1954 Sutcliffe 20,000 Leagues Nautilus Submarine In Original Box

1954 Sutcliffe 20,000 Leagues Nautilus Submarine In Original Box

Many collectors of clockwork toys and Disneyana recognize this superbly crafted steel litho submarine Nautilus from the fantastic 1954 film starring Kirk Douglas and James Mason. It was manufactured by Sutcliffe Pressings Ltd., Leeds, England.

Sutcliffe set out to build the highest quality and most accurate representation of Disney's Nautilus. Joints, seams, and weld marks are practically non-existent. The paint is high gloss ultramarine and water resistant. Gold highlights, also water resistant, were hand painted. The Sutcliffe name is embossed into the keel fin. The moving parts, that is the rudder and propeller, turn with ease. It has its original ballast rubber cork and pipe periscope. Three Sutcliffe decals were applied mid-ships. Decals of the Nautilus title and copyright information were placed on the port bow (front left side).

It's powered using a Sutcliffe-built clockwork motor designed to run for an extended length of time. Each submarine was individually tested before it left the factory. Directions for operation and maintenance were clearly printed on the box.

The box illustrations were beautifully drawn to represent actual movie scenes. And in true Disney fashion several cartoon-like fish were added. It was printed a hazy peach color. It's complete with original insert, original key, and key envelope.

It's curious that although this version of the Nautilus was one of the most recognizable "Hollywood" toys from the 1950s, it was neither produced or sold in the U.S. Ironically most of the examples that did make it across the Atlantic were acquired by collectors and never played with. It's such an awesome toy, yet many never touched a drop of water.

Although many weren't played with the majority of examples that I've seen still grade below near mint. That's because they were still well handled. In fact the last one I found in which both the toy and box graded at least near mint was over 6 years ago.

THE best example of the toy and original box I've seen.

Size: 9-1/2" long.

Date Sold: Aug. 2010

Price Sold: $ 405


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Subject: 1954 Sutcliffe 20,000 Leagues Nautilus Submarine In Original Box

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