c.1939 Marx, U.S. Army Sparkling (Pursuit) Airplane in Original Box

c.1939 Marx, U.S. Army Sparkling (Pursuit) Airplane in Original Box

Superb near mint example of the Marx, Sparkling Airplane. Technically known as the U.S. Army Pursuit plane it's a mechanical tin litho toy and comes complete with its original box. 

Greenberg's Guide to Marx Toys, Volume II, documents three versions of this plane. The one offered in this auction is a fourth undocumented type which incorporates characteristics of those already known. This includes the white balloon tires of one, the red fuselage lithographed cockpit of another, and the sparkling, twin, wing mounted machine guns of the third. Of the three known versions, two of them have the attached wind-up key underneath the left wing. This example, like one of the known versions, winds from the right side. 

Common to all four types is the fantastic appearance and overall quality that went into making this toy. The first photo shows how the lithographic design makes it look like a speeding demon even when standing still. Streaming fuselage riveted lines, alternate red, white and blue striping with Army Air Corp. insignias on both wings, chrome plated embossed propeller and engine cowl, balloon treaded tires with sidewall specifications, and a solid color upright tail wing which neatly blends into the fuselage all contribute to its appeal.

Sparks still emit from the machine guns although they're inconsistent because of the nibbled size of the remaining flints (but can be easily replaced). The single rear metal wheel (which is actually two steel disks riveted together) attach to a support which is also part of the upright tail wing. It's made to wobble slightly so that the plane turns to the left or right, rather than just move ahead in a straight line.  It's powered by a triple-gear, step down, spring wound motor. 

The box is a simple text type with one important consideration. It has a pre-1939 logo printed on the endflaps. The plane itself has a logo which was first used in 1939. This more accurately dates manufacture of the toy from late 1938 to early 1939.

Size: 6¾" fuselage, 8" wingspan. 

Sold: Apr. 2006

Price Sold: $ 417


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Subject: c.1939 Marx, U.S. Army Sparkling (Pursuit) Airplane in Original Box

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