Saturday, March 24, 2018

TRAIN TIME: Work Progresses on The 'Edge of Town' Layout and Marx Wind-up Commodore Vanderbilt w/6" Tin Cars

I have been busier than a bear in a honey bee farm photographing toys. Lots of the toys are being sold and posting them to eBay just takes a long time. Then there's the photo editing and, for many, posting here on the blog. So anywho, back in January I pulled out a couple of wind-up Marx engines I wanted to sell and then got a bug up my backside when I finally decided to work on the backdrop for the small layout I call The Edge Of Town Layout. I reutilized old backdrop panels from the large train layout torn doen a couple of years back. The panels were made of painted foamcore so they were easy to cut down to size. One panel was only about an inch or so longer than I needed for the back so a quick trimming was all it took. The other panel was cut into two and trimmed so the pieces would fit on the left and right sides of the layout. They look awkward now with the leftover painting from their last location but I did manage to go out and buy some paint. Now it's just a matter of finding time to re-paint them.

After piddling around with the backdrop I pulled out one of my Marx Commodore Vanderbilt wind-up engines to test run prior to selling it. I haven't been a big fan of wind-up's but am s-l-o-w-l-y turning that corner towards fandom. Let's see what happens. Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina

The back panel was just a tad too long

Friday, March 23, 2018

TRAIN TIME: 'Mother's Nightmare' Marx No. 400 Wind-Up Engine with Baking Soda 'Smoke' and Bell

We're gonna switch gears here again. I at first wanted to re-engage with The Flintstones toys but then totally forgot I had done a couple of train videos back in January. 

This engine has been referred to as 'Mother's Nightmare' because it throws up baking soda (or talcum powder, or whatever) by design as a substitute for smoke!! Under the smokestack there is a soft vinyl bulb in which powder is poured. A striker bar is attached to the drive rods and every time they move forward the bar presses against the bulb pushing it in and causing the powder to puff out.  The engine is the venerable Marx No. 400 and this powder puffer was made in electric and wind-up versions and included in at least several sets. 

Ya know, Marx did a pretty good job designing toy trains but this idea was an absolute boner! Who at Marx really thought that throwing powder all over the place was a good idea? Really? REALLY??? That being said, it actually works quite well hahahaha Here's the scoop for today's post: I dragged this out of the box because I was gonna sell it. Soooo I thought I would clean it up a little, run it, and film it. Not realising at first that this was the powder throwing engine, I tipped it over and that crap spilled every where. Yeah, I was miffed and I emptied the rest in the garbage canIt is for that reason you will not see any powder puffing out of this thing on the video. I WAS NOT going to get the Edge of Town layout full of powder. :-) So anywho, Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Pressman Toys 54mm Counterweight Trebuchet

A Counterweight Trebuchet is another form of catapult using a long swinging arm to hurl its shot. Its kinetic energy is derived from the massive counterweight on the front end which, when released, force the arm carrying the shot to swing upwards and throw the projectile quite a long distance. First appearing in the 12th century they, like other catapults and ballistas, were made obsolete by gunpowder based weapons. The toy measures 8" (20.32cm) L x 2 1/2" (6.35cm) W x 5" (12.7cm) H. Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Pressman Toys 54mm Catapult

Here's Pressman Toys Catapult which measures 3 1/2" (8.89cm) L x 3" (7.62cm) W x 3 5/8" (9.20cm) H. I recently got some bagged knights and siege equipment that do include catapult shot which would be perfect for these little gems. While the ballist uses a rubber band to hurl ammo, this catapult has one small spring to provide the kinetic energy needed to fling the arm upwards.  Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina