Friday, January 29, 2016

TRAIN TIME: Resurrecting the 'Jeep Layout' - Pt 1

Back in  the late '90s I built a portable train layout for the specific purpose of taking it to local train shows. It had to fit in the rear of my Jeep Cherokee and so I called it the 'Jeep Layout'. I had a lot of fun with it for several years but then I grew disinterested in the local club scene and dropped out cold turkey. That was in 2002 and the layout lay dormant for the next twelve fourteen years. It spent most of that time in a vertical position and sandwiched between other project material until this week. Readers of the blog know I'm in de-acquisition mode and just making a concerted effort to get rid of stuff. To that end a lot of boxes and packing material has accumulated out there in The Cave as evidenced by these photos. With a few sales, giving things away to local thrift stores, and little rearranging some room opened up - just enough to get the Jeep layout out of its in-house storage mode. I love collecting toys but really did miss the trains and the fellowship of the train community. Gosh, I haven't run trains on any of my layouts for many years and I was itchin' to get back in the fold. As soon as I find some old pics of the layout I'll get them scanned so you can see what it was like in its 'heyday'. We'll just leave the narrative as is for now and get into more specifics in another post. Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina

Just a portion of the pile of boxes and packing material I saved in the eventuality of selling off the collection

For now, the layout rests on plastic storage bins

It'll need some dusting and cleaning but overall it's still in really good shape. The frame will probably have to be repainted - something I had already done a couple times in the past.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Unknown Tiny Bomber - Green SP

I'm still workin' on that box of tiny planes I pulled out of The Cave last month :-) There has been progress in the de-acquisition of the collection though. Many bags of old magazines have gone to a local thrift store, some of my artwork has gone to a local auction house (for which we got practically nothing - but hey, it's more stuff out of the house), my eBay sales (seller: marxtoynut) are slowly-but-surely doing okay, and I've begun to sell stuff via the on-line groups I belong to. There are ever-so- slowly widening gaps in the shelves and in the mountains of boxes out in The Cave and the goal is to get at least one of my portable train layouts up and running this year.

Here's an unusual small green soft plastic bomber by an unknown manufacturer measuring 3 1/4" (8.25cm) L 4 1/8" (10.47cm) wingspan x 3/4" (1.90cm) H. The bump-out on the spine and the outline of the vertical tail is reminiscent of the B-17 yet it only has two engines. It's obviously a cheap toy meant for party favors? as a bin toy? as a cheap toy for souvenir stalls? In any case it's a nice little plane for the Tiny Squadron. Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina

Here it shown with the VIBRO ROLL B-17 for size comparison

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Ideal P-40 Warhawk

The Ideal P-40 Warhawk was made from 1945-47 and was the follow-up piece to their P-39 Airacobra featured here back on Dec 21, 2015. Here we have one in a beautiful marbled blue hard plastic with yellow wheels. Mine is missing the prop,which would have been in the same yellow as the wheels, but is otherwise in good shape. It measures 3 1/2" (8.89cm) L without the propeller  x 4 1/2" (11.43cm)  wingspan x 1 3/8" (3.49cm) H. Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina

Posed with Thomas Toy P-40s

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Zweibrücken 'Horn' Stein

I've been busy here at the Ol' Berg Homestead being in de-acquisition mode pulling out toys and whatever and trying to get them boxed up for sale on fleaBay (eBay seller: marxtoynut). During the past couple of years I've amassed a veritable mountain of boxes and packing material which is taking up far too much room in The Cave. Hopefully this year as I sell things I'll solve several problems

a) getting rid of toys/collectibles
b) getting rid of boxes
c) getting rid of packing

each sale takes care of all three categories - just a little bit at a time.

One of my prized collections is the beer/wine/spirits related items. Shot glasses, beer mugs, beer steins, coasters, bottles, even toys like vehicles, railroad cars, and breweries, etc.. But after many years of collecting they have to go. Not all of them will be on the chopping block but a great many will simply need to go, like this one. It's a nice looking souvenir 'horn' stein from Zweibrücken, Germany measuring 8"(20.32cm) H from an unknown manufacturer.Enjoy! Opa Fritz and Oma Bettina