1933 Unique Art Mfg. "DareDevil Motor Cop" in Original Box

1933 Unique Art Mfg.

One of the more difficult to find of all the pre-war clockwork tin litho motorcycle toys in high grade condition is this DareDevil Motor Cop manufactured by Unique Art Mfg. It comes complete with one of the best original boxes I've seen for this toy. Both the toy and box conservatively grade EXC+

The toy features two parallel revolving rear wheels and a freely spinning front wheel. The clockwork motor winds-up using either of the extra long banana-shaped steel keys connected just below the seat. A start-stop lever is on the rear fender. 

As it begins moving forward the banana keys unwind and eventually make ground contact. This forces the entire toy to tip over. It lays on the floor, but the keys continue turning. As they complete the revolution the keys again make ground contact, only now its forced upright. The toy stabilizes itself, the rear wheels touch the ground and once again it move forward. It's a very clever design and great to watch, but unfortunately it becomes very scuffed and scratched over a short time. This is why high grade examples difficult to find. Oh, and best of all it works great!

At the time this toy was released Marx was selling their own version which was almost identical. It was called the "Police Tip-Over Motorcycle Cop" and sold for 59¢. Although the Unique Art toy was more robust it retailed for $1.59, or 2½ times as much as the Marx toy. The Daredevil Motor Cop sold poorly and was discontinued after only one year. 

The full color box was illustrated with a smiling cop raised up on his rear tire creating a small dust cloud. Lots of colorful text advertise its tumbling and uprighting abilities. It has all of its original flaps including the two interior flaps with instructions (see 4th photo down). The opposite set of flaps were designed to remain closed using a locking tab.

Size: 8½".

Sold: Sep. 2013

Price Sold: $ 1570


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Subject: 1933 Unique Art Mfg. "DareDevil Motor Cop" in Original Box

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