Jump to content




Photo

Slot racing covers in the general press


  • Please log in to reply
6 replies to this topic

#1 don.siegel

don.siegel

    Posting Leader

  • Subscriber
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,874 posts
  • Joined: 17-February 06
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Paris, France

Posted 19 March 2017 - 04:41 PM

Here's one I've been meaning to do for awhile: slot racing covers in the general press. I've been collecting these for a long time, reaching back to "The Reader's Guide to Periodical Publications" and long days spent in libraries... 

 

I thought there were only a handful of these, but when I started going through my magazines turns out there's over two dozen. I only chose those where slot cars/racing were the main subject of the cover, but included a few that don't follow those rules, but are close and/or interesting. There are at least another dozen that just mention the slot car article on the cover, but I didn't include those. All magazines are from the U.S., Britain and France, so if you've got any others, feel free to add them!

 

Most of these are from car and DIY magazines, but there are a few surprises...  

 

Let's start off with a historical perspective: spindizzies and rail cars! 

 

Popular Mechanics from June 1946, and L'Automobile from January 1950: 

 

Covers%20-%20Pop%20Mech%200646_zpsr35gb5

 

Covers%20-%20lautomobile0150_zpscqtvhnqw

 

Here's the first real slot racing cover I found: from the British consumers association magazine, Which?, in December 1961. Not the first article, but the first cover, for an article reviewing the first bunch of sets. 

 

Covers%20-%20Which1261_zps1u99qu9c.jpg

 

And the U.S., behind Britain as usual... a handbook from the Science & Mechanics monthly mag, High-School Mechanics, 1963 edition: 

 

Covers%20-%20High-school%20mechanics-63_

 

Here's a trick one: I had just assumed these were slot cars, but not sure - perhaps Minic, and the articles inside don't directly address slot cars, but there's a photo or two... Autosport, Nov. 29, 1963: 

 

Covers%20-%20Autosport1163_zps20yn7br1.j

 

Join the Dodge Rebellion! A magazine for Dodge owners, covering America's newest hobby, with a photo of the famous The Groove Raceway near Detroit (later home to many Thingies!). April 1964. 

 

Dodge%20magazine-0464_zps0veywsos.jpg

 

 

One I've already shown, showing that the Beatles loved slot cars and that Liz had all sorts of slot car troubles... well, sort of. July 1964

 

Covers%20-%20Motion%20Picture%20Beatles0

 

April 1965: now we're into the fad or craze period of slot racing, as proven by this hot cover photo on Science & Mechanics, one of the big 3 magazines of this type in the U.S. (along with Popular Science and Popular Mechanics): 

 

Covers%20-%20Science%20amp%20Mechanics04

 

Slots as big business, from the trade magazine Amusement Business, a weekly dated May 15, 1965. Slot car centers were sometimes classified as amusement centers by local municipalities, which caused lots of problems for the owners. In the money? 

 

Covers%20-%20Amusement%20business0565_zp

 

 

The CARtoon magazines, a part of every red-blooded American boy's childhood - except for the Commies, of course, who were a little too red-blooded... April 1966: 

 

Covers%20-%20Cartoons%200466_zps1kaejpqz

 

Offshoot Hot Rod Cartoons, from May 1966, heralding current F1 practice... 

 

Covers%20-%20Hot%20Rod%20Cartoons0566_zp

 

 

And to close out this first batch, a French romance magazine, undated from what I can tell, but maybe 1964-65? Very romantic cover, but absolutely no mention of slots inside that I can see... and not sure where the illustrator came up with those control buttons, which are not quite the same for the boy and girl... the only ones I can think of like that were by Ideal for a floor rail setup in the early 60S/// Definitely the most romantic slot racing cover ever - and the only one! 

 

Covers%20-%20nous%20deux%201037_zpszi79i

 

 


  • PCH Parts Express, Samiam and Geary Carrier like this




#2 Mattb

Mattb

    Checkered Flag in Hand

  • Subscriber
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,037 posts
  • Joined: 13-August 11
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:IN

Posted 19 March 2017 - 05:07 PM

Good post Don. Probably there were more than a few Popular Mechanics with slots on the cover, certainly there were several different articles.

Looking back at those articles, I like how many were "plans" for slot tracks and cars. All were usually illustrated with drawings, as no prototypes were ever really done with most of them. Just some guy setting a desk with a good imagination!!
Matt Bishop

Vintage Cox Slot Cars

#3 don.siegel

don.siegel

    Posting Leader

  • Subscriber
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,874 posts
  • Joined: 17-February 06
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Paris, France

Posted 19 March 2017 - 05:27 PM

Here's the second part, still right in the heart of the slot racing boom, from 1965-67. 

 

The Sunday supplement to the St. Louis Globe-Democrat, with four top local racers making the cover! February 14, 1965: 

 

Covers%20-%20Sunday0265_zpsuwpsmfpn.jpg

 

Another outlier: strictly statics, but all model cars, in the Jan. 14, 1966 issue of Autosport, from England: 

 

Covers%20-%20Autosport0166_zpsw33k1abg.j

 

 

Over the years there have been various slot car articles in electronics magazines (controllers, race directors, etc.), but I think this is the only one to make the cover. Elementary Electronics, July-Aug. 1966: 

 

Covers%20-%20Elementary%20Electronics076

 

 

Here's one I only discovered with ebay: Teenage Hotrodders! How to turn juvenile delinquants into upstanding citizens with a clean-cut hobby like slots! Probably not as widely circulated at the CARtoons mags. October 1966: 

 

Covers%20-%20Teenage%20Hotrodders1066_zp

 

Another Sunday supplement, this time Family Weekly, dated November 6, 1966. These are large mags, so I couldn't scan the whole cover. It says: The Slot-Car Craze Goes Zo-o-om! / Muliply this enthusiastic youngster by 6 million and you'll get the number of Americans who are avid fans of slot-car racing. ... 

 

Covers%20-%20Family%20Weekly1166_zpsvfcw

 

 

Not strictly a slot car cover, but there is a drawing and it's on a par with the other subjects... Consumer Reports from November 1966. Their annual books also covered slots. 

 

Covers%20-%20Consumer%20Reports1166_zps8

 

 

For me, this is the most iconic period cover and the only one I really remember: I probably bought the magazine! Popular Science, December 1966. This magazine and competitor Popular Mechanics published the first widely circulated articles on the new hobby, starting in 1961... 

 

Covers%20-%20Pop%20Science1266_zpsdwdoye

 

 

Which? is back, with a very artsy cover, in December 1966, a follow-up to their article from 1961. They would do another in 1970... but it turns out that one was about Hot Wheels type cars! How the mighty have fallen.. 

 

Covers%20-%20Which1266_zps35c1ec8g.jpg

 

 

And to close out this second part, the beauteous Judie Jacobs from the Motor City: a supplement to the Detroit News, called Tempo. A big cover again, so couldn't scan it all. The headline says: Slot Cars: The Toy That Grew Up. 

 

Covers%20-%20Tempo0267_zpsedkhbash.jpg



#4 don.siegel

don.siegel

    Posting Leader

  • Subscriber
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,874 posts
  • Joined: 17-February 06
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Paris, France

Posted 19 March 2017 - 05:30 PM

And our good friend Archie, one of four or five different covers. But this is the most romantic! 

 

Covers%20-%20Archie%20joke%20book0167_zp

 

Matt, I don't think there were any other covers in Pop Mechanics type mags - the ones I show here are the only ones I've ever found. Lots of articles, but few covers... 

 

Don 



#5 don.siegel

don.siegel

    Posting Leader

  • Subscriber
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,874 posts
  • Joined: 17-February 06
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Paris, France

Posted 19 March 2017 - 05:44 PM

A short interlude in the world of men's magazines, Grade B... First, from the U.S., Escapade, October 1965. The "slot car race" promised on the cover is just a couple Dinky cars on a naked model, with all the usual puns you can imagine... Still, interesting to think they'd associate that with slot racing - quite a fad in October 65 in fact! 

 

Covers%20-%20Escapade1065_zpsqhjv2ois.jp

 

 

And another one I've already posted: the French magazine Adam from November 1968: a very Tom Wolfe like article on the "Slot Addicts" who hang out in basements and other shady places after the commercial raceways closed down... Not exactly the main cover article, but close, and we'll take what we can get! 

 

Covers%20-%20Adam1168_zpslhbtgy5a.jpg

 

à suivre... 

 

Don 


  • Geary Carrier likes this

#6 don.siegel

don.siegel

    Posting Leader

  • Subscriber
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,874 posts
  • Joined: 17-February 06
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Paris, France

Posted 19 March 2017 - 06:28 PM

Changing of the guard: 10 years after Popular Mechanics reported on the advent of slot cars, they reported on their replacement. December 1971: 

 

Covers%20-%20Pop%20Mech1271_zpsbovwpdeh.

 

 

In fact, after 1967, slot covers become few and far between, but there are a few - and they get increasingly weird! Another comic book but way after my time, Wheelie and the Chopper Bunch, from September 1975: 

 

Covers%20-%20Wheelie%20and%20Chopper0975

 

And I guess there was another electronics mag slot cover, this time from England, December 1979, Hobby Electronics:

 

Covers%20-%20Hobby%20Electronics1279_zps

 

 

Not strictly to the rules, just a mention on the cover, but there were a number like this: Stock Car Racing, a U.S. publication out of Virginia. Lowest dollar racing... guess they never raced Group 7! May 1985. 

 

Covers%20-%20Stock%20Car%20Racing0585_zp

 

 

A strange one from England, Viz, a totally satirical paper, even the ads... That's Fantastic Snailextric on the cover, in case you can't make out the snails... October/November 2001. 

 

Covers%20-%20Viz1001_zps4hqyrqig.jpg

 

An in-flight catalog, not sure what airline, maybe American. Dated Holiday 2002. Very high-end stuff... 

 

Covers%20-%20Sky%20Mall%201202_zpsjd0sua

 

 

Here's another case I've seen a few times: a reference to slot cars on the cover of a real car mag, but no slot cars! This is the only one I could find offhand. As it says, Cortinas "influenced by Scalextric slot cars". December 2007. Lot of December publications in fact, probably to tie in with holiday gifts. 

 

Covers%20-%20ClassicFord1207_zpstetbxxdw

 

 

Again, not strictly by the rules, since these are toy and model collector magazines, but typical of some of the articles in them. First, Collectors Gazette from the UK, December 2011: 

 

Covers%20-%20Collectors%20Gazette1211_zp

 

And then my favorite cover of all, which could also be the title for this thread... Also a good reminder that, in the States, slot cars are still mostly associated with HO scale! from December 1993 (in fact, when slots of all types were enjoying a mini-revival). 

 

Covers%20-%20Collecting%20Toys1293_zps8p

 

 

A bonus: no slots, but an illustration by Geo Ham, the best of them all, from a mid-50s(?) issue of l'Action Automobile et Touristique. 

 

 Covers%20-%20Action%20Automobile_zpshpxf


  • Geary Carrier likes this

#7 don.siegel

don.siegel

    Posting Leader

  • Subscriber
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,874 posts
  • Joined: 17-February 06
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Paris, France

Posted 20 March 2017 - 05:33 PM

Here's one I forgot: Income Opportunities, from November-December 1965. It's another Science & Mechanics publication; boy, they were very busy publishers! 

 

You can see the cover title for yourself, but on the inside the article's title is: Model Car Racing: the road to riches. ... must have been a lot of very disappointed entrepreneurs in late 1965 - and that's really got to be the peak of the fad period... 

 

Covers%20-%20Income%20Opportunities%2011







Electric Dreams Online Shop