Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The one that was never built... or was it ?

In 1943, Berlin based Borsig started working on a new locomotive, bigger and longer and heavier than anything the DR had seen.

The Borsig Mallet, or 3rd Kriegslok (or third war austerity locomotove) would have weighed in at 140 tons and measure nearly 90 ft (27,350 mm) from buffer-to-buffer, unfortunately a bit too long for the standard 75 ft (23 meter) turntables. The five-axle tender would have been in keeping with the locomotive's anticipated voracious appetite and therefore contain 15 tons of coal and 9,246 gal (35 m3 ) of water.

Some say it never passed the drawing table. As a matter of fact The Borsig history for 1943 notes that the company’s facilities in Hennigsdorf near Berlin were heavily damaged by air raids and therefore continuing with locomotive construction was not possible. It was possible to finish two Kriegsloks in January 1944. Also, it was possible to carry out some locomotive repairs. One source notes that by war’s end in April 1945 only about 25 percent of the company’s machine tools were in working order.

On the other hand, the Marklin catalogue of 1988-89 is quoting an ex-Borsig engineer, Karl-Heinz Golze, saying : "At Borsig I saw with my own eyes the first assembly work for this locomotive." "The cylinder mounts could be seen easily. The frame was finished. I walked on it myself." There was a little to see of the tender and the cab as there was of the cylinders but the lathe operators had already worked on the wheel sets. The boiler was also in progress. Golze cannot conceive that the locomotive was ever totally finished or even under steam. He also does not know what became of the parts under construction. "I was drafted in the summer of 1944. Much happened after that and also during the chaotic postwar period that followed. The bottom line is that he never set foot in the Borsig factory again.

BR53 (photo-scheme / detail), Marklin, Germany, 1989

Monday, February 25, 2013

Lynda Lynda... what happened to you ?

You look so "square"... 

Wonder Woman keychain, LEGO, China, 2012

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Smells fishy...

Oh Japan ! The only country where they brave death to eat Fubu... and where they transform fish into robots! From the Yatterman series...

Yatta Ankou, GRIP, Japan, 1977

Friday, February 22, 2013

Ramis Valente

Tadashi, Ceppi Ratti, Italy, 1978

Sometimes, a toy comes in a number of different packagings - and as a collector finding the "hard-to-get" one is always a blast. This bendable figurine was mainly sold in Italy loose with a carton "skirt" around the waist, but some blister-card examples do exist. This is quite nice since usually italian artists would do the artwork on these cards instead of using original drawings all the way from Japan. Did Mr. Matsumoto know about these ? Probably not, even though they are licensed (RAI)...

Then came Star Wars and packaging norms for the action figures with Pantone colors and other directives, and creative input, and some of our childhood, was lost...

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Lukes and lots of them...

Lots of versions of Tatooines' farmboy... Also, did you notice he had all these hair colors in the films ?

Bespin, brown hair
Tatooine, wrong LS, blonde

My sis can take her helmet off?
Cold of space turns scalp black!

Bandana - yeah !
OK, I stole the carpet from your living room !

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Red Baron - the robot

Another interesting robot design is this one... Red Baron. Not a cartoon, rather a "man in a suit" kind of show - it was quite popular in Japan at the time.

Red Baron, ASC, Japan,
ASC was one of the big tin-toy makers,
but had to switch to plastic later on...

A record cover of the show...

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Baby bot, baby Thunder...

The original Commando Robot was an Ideal toy that was sold in the USA in 1961... (see the original add here: Toy Advertising) Strangely, this little bot reappeared in a smaller verion - this time as a "build-it yourself" kit in Japan by IMAI (a company well known for all sortsof super hero and sci-fy kits).

Baby Thunder Robot Commando, IMAI,
Japan, 1970's

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy V-Day

Spread the love !
Robocon, Bandai, Japan,
Heart on the chest...

Monday, February 11, 2013

This is the voice of the Mysterons...

"Take a bath and don't forget the bubbles !"
"FAB, otherwise I won't let you in my SPV !"

Captain Scarlet Bubble bath container,
Euromark PLC, England, 1993

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Coming out of the darkness...

don't use me with a very strong bulb...
or I will melt !
Batman lamp, Underwriters Laboratories,
USA, 1970's

It is nice to have a caped cruzader watch over you in your room ! In the seventies - this was a must have for any crime-fighting kid in the neighbourhood ! Not very safe (the plastic tends to become very hot and even melt !) - and the satin cape did nothing to lessen the fire hazard.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

More knock-offs !

Robot, ?, China, 2000's
Robot (Gundam type), China, 2000´s

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Do you need tweezers to steer this thing ?

Gentlemen, start your engines !
Race car, JPLA (Marinha Grande), Portugal, 1960's
Lots of races were won or lost on the beaches over here, from Algarve to Viana do Castelo... and having big white tires was quite helpful in the sand.

A ridiculous steering wheel...
... for such big whitewalls...

...but even so, it's number one !

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Don't forget your rubber !

Capitaine(s) Albator, Delacoste, France,
French company Delacoste made these 2 squeak toys (in French : Pouet-Pouet). The large one is about 20cm - the small one 11cm high.

Zoomeray (s)

 Sometimes, a piece of paper and a piece of plastic come together in a very futuristic kind of design... I present to you the Zoomeray space guns...

Je veux un nouveau Youp-Youp !"
Mais ou est donc passé mon Youp-Youp ?
When I was a kid, we had these rolls on a stick !

... but this is much nicer !
... and comes in a choice of colors !
And even a version to buy defense bonds...
Zoomeray, Tigrett Enterprises, USA, 1960's

Monday, February 4, 2013

Hong Kong Saucers

Saucer, "T" in a circle, Hong Kong, 1970's

They are round and full of lights ! Call them UFO's or OVNI's - they roam the skies (at least the floor over here in my room...). Please check here for more info on "T" in a circle toys...

Saucer, "OK", Hong Kong, 1970's

Sunday, February 3, 2013