We bought a small collection of unused Marx and Hafner trains a few years ago. In the bottom of the box we found the 749 windup locomotive and the Automatic Line boxcar. But no channel track. A couple of years ago we came finally came across the proper channel track for the train. So here we present the complete set.
We don’t know when this set was produced, but based on the collection (it came from a closed store and the trains were in the attic), we believe this set was made in the 1950s. All of the other train items came from that period.
Wind up the locomotive, set the on-off switch (in the loco cab) to “on”, and watch it go around the track and push the boxcar. The loco will then loop around to the other side of the boxcar via the outside loop of the figure eight and push the boxcar again. Mesmerizing!
If you’ve ever waited at a railroad crossing, and watch the train slowwwwwly move forward, get almost to the point where you’ll be able to get across the tracks, but nooooooo!, the train backs up!, then you know what “shuttle “ means in train language!
Marx thought so much of this process commemorating the train shuttling action, he applied for a patent for this toy. We wish he’d spent his money on overpasses!
Size: Platform: 20 ½ inches long; 10 inches wide; ½ inch high--- Locomotive: 3 1/8 inches long; 1 ¾ inches high; about 1 ½ inches wide ---Boxcar: 2 inches long; 1 ¼ inches wide; about 1 ½ inches high
Condition: The locomotive and boxcar have just a few scratches. They were probably on display in the toy shop back in the ‘50s. When we finally got the track, we wound up the locomotive, maybe for the first time. It was stiff and took several windups to loosen it.
The track shows wear from use. The original loco and boxcar are long gone. There are a couple of dings. And there are several scratches to the varnish finish, but none appear to be down to the bare metal.
You can see the dings easier on the reverse red side. Even with its faults the platform displays well.
If you like platform or channel toys such as this, consider hanging them on a wall. They make great wall art. If you like, I can send you a picture of how I’m displaying my TPS platform toys.
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