Sunday, August 14, 2016

Japan - S&E Crash Rescu Boat R-3-A

There's not a whole lot of boats or ships in the collection but we have posted a few over the past few years. If you're a toy collector who likes Air Force toys it would be natural to collect airplanes and missiles and the occasional vehicle but one thing you might not expect to have is an Air Force boat but here we have a truly unusual Air Force toy. It's a 'Crash Rescue Boat' by the Japanese firm of S&E. Crash rescue boats were a real thing first used by the U.S. Army Air Forces to rescue downed pilots. During the Korean War the 22nd Crash Rescue Boat Squadron (22nd CRBS) was formed as a combat search and rescue unit operating speedy, well-armed boats very similar in design and appearance to the famed PT boats of WWII but without the torpedo launch tubes. It operated from 1950-53 performing not only rescues but covert operations with no loss of boats. 

As far as I could determine the boats variants were designated as 'R-1' or 'R-2' so our toy 'R-3' is fictional. Our S&E Crash Rescue Boat was meant to be played with in the water like many of the tin-litho boats of the 1950s & '60s which of course was their demise at the hands of rust and toy torture so having an example like this is a treat to have survived relatively unscathed. It is missing the windscreen and propeller but the hand-crank mechanism (which powers the propeller) still works and there doesn't appear to be any rust on it. It has one metal deck gun and the rest are litho'd. The toy measures 9" (22.86cm) L (hull) - 10" (25.4cm) L to end of rudder - x 3 1/4" (8.25cm) W x 2 3/4" (6.98) H. Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina

A couple of good shots showing the litho'd armament

Here's the R-3-A sitting at dock in my old train layout, the Marxville and Plateau