Wednesday, February 03, 2010

From a time long long ago...

I know that this entry is total OT, but I have to post it. It is on my other blog, but I had to post it here as well. So bear with me....

This is a shop we found in Yingge. Yingge is a town about 30 minutes South of Taipei. It is popular for its pottery and ceramics. One of the really cool shops we found in Yingge was this shop selling things from the past. The items he sells are not vintage items but replica of items from years gone past. The shop offers sweets which we use to eat when we were small (that would be the 70s and 80s). However the items that interest me most was the collection of tin plate toys.

The shop.

This is of the things we got for the kids. We (wife and I) use to play with this when we were kids. It is called 'Tai Kong Qi Qiu' or space balloon (the Chinese characters on the packaging is in simplified Chinese).

Basically there is a sticky stuff in the tube. You put some of this stuff on one end of the straw and gently blow through the other end. The end result? Look at the photograph below.

Back to more important stuff. The tin clockwork toys. The toys are replica of the original. They do have some original ones that were produced between the 60s and 80s, but these were very expensive.

The tin toys.

More toys.

I ended up buying two of the robots. The first one is a clockwork tin toy. This toy, a robot, is based on the popular Robby the Robot from the Forbidden Planet movie.

But before we go further, these toys are not really for the kids. They do not meet any of the current safety requirements for toys. These toys are made to look like the toys that were sold in the 60s and 70s. They can have sharp edges, be very noisy and the paint can chip off. As can be seen in the photograph below, this is not a toy.

OK, on with the toys. I got the red version. I know that it comes in other colours. The toy stands about 9 inches tall. When you wind it up, flick the 'On' lever and it will start moving, wobbling to be more accurate. It comes with a winding key. It fits into a cutout on the right hand side of the robot's body. There is an 'ON/ OFF' lever on the chest of the robot.

The robot in a box.

You can see the 'ON/ OFF' lever on the right of the silver rectangular box on his chest.

The robot.

The clockwork winding pin.

The winding key.

The other robot. I have always wanted one when I first saw it a long time ago. Sadly, I could not afford it. So when I saw the robot, I had to get it. It is the Mr. D Cell Black and Red Space Walk Man. It so happen the version the shop had for sale was the Christmas version. There are many versions of the robot.

This robot is powered by 2 D-cell batteries that sits in the back of the robot. The 'ON/ OFF' switch sits at the back as well.

This robot stands 12 inches tall. It is based on a Japanese robot from the 50s. It belongs (original one) to the Rotate-O-Matic series. Basically, when you switch it on, it walks a few steps, it's body will rotate (3 times) and machine guns will pop out of its chest. Once he completes the three turns, he starts walking again. The process repeats it self. How cool is that.

The robot walking. There is a light on top of his head.

The chest about to open.

And the body turns, machine guns blazing (lights flashing).

A very happy man indeed. Life simple pleasures.

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