Carrera – slot car racing since the 1960s

Carrera’s origins can be traced back to 1920 when Josef Neuhierl started manufacturing tin toys in the Franconian town of Fürth, Germany.
In 1963, Josef’s son Hermann Neuhierl launched the Carrera Universal system – the first electronic 1:32 scale Carrera racetrack. It was an instant success. In 1967 the larger scale Carrera 124 continued the success and led the way for the brand to gain further popularity throughout the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s. To date, the company continues to manufacturer innovative slot car racing sets, and is a recognised leading brand around the world.

TVTA is pleased to present selected scans from the Carrera 2001 catalogue, plus Carrera print adverts from the 1970s and 1980s.

Carrera cover 2001 catalogue. France.

Carrera 2001 catalogue. France.

Carrera Evolution vehicles.

Carrera 2001 catalogue. France.

Carrera Evolution vehicles.

Carrera 2001 catalogue. France.

Carrera Evolution vehicles.

Carrera 2001 catalogue. France.

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GoBots, Robo Machines and Machine Men – Bandai’s family of transforming robots

Robo Machines. UK. 1983.

GoBots. Model kits by Monogram. US. 1985.

I name thee…

GoBots, Machine Men and Robo Machine(s) are some of the international names given to Japanese toy company Bandai’s transforming vehicle/robot toy line first sold in 1982.

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Heller – vintage model toys beautifully illustrated

Heller catalogue 1979 N° 607 La Sardane.

Welcome to a new entry for TVTA’s toy archive… Heller models.

I have to say it’s been raining here for three days + storms + flooding. I live near the sea, and at the moment I feel like I’m living in it. What better way to begin today’s post with some vintage marine images – courtesy of the 1979 Heller catalogue from France.

Heller catalogue 1979. N° 603 Le Capricorne par J Blanche.

Heller catalogue 1979 N° 604 Marie Jeanne par Roger Chapelet.


Heller is a French toy company founded in 1957 specialising in model yachts, military ships, cars and racing, aircraft, motorcycles, toy soldiers, and military vehicles. TVTA is pleased to present a selection of Heller’s models from the 1979 range as featured in its tri-language European catalogue. Also included are the full scans. The paintings are quite exceptional I think, with care taken not only in representing the intended model toy but the staged backgrounds too.

Artist Name Hunting

It took me a few good hours to research the French artists responsible for the catalogue images, and the ones I came up with are: Francis Bergèse, J. Blanche, Roger Chapelet, and Olivereau. It was worth the effort, as the images you see in this post are simply magnificent and deserve to be credited. Although plenty of original artwork was commissioned to sell toys during the later half of the 20th century, not much of it is credited. When you do find an artist’s signature on a catalogue page, advert, or toy box, it’s usually grainy and unreadable. So, trying to track down Heller’s 1979 catalogue signatures was a good challenge for me, and I’m pleased I managed to find the majority of them.

Click images to go bigger and enjoy the art!

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Latest ads – simple toys, simple times

Les Poupées de Lisette. France. 1960.

Congost toys. Spain. 1977.

Primo washing powder toys. France. 1960.

Things were simpler back then. A more innocent time?

TVTA takes a quick peek at some 1940s – 1980s print adverts from Spain, Denmark, France, the US, and the UK, featuring simple toys and ideas.

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My Dog Has Fleas! Ideal toy shop catalogue, 1980s, France

My Dog Has Fleas (Sacapuce) game from Ideal.

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Robo Machine (very mini) mini catalogue

Robo Machine (sometimes Robo Machines) was a transforming vehicle/robot toy line made by the Bandai company in the 1980s. It was the European version of the Japanese Machine Robo toy line.

When I say that this Robo Machine catalogue I recently acquired is not much bigger than a postage stamp I’m not exaggerating! Here it is all in its tiny, little glory. Small is beautiful.

Robo Machine Command Centre Play Set. The top left picture of the transforming vehicle on four legs reminds me of  a very famous vehicle as employed by the Empire in certain Star Wars films!


Thank you for transforming with us 🙂 

Toy soldiers

Artwork detail. Airfix Catalogue 2008, UK.

Artwork detail. Airfix Catalogue 2008, UK.


TVTA is pleased to present a selection of international toy soldier print adverts, catalogue pages and photos from the brands Airfix, Atlantic, Starlux, Britains and others in the scales H0/00, 1/32, and 1/72.

Airfix Military Figures. 1983. France.

Airfix Military Figures. 1983. France.

Airfix Military Figures. 1983. France.

Airfix Military Figures. 1983. France.

Airfix Military. 1984. UK.

Atlantic soldiers. Italy. 1979.

Atlantic Toy Soldiers. 1981. France.

Atlantic Toy Soldiers. France. 1981.

Atlantic Far West. 1982. France.

Floraline pasta. Collect free soldiers and cowboy and Indians figures. 1979. France.

Cowboys and Indians. 1969. Denmark.

Wild West figures. Gerca. 1980s. Made in Macau. MIP. TVTA Collection.

Wild West figures. Gerca. 1980s. Made in Macau. Loose. TVTA Collection.

Britains Deetail soldiers. TVTA Collection.

H0/00 scale painted soldiers. TVTA Collection.

Various H0/00 scale soldiers. TVTA Collection.

BRITAINS SET N° 460, Scots Guards, circa 1933. No price listed. Christie’s Catalogue. 1988.

Footlocker Toy Soldiers. 1981. US.

Starlux Cavalry and Infantry. France. 

Thanks for looking 🙂

Latest ads – SSP, Solar Ball, Skittle Baseball, Sea-Monkeys and more!

Kenner SSP Racers. 1971. US.

Glow in the Dark Solar Ball. 1985. US.

Aurora Skittle Ball. Weird War Tales N°1. 1971.

Seamonkeys. 1977. US.

Space 1999 model kit by Centuri. 1976. US.

Doctor Who Records and Tapes. 1980. UK.

Sphere sci-fi books. 1989. UK.

Sizzlers Fat Track. 1971. US.

Aurora Powerslicks. 1971. US.

Fleer football cards. 1991. US.


Thanks for looking 🙂

It’s a doll’s world: clone wars, law suits, and inappropriate names.

Clone after clone after clone. Presenting: The Babs, Randy and Bill wardrobe booklet, 1960s, US.

Babs, Randy and Bill wardrobe booklet, 1960s. Fab-Lu Ltd.

Babs, Randy and Bill dolls were sold by the Fab-Lu Ltd company of New York in the early 1960s. The line was a cheap clone of the popular US Barbie doll brand, and the German Bild Lilli brand that predated both.

Babs’s wardrobe imitated many of Barbie’s costumes, as well as clothing from various Hong Kong cloned Lilli dolls. Babs also mimicked Barbie’s tag of “Teen-Age Fashion Model” by declaring herself as “Queen of Fashion”. Not that Barbie should complain too much, seeing as she herself was a clone of the German Bild Lilli – the original fashion doll.

Randy

Randy was a clone of Barbie’s younger sister, Skipper.

For the British market, Randy underwent a name change to ‘Mary Lou’ due to the English sexualisation of the word randy (meaning ‘to feel sexually aroused’). However, the problems didn’t end there for Randy/Mary Lou. The doll, as seen on her featured pages of the Fab-Lu booklet, was actually a Tammy doll as made by Ideal and ‘borrowed’ for the photoshoot to model Randy’s wardrobe. Fab-Lu tried to get around this by painting a beauty spot on the cheek of the Tammy doll in the hope no one would notice. It failed, and Fab-Lu was later taken to court and sued by Ideal.



Bill

Bill was a clone of Barbie’s boyfriend, Ken.

“Every inch a he-man. Powerful body. Powerful physique.” Check out Bill’s ‘sales pitch’ …

Bill – every inch a he-man?


The Clone War(drobe)s.

Below are the remaining scans of the Babs, Randy and Bill product booklet. It is the only known catalogue to exist for the line to date, and was included in packs of individual dolls and accessories.

Click images to enlarge.


Low, low prices!

Babs dolls and outfits were exceptionally cheap to buy compared to Barbie. Statements such as “fashions made to fit all leading fashion dolls”, and “Other male fashion dolls can and do wear Bill’s extensive wardrobe” were almost a call to arms to buy Babs outfits to put not just on Babs dolls, but on Barbie dolls too.


To find out more about the fascinating history of ‘clone dolls’ – from Lilli to Barbie to Babs and others – check out the excellent article Bild Lilli and the Queens from Outer Space

Until next time, thank you for cloning around with us 🙂