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 ALPHADROME ROBOT AND SPACE TOY DATABASE

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DISTANT EARLY WARNING RADAR STATION - MASUDAYA - JAPAN329 viewsA large grey-black lithographed tinplate battery operated tracking station. It has the usual Masudaya rotating plastic antenna and the pylon tower with the flashing light and Morse sound. The novelty feature of this toy is its attempt to recreate a radar cathode ray tube.

One of the four Masudaya space toys using this distinctive pressing.

Radar N Scope. Radar screen. Morse button. Rotating antenna. Detachable pylon with light. Console.
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EXPLORER AND VANGUARD TRACKING STATION - MASUDAYA - JAPAN326 viewsStructoys / Masudaya Large red lithographed tinplate battery operated radar control center. MT. Satellite rotates around Earth in the central window. Rotating antenna. Morse key operates buzzer and light on pylon. Versions exist with Structoys and Masudaya logos at bottom left of box lid. In the Miles Kimball catalog for 1958.

One of the four Masudaya space toys using this distinctive pressing.
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TWO-STAGE ROCKET LAUNCHING PAD, VERSION 2 - NOMURA - JAPAN299 viewsTin battery op rocket launching station. This is the more common light purple version. In this version the rocket is pressed into the silo manually, instead of crank action loader. The launching function is automatically started (battery operated) after pushing down the "launcher" part. A countdown sequence begins, the controller pulls levers, then the rocket launches. This version has extra rockets mounted around the firing tube. Some examples still retain a direction arrow at the point where the crank handle of the earlier version would have been. The earliest sighting of this, the more common version, is in the 1960 Higbee Company catalog. Marked Jupiter on the side.


There is a less common green litho version, the Rocket Launching Station.
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ROCKET LAUNCHING PAD - NOMURA - JAPAN288 viewsTin battery op rocket launching station. This is a green version of the Nomura Two-Stage Rocket Launching Pad. In addition to the litho change there is a completely different box art and name. No date yet but details suggest it is later than the Two-Stage (See Gernot's article in Alphadrome)
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AIR DEFENSE CENTER - CRAGSTAN (MAKER?) - JAPAN274 viewsA tall red lithographed tinplate battery operated console with radar screen and flashing lights.

The 1962 Sears catalog advertises this toy: "Radar scans sky.. warning lights blink.. missles fire! Air Defense Center is busy with action.. has rotating antenna and radar scope; winking lights; moving air speed register and altimeter. 3 rubber-tipped darts. Steel, 12 in. long."

Large oval rotating antenna. The box art depicts a military scene but the actual toy resembles the Masudaya range of similar control centres.
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TWO-STAGE ROCKET LAUNCHING PAD VERSION 1 - NOMURA - JAPAN271 viewsTin battery op rocket launching station. This is the rarer light blue version with a "flatter" finish than the slightly raised litho of the purple version. There are no rocket holder clamps and the litho on the launcher top and base is different. The plate at the bottom of the launcher also has a different shape.

The main difference is the crank handle attached at the front and the presence of an additional button on the launch tube. The crank is used to start the launch sequence mechanically. The later version is started by simply pushing the rocket down. The handle folds flat for storage in the box. It is assumed that this is an earlier version which was unnecessarily complex and dearer to make.

The box is believed to be the same.
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NASA CONTROL CENTER - MASUDAYA - JAPAN260 viewsA large blue and white tinplate battery operated command center console. This is a later example of the Masudaya control center and it has a decidedly less toy-like feel; it offers more realistic computer influenced design.

A command ship orbits the Moon. The object is to dock it with a lunar module. Inspired by NASA's Apollo moon program. Rotating two dish antenna.
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ROCKET LAUNCHING PAD, FIRING COMMAND VERSION - YONEZAWA - JAPAN258 viewsTin battery op rocket launch pad. Countdown clock with lighted screen and "radio signal". Push the firing switch and the countdown meter starts backwards from ten as a radio signal sounds. TV screen shows rocket takeoff.

Two versions of this rocket launch are known, this one with the Firing Command wording has been first sighted in various 1959 catalogs including Aldens.
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ROCKET LAUNCHING PAD, COUNT DOWN VERSION - YONEZAWA - JAPAN246 viewsTin battery op rocket launch pad. Countdown clock with lighted screen and "radio signal". Push the firing switch and the countdown meter starts backwards from ten as a radio signal sounds. TV screen shows rocket takeoff.

Two versions of this rocket launch are known, this one with Count Down wording and one with Firing Command wording. The Firing Command version has been sighted in various 1959 catalogs including Aldens. It is possible that the name later changed to reflect the popular TV countdown sequences.
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ICBM VANGUARD SATELLITE LAUNCHER - REMCO - USA243 viewsPlastic missile launch station. Launches planes and spinner disks.
Appears in the Miles Kimball 1958 catalog.
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THE SATELLITE TRACKING STATION - MASUDAYA - JAPAN242 viewsLarge red lithographed tinplate battery operated tracking station. Behind the screen is a model Earth with an orbiting satellite. Morse button. Rotating antenna. Detachable pylon with light. Console. Appears in a newspaper ad dated November 1958.

One of the four Masudaya space toys using this distinctive pressing.
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TERRA LUNA No 262 METEOR EXPRESS - TECHNOFIX - WEST GERMANY234 viewsHighly lithographed tinplate track toy. Two versions, one with additional spinning rocket antenna. This version, without antenna, features in Eaton's 1953 catalog as "Rocket to the Moon". 19" long. The box has no name for the toy.
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PIONEER 3 STAGE ROCKET WITH LAUNCHER - NOMURA FOR ROSKO - JAPAN234 viewsTin spring loaded rocket launch pad with USAF rocket.

The white rocket has red and blue fins. It consists of three sections, the last being a rubber tipped dart. The rocket sits on a spring loaded base alongside a blue tinplate gantry. When the button is pressed there is a "countdown" delay before the rocket is launched. 19" 49cm

"At Cape Canaveral".

The Pioneer is featured in a newspaper ad in June 1959
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TWIRLY WHIRLY ROCKET RIDE - ALPS - JAPAN231 viewsTin battery op fairground ride with spinning capsules. 13.5. Rockets spin & light as they rise. Bell. On sale in November 1959.
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TERRA LUNA WITH ANTENNA - TECHNOFIX - WEST GERMANY230 viewsTin windup track toy. Circa 1953. Early version of the toy that has two satellites spinning in circles as two 1.75" long tin cars are shot around the track. Beautifully litho'd toy has illustrations of space ships on both sides. 19" long. The box has no name for the toy.

Image Smith House Auctions
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ROCKET EXPRESS - TECHNOFIX - WEST GERMANY229 viewsBrightly lithoed tin wind up space toy. Small rocket cars orbit a track arond the Earth against a space port scene. Based on the Terre Lune pressing. West Germany
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MOON PATROL HELICOPTER, MOON SCOUT - MARX - USA225 viewsTin wind up space helicopter. Two rotors. Litho details. An example of a toy given a space theme despite the absurdity of the science.

Image courtesy Smith House auctions.
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MAN-MADE SATELLITE - SWALLOW TOYS/HOKU - JAPAN223 viewsTin battery operated orbiting satellite toy. Circa 1958. Earth turns as the satellite spins above, Mars spins and the rocket light blinks. With signal button and Morse code 8.5" Beautifully lithographed base with a lunar landscape on one side and space rockets on two other sides. Is this Hoku?

On sale in December 1958
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SPACE TRIP STATION - YONEZAWA - JAPAN220 viewsA large lithographed tinplate control center combining battery operated and wind up drives. Electro Toy space launch station. Shoots spinners. Approx. 13.5" long. Brightly lithographed console. Lighted space scenes moving across central screen while the top dome with astronaut spins around. Plastic spinners can be launched from the wind up mechanisms at either side.
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UNIVERSE TRAVELLER - MASUDAYA - JAPAN219 viewsLithographed tinplate track toy. Two tin rockets move along Technofix style as the wind up mechanism raises and lowers the track. Large rotating antenna. A clockwork mechanism lifts the track and allows the cars to roll from end to end. An antenna rotates. The same design of toy also appeared as the Dragon Ride circa 1952/3.

On sale with the spelling Space Traveler in October 1958.
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CAPE CANAVERAL ?AK 1100 ROCKET LAUNCH PAD - STRENCO - WEST GERMANY216 viewsTin wind up rocket launch pad. Red and white rocket on blue base with gantry. Rocket approaches the gantyr then launches. Small plastic figure included.
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TICK TACK EXPRESS - Phillip Neidemeyer (PN) - WEST GERMANY214 viewsTin wind up track toy. Two wind up cars travel from end to end via a central Station. Technofix style. Space graphics on the box, not on the toy. Borderline space toy.
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SATELLITE IN ORBIT - HORIKAWA FOR CRAGSTAN - JAPAN213 viewsTin battery op space toy. The world turns and a styrofoam ball floats on the stream of air created by the blower. Made in Japan for Cragstan by Horikawa. Serial no 40225

First sighting in the May Co. Toytime 1959 catalog.
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ROCKET LAUNCHING BASE - MASUDAYA - JAPAN206 viewsA red lithographed tinplate rocket launch station. The console has a detachable pylon with a red light, a rotating dish antenna and a plastic rocket. The station has graphics of various dials. In the center is a ring of white lights that provide a countdown before the rocket is launced. Morse buzzer, spinning antenna and lighting pylon. 8"x5" Date?

One of the four Masudaya space toys using this distinctive pressing.
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GLOBE WITH ORBITING SPUTNIK AND SAUCER 2000 - MS - WEST GERMANY200 viewsW Germany. Tin clockwork globe with orbiting flying saucer and sputnik. MS Chamois Logo 2000
Made by Michael Seidel. Founded 1881 in Zirndorf near Nuremberg. Schopper is also from Zirndorf. It´s possible that those toy companies - Schopper/Fuchs/Seidel - changed toy parts, not unusual for German toy producers.
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LANZA COHETES SPUTNIK - RODADOS BRILLO - ARGENTINA196 viewsTin missile launch toy. A stubby plastic rocket fits inside a launching tube mounted on a rotating platform. Two sentry posts. Marked Rodados Brillo. The term Sputnik is included for topicality: there is no obvious connection.
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SPACE SATELLITES WITH LAUNCHING STATION - MARX - USA196 viewsTin lithographed space launch base with crank powered spinners. See the "Space Satellites with Launching Sites and Rocket" variation.
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SPUTNIK THE MAGNETIC SATELLITE - MAKER? - JAPAN192 viewsTin battery op spinning toy. Central globe holds batteries. Magnetic satellites spin around the outer track, lit by power from the center.
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EARTH AND SATELLITE TOY NAME? - MAKER? - WEST GERMANY192 viewsTin and plastic wind up? Earth ans satellite orbitin a conical stand. West German ?

Image courtesy of Smith House Toys
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MECHANICAL SPACE MOBILE - MARX - JAPAN190 viewsTin lithographed battery operated space train rolls backward and forward over a tinplate lunar style track. Space-Mobile. Track dismantles for storage in box.
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SATELLITE - MAKER? - JAPAN190 viewsTin battery op toy. Batteries housed in central globe. The magnetic satellite spins around the track, lit by power from the central globe.
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DOCKING APOLLO - MASUDAYA - JAPAN187 viewsBrightly lithographed tin and plastic spacecraft and plastic lunar lander. The two craft travel around a figure of eight track with a detailed picture of a moon landing. Tin battery op track toy with Apollo capsule and plastic lander. An imaginative attempt to capture the intricacy of the Apollo moon landing operation.
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RAKETEN BAHN - SPACE ROCKET TRACK - VOITH - WEST GERMANY187 viewsTin track toy. Tin litho launch station propells tin rocket around the track. West Germany. Fritz Voith Zirndorf
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ROCKET CONTROL CENTER -SANKEI - JAPAN185 viewsBlue and yellow battery-operated Rocket Control Centre game. The box shaped toy comprises an endless rotating grey plastic conveyor belt with fixed rockets and Moon Launchers with magnetic moveable rocket. The magnet in the base of the plastic rocket trips a switch underneath the belt, allowing the belt to move. A wheel is turned which moves the magnetic switch from side to side, taking the rocket with it and so guiding the rocket through the moving obstacles. Should the rocket hit one of the approaching obstacles it drops contact with the magnetic switch and the belt stops. Space scenes on base and illuminated green control panel. 33cm
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SPACE-SATELLITE - Phillip Neidemeyer PN - WEST GERMANY184 viewsTin wind up toy. Tin litho toy has overall size of 4x13x5.5" tall. 1960s by Niedermeier, Western Germany. Center unit of the toy which has lever is domed globe showing continents along with large images of a jet plane and ocean liner. Attached to this by rods are a 3.5" long spaceship and 2" diameter satellite both featuring images of the Sputnik 2 dog Laika at windows. Toy works and spins to give appearance of the spacecraft rotating the Earth.
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SKY ROCKET - ARNOLD - WEST GERMANY184 viewsTin wind up space toy. Two levers control the movement of a rocket approaching a docking station. W germany
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MECHANICAL ROCKET EXPRESS - LINEMAR - JAPAN182 viewsTin wind up orbiting train and satellite. Two rocket trains marked SP sit on either side of a central disk rotating on a blue base with space lithography. When wound the trains move round, passing under a tunnel and through a station. A Sputnik satellite orbits above. Honeymoon Express style. 1950s?
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SPACE TRIP - MASUDAYA - JAPAN181 viewsA metallic blue lithographed tin battery operated track toy. Rotating space station lifts tin rockets and sends them around the track. When turned on and the two sided cars are placed on the top portion of the track, they race to the left where they drop and flip over transferring to the bottom inside section of the track. They then jump over a ramp and disappear into a rotating space station that rotates moving the cars to the top section to repeat the action. During operation a space sound is heard. On sale in October 1959.
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FLY TO THE MOON BY SPACE CAPSULE - Maker? - JAPAN177 viewsA tin and plastic space moon globe. A detailed lunar globe is encased in a light green plastic sphere. It stands on a tin and plastic base with space scenes. A white and red Apollo spaceship is attached to a track on the side of the globe and travels around the moon. Battery operated.
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MOON'S STATION - ANANIADES - GREECE176 viewsTin wind up Honeymoon Express style train travelling around Earth. The two carriage train is fixed to a central disk. As the disk turns it takes the train around, through two tunnels. Saturn. rocket and jet lithography. A rocket and Sputnik style satellite on a wire orbit the central Earth hemisphere. Greek. Possibly by FINO?.
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DAN DARE WALKIE TALKIE SET - MERIT - ENGLAND175 viewsMerit England, plastic electronic walkie talkie set.

Merit was the trading name of J & L Randall.
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APOLLO LUNAR LANDER TOY - K LOGO KOKYU - JAPAN173 viewsK Logo. Tin wind up Apollo capsule and lander orbit the moon. The lithographed tinplate toy comprises a square base with a hemispherical red and yellow moon surface. From the center of the cratered moon surface two wires extend, one with an orboting Apollo space capsule, the other has a lunar lander. Wind up rotating action. Japanese box version.
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ASTRONAUT ORBIT WITH 3 MERCURY CAPSULES - ATC - JAPAN173 viewsLithographed tinplate lever action amusement ride carousel with three 3 tin Mercury capsules attached to the canopy by wires. Blue base, central girder tower and a yellow tin canopy. The space capsules are fitted with large celluloid propellers which turn when the toy runs.

Asahi Toy company. Similar to the SPACE CAPSULE CARROUSEL
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I.C.B.M. LAUNCHING STATION - HORIKAWA - JAPAN173 viewsTin friction rocket launching ramp. Turn crank on base to turn the friction motor on the missile then push the button on the base. The two stage missile is released. When the missile hits the end of the ramp a button automatically triggers the rubber tipped rocket to release. 45cm assembled. ICBM

Image courtesy Smith House Auctions
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MECHANICAL ROCKET RIDE #400 - CHEIN - USA172 viewsA tall 18" brightly lithographed tin wind up carousel with rockets. The tall, slender toy has a red tin base, solid hexagonal tower, blue canopy. Four vintage fairground style style rockets each hang from a pair of wires. The rockets, two red and two blue, each carry two passengers. Each rocket has a celluloid propeller which turns when the toy runs. Wind up action. Sold in a brown box with minimal graphics. USA

First sighted in Read's Christmas Catalog for 1952.

This toy has been reproduced.
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ROCKET LAUNCHERS169 viewsBoxed hoopla game.
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FLYING SAUCER AEROPLANE NR 132 - MAKER? - WEST GERMANY168 viewsTin friction plane with spinner. Forward motion launches the disks. Box art of plane with flying saucers. W. Germany. DPs Maker?
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MUSICAL MECHANICAL SPACE RIDE #265 - CHEIN - USA166 viewsA 9" tall light blue lithographed tin lever action space carousel ride with three rockets. This carousel has a round base, a round central cylindrical column and a domed canopy, all with copious early style rocket and space decoration. Four vintage fairground style rockets with different litho detailing, each hang from a stout metal rod. Litho rider detail. The toy uses a simple spring activated lever. It actually rotates very fast with centrifugal force pulling the ships nearly horizontal. As the canopy rotates it generates an ascending scale of three different plinking sounds; each is slightly higher in tone than the previous. It then repeats. This is the "musical" part of the toy. The toy was on sale in December 1954.

Note: only confirmed with four rockets. A version with three rockets has been seen but may have been adjusted to compensate for a missing rocket.
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CONEY ISLAND ROCKET RIDE - ALPS - JAPAN165 viewsA light blue lithographed tn battery operated fairground ride. Circa 1959. Two red, yellow and blue rockets are on either side of a central beam and spin and light as they twirl around the tripod mounted tower. A bell rings. See also the Twirly Whirly Rocket Ride variation.

Image Smith House Auction
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EL SUPER ROBOT - SPAIN164 viewsMagic Robot game. Small plastic robot in the center is a Dux Astroman.
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SPACE BUS - BANDAI - JAPAN163 viewsA large lithographed tinplate battery operated space helicopter. the boxy design in bluw, red and yellow has a formawd canopy and tailfins on the side rear. Two folding plastic rotors fit on a tin dome and are synchronised to rotate such that they overlap. Battery operated remote control gives forward and reverse movement with flashing lights.

Featured in a newspaper ad in October 1964.

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WALKIE TALKIES - REMCO - USA162 views
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HELICOPTER ME-632 - CHINA161 viewsThis is considered to be one of the finest of Chinese space toys. This is a dark blue lithographed tinplate battery operated space helicopter. This unusual spaceship is a flying wing, with two large helicopter rotors. The brightly lithographed ship has a picture of itself in flight. Two plastic structures hold the rotors and there is a forward plastic control center with two pilots. The spaceship has a two stage action: first it advances with spinning rotors and flashing lights, then it stops and two flaps on the wing open to reveal litho characters beneath. The box has a superb illustration of the toy flying through space. ME632
Date?
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SPACE PATROL PLANE - MAKER? - ENGLAND161 viewsRed lithographed tin wind up airplane with space detailing. The name and the copious space litho lift this firmly into the space toy category. Friction action with turning propellor and spark. Marked Space Patrol on the wings. There is a deliberate use of Dan Dare style graphics. Probably by Wells Brimtoy but just marked Great Britain. 35cm.
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GE-270 PLANE - EINFALT TECHNOFIX - WEST GERMANY154 viewsBorderline space. A tin friction plane with two propellers.
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STRATO-COPTER MZ-560 - HUKI? - WEST GERMANY153 viewsGerman, 1950s, tinplate wind up toy. Helicopter orbits with flying saucer around a central tower. Excellent box art. HK-560 (proably HUKI) on helicopter which has separate wind up motor for its rotor. See box other version.
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AMUSEMENT PARK ROCKET RIDE - YONE - JAPAN152 viewsSY/Yoneya's Jumping Rocket pressing has been used to create this rocket amusement ride. The lithographed tin wind up ride consists of a square tower with a beam fitted to the top. Two rockets with vinyl pilot heads rotate horizontally around the tower. The box depicts a much more streamlined version than the actual toy.

See the Super Rocket Ride variation of this toy. 8" 21cm high. On sale in September 1966.
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WALKIE TALKIES - Remco - USA151 viewsPlastic electronic set.
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Morse Code Space Set147 viewsMorse code set with working lights and buzzers.
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METEOR HWN-XC7 - HWN - WEST GERMANY146 viewsBordeline space plane. Drive? W Germany
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MARXMAN SPACE TARGET143 views
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ROCKET STATION No 136 RAKETEN STATION - HWN - WEST GERMANY142 viewsTin spring loaded rocket launching building with plastic rocket. Wind up timing release mechanism. West Germany.
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ROCKETS AWAY - AMSCO141 viewsSpace game.
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ROCKETS AWAY - AMSCO141 viewsContents
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ROCKETS TO THE MOON SPACE GAME - WOLVERINE - USA139 viewsTin and plastic bagatelle.
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HK-555 PLANE - HUKI - WEST GERMANY139 viewsTin friction(?) rocket plane. The wings are articulated, allowing a variety of shapes. Huki - West Germany, 50s. Another version exisiting with different litho and colors
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SPACE ROCKET SR-1007 - MAKER? - JAPAN138 viewsLithographed tin friction rocket with jet plane styling. Blue, red and yellow. Delta wing. Japan. Maker?
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SPACE PATROL WALKIE TALKIE - MERIT - ENGLAND136 viewsPlastic and string toy. Merit was the trading name of J & L Randall.
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SPUTNIK II LAIKA MONEY BANK136 viewsBrightly lithoed tin money bank. Globe on stand. Laika, the first dog in space, is pictured. Probably c1958
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SPACE CAPSULE CARROUSEL - ATC - JAPAN132 viewsLithographed tinplate lever action amusement ride carousel with three 3 tin Mercury capsules attached to the canopy by wires. Blue base, central girder tower and a tin canopy. Asahi Toy company.
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SUPER ROCKET RIDE WITH BELL - YONE - JAPAN125 viewsA lithographed tinplate wind up ride consists of two rockets with vinyl headed pilots rotating vertically rather than horizontally. The rockets are attached to a metal upright which is fixed to a lithographed baseplate.

A reworking of the SY/Yoneya's Jumping Rocket pressing to create this variation of the Amusement Park Rocket Ride. The rockets are marked R.45 and R.26. Both rockets have had comical faces printed on the nose.

See the Amusement Park Rocket Ride. The R.26 rocket was sold separately as the Kiddy Rocket.
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SPACE MERRY-GO-ROUND WITH SPACE CAPSULES - ATC - JAPAN123 viewsLithographed tinplate lever action amusement ride carousel with three 3 tin Mercury capsules attached to the canopy by wires. Bell. Blue base, central girder tower and a yellow tin canopy. The space capsules are fitted with large celluloid propellers which turn when the toy runs.

Asahi Toy Company. Virtually identical to the Space Capsule Carousel version but without a flag.
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SPACE BAGATELLE - MAKER? - ENGLAND122 viewsWooden bagatelle pinball.
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SPACE TARGET120 viewsTinplate target with space scene.
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ROCKET SATELLITE ACTION GAME120 viewsDexterity game, guide the rocket.
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MECHANICAL ATOMIC SPACE SHOOTING RANGE - CODEG - ENGLAND119 viewsAn English version of the US Automatic Toy Company's Space Shooting Range. The litho varies and the shape of the gun platform is different from the US version, being long and thin rather than triangular. Tinplate spaceships revolve around a system of pulleys across the tinprinted display, a separate tinprinted base clips to the display and is complete with a spring loaded gun, made to fire ball bearings at the passing spaceships. Tinplate shooting range. Wind up. The American version dates to 1952,

UK
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ROCKET PATROL MAGNETIC TARGET GAME117 views
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JIGGLE PUZZLES117 views
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ATOM GUN - MAKER? - WEST GERMANY54 viewsBrightly lithographed tin gun on base. Gun rotates and tilts. Shoots plastic balls. Based on the chassis for a variety of cranes.
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SPACE AGE GLOBE WITH SATELLITES - MAKER? - JAPAN53 viewsBrightly lithographed tin globe with orbiting satellite and two rockets. Wind up. Possibly Masudaya MT.
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