A Nice Find … That Could Have Been So Much Nicer

I saw some garage sale signs pop up in the neighborhood on Wednesday evening, so I decided to check them out on the next day. I stopped at one on my way home for lunch on Thursday. I found a box with some old Hot Wheels tracks, a Speedometer and a Big Belter (with Speed Control). As I paid for the find, I asked the woman if she had any cars hidden around anywhere. “I sold them all this morning,” she said, “Tray after tray of my husbands old cars from the 60s and 70s.” Ouch. I guess until I get serious enough to get up at 6AM every Thursday, I’ll have to be happy with the things that the professional garage salers pass over.

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The Speedometer, which is copyrighted 1968, still works fine. The Big Belter, copyright 1970 just needed a couple of fresh rubber bands, though the Speed Controls seem to be worn out and I think it’s missing a tower or something in the middle. My find also included several sections of straight track and two 180 degree curves, and a few sections of yellow Matchbox Superfast track. If you want more info on Hot Wheels track sets, check out the HotWheelsRaceTracks blog, where you can even watch videos of the sets in action.

We had quite a bit of track when I was a kid, enough that we could make a whole city out of Lincoln Logs and other building toys that our Hot Wheels could zip around. An older brother inherited that track, but a few years ago I bought a re-issue of the old Stunt Action Set at Target – the one with the classic loop and the ramp. In fact, about the only time that my son plays with Hot Wheels is when we get out the orange track. Still, I was a little surprised how much fun he’s been having with this Speedometer.

So we went to another garage sale this morning and I came across some newer Hot Wheels toys, a police station and a bank. I showed them to my son and he immediately wanted to buy them. “Dad,” he said, “we could make a whole city!”

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About marcboz

Marc Bosworth is an artist who teaches printmaking and works as an art director. He lives in a 100-year-old bungalow in Wichita with his lovely wife and their young ninja son.
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4 Responses to A Nice Find … That Could Have Been So Much Nicer

  1. I love the look of the speedo. Nice find. You know I dont remember seeing one of them as a kid? Are/were they pretty rare? And as to getting up early for garage sales…its the way to go for the bargains but I myself have never done it 🙂 Love this post. Good stuff. Doogie.

    • marcboz says:

      Thanks, Doogie, glad you enjoyed the post. I always enjoy your posts as well! Apparently, this single-lane Speedometer might be fairly rare, since the set that it came in was sold exclusively through Allied Stores, or so my fellow blogger and orange track expert tells us. Check out his page about this set here. He’s the real authority on this stuff!

      See you at 6:00am next Thursday!
      Marc

  2. Smackeralcafe says:

    Hi Mark, I came across this blog posting because I was searching for current internet info on the Big Belter. Thanks for the props to my blog site. I am currently in production on my first Big Belter blog/video and have 3 more blogs/videos lined up for this device after that. I think you’ll like them. I had 4 kids over this past Christmas week and we ran the Big Belter/Matchmaker. You should have seen their faces and heard their howls and laughter. The red light feature on the Matchmaker really got them excited. You can’t cheat and leave the line early. Cheers. John

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