1928 McDowell Mfg. Co., MAC Pile Driver in Original Box

1928 McDowell Mfg. Co., MAC Pile Driver in Original Box

I had never heard of, or seen, a MAC Pile Driver before finding this amazing tin litho and steel clockwork toy. Produced by the short lived, but high quality McDowell, Mfg. Co., it is by far one of the neatest and most mesmerizing American clockwork toys I've  seen. Just as fortunate as finding the toy, is it's lofty excellent+ to near mint grade. On top of that it comes with its beautifully illustrated original color box. The toy is complete, all original, .....and works fantastically!

It's based on the simple mechanics of a pile driver, but that's about the only thing simple about it. It uses a complex clockwork movement combining a coiled ribbon spring, lead flywheel, steel gears, and wooden pulleys. Just raising and releasing the pile driver hammer (the yellow thing that goes up and down on the steel rods) would be easy, but for added realism McDowell engineered it to work in precise rhythm to a tin litho boiler operator with moving arm!

This mish-mash of working components makes it appear that the boilerman raises his left arm at the same time that the pile hammer is being lifted to the top of the steel rod frame. At the precise moment he lowers his arm (and its fast) he releases the hammer, striking the pile below. Over and over the toy runs with perfect timing to raise and lower the hammer and operator's arm simultaneously without any mismatched movement. He lowers his arm and "clang" you hear the hammer strike the pile. It's so realistic and absolutely mesmerizing. 

It's important to wind the toy ONLY in a clockwise direction. The string, which is also original must be centered in the groove of both the ground and frame pulley's. The spring should be wound fairly tight, but not to the extreme where it won't move. Then give the flywheel a little clockwise push, and watch. 

The toy "breaks" down into several components as indicated in the directions, but I'll ship it intact to insure that it doesn't get scratched while putting it together. It was barely used and for a good reason. As you can imagine all of these gears and stuff can easily stop working if not handled correctly. I'm sure it was played with a few times before "something" happened to make it not work. I had it repaired, but there were no broken parts. Nothing was added or replaced. Everything is original to the toy.  Since it's repair it's worked flawlessly.

The two piece box shows an accurate representation of the toy on the cover complete with boiler operator, hammer, etc. A short set of instructions were also printed on the cover. The box aprons include only the name of the toy. The toy itself does not carry a manufacturer's trademark. The only way to identify is with the box, unless you've seen it before.

Size: 12" x 10" x 4".

Sold: Dec. 2007

Price Sold: $ 1137


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Subject: 1928 McDowell Mfg. Co., MAC Pile Driver in Original Box

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