c.1949 Marx, Blaze Away Dart Pistol in Original Box

c.1949 Marx, Blaze Away Dart Pistol in Original Box

Scarce Marx, enameled pressed steel "Blaze Away Dart Pistol" complete with original box, insert, and four rubber tipped wooden darts. First time I've ever found this toy. 

Maxine Pinsky in her book, Greenberg's Guide To Marx Toys, Volume 1 describes this toy as a detailed multicolored lithographed pistol. This example, however is jet black, enamel painted pressed steel. It's similar in appearance to Marx' line of sparkling pop pistols including Dick Tracy and the G-Man gun. However, it's smaller, has a trigger guard, no decal, and shoots darts; so it's significantly different from those earlier toys. It has a spring loaded barrel capable of firing a rubber tipped dart several feet. 

They all came with four rubber tipped darts and a customized insert with instructions. This is an example of that toy with its beautifully illustrated hinged box and original insert plus all four wooden darts.

The gun has a stationary bullet cylinder and hammer. The grips are embossed with cross-hatched markings. The bottom is stamped "Made In USA" and are the only identifying marks on the toy. The Marx logo does not appear on the pistol. The darts fit perfectly into the barrel and the spring mechanism holds them securely. An easy squeeze of the trigger releases the dart, but I only did this to make sure that it worked correctly. I wouldn't recommend using it because the wooden shafts are fragile and could easily break off and jam the spring. As already mentioned it comes complete with its four original wooden shaft darts with red rubber suction cup tips. 

Please note the right side of the frame has a factory made die-cut hole just behind the bullet cylinder. This was meant to accept a plastic jewel or concho. Other Western versions of the toy may have included this piece. There are no scratches or points around the hole to indicate that it ever held this decoration. 

The handsome hinged cover box was printed in glossy black with multicolor illustrations. The cover shows a sprite cow-lad shootin' from the hip. With polka-dot bandanna blowing in the wind and his woolly blue chaps he's ready for any malicious varmints. A small town on a river's edge is shown behind him. The Marx logo was also printed on the cover. The front and side aprons include the name of the toy and reemphasize that the set comes with extra darts. The Marx name and address were also printed on the front panel.

The box utilizes a two tier die cut orange insert. It's divided in half diagonally with the left division holding the four darts. The right side was recessed to accommodate the pistol. This side was printed with 'important instructions' and two simple schematics for loading the darts. Interestingly the insert was printed with a pre-1939 Marx logo, while the cover used the revised post-1939 logo.

Size: 7½" x 3¾" x 1".

Sold: Feb. 2008

Price Sold: $ 262


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Subject: c.1949 Marx, Blaze Away Dart Pistol in Original Box

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