Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Another Kingsbury Car

July 31, 2012
Summer Sure is Going By Fast!

Another Kingsbury Car

You're probably  wondering why I'm not writing. The answer is that toy selling at this time of year is slow, and so I'm trying to sell and not buy. However, I didi manage to purchase today's car a few weeks ago, and it arrived last week.

I'll add the weight and dimensions at another time.

This car looks worse than it is.
It's an easy restoration, but I'm going to leave it to someone else.
I've never taken this toy apart to see its inner parts and how the electric wiring works, so I decided to do so.

I was surprised at how simple the electrical circuitry is.
The lightbulbs are simply screwed into the parts that are attached to the car chassis.

 The rear brake light or warning light (for night time) is attached or fitted in the same way as the headlights.

In terms of the inside of the car, the electrical circuitry is also quite simple.
That rusted hook abutting against the right-angled bend of flat metal is the "on/off switch". The rusted semi-circular piece of metal is where a size-D battery goes.
 A Closer Look.

The rear contact for the brake or warning light.
I cleaned and wire-brushed the interior of the car.
I'm going to add a rear light and then when everything is dry, I'll assemble the toy and test to see if the lights work.

A Closer Look.I wire-brushed the inside in order to remove much of the rust, and to expose the wire to its inner contact surface.

This is a close-up of the rear light contact.
As you can see, the design is quite simple!

If you read my instalment about the blue Kingsbury car that I wrote about, you'll know that the Keene Company that made the cars is still in business. The "bad news" for toy antique collectors is that they no longer manufacture toys!

As always,thanks for dropping buy to read my blog.

If anyone out there has photos and would like to write an instalment to post here, by all means please write. It's slow inthe summer, and I can surely use some help.

Have a nice morning, afternoon, or evening, 
wherever you may be.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

A Small Repair on a Hoge Chief Car

Thursday, July 7, 2012

A Small Repair on A Hoge Fire Chief Car
I get a Little Help From My Friend
(Thank you The Beatles for the Loan of Your Title)

     I've met a few helpful people at  Dunkin Donuts. One of them is Paul Maddox, a retired electrician, who's been all over the world. He's been to South America and the Middle East and off the Canadian seacoast off of Newfoundland, on the oil rigs. In those places, he's been responsible for the electricity in tasks such as maintaining the generators to supply power to the oil rigs and platforms.

    I wrote about the Hoge Fire Chief car yesterday. It has a battery compartment that takes 2 size D batteries. They provide the power for the 2 headlights, which  were not working yesterday. So this morning, I brought the Hoge car to Dunkin Donuts, and Paul had a look at it. 

   I got a mini-lesson in electricity, and learned or relearned such terms as voltage, resistance, circuit, and so forth. HAving looked at the toy, Paul provided me with 2 solutions to the problem , which I'll describe below.

  A Repainted 1930's Hoge Fire Chief's Car
The original colours are red and black.

 The Battery Compartment as it Looked Yesterday

 The Battery Compartment Today 

 I used several different grades of steel wool to remove the rough rust.
I then used my high-speed Dremel tool to remove more rust.
Finally, I use grade 400 automotive sandpaper to provide a smooth finish to the metal.

 The Battery Compartment with the On/Off at the top left 
(the amber-coloured square with yellow paint on it) 

Notice that the wires have had their outer protective rubber coating fall off.
I'll ask Paul if I should cover them with electrical tape.

  A Closer View of the Battery Compartment with the On/Off Switch

 A Close-up of the On/Off Switch

It's oily, so what I did is use a lacquer thinner (I didn't have paint thinner handy)
and degreased the surface. 
At least I know that oil on an electrical surface can create resistance and impede the flow of electrical current.

A Cleaner On/Off Switch Plate

A Diagram of the On/Off Switch

Hidden at the tip of the switch is a small metal bump.
I assume that is the lesser resistance, so more light is produced by the headlights.
The metal rectangle with the hole is the bigger resistance, and so less current goes to the headlights. Thus you have 2 intensities of light - high and low output.

The "resistance wire" is curled around the switch providing a circuit to provide high or low power.

Thanks to my friend Paul, the Hoge car now has  electricity.

So thanks to everyone for visiting,
and as always have a great day or night, wherever you may be.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

A Hoge Fire Chief Car

July 4, 2012
American Independence Day

A Hoge Fire Chief Car

     Today's instalment is about a Hoge Fire Chief Car. The car was repainted in the colour theme that you see. However, originally,it was all red with some black. Tghe car is pressed steel, and is very well made and heavy.


14 3/8" (L) x 5 1/4" (W) x 5 1/4" (H)
365 mm x 135 mm x 135 mm


3 pounds 6.1 ounces
1.535 kg.

   I thought that  I'd include a photo of a Girard Pierce-Arrow Pressed Steel car for comparison. Both have similar features, and were made about the same time (circa 1930's)

The Girard Pierce-Arrow

 This car is the Hoge.

It has the following features that are common with the Pierce-Arrow by Girard

 1. A wind-up mechanism

2. A brake to hold the tension as you wind up the spring with the key

3. Lights operated by 2 size D batteries

4.  SOund - Inthis case a siren. The sound is created also by the wind-up mechanism.

 The small light bulbs are missing.

 TYou can see the name Hoge imprinted on the tire at the 12 o'clock position.
Many toy manufacturers liked to customize their tires with their brand name.
Wyandotte, Arcade, Girard, Kingsbury are just some of the names that come to mind with regard to branded rubber tires.

The spare tire certainly will be nice when the paint is removed.
It appears to be chrome-plated.

Notice also the brake lever located between the rear right fender and the car body.

 The Wind-up Mechanism with the Siren.
The siren is the round-shaped object with the 2 small holes.

 The Battery Compartment that Holds 2 Size D Batteries.
 A Closer View of the Hard Top
 Here'a a close-up view showing the wind-up key and the brake.
The brake is the yellow lever between the rear fender and the car body.
A Side View of the Car.

You can see the wire that is soldered to the front right  light holder.
A small lever inside the car compartment turns the power on for the lights.
I tried to turn on the lights, but I think either the wire contacts are separated from the lightbulb holder or the paint has blocked the contacts of the battery from providing electricity to the lights.

The rear light is also missing.

Structurally, this car is in great shape, and was built to last.
It's well made, and has heavy gauge pressed steel for the body.
Even the wind-up mechanism is intact, considering the toy is at least 80 years old!

So to all my American readers - Happy 4th of July,
and to everyone else, have a great morning afternoon, or evening, 
wherever you may be.