American J Chein toy manufacturer was in business from 1903 through the 1980's. The company is best remembered today for its stamped and lithographed tin toys produced from the 1930's - 1950's.
This is the Classic No.172 Hercules Mechanical Ferris Wheel manufactured by Chein & Co. from 100% lithographed tin with spring driven motor. The toy is characterized by its brilliant red and yellow design. It has six spokes and gondolas and features the famous smiling clown hub. The opposite side hub includes a spinning, ringing pinwheel. It was produced in four versions from the early 1930's through the early 1960's and originally sold for $1.00. This being an early version of the Chein Ferris wheels, it can be identified by its period graphics of knickers, old style orangeade dispenser and the freak show side panels. The freaks were replaced with animals in later versions.
The ferris wheel measures 16 3/8" in height, 10 1/4" in length and 4 3/4" in width. The condition of the lithographs are very good with some minor wear and rust. The spring driven motor winds and the ferris wheel turns with a little help to get started as well as the bell mechanism; probably only needs some fine turning. Great 1930's wind-up American toy.
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