Tuesday, July 31, 2012

1948 Instructions for Assembling and Operating Lionel Trains pgs 37 - 42

Here's the last pages of the Lionel Instruction Manual from 1948. These too show signs of having been kept on the workbench as the pages had been partially glued together and stained from paint? Lacquer? Glue? whatever. Oh well - Enjoy!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Banning Enterprises Ltd "Stella's Diner"

Today we have a nice diner from Banning Enterprises, Ltd.  It's a container that is marketed as a notions box (a box to store sewing stuff and miscellany) and is a hybrid tin & plastic construct. The beautiful signage on the lid of the container looks like it should be able to light up but in point of fact is unlit and is probably made heavy so as to serve as a convenient handle. The detailing front and back is really nice. The photos make it appear as though there is interior detailing but that is all printed on the exterior. Even the rear of the diner hasn't been negleted and is as finely appointed as thr front. I bought 'Stella's Diner' for my 3-rail O-gauge layout but it's a tad large for the area I had in mind to place it on. Still, I decided to keep it for my diner collection cuz with all that '40s/'50s era type styling it's so cool looking. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

1932 Olympic Village Post Cards

The 1932 Summer Olympics held in Los Angeles, California were officially known as the Games of the X Olympiad. The majority of our posts this week on Toys & Stuff will commemorate the 1932 Olympics Village. Only three years into the Great Depression, no other city put in a  bid to host the games. The Depression made it difficult for many nations to participate and less than half of the participants of the 1928 games were able to participate as they simply couldn't afford it. To help offset costs, 1932 was the first time an Olympic Village was built. The male athletes occupied the village, built in the Baldwin Hills, while female athletes stayed at the Chapman Park Hotel on Wilshire Boulevard. The 1932 Games also marked the first use of a victory podium. For a more detailed treatise on the Village and the 1932 Olympics in general go here:  1932 Olympics 

Our first offerings are a couple of postacards, one in color and the other in black and white, showing overall aerial views of the Village grounds. Enjoy!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Medievel Woodcut: Dragon and The Shepherd

Saturday's on Toys & Stuff are all about Sci-Fi and Fantasy and I've pretty much stayed true to that. And whenever I start a thread or series I really try to not interrupt it (unless I just plain forget) but today I'm goin' to interrupt the Royal Mail's tribute to Gerry Anderson for my monthly dragon post. This year being The Year of The Dragon I set a goal of presenting at least one dragon post a month but almost let this month go by without anything. I already have plans for the next several days so today has got to be the day. At least we're sticking to fantasy!

Unlike our other dragon posts, this is not a modern era toy or sculpture, but rather a true antique - from 1508! One day back in the '80s we (i.e., me) decided to drag the family on a day trip down the Rhein River (or 'Rhine' here Stateside). We stopped at the beautiful Marksburg Castle, way atop a hill overlooking the river. Now, the Marksburg Castle is also the home to the German Castle Society who operates a small gift shop on the premises. Amongst the gift shop offerings were a great many manuscripts and what were probably pages culled from ancient books which, I can only assume, were not of any historical significance, otherwise they would not be made available in a gift store. There were some very beautiful pieces but they were way out of my price range. However, I spotted this nifty little woodcut at a reasonable price. And what a better picture from the Middle Ages than what appears to me to be a dragon chasing what appears to be a pretty scared shepherd with his unfortunate flock (aka the dragon's dinner) scattering? Also, notice the medievel town perched on top of the hill behind the dragon. I tried to figure out what other type of creature this could be - it's quite large and doesn't really look like a dog or wolf. So I'm using my own perogative (and imagination) in believing this is a rather crude or early representatio of a dragon! The image is small, being only 4 1/4" (10.8cm) L x 2 3/8" (6cm) H. The picture was framed using acid free materials but one can see marks bleeding through the picture where tape was used on the back to attach it to the card it was on when purchased at the gift shop. Enjoy!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Lledo 1932 Olympics Ford Model A Truck

Today marks the beginning of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England and it's about as good a time as any for Toys & Stuff to post a few Olympic-themed entries. So, from now until the end of the Olmpics we'll be featuring some neat stuff, specifically from the 1932 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, Califirnia. I won't be able to have an Olympics-themed post every day but will have enough for just over a week's worth.

I found it amazing to find this Lledo delivery truck lettered for the 1932 Olympics. I really wouldn't have believed there to be a modern era toy with graphics for an older event like this. The truck was idenified by the seller as a Mack and that's how I labeled the photos, but actually this is more along the lines of a Model A Ford, so if you download the photos be sure to re-name them. Enjoy! And enjoy the games!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Marx 34 Pc Village & Construction Set - Garage

In February of 2011 Toys & Stuff featured the scans for this garage and today we finally have pics of the built-up toy! See the scans here: Garage scans  The garage measures 2 3/8" (6cm) H x 2 3/8" (6cm) W x 3" (7.6cm) L

Something kind of interesting came to mind when editing the photos. First of all, understand that this toy was designed in the early 1950s - perhaps earlier. We know it's a garage because you'll notice the car showing through the windows. The toy reflects American architecture of the period and as such the garage is a separate structure, unlike the modern house where the norm is for the garage to be integral with the house. Now, look at the pics and imagine, if you will, that this is a photo of a real garage (you'll have to mentally edit out those clunky tabs though). Our garage was mostly likely designed for the old Model T's. How so? Notice the doors. They open outward vs. rolling upwards and they are narrow. Now take a good look at the length. If this were a real garage it would be too short to accommodate the longer, wider cars of the '50s. Homeowners of the '50s who maintained these old garages would have had to alter them to accommodate the newer cars. I know, because during the 1970s I parked my car in one of these old-timer bays! Our neighborhood was largely built around the turn of the 20th century and our house didn't have its own garage, so we rented one from a neighbor lady who didn't drive. It was a 2-car garage but the two bays were separated by their own sets of doors similar to the ones in this toy with a wall separating the two parking bays. At some point in the past an addition was built onto the back of the garage which looked like a lean-to attached to the wall and was just high enough to fit a car's hood when one pulled in. The garage was so narrow - and still short enough - that I had to park my '75 Olds Cutlass at and angle. The front of the car had to be turned towards the right as I pulled in allowing me to exit out of the left side driver's door and any passengers had to exit the vehicle prior to me pulling into the garage!

On to the pics. Enjoy!