Your favorite classic toys for kids

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JupiterJones
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by JupiterJones » Wed Nov 12, 2014 4:57 pm

Here's another Hoot Nanny simulator, FWIW:

http://akatz712.freehostia.com/Browser_ ... canvas.htm

Me? I was a Lego kid, through and through. We're talking old-school Lego, even before minifigs, when the "Lego People" looked like this.

Oh, and does anyone remember Whee-Lo?
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Professor Emeritus
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by Professor Emeritus » Wed Nov 12, 2014 4:59 pm

Brio trains

Paul78
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by Paul78 » Wed Nov 12, 2014 5:00 pm

nisiprius wrote:
lucky3 wrote:Nothing fancy.....

....Chutes & Ladders...
This is very sad: the current edition of "Chutes & Ladders" is awful. I don't know how they could ruin such a simple idea, but they did. The basic problems are, first of all, the game board seems to have been designed by someone who likes the trendy "low contrast user interface" and it is actually quite hard to see the arrows that tell you which square follows which. You of course move row by row in a serpentine, boustrephedon pattern, but my grandson is having a little trouble following that.

Second, they cheaped out and and made a very small game board. (My recollection is that the one I had as a kid was about the size of a proper Monopoly board). And, I suppose to avoid a choking hazard, the game pieces each have a plastic base so big it takes up a wholei square, along with a thick cardboard picture that snaps into a groove in the base. The problem is there is no way for two players' pieces to occupy the same square at the same time.

Also, I consider this a failure of truth-in-advertising. The game itself, of course, has the same moral theme it always did--the bottom of each ladder shows a kid doing a Good Thing and climbing to the top, the top of each chute show a kid doing a Naughty Thing and sliding to the bottom. In the game itself all the kids at the bottom of the chutes are unhappy. On the box, of course, the kids are shown as having a wonderful time sliding down the slide and laughing and grinning at the bottom.
I understanding the reason for cheaping of products but I really wish they would have keep the quality of board games high and just charge a few extra bucks.

The current boxes fall apart in weeks instead of lasting years and the boards are flimsy and weigh wayyyy less than the older models.

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Peter Foley
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by Peter Foley » Wed Nov 12, 2014 5:04 pm

Bill Ding. My brother and I had a used set when we were children. I would guess our set is from one of the earliest editions. My daughters played with them when they were little and now both of my grandchildren are playing with them.

If you don't know what they are, they are stack-able wooden figures. You can Google them to get an idea.

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StormShadow
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by StormShadow » Wed Nov 12, 2014 5:24 pm

Dungeons and Dragons
GI Joe action figures (3.75" version)
Slot cars and electric race track
Legos
Aircraft models
Monopoly
Comic books
Stuffed animals when I was really young

Nintendo and computer games, of course.

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cheese_breath
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by cheese_breath » Wed Nov 12, 2014 5:48 pm

Traveller wrote:1) Lego, erector set, Lincoln logs
2) slot car set. I loved that thing.
3) Lionel train set
4) cox string control airplane. Darn near chopped my fingers off with that thing many times.

The last few are for somewhat older kids.
Lionel was considered the top of the electric train product line when I was a kid, but I didn't like the 3rd (center) rail. Real trains didn't have three rails. My first train set, given to me when I was about 3 or 4 was a Marx, and it had a third rail. But my next one was American Flyer with only two rails.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by Traveller » Wed Nov 12, 2014 5:57 pm

cheese_breath wrote:But my next one was American Flyer with only two rails.
Too funny - it always bugged me that my Lionel set had three rails. My older cousin had a Gilbert American Flyer set with two rails. Nice.

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cheese_breath
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by cheese_breath » Wed Nov 12, 2014 6:44 pm

I don't know how I forgot plastic car and airplane models. Maybe a psyche block?

I spent half my childhood putting them together.
... Go to the hobby store which had shelves and shelves of simple kits.
... Pick up a kit, glue, Dope model paint and brushes.
... Take it all home and dump the plastic pieces out on the table.
... Snap and glue the pieces together.
... Clean excess glue off myself and table.
... Wait for next day for glue to set.
... Put newspaper on table. (Learned my lesson with the glue.)
... Shake up a bottle of Dope, open and paint one of the colors.
... Close paint bottle, clean paint off myself, and put brush in to soak in water in mother's dinner glass. (Catch hell for that.)
... Repeat with other color next day, unless I was stupid enough to try painting both colors the same day. (What a mess.)

For some reason the finished product never looked anywhere near as good as the picture on the box. But it was good experience because it taught me to put aside any thoughts I might have for an artistic career.
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wilpat
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by wilpat » Wed Nov 12, 2014 6:59 pm

Radio Flyer wagon!
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by ThankYouJack » Wed Nov 12, 2014 7:39 pm

Oh the nostalgia. Thinking back, I have some others that were my favorites:

Flying toy rockets - I was always amazed at how high they would go

Aerobie Flying Ring - it was only a matter of throws before it got stuck in a tree. Part of the fun was hoping for a windy day to see if it would get blown down.

Long red sled - my backyard had a hill and my siblings and I would always race down our dual slalum course -- steering over jumps, around trees, rocks and stopping it before the brook.

Gyroscope
Gyrowheel
YoYo
Hackie Sack
Juggling balls
Baseball cards (with a stick of gum in it of course)

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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by hicabob » Wed Nov 12, 2014 8:04 pm

StormShadow wrote:Dungeons and Dragons
GI Joe action figures (3.75" version)
Slot cars and electric race track
Legos
Aircraft models
Monopoly
Comic books
Stuffed animals when I was really young

Nintendo and computer games, of course.
Loved slot cars here too. I always thought the switch to "traction magnet" cars kinda took it down a notch though.

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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by joe8d » Wed Nov 12, 2014 8:15 pm

Baseball cards (with a stick of gum in it of course)
ThankYouJack

Terrible gum.All the Mickey Mantle cards I had back then. Gone now :(
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by frugalguy » Wed Nov 12, 2014 9:07 pm

cheese_breath wrote:I don't know how I forgot plastic car and airplane models. Maybe a psyche block?
Maybe too much glue? :)

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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by frugalguy » Wed Nov 12, 2014 9:09 pm

hicabob wrote:
Comic books .
In the backs of the comic books, they always had advertisements for x-ray glasses.

Did anyone try them?

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cheese_breath
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by cheese_breath » Wed Nov 12, 2014 9:19 pm

frugalguy wrote:
cheese_breath wrote:I don't know how I forgot plastic car and airplane models. Maybe a psyche block?
Maybe too much glue? :)
Not glue, but that white paste they had in kindergarten tasted good. :D
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gardemanger
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by gardemanger » Wed Nov 12, 2014 10:14 pm

I remember a geometric puzzle game that I played with as a kid of about 10, when I had a broken arm and couldn't go out at recess. The game was at the school - we didn't have it at home - and I never saw it anywhere else. It had a one word name that I can't remember. I Google Image searched long and hard and finally found a different version of the same game called "Block by Block":

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/p/toys-ga ... e/15585113

You have to figure out how to make the pieces into the different 3-d shapes provided. ENDLESS fun. More description in this blog post (scroll down):

http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/doi ... ce-y-kids/

I'd be amazed yet gratified if anyone else remembers the old version.


Edit a few minutes later: SOMA! The game is called the Soma Cube. And it's apparently off patent, as you can find all kinds of versions from different manufacturers, mostly wooden.

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/top ... /Soma-Cube

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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by davebarnes » Wed Nov 12, 2014 10:39 pm

Daisy air rifle.
Cut the safety bar out of the muzzle so you could jam more dirt into it.

One my friends in 3rd grade had one of these
Image
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seamonkey
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by seamonkey » Thu Nov 13, 2014 6:22 am

Paper savings bonds.

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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by Crow Hunter » Thu Nov 13, 2014 8:04 am

davebarnes wrote:Daisy air rifle.
Cut the safety bar out of the muzzle so you could jam more dirt into it.

One my friends in 3rd grade had one of these
Image
A Japanese Type 99 Machine gun?

Wow!

Firing or deactivated?

WWII bring back?

My best friend had some German bayonet bring backs from his uncle that we used to play with but nothing as cool as that.

All our toy guns were wood/plastic.

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Very heavy

Post by davebarnes » Thu Nov 13, 2014 3:05 pm

Crow Hunter wrote: A Japanese Type 99 Machine gun?
Firing or deactivated?
WWII bring back?
Yes.
Assumed firing, but we had no ammo. If we had, we would have used it. 3rd grade boys are crazy.
Yes. Todd's father brought it back. GIs brought back the most amazing items.
We did not play with it much as it was way too heavy for us to handle easily.
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Re: Very heavy

Post by Crow Hunter » Thu Nov 13, 2014 3:44 pm

davebarnes wrote:
Crow Hunter wrote: A Japanese Type 99 Machine gun?
Firing or deactivated?
WWII bring back?
Yes.
Assumed firing, but we had no ammo. If we had, we would have used it. 3rd grade boys are crazy.
Yes. Todd's father brought it back. GIs brought back the most amazing items.
We did not play with it much as it was way too heavy for us to handle easily.
Yeah. 7.7 Japanese is hard to find now, I can imagine it was hard to come by then. It would have had to be all surplus.

What it is worth today, assuming it was in firing condition and registered/transferrable via a Form 4.

http://www.ohioordnanceworks.com/rifles ... an-type-99

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DaleMaley
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by DaleMaley » Thu Nov 13, 2014 7:19 pm

When I was a kid in the 1960's, my favorite toy besides my Lionel train set, was Mr. Machine the robot.

Image

If I remember right, the first 2 years he was sold, you could completely dis-assemble the robot, and put it back together again. This is the model I had. Then they changed the design such that you could no longer dis-assemble it.

Here is a video of an original TV ad for Mr. Machine.........
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WHQI5iKYfM

My old Mr. Machine got lost at some point. In early 2006, I bought a reproduction of Mr. Machine from this web site........
http://robotisland.com/

This web site still has tons of old robots for sale, but sadly I could not find Mr. Machine still for sale.

I plan someday to help my grandkids take apart and re-assemble my reproduction Mr. Machine :D
Last edited by DaleMaley on Fri Nov 14, 2014 7:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by grabiner » Thu Nov 13, 2014 8:46 pm

nisiprius wrote:Anything that is basically a "construction toy." Doesn't matter if it's old or new, name brand or knockoff. Lego, absolutely, although I sometimes think the knock-offs are better. I feel that Lego has gotten way too much into one-trick ponies, themed sets with special pieces in them that come with instructions and ONLY let you build a Millennium Falcon, or whatever.
Agreed with the Legos. I spent a lot of time building houses, bridges, and towers out of a generic Lego set, but never really liked the sets that could build only one thing and were essentially useless once that one thing was built.

Lego outlet stores don't sell a generic set, although they sell individual blocks, so you can make your own generic set in a bag.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by frugalguy » Thu Nov 13, 2014 10:20 pm

DaleMaley wrote:When I was a kid in the 1960's, my favorite toy besides my Lionel train set, was Mr. Machine the robot.

Image
I built a robot out of an erector set.

Too bad my robot didn't meet your robot. :)

Your's gets the upper hand on personality. Mine wasn't smiling.

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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by nisiprius » Thu Nov 13, 2014 10:43 pm

The Svengali deck of cards.

Most magic sets are not that good--too much skill, too much trouble "putting on a show," sleight-of-hand is REALLY HARD to master, and someone in the audience always had bought their own copy of the trick and demands to see the linking ring that has the gap in it instead of the solid ring you want them to examine. And you don't have the stage presence and con-artistry to deflect it.

(I once went to a children's party with a magician that REALLY KNEW HIS STUFF. He would be doing things and by golly he would put on his authoritative adult voice and say "STOP looking over there, LOOK OVER HERE." That's the way to do it. Ordinary magicians use misdirection, great magicians just use direction!)

Anyway, what I was going to say that most magic sets are not that good. However, the Svengali deck is cool. Every other card is the six of diamonds--or whatever--AND they are all just tad shorter than the others. Flip through the deck one way and the cards all look different. Flip the other way and you see nothing but the sixes of diamonds. With half the cards being the six of diamonds it's pretty easy to force the six of diamonds onto someone. They put it back... you riffle the other way and say "Is this your card?" and they are looking at what seems to be an entire deck of nothing but the six of diamonds.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by rayout » Fri Nov 14, 2014 1:08 am

Some fun board games. Not necessarily classics now but I think they will be:

Fun for all ages: http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/40990/word-street

Transitions into a drinking game when the kids are in college (featured in the WSJ today): http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/327/loopin-louie

Another fun one - blow ships around a board with a turkey baster to collect gold: http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/2389 ... arze-pirat

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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by dumbbunny » Fri Nov 14, 2014 1:12 am

Another vote for Legos.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by mcblum » Fri Nov 14, 2014 6:03 am

Lincoln logs and erector set. if they are still around...
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by JupiterJones » Fri Nov 14, 2014 4:01 pm

gardemanger wrote: SOMA! The game is called the Soma Cube. And it's apparently off patent, as you can find all kinds of versions from different manufacturers, mostly wooden.
Interesting! We had what was basically a 2D version of the same game. The commercial version we had was called "Pythagoras":

Image

But the concept is very old, from China, and generically known as Tangram.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by gkaplan » Fri Nov 14, 2014 7:53 pm

I don't consider most the toys that people have noted as being toys as such. To me, Lincoln logs and erector sets, to site two, are learning tools. Others might be considered games or sports.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by nisiprius » Fri Nov 14, 2014 8:04 pm

frugalguy wrote:
hicabob wrote:
Comic books .
In the backs of the comic books, they always had advertisements for x-ray glasses.

Did anyone try them?
Yes. Not from comic books as I recall, but either the Johnson Smith & Co. catalog or from novelty shops. It uses a scrap of bird's feather to produce a kind of shadowy double image that is darker where the two images overlap. An illusion of seeing lead within a pencil... sorta maybe. An illusion of seeing bones in fingers... not very. An illusion of seeing bodies underneath clothing? No. Trust me, it doesn't work.

Image

On the whole, tempting as they are, the jokes, gags, pranks, and novelties are not really classic toys nor good value for the money.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by obgyn65 » Fri Nov 14, 2014 8:15 pm

A play doctor kit.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by cheese_breath » Fri Nov 14, 2014 8:23 pm

obgyn65 wrote:A play doctor kit.
Judging from your ID it looks like you're still playing doctor. :wink:
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by frugalguy » Fri Nov 14, 2014 9:35 pm

nisiprius wrote:
frugalguy wrote:
hicabob wrote:
Comic books .
In the backs of the comic books, they always had advertisements for x-ray glasses.

Did anyone try them?
Yes. Not from comic books as I recall, but either the Johnson Smith & Co. catalog or from novelty shops. It uses a scrap of bird's feather to produce a kind of shadowy double image that is darker where the two images overlap. An illusion of seeing lead within a pencil... sorta maybe. An illusion of seeing bones in fingers... not very. An illusion of seeing bodies underneath clothing? No. Trust me, it doesn't work.

Image
Here's what I was talking about. Straight from the Boglehead favorite, Richie Rich. :mrgreen:

Image

It says there in black and white: "Scientific optical principle". You mean it's not? :confused

Glad I didn't spend the dollar then. 8-)

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cheese_breath
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by cheese_breath » Fri Nov 14, 2014 11:21 pm

The interest in the x-ray glasses reminds me of the 3D comic books.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by Gnirk » Sat Nov 15, 2014 1:34 am

A stuffed Pooh Bear, the Game of Life, Monopoly, and for little kids Chutes and Ladders (if they're still around).

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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by nisiprius » Sat Nov 15, 2014 10:20 am

Pads of paper of about the right size--they're getting to be harder and harder to find--plain white paper with sheets about 3"x5"--for drawing your own flipbooks.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by nisiprius » Sat Nov 15, 2014 10:39 am

There are losses and gains and things were NOT better then, but I sure did love my Kodak home darkroom kit. It had chemicals (Dektol), a thermometer (68°F was marked by a star and my friend and I always talked about "star water,") a plastic film-developing tank, a contact print light box, and some printing paper called "Velite" that was SO SLOW that you could do the printing in "subdued room light." It took several MINUTES to expose a CONTACT PRINT in the light box. I don't think there's anyone in the world who has watched a print develop without marveling at it.

I didn't have an actual darkroom, I would go into a closet to load the film in the tank, so there was often some lightstreaking on the film. And if people remember those plastic reels... they had little spring clips that were supposed to let the film slide one way, and you were supposed to be able to stuff the film in and ease it in by alternately twisting the two ends of the reel back and forth. Well, usually there was at least one place where the film would buckle and two adjacent wrapping of film would touch, so when you took the processed film out there it would be stuck together and have a pinkish-white chunk of unprocessed film emulsion in the middle

And of course I never got the hypo properly rinsed from the prints.
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by cheese_breath » Sat Nov 15, 2014 1:18 pm

nisiprius wrote:There are losses and gains and things were NOT better then, but I sure did love my Kodak home darkroom kit. It had chemicals (Dektol), a thermometer (68°F was marked by a star and my friend and I always talked about "star water,") a plastic film-developing tank, a contact print light box, and some printing paper called "Velite" that was SO SLOW that you could do the printing in "subdued room light." It took several MINUTES to expose a CONTACT PRINT in the light box. I don't think there's anyone in the world who has watched a print develop without marveling at it.

I didn't have an actual darkroom, I would go into a closet to load the film in the tank, so there was often some lightstreaking on the film. And if people remember those plastic reels... they had little spring clips that were supposed to let the film slide one way, and you were supposed to be able to stuff the film in and ease it in by alternately twisting the two ends of the reel back and forth. Well, usually there was at least one place where the film would buckle and two adjacent wrapping of film would touch, so when you took the processed film out there it would be stuck together and have a pinkish-white chunk of unprocessed film emulsion in the middle

And of course I never got the hypo properly rinsed from the prints.
Oh WOW, the memories. I actually had thought about being a commercial photographer when young and took a year of photography class in high school. I used a place under the basement stairs for my dark room and rinsed the prints in the laundry tub. I had all the above mentioned stuff plus a DeJur enlarger. I used Kodak paper, but it was a lot more light sensitive than the Velite. Of course you remember the red light so you could see without hurting the film. (That's the ONLY red light activity I ever engaged in.) Even though I stopped using it in my teens I didn't sell it all until my middle 30s.

But I still have my old camera from my teens stuffed away in the basement plus light meter, tripod (a lot bulkier than today's), and the camera cable attachment so you could trip the shutter without pressing the button (and thereby possibly moving the camera during the shot.)
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Re: Your favorite classic toys for kids

Post by nisiprius » Sat Nov 15, 2014 1:51 pm

Balsa-wood gliders, and rubber-band airplanes--the cheap ones, like the Guillow's Sky Streak.

Image

Hey, they sell them in two-packs now? That's a good idea, they do get smashed pretty easily.

Once went to a model airplane event--just to watch, I don't fly them--and they had a competition for indoor planes, those insane things made so lightly that they hang in the air like thistledown and fly as if in syrup, with the propellor going about one turn per second--and one guy had everybody cracking up. He had made one... out of "microfilm" and everything... but had painted and decorated it in such a way that it looked exactly like a Guillow's Sky Streak.
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.

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