Please refrain from posting animated GIFs, memes, joke videos and so on in discussions other than those in the off topic area.

Dismiss this message to confirm your acceptance of this additional forum term of use.
You must be 16 or over to participate in the Brickset Forum. Please read the announcements and rules before you join.

New (Old) LEGO discoveries of 2016.....

IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 1,836
LEGO never ceases to surprise me, what discoveries that are still waiting to be found out in the world.  In 2016 many new old undiscovered items have been found by AFOLs all over the world....

LEGO Minitalia.... that Italian LEGO line of the 1970s, which as it turns out was produced because LEGO was considered a luxury toy to many Italians (and thus had poor sales there).... and not because of any toy import restrictions.... well it turns out that Minitalia was not produced in Italy... but in Kolding... contracted out by TLG using a cheaper plastic for less expensive sets shipped to Italy.  Even Minitalia got caught up in the "marbled LEGO" craze....



Only the white window/green shutters were sold in these sets.  Everything else was found in private collections in Kolding (Image: James).

------------------------------

And then there's those old pricey 1955-70 1:87 HO scale LEGO cars and trucks.  The first of the cars... an Opel Kapitän of 1957 was never actually produced for sale, and only about a dozen examples are known so far.  It turns out that these were produced in Norway... and not Billund Denmark, like all future cars/trucks.  Recently my Norwegian LEGO collector friend Arild found a pair (now in his collection)... probably today the priciest of old LEGO parts... these (so far unique) green and dark red) Opels would command over 5000 Euros each today....



----------------------

But my favorite LEGO mystery part is a much later 6661 Mobile TV Studio first produced in 1989 and early 1990s.  There are now more versions of this set... some quite pricey... once people become aware of them... ;-)

They made this worldwide set for hanging on a rack...



... or just in a box on a shelf....



Well.... as it turns out... not all the sets had "TV" printed on the 1x4x3 pair of blue panels...



Looks like some of these were overprinted "WDR", even though the "TV" imprinted into the panel is still plainly visible.

WDR stands for "West Deutsche Rundfunk"... the northwest Germany TV station (based in Cologne).  The TLG Archives and German LEGO marketing folks had no documentation on why this part was produced.  But it appears that some "special" sets were produced as a promotional set for WDR station's 25th Anniversary in 1990.  Only thing is, it appears this was done "under the table".  Perhaps a WDR executive contacted a LEGO executive to get a couple hundred of these made for promotions by the German TV station.

So they promo sets were thought to have used just regular 6661 set boxes and instructions.....



And inside in the cellophane sealed bag were WDR panes... so you wouldn't know if you had a WDR 6661 set, until you opened the box.  And then these showed up.....



6661 sets with WDR seals!!   So it looks as though the German TV station had special sealed sets for their Silver Anniversary promotion.  BUT... this set also exists with just the regular circular transparent box seal.

Well what might be the cause of that?  I bet TLG produced more of these WDR blue panels than were needed for the WDR promo sets.  What would you think TLG would do with those extra WDR blue panels?  Throw them away?   Hell no!   TLG did what they do best... they just put the leftover WDR panels into regular sealed 6661 sets.  This makes for 2 rare versions of the WDR 6661 sets, as well as the normal "TV" 6661 versions (hanging and non-hanging boxes).  Keep your eyes peeled.  These set types are still unknown to most collectors!  $$$

------------------------

Here's another old forgotten obscure LEGO set that just reappeared... the 159 blue train track era (1966-79) set.  Except this isn't the 1976 "rails and crossing" parts pack.   This is a 1968 entire train layout set with all the parts needed to build the track layout on the side of the "carry-all" type box... along with the necessary quantity rail ties (sleepers)....



Apparently this set was sold in very few continental European countries in 1968, and discontinued almost immediately.   Never saw this before 2016....

More unknown stuff to come... gotta get to bed for now though (4AM in the USA EST)....

I'm working on bringing my online LEGO collectors guide to the present (2016)... but old stuff keeps getting in the way!  ;-)

stluxrdflegoYodaliciousAllBrickdrdavewatfordTheLegoMaster35akunthitadavetheoxygenmanblogzillyMooreFXLegogramricecakeJackad7LEGO_Dad77SprinkleOtterCaptainLego

Comments

  • ecmo47ecmo47 North CarolinaMember Posts: 1,758
    Fascinating! Thanks for posting. 
  • catwranglercatwrangler Northern IrelandMember Posts: 1,427
    I actually yelled, "Oh my god!" when I saw the TV van - it's a childhood favourite and didn't expect it to come up in a post about rare parts! Having got mine in the UK, I don't have the WDR panels, but this was a fascinating read anyway. I wonder how many other 'under the table' promo editions of sets there are out there...
  • akunthitaakunthita USAMember Posts: 920

    Gary, I was just thinking of you the other day. Like I haven't seen you post anytime recently and was wondering what you were up to. Then you post this! Always fascinating to read about your findings!

  • blogzillyblogzilly Columbus, OhioMember Posts: 542
    Love the history, the depth of the hobby...great post.
  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 1,836
    edited January 12
    akunthita said:

    Gary, I was just thinking of you the other day. Like I haven't seen you post anytime recently and was wondering what you were up to. Then you post this! Always fascinating to read about your findings!


    Hi Anna, yes I have been busy researching many LEGO items.... old sets, new sets (finding oddities such as the 6661), and also the old wooden LEGO toys.  I am working on a massive project that I am not at liberty to say much about (yet), except that it's for a "major" Asian country (unfortunately to be translated into their language by them), but I am using my Unofficial LEGO Sets/Parts Collectors Guide computer desktop online guide as the template for them to translate from.  My current guide only goes to the mid 1990's, but I was in the process of bringing it forward into the current century, when this offer came along. (I posted last night in Marketplace about current owners of my guide getting all these future updates, including 21st century additions, as free upgrades.  See Marketplace for details.)  Unfortunately, very soon, I may be forced to make my online guide a closed edition (except for current owners, who will get free upgrades/additions, plus all new higher res images).

    I'm hoping that once the Asia project is done... that an English language (and possibly others?) is in the works.  I had to buy a block of 10 ISBN numbers... and most will be taken for this multivolume work. It will be book form, but much costlier compared to the online guide.

    So as I'm working forward.... my LEGO collector friends and acquaintances keep finding old stuff that is relatively unknown... and quite valuable.... and in the process dragging me back.... :-)  If anything, I would have to say that 2016 was "The Year of LEGO in Norway", because of the astonishing amount of quirky and unusual LEGO items that originated from there from the years 1953-62.  From WWII until 1961Norway had a toy import restriction, and they produced their own LEGO sets and parts... some things downright strange!! ;-)

    More 2016 discoveries to come.... 

    Here's a new Norwegian discovery... from 1956-57.... Esso Stations in Norway would give people who got petrol fillups at their stations one of these 1:87 Bedford Esso Barrel Tanker Trucks (for their kids).  Not only is the box valuable... but the decal in only Norway was just "ESSO"... and a mint one of those would fetch circa $500 alone.... with the box lots more....  (no plastic "window glass" on these)...



    Good to hear from you Anna!!

    catwranglerstluxLEGO_Dad77
  • Switchfoot55Switchfoot55 Washington, USAMember Posts: 338
    Really interesting read. Thanks for the Lego history lesson!
    Istokg
  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 1,836
    edited January 12
    Some of the new items I was fortunate enough to get in 2016 was some wonderful box images of older sets, which show some of the finest LEGO artwork ever.  Here are a pair of the largest basic sets of 1960-65 of continental Europe, Britain and Australia.  There was no rhyme or reason where each of these boxes were sold, but they contained the same contents.  As I said, I love the artwork.... 700/0 Basic sets...  Here's the more common box top of 1960-65....



    And here's the rarer 700/0 box top design of 1960-61...



    A sealed set... shrinkwrapped in cellophane....
    catwranglerstluxLEGO_Dad77
  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 1,836
    edited January 12
    Multi-language LEGO boxes are a very mind boggling part of LEGO sets.  I found a lot more of this in 2016 than I had ever imagined.  For example... the 7740 Intercity Train of 1980, one of the most popular and beloved of all LEGO trains came in 3 box versions....

    1) German, French and Dutch - This 7740 version was likely sold in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Luxemburg, Belgium and Netherlands.



    2) Danish, Swedish, Finnish - This 7740 version sold in Denmark, Sweden and Finland.




    3) English, French, Italian - This 7740 version sold in Britain, Ireland, Australia, France and Italy.  Had this train sold in the USA or Canada (it wasn't)... this box would have been likely used there as well.




    This explains why you sometimes find annual LEGO catalogs of that era in 3 specific languages... to go with specific set language boxed sets.

    It wasn't until 1990-92 that LEGO boxes came mainly in 2 versions.... North American (English, French, Spanish), and Rest of World (little to no writing on the boxes).
    catwranglerstluxPeteMsid3windrLEGO_Dad77
  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 1,836
    Maersk sets have been popular ever since the 1650 Maersk Line Container Set came out as a promotional set back in 1974.

    In 2004 the 10152 Maersk Sealand was introduced as a popular set, which contained for the first time Maersk blue 2x4 bricks (only 4).

    In 2005 an additional 10152 set version was introduced, and in 2006 the same 10152 Mersk Ship was introduced, but it no longer had the Sealand label or stickers.

    The 2006 version....


    There were only ever 5 sets that had Maersk blue 2x4 bricks... the 2004-2005-2006 10152 Maersk ships, the 2010 10155 Maersk ship, and the 2011 10219 Maersk Train set.

    There's nothing special about the Maersk blue 2x4 bricks found in these 5 sets (4-5 bricks per set).... except...

    In 2006... TLG was producing the 2006 Maersk Line Ship set... and something happened.  The factory was running low on Maersk blue 2x4 bricks as they were nearing the end of the production run.  Rather than produce another batch of bricks, many of which would sit around in inventory for years, TLG asked the model shops if they had any Maersk blue 2x4 bricks... so they could finish the production run.  Well one of the older model shops (not sure which one)... did have a supply of the 2x4 bricks in their inventory in that color, so they shipped them to be included in the last of the 2006 10152 Maersk ship sets.

    What no one at TLG knew (or didn't care about)... was that these model shop versions of the Maersk blue 2x4 bricks in the late 10152 sets... were 3001old bricks... namely they didn't have cross supports attaching the tubes underneath to the sidewalls.  This 3001old brick in Maersk blue was likely produced in the early 1980s for some model shop glued display models... and never found in any LEGO set... Maersk or otherwise... until the end of the 2006 run of the 10152.

    A very interesting and rare part that is available in Bricklink, at a premium, but not too expensive.  And it's one of the few parts "not found in any set" that we actually have a provenance for.



    More LEGO Mayhem!  :-)

    RogerKirkAllBrickLegogramsid3windrricecakeLEGO_Dad77stluxcatwranglerGalactus
  • WoutRWoutR NetherlandsMember Posts: 43
    Istokg said: (...)
    In 2006... TLG was producing the 2006 Maersk Line Ship set... and something happened.  The factory was running low on Maersk blue 2x4 bricks as they were nearing the end of the production run.  Rather than produce another batch of bricks, many of which would sit around in inventory for years, TLG asked the model shops if they had any Maersk blue 2x4 bricks... so they could finish the production run.  Well one of the older model shops (not sure which one)... did have a supply of the 2x4 bricks in their inventory in that color, so they shipped them to be included in the last of the 2006 10152 Maersk ship sets.

    What no one at TLG knew (or didn't care about)... was that these model shop versions of the Maersk blue 2x4 bricks in the late 10152 sets... were 3001old bricks... namely they didn't have cross supports attaching the tubes underneath to the sidewalls.  This 3001old brick in Maersk blue was likely produced in the early 1980s for some model shop glued display models... and never found in any LEGO set... Maersk or otherwise... until the end of the 2006 run of the 10152. (...)
    Thank you for that story. I knew part of it, but now the remaining pieces of the puzzle fall into their places.


    The most amazing new (old) discovery I have seen in 2016 was this brick:

    (Not my photo)
    A CA 2x4 bricks with three cross-supports!

    It was made in the same odd mold as these bricks:

    catwranglerstlux
Sign In or Register to comment.
Recent discussions Categories Privacy Policy