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Post  Shagrug Tue Jun 11, 2024 10:46 pm

Hello-

     I didn't see it in a search- And it might be too trivial a question...

     Both versions were in the first blister card packages (1957) with only the Thimble Drome name. (no Cox name on it yet) I've never noticed the silver tank backplate version until now. I am used to the brass look, and after seeing a NIP photo of the silver version I'm curious. Are they both zinc alloy? I am wondering what it was made from due to the color difference, and which version is earlier production. I've a lifelong fan of the pee wee, and owned many over my 70 years. Still flying one now and then.

     I can post photos if clarification is needed.
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Post  Admin Wed Jun 12, 2024 1:35 am

Welcome to the forum.

I believe the varying near-silver/clear to light yellow/brass to dark brass/copper look these backplates have is due to variations in the zinc chromate treatment that was done to the backplates in the early years. The backplates are made of Zamac (zinc base) and are subject to corrosion, so the backplates were treated with zinc chromate. Clear chromate was used early on (1956-57, then switching to a yellow chromate (~1957-58), and finally a brass colored chromate (~1958-87 when zinc backplates were discontinued due to mold wear).

This would be a good one for @Mark Boesen and or @Mudhen to give some input on, my years may be off, it's been awhile since I've thought about it.

Not sure if or how many engines may have left the factory without a chromate treatment or if they used a clear chromate sporadically in the later years. I have seen later (60s) engines with gray/silver backplates (both inside and out). The chromate coating can also wear off due to handling and aggressive cleaning.

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Post  Shagrug Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:30 am

Thanks, that answers a lot of my questions. I've seen the badly oxidized and green discolored spots, along with the different tints. On the 049's as well. So I guess comparisons could help identify production runs, and help figure out exactly how old a engine is.

     So 1956 was the first year for the pee wee?
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Post  Admin Wed Jun 12, 2024 4:02 am

The Pee Wee was first released in early 1957. The Babe Bee .049 was released in late 1956.

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Post  rdw777 Fri Jun 14, 2024 12:30 pm

Here’s a screenshot shot I saved from somewhere here on the forum that helps with dating early engines…. Pretty sure @Mark Boesen originally provided this…Displaying .049’s but PeeWee’s should track along pretty closely…

Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... C9f79a10
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Post  GallopingGhostler Fri Jun 14, 2024 10:48 pm

11 months ago, I bought an earlier Pee Wee Cox with no anodized red fuel tank. It has the earlier Zamac tank back with a smaller orifice and no dirt screen. Got it for less than $30, was surprised no one else was bidding on it with me.

Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... 2023-176

Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... 2023-177

It has some tarnish, but the back is of a lighter color than my later Pee Wee's. Although it is definitely used, still has good compression. Just needs a really good clean-up and a little fin straightening, should look more respectable after I do that.
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Post  Shagrug Sun Jun 16, 2024 1:01 pm

Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... A_pee_10
Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... B_pee_10
Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... C_pee_10

Thanks to all- I'm learning some good history here.

The photos inserted show what prompted my post. Both are in the earliest(1957?) blister package and identical except for the backplate. I have a later package (photo D) with the starter spring added- does anyone know through what years it was made? And when the screen was added in the backplate? In 1964 as the 049 pic shows? And any production year info on the clear case version? (Photo E)


Last edited by Shagrug on Sun Jun 16, 2024 1:31 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Post  Shagrug Sun Jun 16, 2024 1:03 pm

Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... D_late10

The later blister card version. It has a screen added along with the spring.,,,


Last edited by Shagrug on Sun Jun 16, 2024 1:17 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Post  Shagrug Sun Jun 16, 2024 1:13 pm

Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... E_pee_10
The clear case version...
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Post  Shagrug Sun Jun 16, 2024 1:26 pm

Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... F_sanw10

And while we're at it- any info on when these were exported and rebranded?
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Post  GallopingGhostler Sun Jun 16, 2024 3:01 pm

Shagrug wrote:Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... D_late10

The later blister card version. It has a screen added along with the spring.,,,
Thanks, @Shagrug for your Cox Pee Wee pictural history from your collection. Your photo above is what I more or less remember of my Pee Wee purchases back in the early 1970's, the carded engines racked in the hobbyshop engine accessories section or display case.

The Pee Wee was my go-to engine as then, the .010 Tee Dee was at least 3 or 4 times more expensive.
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Post  crankbndr Sun Jun 16, 2024 7:47 pm

From my stash, it's pretty old but don't know the year.


Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... Img_0913
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Post  crankbndr Sun Jun 16, 2024 7:52 pm

$32 Pee Wee ends in 10 min

https://www.ebay.com/itm/326152960530?_trkparms=amclksrc%3DITM%26aid%3D111001%26algo%3DREC.SEED%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20160811114145%26meid%3Dcd0f893fab13442c832a4f714f413a13%26pid%3D100667%26rk%3D6%26rkt%3D8%26sd%3D395461792677%26itm%3D326152960530%26pmt%3D0%26noa%3D1%26pg%3D2351460&_trksid=p2351460.c100667.m2042
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Post  Shagrug Sun Jun 16, 2024 11:16 pm

I see the final price ended up at $58...

Another ebay auction photo I saw while there is posted below. I got to thinking the parts prices listed on the card backs could help determine the age- leastways as to which order they were manufactured in.Early Thimble Drome Pee Wee backplate question... G_earl10
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