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redstar
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Here's an Italian Rivarossi set made around 1948-49. The car is made of zinc, has electric headlights & is slotless. There's also a photo of it next to a 1937 German Tippco Alder just to show the scale. The track has a metal surface divided into + & - sides, the transformer is housed in a wooden gas station. There is a metal tree & gas pump there as well. I've never seen one of these before. its amazing all the early post-war Italian electric car sets made.

Enjoy!
Bernard

 

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Great stuff Bernard - looks a bit like a smaller version of the earlier French LR set.

You're right about the Italian sets, pretty amazing how many were produced in a post-war economy! Of course, none seems to have been mass produced either...

Hiding the transformer/controller in a building was also another old trick - was it Tippco that did the same thing?

Don
 

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Vendor
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I'm trying to translate, literally, the

INSTRUCTIONS
the 'AUTOPISTA LT' (note: Autopista = slot car track in italian) is a toy which, in its simplicity, has reached admirable technic and represents the joy of children, the entertainment of adults.
Making the toy work is extremely simple: the small car faithfully follows the track, while to adjust the speed, the purpose made lever placed behind the control cabin, must be used.
For best performance (note: literally: good working) of the car a proper assembly of the track is mandatory, which can be had by strongly screwing the little nuts (by means of the special tube little key), keeping in mind that the washer (note: in italian, rigarella - I've never read this term before, so I assume it's a washer) must be placed right before the little nut.
In the part of track, where the wire coming from the control cabin is joined, it is necessary to put, between the track and the washer (again: rigarella - what is it?), the cable joints (note: attacchi - can be any type of joint, faston, eyelet, etc...)
Place carefully the small car (note: vetturetta, has an 'endearment' tone) on the track laying, with the proper pressure, the brass braid (for the electrical contact) on the track.
All that's left now is to give power to the track and... have fun, be it watching the car, or making timed speed races, or any other game created by fantasy.
There are several different layouts that you can make especially if you will extend your circuit with more track pieces, to be asked to your retailer.
You can also request, through your retailer, any spare part that you may need.
Remember the voltage of the place you live to make the right choice, in case you need to change the power plug (note: this is a complete surprise to me - I did not know that Italy had different voltage for different places, after the war)
EACH BOX CONTAINS:
One small car (I can't read further)
One control cabin
six pieces of curved track
four piees of straight track
one small bag containing (I can't read further)

A very interesting read. It sounds typical of how Italian was written so many years ago.

Regards
Maurizio
 

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Thanks Maurizio! And your notes on the difficulties of translation interpretation are very sharp and very useful...

There are two schools of translation on these points, but I'll spare you all the existential anguish of the professional translator...

Don

PS: still seems funny that a lot of these early systems didn't seem to grasp that running a single car around a track had only limited appeal!
 

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Jim Moyes
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What a wonderful piece of electric model car history.

That car is probably quite futuristic for the 40's!
 

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Hi Bernard

Absolutely great stuff. A very nice addition to your collection. It is almost as if the toy makers were taking their cues from the model train world. So a car instead of a train. Although we did have train races in the States during the 1930s(?). It certainly did take the manufacturers a while to get to car racing.

all my very best,

Charles
 
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