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Author Topic: Sliding pillar for children  (Read 1376 times)
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Posts: 89

« on: 04 September, 2014, 04:09:27 PM »

On one of the first pages of Geoff Goldberg’s superb new book is a small photo of a young Gianni Lancia in his toy car.  Now many families have photos of their kids in a toy car but how many have the toy car with sliding pillar front suspension?

So far I have not come across any text about this car so can anybody throw any light on it?  From the photo the sliding pillar looks a small version of the real thing but that would be incredibly complicated in making the internals.  Was it a mock up, made to look correct and of a size to fit this toy car with no internals inside the shell? Or could it possibly have started out as a model made for experimental reasons or perhaps an exercise for the apprentices?   Was there anything inside the pillars? 

Intriguing and someone somewhere (Geoff?) must know although I think we can be fairly certain the toy will not still exist; nice to be proved wrong.  Whatever, perhaps this might inspire a member or two to produce their own toy car for their children or grandchildren.   
Posts: 501

« Reply #1 on: 04 September, 2014, 05:27:51 PM »

Good catch. The kids on p. 260 didn't get the suspension.

And no, we don't know anything more about the Gianni car. It was a pretty special find to get that image! Its likely Vincenzo had that car made up in the workshops, they did like to fiddle.

B20 s.2, Appia C10, Flavia 2000
Posts: 89

« Reply #2 on: 15 September, 2014, 06:39:37 PM »

A random thought inspired by Roland Grazebrook's article in the current VL.

If you are making something complex the chances are you have a close look at what other people have already done in this field.  Virtually normal practice as long as no patents are upset.  Or nobody finds out.

So is it possible that Lancia had a look at or even bought a sliding pillar car or cars to reap experience of others?  Whatever they used could well have been left knocking around the workshop until one day someone had the bright idea of using it on the toy car. 

This would explain the toy having what looks like smaller sized axle/pillars compared with the production version.  Of course it is still quite possible that Lancia made a small version for their own experimental purposes.  Just seems a bit over the top to make a whole axle and sliding pillars for a toy although you never know.  And we shall never know but fun to contemplate.  Any other thoughts?
Permanent resident
Posts: 1493

« Reply #3 on: 15 September, 2014, 08:52:22 PM »

I seem to recall having read that the company were very keen to ensure that staff were fully trained and ran an in-house training scheme to assist in this.

It is possible that the toy was at least in part an 'apprentice piece', quite possibly for more than one trainee!!!  It was common practice for English furniture producers of the 18th and 19th centuries to have their apprentices produce small scale pieces similar to the main offering of the company as part of their training, usually it was the final test.

Just a thought,

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