When I was a little boy, I would often go to see my grandparents, who lived on the west side of Chicago. This was always exciting to me. It was very different from our home, two miles away but it might have been a million miles away for all it seemed.
They had a neighbor there that was just fascinating to me, that I would have loved to visit in those day. And almost 60 years later, I guess I’d still love to.
Now the grandparents are long gone, and the house was torn down years ago, but their neighbor – the building where the Tootsietoy factory was – is still there.
For years untold millions of simple little die-cast cars were pumped out of the factory at 600 N. Pulaski in Chicago, and little boys everywhere would play with them.
They were cheap, I believe that you could buy a sleeve of ten cars for a dollar back then.
They were basically failproof gifts when it came to boys.
They weren’t the fancier Matchbox or later Hot Wheels cars that would come along later. But there was less to break. They were virtually indestructible to a kid. Nor were they battery powered, but they had plenty of engine sounds and brake squeals, courtesy of your average 1st grader.
Back then, I’d play with them. I would have loved to go into the factory to see them made, but at that time I had no idea how they were made. But now I know.
Tootsietoys were simple metal toy cars, typically made of one diecast body two axles, and four plastic wheels. The bodies would be spray painted, then the wheels would be pushed on to the axles, and the axles would snap onto arms protruding from the underside of the body.
They were very durable, unless you wanted to hit them with a hammer the bodies were hard to destroy. Of course, you could damage the wheels but otherwise they were almost indestructible.
They were the early versions of Lego’s, meaning if you walked around in bare feet and stepped on one of them that was sitting upside down, you would not forget the experience. I know, I proved this many times.
It’s pretty simple. You have a mold, or a set of molds, that you put a pattern into. Metal is heated till it is in a liquid state, then it is injected into the mold, then cooled till it is solidified.
The finished product would then go off to the paint line, then the wheels and axles were added, and the cars would be packaged and sent out to stores, and then go to kids everywhere.
Many years have gone by, but for some items, die-casting is still the best, most economical way to go to produce durable goods, be they shelf brackets, utensils or even toys. And Fast-Rite can make them for you
Do you have a product you need diecast?
Give our engineers a call at 888.327.8077 or email us at Sales@fast-rite.com