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Stringing together a bargain

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The 7 May  Trains, Planes & Automobiles auction, from Down Under, once again went to prove that not everything collectable is mint and boxed – and neither is it necessarily with a huge price tag attached. A large number of lots went under the hammer, with something for everyone – literally.

The Pelham wooden Skeleton puppet was typical of the fare. Around 300mm tall, its pieces fly apart and reunite (when in skilled hands, that is). Somewhat tangled, with a few parts detached, it needed a little work but appeared to be complete. A Spot-on catalogue (3rd Edition) also turned up, as did two Scalextric vehicles, to wit a Vintage Sports Car and a Motor Cycle with Sidecar. Both were poor but a guideline of AUS$100–200 was noted.

The Winna WV526 Bakelite car, in dark brown, was much better. At 188mm long, this was the version without a clockwork motor. Winna remains a popular brand in Oz and this example eventually made AUS$380. One of several made-up models offered, a pretty 1/72 scale RN Fairey Gannet had been (professionally?) built from a kit, and had been superbly painted and detailed. In excellent condition, it sold for AUS$80. It’s interesting to see that unmade kits are not always the ones to look out for.

Totally different was the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express Souvenir Sheaffer fountain pen. With silver lattice overlay and 18K gold nib, it came with two unused cartridges and a refillable converter. Described as very good, in a very good silver-plated presentation box, this carried a lowly estimate of AUS$40 but enough train buffs were bidding to propel it to AUS$130.

Remember the yo-yo craze? These toys are still about, of course, but the shop display box of 12 Russell Professional Coca-Cola Yo-Yos, finished in red and white (what else?), came with five packets of spare strings. As new, in a good box, this novel set sold for AUS$14.

Another popular make in Australia is Micro Models – and the GB/12 Talbot-Lago racing car, finished in green, was a good example of the genre. Some slight paint loss in certain areas was flagged up but its estimate AUS$80-160 proved rather too modest, the car accelerating away to achieve AUS$200.

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