Posted 10 years ago
Fresh from the glorious Vaterland, this curious looking vehicle was made by a lesser known maker Hans Eberl. They made toys from about 1900 to 1929 (according to the tiny amount of information I can glean). I had never seen one of these up to this point, so I was excited to have the chance to get it. My best guess would be somewhere in the 20s, near the end of that period, since the company made many fine limousines and touring cars (which, by design, are earlier). Definitely during, or post WWI, since it represents an early anti-aircraft vehicle.
I had to make a few adjustments to the motor to get it running, but the effort was well worth it. Simple, yet creatively complex. The old cloth-wrapped wiring even held up after all these years! The battery box on the bottom of this thing is about 2 1/4" by 2 3/4" by 5/8", which is 40% larger than the D battery I rigged up to get the light on. I'm still amazed by how these were designed. The power goes through one wire and then returns though the body of the toy! There is literally only a lever that touches the side of the battery pack which makes the connection to the hull.
The mechanism on this is my favorite part. Attached to one of the gears in the motor, a small crank on the side of it moves a long metal piece inside the hull. Attached to this piece are two more cranks, which are then attached to gun and the light, respectively. The result of this hidden contraption is that, as the car moves along, the spotlight follows the gun as it moves back and forth, right to left.