|Linemar GE Courier Car|
Such was the case with the GE courier car. While not in mint condition, it's still in reasonably good shape -- and the price was right. I now have five of the ten vehicles offered in this set, and I'm leaning towards the opinion that this a set created to get rid of existing inventory. When I last wrote about this set (Collecting -- and collecting information 14), I wasn't so sure.
A little hands-on comparison.
Below is a photo of the five vehicles I currently own. It's pretty easy to see that the coal truck and fire engine were made one way (with the chassis crimped to the body), and the other three made differently (with the bodies held to the chassis with tabs).
|Top row (L-R): NYC fire engine, Central Coal & Coke Co. coal truck. |
Bottom row (L-R) Potomac Electric Power Company truck,
General Electric courier car, Bond Bread delivery van.
There's almost an evolution in form from left to right. The Bond truck just has a single indentation for the friction motor. The GE car has the same, plus an additional groove. The PEPCO truck has a second distinctive circular indentation. If the motor didn't change design, then there's no need for these variations. After all -- every time you alter a piece it costs time and money. Companies like Linemar operated on a very thin margin, so it's not something they would do lightly.
These variations further convince me that these three vehicles were made at different times, perhaps using three different friction motors (perhaps from different suppliers?) that required the modifications. That's my current conclusion, anyway.
I should just open up those three cars and see if, in fact, the motors are different. There's always a danger in bending and rebending those fragile tabs, tough. That's something I"ll have to think on a while. For now, I'm happy to go with what the external evidence is suggesting to me.