- About Us
- News & Events
- Erector Sets
- Other Products
- A.C. Gilbert
In February of 2011 I participated in the Bill Bean Stout auction and was very fortunate to be the winning bidder of the 1929 No. 8 Zeppelin set from Bill’s collection that is pictured in Greenberg’s Guide to Gilbert Erector Sets, Volume one on page 105. Needless to say, I’m quite proud of the set and it has become one of my prized sets.
When I received the Zeppelin set, there were 2 large black steel tubes and a round base included which I could not find on any inventory sheets I had. Nothing in the instructions referred to them either. I put the 3 mystery parts together (they screwed together perfectly) and it appeared to me as if this was some kind of alternate “Mooring Mast” for the Zeppelin, as the support rod fit perfectly also into the pipe. Note: The round black base has the mark “HAYS” on it, if that is a clue to anyone.
I was puzzled and wanted clarification, so I felt it necessary to contact Bill to see if he could shed some light on the mystery parts. Bill explained this was an interesting story. If you look at the graphic inside the Zeppelin box lid at the Mooring Mast you will notice the 3 mystery parts are in the picture. Bill said he purchased the set from Ted Howard who got it from the original owner and the original owner stated those parts were in the set when he received it from A.C. Gilberts’ factory.
This begs the question, were these parts included in any other Zeppelin sets or was this a one-time experiment by A.C.? Perhaps these were test parts and put in this set by mistake? If you have any knowledge of these parts or have them in your sets, please post a reply.
Click on the photo to view a larger version.
Craig writes: This was one of the models that got me interested in Erector prewar. I bought the No.8 Trail Blazing set from another ACGHS member and I was off to the races. I worked really hard on this and knew it would be a really nice display piece. I called Joel Perlin numerous times until he agree to sell me a reproduction of the rotating IA ceiling assembly and then I decided to mount this so it would be static. I think I made the right decision. After taking the tower pieces down to bare metal and repainting everything I used repro gondolas from Joe Long and a bag from Ray Rosebush with all other parts being from the original No. 8 Set. Without the generous help of all the above mentioned ACGHS members I would never have been able to get my models built. I am in the process of building the huge Ferris wheel from the “B” Set with 8 gondolas thanks to many emails exchanged with Larry Worley. Thanks to all for the great and rewarding experience that is Erector.
Al writes: I bought a complete set from Harvey Nash and decided to build the model. The Zeppelin is all original except for the Joel Perlin cloth bag. I have a beautiful original bag but was too nervous to stretch it over the model!!! I needed a support base so I painted an old 7 1/2 White truck box and mounted the mooring mast to it. It worked out nice.