Tokyo Shapiro. Formerly the jobbers for Clarkins Stores Inc. First slogan? Tokyo Tech At Shapiro Prices. It was the late 70's after all. Of course, bought by the Luskins chain and run into the ground when every electronics chain gave up the ghost to Best Buy and Sun TV. (The latter also giving it up to Best Buy.) I worked there for some of the best times of my young career when it looked like retail sales would be the path I was going to take. Fat chance, but I stayed with it for a few. I knew what the flying erase head did on your camcorder. I knew what Scandium Oxide was on your 35" Mitsubishi big tube TV. Like any plastic bag just blowing down the street which your good friend Bill thinks is saying "BIH!" as it blows... I got lots of debris from here. It brings up my lots of debris here on the web. Yeah, I let this go a bit, but I'm back. You see, I started another blog for my trips to Florida and my recent trip which was stellar. http://ricochet.boomerthedog.net/blog/orlando_2018/ That got me back into shape, and well, time to start blogging about my junk again. Means something to me, kept it in a box, insignificant to you, but there may be a glimmer of remembrance. We do it all for ME, Rod. Plus, I'm listening to a concert from the Grateful Dead from 1968 on SiriusXM and just jamming up and down the super slab known as the internet.
There's that slogan. Shapiro was a guy known to the owners who was Japanese and was also cheap. Yeah. That's it. That's what they meant. Electronics tech was moving really fast. When I started here, video tapes were still averaging $5. Only recently did they have firms like Universal coming around with 2.99 (on sale for 1.99) VHS tapes. It was still a big deal that big manufacturers had video tapes. Maxell was a get for the Tokyo Shapiro company. I don't remember why. I thought TDK or JVC were the best tapes made, but the Maxells were a little cheaper and they looked good. Hence, my first $5 video tapes were Maxell. It would be another year or two when VCRS dropped into the $200 range that you could get almost any brand for about $3 and it would be a good tape. I judge from my extensive tape collection. Whatever brand was on sale at the time, I bought some. These were the deluxe high grade and well, I never could tell the difference. They all played the same. Boy this Tokyo stuff just keeps coming up in this blog right? Right?
Have you SEEN THE LIGHT? This relic, I can say I had before the first Star Wars movie was a toy flash light that really worked as a flashlight and you got "that hand" some good excersize for your formative years. It came with a crank handle and a plastic belt holder and three colored slides that made it red, blue or green. Oh no, there were no fancy batteries to recharge. It was a motor that generated enough power to light up a flashlight bulb. To someone that didn't have a pot to piss in, this was high tech goodness.
Pretty simple right? It was built like a tank and would likely still work today. Nothing inside to go bad. The case was dropped a few times, so it has a crack in the surface, but should still work. The weakest point was the plastic crank handle, which, with a ton of use that any kid would give this during normal play, first wore where it connected to the crank. Then the handle broke at the point where it met the cranking plastic that fit into the crank. I can only assume the handle is to the wind or down a heating vent somewhere.
Nevermind the other junk in this photo, just concentrate on these lenses. They would fit over the light in the notch you see in the photo above. Wow. Neat. Cool. We didn't have much when your were poor in the 70's.
"When you see the red light... " ROXXXXXXXXXANNNNNNE! You don't have to turn on the RED FLASH BRITE LENS. It's a picture of a single hole punch inside of a dark room. Um, I got nothing else. Big Red.
You know, they actually included a MORSE CODE card with this flash light? That's what the little button on the back was for. Yeah, you were winding your ass off to make light and they gave you a switch to make it go out for a split second. You could do Morse code with this! Alls I remember is I NEVER DID THAT ONCE! It was too hard to push a button on the back of the light while holding and cranking at the same time. Still, FOR KIDS was this light. FOR KIDS.
A famous maker toy company name? Nope. Copyright 1975 Janex Corp. AHA. Just when I was going to say I could find NOTHING on the web, there was a sister product that was a big box that showed through a lens and took VIEWMASTER reels! I'm going to break this Junk Blog code and link HERE. http://www.viewmaster.co.uk/htm/flashbrite.asp Why? I don't know. Because I looked for everything, didn't find anything, then found this by looking for the company that made it. A search on EBAY brought up a lot of plastic character clocks and character tooth brushes and yes, even updated Masters Of The Universe self powered flash lights. I suppose the main reason for breaking code was you can see the crank for the Viewmaster thing is exactly the same as what went on the side. Cheap. I wouldn't mind having the viewer though, of course we couldn't afford any reels.
Somebody hear the theme from Welcome Back Kotter playing?