friend and I were
visting Hollywood, and came across it one night when we were stoned
out of our minds. There was a spectacular example of kit bashing in the
window display, a completely fictitious Italian bomber cobbled together
from half a dozen different kits. Perhaps inspired by an article in Playboy
magazine the previous year (which featured colored drawings of several
fictious WWII aircraft), it sported a beautiful Italian camouflage finish.
My buddy, who had just returned from Nam, was taken with the rather
impressive Monogram "Visible Huey" also on display.This was in '71.
A modeling magazine I have from 1967, lists the address as 1501 N.
Western Ave. This is in Hollywood between Sunset and Hollywood.
Reginald Denny was a British actor with 46 years in Hollywood. Probably the
best known part he played that members here would recall was the chap shot by
Jane Fonda in "Cat Ballou" that brought her to being hung.
I too, lived in Hollywood in the 1950's. My first model from them was in 1955.
T that time they were located on Hollywood Blvd. and Taft Ave. It was owned by
2 or 3 brothers, one who's name was Vern. They sold it to 3 brothers, two of
whom ran the shop. The third brother worked as a model builder for I believe
Warner Bros. Studio. The studio that make Ice Station Zebra. Models of the
MiG21's that were in the movie were hanging at the shop later. These brothers
were Don, Jack and Bob. Around 1965(?) the store moved the the corner of
Sunset Blvd. and Western Ave. in Hollywood, where it stayed until about 1972
when the property was sold for a strip mall. The store then moved to Hollywood
Blvd. just west of Bronson Ave and started to go down hill. Some time around
then Bob died, he was the youngest. Jack the middle brother was an alcoholic
and was hospitized around the mid 70's died 1976(?). Don continued running the
shop but sold it and died shortly afterwards. I heard that orginally the shop
was on the south side oh Hollywood Blvd near VanNess or where the Hollywood
Freeway became. Possibly they moved for the freeway. Who lived there in the
50's? Letme here from you.
Actually, I was thinking the same thing when I saw the name ;~).
"The world would be a much simpler place if every one could pick
and choose their obligations, but we can't and we shouldn't."
Major Charles W. Whittlesey
actually, reginald denny was a british actor whose hobby was flying r/c
aircraft and was asked by the US Army to build r/c aircraft for use as flying
tagets in ww2. this gave him the start after the war for his hobby shop shop.
his was one of the first non railroad hobby shops in the US. this is the story
my sister told me when she visited his shop to buy me a model way back in the
1950's. the kit, by the way, was the Airfix 1/72 P51D which introduced me to
the idea of "constant scale" the kit cost 40 cents.
I went there in the mid to late late seventies. I bought some books on
plank & frame modeling & also a kit. They were one of the few to stock
sailing ship models. In fact, I still have his business card in my file.
It says they take BankAmericard & Mastercharge. Their phone number was
(no area code) H-O-B-B-I-E-S. Address listed as 5905 Hollywood (at Bronson).
If you click the "now" link on the "denneyplane" page it seems to
indicate that the shop was (once, at least) on the corner of Hollywood
and Van Ness, but I'll take the word of folks that have actually been to
the shop(s) - it is a Hollywood story, after all...
...but also having once been seriously into R/C models and as a CA
transplant this was interesting history for me to learn of.