Saturday, April 22, 2017

An Unexpected Reader Asks for My Help

Saturday, April 22, 2017
8 C  46 F

An Unexpected Reader Asks for My Help

   Periodically, I receive e-mails from readers asking me to identify a toy. So was the case of Mr. Tom Rutherford, Sr.  He send me photos of a nice old pedal car and asked me for information. Unfortunately, I didm;t have much experience in writing about pedal cars. I invited Tom to be a "guest" on my blog, and asked for his permission to use his photos and dialogue for today's post.

In his own words:

Please assist me in identifying this old pedal tractor.  I have researched for a long time and have not found this tractor.  Please provide the following:

Manufacturer and geographical location
  • Date(s) produced
  • Rarity
  • Value as is
  • Value when restored
  • Any additional information

I complimented Tom on his very fine photography, and waited until today to add Tom's post to this blog. In the interim, I mentioned to Tom  that the front ornament loped like an American car ornament.

Tom wrote back to say:

Hi again!
Just identified the auto emblem.  It is a Cadillac emblem.  It's frequently referred to as the "duck" emblem (ducks appear inside emblem).  It first appeared in 1930.  Another came out in 1947.  After that, the same emblem was surrounded by various separate borders.

I'm going to see if Cadillac produced any tractors.  I doubt it.  Only a wealthy family would be able to purchase these pedal cars.

I'll quickly e-mail you if I come across any other pertinent information.

Thanks again!
Tom Rutherford

A few days letter, another e-mail arrived from Tom:

Hi again!
Just identified the wagon.  The sun was shining on the side of the wagon just right.  I was finally able to see the faint inscription and picture.  It's a Radio Flyer 1933 Streak-O-Lite.  The "picture" is three passenger cars of a train.  Perhaps to can answer my original questions about this wagon, the horse and buggy, and tractor.
Thanks again!
Tom Rutherford, Sr.

   There are still several questions that have to be answered. So if there is anyone out there who has the answers to the questions below, would you be so kind as to write me:

1. How Rare is this toy?

2. What is the value of this toy - as is, without restoration?

3. What is the value of this toy - restored ?

  I was more ambitious than usual today, and so I added 2 posts for today. As I mention before, we've been getting lots of rain  up here in Montreal, and today is no exception. So what better way to keep occupied than to add a few posts to my blog!

Thanks for visiting,
And as always,
Have a great part of the day or night,
Wherever you may be.

Stacey Bindman

Another Fine Restoration by Tom Sanders

Saturday, April 22, 2017
8 C  46 F

Another Fine Restoration 
by Mr. Tom Sanders

Recently, I was fortunate enough to have hearted from Mr. Tom Sanders . Tom 
specializes in  creating and modifying old toys into customized finished models for his clients.
If you search my blog for "Tom Sanders", or Mr. Tom Sanders, you will find the many exemplary 
pieces of work that he has done in the near-distant past.
In Tom's own words:

Stacey et al,

"Another unique application. This time its to fix a wounded bird. I purchased this woeful Wyandotte Twin Engine Transport a few weeks back. It had suffered through a "stabilizer-ectomy" years ago when someone removed the two stabilizers. it was also missing its Fin, Propellers and the stock "panted" landing gear. Still, it is 1930's steel and worth making whole again. Years ago I had an interview with a past employee of Wyandotte All Metal Products, Inc. at an antique show in Michigan. He was the same gentleman that sold me that Wyandotte toy airplane Sirius "convertible". He related that Wyandotte had many concepts and plans to add to their toy line but WW2 and lost market shares dwindled the hopes for many of these concepts. One in particular was the idea of producing the Wyandotte Twin Engine Transport with a new stabilizer with twin fins that were popular on Lockheed airliners and the Beechcraft B-18 "Twin Beech" airplanes. Their goal was to come close to the airplane used as the get-away vehicle in the movie Casablanca.   

This airplane that I purchased pretty much fit the bill and so I proceeded to modify the airplane into a Lockheed 10a ala' Casablanca."

"Once again, another list of tasks-
1) remove the lead paint and inspect the steel and cust surfaces.
2) Cut, stamp and bend the stabilizer/fins combo piece and solder in place.
3) Remove the tail wheel (the wood wheel was saved for a future resto)
4) Cut and solder two steel plates under the stabilizer to allow the body lines to continue aft.
5) create a new tail wheel assembly featuring a wheel with an aluminum hub and rubber tire.
6) Create a new main gear system that also features wheels with aluminum hubs and rubber tires.
7) Paint the airplane using a period style Lockheed lightning bolt (for their Electra models) 
8) Install a Pair of Sandman Overhaul retro-fit prop kits.

That pretty much sums up the project. Interesting that it sold within 17 hours after I started my Buy-It-Now Auction to an ex Beech 18 pilot."

This customized restoration is another example of the fine work that Tom does through his company- Sandman Overhaul.

If you go to the web address below, you can see many examples of the fine work that Tom has done for his clients. It's certainly great to see what can be created with old toys to bring them 
"back to life".

So that's it for this Saturday. April has been a near-record for rainfall here in Quebec. Several of the cities around Montreal, Quebec have been inundated with rising levels of river water that have caused flooding. Hopefully, May will be a much better month, and the waters will abate.

Thanks for dropping by,
And as always,
Have a great part of the day or night,
Wherever you may be.

Stacey Bindman

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Tom Sanders Helps Out

Wednesday, April 12, 2017
9 C 48F

Tom Sanders Helps Out

   My previous post was about Christopher Ferrone and his creativity with restoring old toys into new ones "with a twist". In that post, Christopher took 2 old toys from the 1930's and metamorphosed (changed) them into one. The new model , a combination of the 2 toys appeared to actually resemble a toy from the 1930's.

   In today's post, Mr. Tom Sanders wrote me and presented a nice airplane that he restored.  In Tom's case, he creates marvellous models from old toys, but  on a commercial basis (he is commissioned to create them). In the example below, he custom-made a base plate that holds a Wyandotte China Clipper airplane (to represent) a  Martin M-130 China Clipper at the time.

Above: Tom Sanders' trademark logo

Some information about Pan-Am.

Please click here to visit Wikipedia's fine article on Pan-Am
(If the link doesn't work, type in the words "Wikipedia" and Pan-Am to visit the exact page of reference)

Pan-Am was the largest American passenger aircraft company in the USA from 1927-1991.
The company was created in 1927 and started to fly between Key West (Florida) and Havana (Cuba). This route was highly successful, and eventually led to the airplane expanding into South-America. Having been financially strong, the Pan-Am was able to purchase less-successful  South American companies to expand its' South-American Business. Most of the South American business was on the west coast of South America. Example of key cities were Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Buenos Aires (Argentina), and Santiago (Chile), and Caracas (Venezuela) Also included were Mexico City (Mexico.) The airline also earned added revenue (Money) by having won the rights to carry mail (airmail) between America and the South American routes. Many of the airplanes were what were called "flying boats) that were capable of taking off and landing in the water.

The Pan-Am Logo
*Image courtesy of Wikipedia

A Sikorsky S-42 Airplane
*Image courtesy of Wikipedia

As you can see in the poster below, the route of Pan-Am was quite exotic. It's quite amazing how relatively inexpensive (to 2017 prices) the cost of flying to South-America was at the time. Of course, the buying power of a 1941 US Dollar was quite different from a 2017 American Dollar.
A Pan-Am 1941 Itinerary (Route) 
*Image courtesy of Wikipedia


Hope you are doing well and the Blog is rolling along. I will send you a couple of projects to consider.  This first is unique project. The owner is a collector of Pan Am artifacts from the Flying Boat era. He acquired a model stand some years ago that was missing its original model of the Martin M-130 China Clipper. We had some dealings earlier this year and contacted me with an unusual request, would I consider rebuilding a Wyandotte Pressed Steel Toy Clipper into a model?  Interesting thought as there are a few people making nice cast models. The reason is that he absolutely wanted a period produced model and those are as rare as hen's teeth!!

Part I 
(Creating the new model)

Below are the modifications that Tom initiated to meet the requirements of the client. You can see the extensive work that Tom did to create a wonderful model for his client/

There were a great number of modifications needed to make this work. Here is a partial list-
1) Rear wheel was removed and the belly pan modified to accept the fixture's "saddle" mount.
2) Wings were relocated 1/2 further aft and lowered by 1/2"
3) Tailing edge of the wing was tapered to match the M-130
4) Four new struts were created and soldered to the bottom of the wing. The sponsons both have new receptor holes for the bottom pins of the struts.
5) The main landing gear system was removed, the struts folded back up into the sponsons and gaps filled with solder then sanded smooth.
6) Brass plates were soldered to the bottoms of the sponsons to eliminate the hollowed-out effect.
7) New props, engine fronts/shafts (pop rivets!) and cowlings (brass tubes with aluminum inserts) were crafted and installed.
8) the tail assembly was soldered and bend-over tangs were removed.
9) More windows were added to the cockpit area (cut, grind, sand)
10) Two-tone silver and black paint to match prototype.

(The finishing touched)

It's really great to see these old toys being restored and modified for collectors. In this case, the combination of the airplane model with the base plate of the world and focussing on North and South America. 

It's too bad that Pan-Am had to close down, because the airline had wonderful air routes for those who liked exotic places to visit at the time (and still today).

Thanks for dropping by,
and as always,
Have a great part of the day or night
wherever you may be.

Stacey Bindman

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Christopher W. Ferrone Helps Out

Sunday April 9, 2017
Partly Sunny
6 C  41 F

 Christopher W. Ferrone Helps Out

    Finally the weather is getting nicer. Up here in Montreal, it was a somewhat average winter. There wasn't as much snow as usual, but in the last several weeks, we had a huge snowfall of  about 17 3/4 inches  (45 cm). And just this week, there was rain all day long for 3 days. Today, it's finally sunny but cool. But this upcoming Monday, it's going to be 20 C (68 F). 

   I received an e-mail from a friend by the name of Christopher W. Ferrone. He's the President of Americoach Systems, Inc. In Chicago (Illinois, USA). When he's not busy managing his company, his hobby is to take old toys and restore them . Sometimes he just restores them without any changes, and sometimes he alters them like the toy that I'm presenting today.

In Christopher's own words

Hi Stacey

here is a new truck and steam shovel I just completed

the truck is a 1930's Wyandotte, and the steam shovel is a 1920's Metal Craft

both were sand blasted and modified

Note the cab of the truck has been extended slightly and a Portal window has been added, check out the vertical exhaust stack from the hood of the truck .

The steam shovel formerly had its own set of wheels, but I thought it would be cool to mount it on the rear for the truck, I fabricated the base mounting system .

Both pieces are base coat metal flake, and clear coat......hardly "period" for the 20's and 30's, but a cool "spin" and a modern look ??

Both of these toys were broken when I got them.  I only buy broken toys, no fun if it is all together ....right ?

again......sorry for the terrible photos......but at least you get to see my kitchen....hahahah!

Thanks for posting all of my work !

I hope you like this toy



  When I Wrote this blog 4-5 years ago, I also liked to restore toys, but nowhere near the excellent skills of Christopher. I would remove the old paint, find replacement parts, then re-paint the toy. Christopher, on the other hand is an "artiste". Not only does he restore toys, but he works with broken toys, and even is creative. In the case of today,s toy, it is unique. It's a "creation" from 2 toys put together with Christopher's fantastic abilities. 

   If Christopher hadn't informed me that this toy was a combination of 2 toys, I would have thought that it was an authentic toy from the 1930's, such is the skill of Christopher. I always enjoy receiving
e-mails from Christopher, because Ian always anticipating new "art" from his magnificent abilities.

  His e-mail gave me the impetus (motivation) to write this post and to start writing again.  

 So thanks Christopher for your kind effort to help me out, and I especially liked this most unique toy.

Thanks for dropping by,
and as always,
Have a great part of the day or night,
wherever yo umay be,

Stacey Bindman