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Post  Kim Mon Dec 07, 2020 4:23 pm

From my Facebook Page:
-------------------------------------------------------------------

Thanks to Ebay:  It's now "Christmas 1965" on the Hill.

Mattel "Vac-U-Form"...The Original 3-D Printer

Come with me to a bygone era, when it was considered absolutely normal to give an 11 year-old kid a Christmas present with the same heat range as a hot plate turned up to full-tilt boogie.

Second-degree burns aside, it had the wonderful capability of creating multiple types of toys from small sheets of plastic...though the only ones I considered worth bothering with either flew or looked like something that could fly.  

The plastic sheets could be purchased in packages of all colors, along with other mold packs allowing more creations.

About the size of a shoebox, it has a mold platform that sits atop a manual vacuum pump on the left, and an incredibly hot heating element on the right, with a hinged frame that flopped from one side to the other.

The plastic sheet is locked into it's frame and held above the heating element 'till just above liquidity, then slammed over the mold while the Junior Craftsman furiously pumps the handle to the vacuum pump.

If all goes well, the hot plastic is drawn down around the mold and all that's left is to cut the new flying machine from it's plastic sheet.

So there we are...a new creation...formed by blister-raising hot plastic, then cut to freedom by Aunt Bert's sharply pointed dress making scissors.

What a Great Childhood...though I'm not sure how we got here---what with BB Guns, Cherry Bombs, Slingshots, Structurally Deficient Grape Vines, and Experimental Umbrella Parachute Jumps (they don't slow you down one bit, by the way).

Now, thanks to Ebay...we're going there again.  I've granted Power of Attorney to my brother Keith, and he'll post my hospital room number if need be.

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Post  GallopingGhostler Mon Dec 07, 2020 4:38 pm

Nice catch, and mint, too! Thumbs Up I remember that, was listed in the toy catalogs. I was 11 YO in 1965. sunny

Second thought, maybe it is not a vacuum leak. drunken Popcorn

A 14 YO is strong, furiously pumping away with his fingers versus us seniors. Old Bugger Hot lol!
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Post  Jason_WI Mon Dec 07, 2020 4:47 pm

If its big enough you could recreate the bubble pack Cox packaging used on the Olympic, sportsman, early TDs, RR-1, Strato bug, thermal hopper, space bug jr, ect Just need the forms.

Modern day version has a built in vacuum pump. No need to furiously pump it down manually.

https://www.matterhackers.com/store/l/vaquform-dt2-digital-desktop-vacuum-former/sk/MWNVJSUP
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Post  roddie Mon Dec 07, 2020 5:32 pm

"Aunt Bert's sharply pointed dress making scissors..."

Dude.. you need to seriously think about working on an autobiography. I'd read it for sure!

Do you suppose that a Jetex engine could fly that Delta-wing?     or......... Eyebrows   an elastic/dowel catapult-launch with a safety-foam (ear-plug) nose-cone? What great stocking stuffers! Lighting The Tree


Last edited by roddie on Mon Dec 07, 2020 6:55 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : SP)
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Post  NEW222 Mon Dec 07, 2020 6:43 pm

Wow, is that ever neat. Congrats to you with your new toy!
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Post  KariFS Tue Dec 08, 2020 1:02 am

Pretty cool! Or hot Very Happy Is that a Delta Dart?

Nevermind the burns, BB guns, cherry bombs and all that, borrowing a lady’s dress making scissors without permission, especially for cutting anything besides fabric, now that’s dangerous!

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Post  balogh Tue Dec 08, 2020 1:33 am

@KariFS wrote:........

Nevermind the burns, BB guns, cherry bombs and all that, borrowing a lady’s dress making scissors without permission, especially for cutting anything besides fabric, now that’s dangerous!


I second to that Kari.... lol!
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Post  Oldenginerod Tue Dec 08, 2020 2:02 am

@Jason_WI wrote:
Modern day version has a built in vacuum pump. No need to furiously pump it down manually.

https://www.matterhackers.com/store/l/vaquform-dt2-digital-desktop-vacuum-former/sk/MWNVJSUP

$985 hey? Not something to stick in the kids' Christmas stockings.
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Post  getback Tue Dec 08, 2020 5:35 am

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Post  Kim Wed Dec 09, 2020 4:57 am

@getback wrote:Hot Damn , I didn't have one of those But i did have one those creepy crawler making machines Bought got caught stealing some molds for a downtown store Laughing

My little brother got a similar "Encredable Edibles" machine, that heated a really sickening syrup in bugs and lizard molds so kids could gross each other out by chewing-up critters and swallowing them.

I don't think any us of wanted more than one dose of those things. Smile Smile Smile

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Post  Kim Wed Dec 09, 2020 4:59 am

@balogh wrote:
@KariFS wrote:........

Nevermind the burns, BB guns, cherry bombs and all that, borrowing a lady’s dress making scissors without permission, especially for cutting anything besides fabric, now that’s dangerous!


I second to that Kari.... lol!

Aunt Bert wasn't too crazy about it either!  She only had one pair of scissors!


Last edited by Kim on Wed Dec 09, 2020 5:05 am; edited 1 time in total
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Post  Kim Wed Dec 09, 2020 5:05 am

@roddie wrote:"

Do you suppose that a Jetex engine could fly that Delta-wing?     or......... Eyebrows   an elastic/dowel catapult-launch with a safety-foam (ear-plug) nose-cone? What great stocking stuffers! Lighting The Tree

This one is too small for a Jetex, though a bottle rocket might make it go!
There was an optional mold for a flying wing that was double the wingspan, but I don't think I ever got that one.
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Post  GallopingGhostler Wed Dec 09, 2020 9:29 am

@Kim wrote:This one is too small for a Jetex, though a bottle rocket might make it go!

I Love This Forum! Back then, I would buy a hard plastic delta wing of 4 to 5 inch wingspan like that with rubber band catapult for $0.05 back in 1966. They came in colors of pink, orange, green yellow, white, light purple and light blue. They were fast fliers, worked best angled very slightly down from the horizon. The plane would near the ground a foot or two, then rise up.

Those fliers resembled closely to yours, Kim. They were sold in the local 7-11 store in Makaha, Hawaii. I and my friends would ride our bikes there, it was may be 0.75 miles from home.

Hijacked We didn't have adult supervision, wasn't considered reckless abandon. Would also do body surfing then as a 13 YO at a secluded beach not known by tourists back then, about 1.5 miles south of the famous beach, too.

It was an interesting time, too. I remember a few older adults who would be griping and complaining about cheap crap from Japan, very poor quality, etc. Yet as a teen we had Panasonic fans, Japanese transistor radios, stereos, they seemed to be decent. I had a 1968 Hino Contessa Japanese Renault rear engine car, and after a 1967 Datsun PL411 sedan. They certainly weren't crap.

Later I bought engines from the 1960's, OS Maxes, Enyas, Fujis. They were far from crap. In the 1970's I had a Toshiba stereo system, it certainly was not crap, neither was the used 1970 Mazda 1800 I had. It was more like a Buick, styling BMW-like.

Back To Topic Those were interesting times to grow up in.
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Post  Kim Wed Dec 09, 2020 4:13 pm

@GallopingGhostler wrote:
@Kim wrote:This one is too small for a Jetex, though a bottle rocket might make it go!

I Love This Forum! Back then, I would buy a hard plastic delta wing of 4 to 5 inch wingspan like that with rubber band catapult for $0.05 back in 1966. They came in colors of pink, orange, green yellow, white, light purple and light blue. They were fast fliers, worked best angled very slightly down from the horizon. The plane would near the ground a foot or two, then rise up.

Those fliers resembled closely to yours, Kim. They were sold in the local 7-11 store in Makaha, Hawaii. I and my friends would ride our bikes there, it was may be 0.75 miles from home.


Back To Topic Those were interesting times to grow up in.

I think I had a couple of those too! A little delta wing with turned up "elevons" at the wing tips. The body was a hollow tube that stored the rubberband and dowel when not in use. I could bend the wing tip surfaces down just a bit, and get tremendous diameter loops...though it sometimes didn't recover without smacking the ground.

Dear Lord keep me away from Ebay 'till this vision passes!!!!!!!!
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Post  GallopingGhostler Wed Dec 09, 2020 5:11 pm

@Kim wrote:I think I had a couple of those too!  A little delta wing with turned up "elevons" at the wing tips.  The body was a hollow tube that stored the rubber band and dowel when not in use.  I could bend the wing tip surfaces down just a bit, and get tremendous diameter loops...though it sometimes didn't recover without smacking the ground.

Sounds similar, yes, upturned elevon tabs. There was a larger version, but the smaller I remember, don't recall them having a fuselage compartment for the catapult stick, it was hollow enough to keep weight down, but they were very sturdy, flew the Dickens out of them. (Odd, never knew the connection with Charles Dickens. Shocked )

A couple at $0.05 back in 1966, 1967 and kept me entertained for hours on end. Flew them at Makaha Elementary School grounds a couple blocks from where I lived (long before they had chain link fences protecting the property from kids like nowadays Sad ).

One thing I miss are the hand launch delta duo gliders kits by Jasco or later Jetco. One was slightly smaller than the other, but had such a cool look to them. I have never seen plans available for these, only the corollary Jetco Thermic Trio, which I have.
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Post  Kim Thu Dec 10, 2020 5:00 am

@GallopingGhostler wrote:
@Kim wrote:I think I had a couple of those too!  A little delta wing with turned up "elevons" at the wing tips.  The body was a hollow tube that stored the rubber band and dowel when not in use.  I could bend the wing tip surfaces down just a bit, and get tremendous diameter loops...though it sometimes didn't recover without smacking the ground.

Sounds similar, yes, upturned elevon tabs. There was a larger version, but the smaller I remember, don't recall them having a fuselage compartment for the catapult stick, it was hollow enough to keep weight down, but they were very sturdy, flew the Dickens out of them. (Odd, never knew the connection with Charles Dickens. Shocked )

A couple at $0.05 back in 1966, 1967 and kept me entertained for hours on end. Flew them at Makaha Elementary School grounds a couple blocks from where I lived (long before they had chain link fences protecting the property from kids like nowadays Sad ).

One thing I miss are the hand launch delta duo gliders kits by Jasco or later Jetco. One was slightly smaller than the other, but had such a cool look to them. I have never seen plans available for these, only the corollary Jetco Thermic Trio, which I have.

We lived in a housing project on the east side of Paducah, Kentucky at the time, and most of my gliders ended up on the top of our apartment block. Even back then, I wondered what the glider "saw" at the top of it's loop above the buildings and trees. Once in a while, there was were some guys hired to clean out the gutters (tennis balls, and other debris), but I never got any of my gliders back!

Wouldn't want to go back to that time, but it sure is fun remembering.
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Post  Levent Suberk Thu Dec 10, 2020 10:27 am

I remember it from Sears catalog. Instructions:

https://www.samstoybox.com/toys/instruct/vac-u-form/vacuform01.html

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Post  Levent Suberk Thu Dec 10, 2020 10:28 am

My Antique "3-D Printer" Page0210
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Post  Kim Thu Dec 10, 2020 2:01 pm

Yeah! On the second page, about half-way down is the mold kit for the flying wing. I remember a kid I knew having one, but can't recall if I ever got those molds. The wing was twice the size of the delta wing, with two molds for left and right, and glided a lot better.
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Post  TLAnderson Thu Dec 10, 2020 7:27 pm

@Kim wrote:

I think I had a couple of those too!  A little delta wing with turned up "elevons" at the wing tips.  The body was a hollow tube that stored the rubberband and dowel when not in use.

And that hollow tube was just the right size for a firecracker. You could get the plane ready to launch, have your buddy light the fuse, and let 'er go. It would leave a trail of sparks from the burning fuse right up until it detonated. Cool
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Post  getback Fri Dec 11, 2020 5:31 am

@TLAnderson wrote:
@Kim wrote:

I think I had a couple of those too!  A little delta wing with turned up "elevons" at the wing tips.  The body was a hollow tube that stored the rubberband and dowel when not in use.

And that hollow tube was just the right size for a firecracker. You could get the plane ready to launch, have your buddy light the fuse, and let 'er go. It would leave a trail of sparks from the burning fuse right up until it detonated. Cool
The fling bomb lol!

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