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Switch 'N Go By Kevin Preston
Item Switch 'N Go
Manufacturer Mattel Incorporated.
Location Hawthorne, CA
I believe Switch 'N Go to be one of the most cleverly designed toys ever made.
What is especially nice about these is that, like train sets, there is an appeal to the young and old alike. It takes a little skill to get them to work exactly right, but kids can set up basic layouts in a matter of moments. Like the packages say, there are infinite layout possibilities.
When you read about these sets, uninformed people think that the various Switch 'N Go vehicles are air powered. This is simply not the case. They are battery operated.
Air is used, however, to actuate various switches to change the direction of the vehicles. The vehicle's track is non other than very thin flexible tubing. The tubing is of course hollow, allowing air to pass through. There are silvery colored switches that allow a straight course through, or upon applying air to the 'track circuit' if you will, they change the course of the vehicle. The entire track layout is pressurized when actuated in this manner.
I have also had great fun stringing bulk telephone cable around the living room, and the vehicles of course, follow along the crazy pattern. You could, if you wanted, use sections of such cable for very long lengths (provided you have the room) and sections of the pressure-izable Mattel tubing for switching areas. Simply butt the two cords against each other. Each vehicle stays on the track my means of a swiveling, grooved wheel.
I believe that Mattel stopped the production of these sets to make room for the launch of Hot Wheels in 1967/1968.
For more information visit The Kevin Preston Toy and Game EXTRAVAGANZA