1962 Hayashi, 2 Gordon's Gin London Bus Displays in Original Box

1962 Hayashi, 2 Gordon's Gin London Bus Displays in Original Box

Here are two unusual tin litho friction motor London Buses produced in Japan by Hayashi Mfg. Each is an advertising piece for Gordon's Distilled London Dry Gin. Both are fitted with a brass finished metal wire loop stand designed to hold a ¾ Quart bottle of gin. They were not available to the public, nor cheaply made.

Both have never been used and are in near mint+ to mint condition. They come in their original individual insert boxes plus the original shipping box with mailing label. Also included is the original photo instruction sheet. 

They were given to liquor distributors to promote Gordon's 1962 ad campaign "Gordon's is England's Biggest Selling Gin and America's, too!" Referencing this slogan I was able to date the set using a microfilmed newspaper ad published in the February 23, 1962 issue of the Nashua Telegraph, Nashua, NH (see below). 

The buses are embossed and completely tin litho. Each represents London's famous bright red double decker buses with a 3-step left entrance with right side driver. They have three embossed silver colored roof vents and a solid black plate chassis. The top section has 12 seats. The lower has 10 plus a driver's seat. The campaign slogan was lithoed on both horizontal sides of each upper section. "Gordon's London Dry Gin" was lithoed onto the lower half. "Ask For Gordon's" is on the rear panel. 

All windows are die cut, but only the front upper and lower windshields were fitted with celluloid panes. Both are still in place. The tires are solid black rubber with metal centers. The steering wheel is plastic.

The left rear corner of each bus is marked "Made In Japan" and "563". A dab of factory touch-up was applied just below these markings and most probably covered the manufacturer's trademark. It's the only set of its type I've seen and I couldn't find any references to them (that includes The World Of Toy Buses and Models, and both volumes of The Big Book of Tin Toy Cars). This made them difficult to identify. 

Fortunately the wheel cover style was unique to only one Japanese company; Hayashi Manufacturing. They have a raised center "nipple, three embossed concentric rings, and five lithoed spoke "holes" without lug nuts. No other company used this exact combination. 

Brass finished bottle display stands were separately fitted around the right side of each bus. They could probably be removed but only at the risk of scratching the surface, or bending the wire. I was able to rotate the rear tires sufficient enough to determine the presence of a friction drive motor. Each wire loop has its four original black vinyl "feet".

Each bus comes in a separate 10" x 6" x 3" half-box cardboard insert. The inserts fit precisely into the shipping box which is printed with text only. One side states "Gordon's Gin London Bus Display Two Per Carton". The opposite side has a "not-responsible" damage or loss claim statement. The original mailing label from Renfield Importers, Ltd. sent to Gold Seal Liquors, Inc., Chicago Il, still adheres to one end. There is no zip code. Still inside the box is the original 8½" x 11" photo instruction sheet which shows placement of a bottle of Gin plus 4-step setup. 

Size: Bus only 10" x 5½" x 2¾", Total height with bottle holder 13½". Box 14" x 11" x 4"

Sold: Jun. 2009

Price Sold: $ 325


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Subject: 1962 Hayashi, 2 Gordon's Gin London Bus Displays in Original Box

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