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donna123

Halloween blow mold devil, skull and jol 3 light string??

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This 3 string set is currently on ebay and the bidding is high.  I am not familiar with this string as to who made it and if the pieces have been hand embelished.  Does anyone know if this is original or not?  The brows on the pumpkin don't look right to me.  

 

 

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Edited by donna123

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I copied close-up pics of each.  Do you think that they are touched up by hand?  

Btw...that's some wicked old wiring right there

 

 

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I know nothing about the three blow molds shown above but is sure looks as though somebody has just taken three blow molds and electrified them given the placement of the wires.  If the price is really outrageous, It would make a lot more sense to just buy similar blow molds around Halloween and light them yourself.

It's pretty simple to do and still get a really good result. Last fall I spotted two blow molds at my local Goodwill outlet store, a skull and a hand. They were not lighted but were translucent so a good candidate for being lit. I used two red circular chip-on-board LEDs for the eyes. They were taken from red tail lights that cost me two for a dollar on eBay. I lit the body of both pieces with short sections of SMD 5370 LED strips. I powered them with a 12VDC wall converter from old electronics. The molds, lights and other parts can't have cost more than $2.50 total.

skull and hand.png

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I found a different pic on Pinterest, but no info about the light string.  I guess my question about the above string set being embelished is answered.  That's a big YES!  

 

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A little electrical forensics...

These look like they may have been DIY wired many years ago with part of a 1950's-60's vintage NOMA 7-light C9 String. These strings came with a "potted" plug that couldn't be easily taken apart and re-used so someone had to cut it off  and remove the C9 light sockets (easily done by twisting the metal tab that held the two halves together) to string the wire through the holes in the decorations, afterwards re-installing the sockets. Its too bad that the sockets aren't visible in the photos to confirm this hypothesis. Another note of interest is that the two sets in the two pictures are wired in a different order with different makes of old "live front" plugs. This does not seem consistent with something produced in a factory. These old live front replacement plugs typically used a cardboard insulator (which often fell off and got lost as in the case of one of the pictures you posted) to prevent loose strands of wire from arcing out on metal outlet plates. Live front plugs were banned for manufacture and sale by the national electrical code back in the 1970's I believe. I have included pictures of the red and black NOMA string and some  of the old live front and the new dead front plugs and old outlet plates that were damaged by shorting.

1799329653_NomaRed_BlacklightString.thumb.JPG.a039216903fcfaab74c828bf3b1639f6.JPG

The C9 lampholders on this old NOMA string could be easily removed and re-used. Note these black bakelite lampholders were actually rated for up to 75 watts!

1435902964_NomaRed_BlackC9Socket.thumb.JPG.7c2f7946b3f844919b1e00b2d6e07e8a.JPGLeft To Right: live front round plug with paper insulator, modern dead front type plug, live front plug missing insulator, another modern dead front type plug. Below: damaged outlet plates out of a 1950's era school caused by live front plugs shorting out on the grounded plate.1286007200_DeadFront_LiveFrontPlugs.thumb.JPG.e61f9828c4a5a9eae9464d0d7e17d336.JPG

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That's so funny...what where they thinking... cardboard+high current...it's a wonder,that, more houses didn't burn to the ground.😲

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Those look a lot like light strings I pulled out of the attic last fall.  There were even some with fabric coated wire that would have been from the 1940s.  I put out a box "free stuff" at a garage sale with all my remaining incandescent lights in it. Nobody took the larger lights so they went into the trash.  I'm pretty sure I didn't include the fabric coated wire sets in the "free" box but when I checked the wiring, the fabric had not deteriorated in spite of being extremely hot in the summer.  BTW, this was before I discovered this site and realized there were people who value this old stuff.

I looked at the eBay listing this afternoon.  There were 20 bids and it had reached $114 with shipping.  Less than two days until it ends. These blow molds are 3" and 5" high.  I can't imagine paying that much for three small blow molds.  Maybe the addiction hasn't caught on as badly as I thought it had. 

 

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Some collectors will pay big bucks for those fabric coated wire sets, especially if they are still in the original boxes. My dad had a load of these when I was a kid, unfortunately they ended up in the trash years ago.  The most sought after ones have the "red beads" on the wire to secure the lights to tree branches and contain the old swirl style GE or Westinghouse mazda bulbs which were a full 9 watts (instead of the 7 watts that you get now in an incandescent C9 bulb) and ran really hot to the touch. Its strange that the manufacturers of the new "ceramic style" LED retrofit bulbs haven't come up with this retro "swirl or flame" shape yet. I like the LED C9 retrofit bulbs, old school yet high tech. Here are a few pictures that I found of these old light sets...

oldnoma.thumb.jpg.cdab73f4f827df2788501adeefca3c36.jpg227748000_NOMA20spring20inside.jpg.66ff9fcb0c45408f592be4290584cc5c.jpgClemco_Ariplane_inside.jpg.34455732d2c03c16d7764b6ca4ceefd2.jpgxmas9552.jpg.09572b223a2f94c1ad19b7b41413ba93.jpg1371916054_NOMA20C920replacements.thumb.jpg.873627e13ea25d288b3f14389ce4ac8b.jpg

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Noma did make Halloween lights. Attached below are some from 1930 with cloth wiring and some from 1960.

 

 

2018_07_10_07_27_15_NOMA_s_Decorative_Hollowe_en_Outfit_No._77_VintageHalloweenCollector.com_Int.png

2018_07_10_07_28_15_NOMA_s_Decorative_Hollowe_en_Outfit_No._77_VintageHalloweenCollector.com_Int.png

2018_07_10_07_29_18_NOMA_s_Decorative_Hollowe_en_Outfit_No._77_VintageHalloweenCollector.com_Int.png

2018_07_10_07_33_50_noma_halloween_1960_devil_Google_Search_Internet_Explorer.png

2018_07_10_07_32_47_noma_halloween_1960_devil_Google_Search_Internet_Explorer.png

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Rich in Las Vegas,

I think what got my attention in the first place was the bidding because many, many blow mold lovers do not like when a blow mold has been altered in any way.

Mikeymatic,

I never knew what those red beads on the old light strings were for until now.  Also, I loved those flame bulbs.  We used to use them when I was growing up.  I remember the blue ones especially because some would light up blue and some would look like a violet color.  

Scott Rob,

The vintage pumpkin light sting is amazing!  Also, is that a window candle or is that devil head the same size as the blow mold above?

Big J,

Hey!  I hope you're staying cool this summer!  

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This set was sold on ebay back in April.  It was listed for $124.99, a best offer was accepted.  Here you can see the devil is in the middle position.  Maybe the owners changed the positions around.  I would love to know who made these and if they came as a set.  If these didn't come as a set then it is remarkable that multiple people would choose these 3 blow molds to wire together in a similiar way.

 

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Edited by donna123
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The Devils are in the details, you got me very curious...

Here's what  I could find:  A company called Kokomold Plastics Co. made these in the 1950's and they were sold as plastic halloween candy containers that came full of candy according to a post on pinterest. There was also another company, Rosboro Plastic operating at the same time, not sure if they are related to Kokomold. I bet Mel Fischer might know something about these manufacturers as the trail of crumbs seems to dry up on the internet. Maybe they also sold some of them as wired lit up lanterns as the one in your last photo definitely looks like it is factory wired. Here's a few more pictures of the red satans:

1010258460_RedDevilHeadVintagerare.jpg.76286bfeb3e4fc1da48be91a151a9056.jpg801714787_1950scandyfilledsatan.thumb.jpg.f932befee304bf967785542a535d65ff.jpg1237789864_crystallightreddevilhead.jpg.67bc901cad609bf2032b3d265398cec0.jpg

 

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Mikeymatic, thanks for the information.  I always get inspired to do a little research when I see something like this.  I hope Mel joins in and has some answers for us!  I have a couple of old catalogs that go back a long time, but they are Christmas.  The earliest one I have for Halloween is 1972 Bayshore and they did not make the above items.  Obviously the blow molds above are much older.

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I came across reproductions of a few TICO TOYS catalog pages that someone made into metal signs.  On the page you can see the "Jr." size pumpkin at the top left and the devil, skull and larger pumpkin at the bottom.  Also, on the cover page you can see the witch holding the devil's head.  It seems possible that they could have been made by Tico Toys since we know that they sold blow molds that were lighted.  I'm taking a guess here that in 1972 they did not use those red and black wires anymore.

image.thumb.png.8c71f0aec535234f9b86b5e751a9846d.pngimage.thumb.png.a8597094c9920d84aa5a6998d5861cf8.png

 

Edited by donna123

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The light string was probably made by Peerless, they show up on eBay occassionally.  Here's a string with just the devil heads that sold on eBay on July 5, 2018 (five days ago) for $61 + $12.90 shipping.

Mel

Capture.JPG

s-l1600 (01).jpg

Edited by Mel Fischer

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21 minutes ago, Mel Fischer said:

The light string was probably made by Peerless, they show up on eBay occassionally.  Here's a string with just the devil heads that sold on eBay on July 5, 2018 (five days ago) for $61 + $12.90 shipping.

Mel

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That is just too funny!  The last time I searched ebay for "blow mold devil", in current and sold, these were not listed and then there they are posted even with the maker.  It's so funny that you can spend time trying to find information and then it gets plopped in your lap.  Well this particular devil head design sure seems like he got around.  He became a candy container, window candle, candy pail and light string. 😀

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Tico Toys and others also made a spook stick with him in the 60's & 70"s.

Mel

Tico Toys Devil Spook Stick.jpg

Burlington Free Press (1964-10-24) (Forrest Hills Ad).jpg

23 hours ago, donna123 said:

That is just too funny!  The last time I searched ebay for "blow mold devil", in current and sold, these were not listed and then there they are posted even with the maker.  It's so funny that you can spend time trying to find information and then it gets plopped in your lap.  Well this particular devil head design sure seems like he got around.  He became a candy container, window candle, candy pail and light string. 😀

The devil window candle was made by Spook-O-Lites in the 60's.

Mel

Devil with Box.jpg

Morning_Herald_(1967-10-18)_(Town_&_Country_Ad)_(Complete_w_Date).jpg

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32 minutes ago, Mel Fischer said:

Tico Toys and others also made a spook stick with him in the 60's & 70"s.

Mel

Tico Toys Devil Spook Stick.jpg

Burlington Free Press (1964-10-24) (Forrest Hills Ad).jpg

And even a Spook Stick!  

Mel, I enjoy all the old ads you post and can't help remembering how dirty the black print ink use to make my fingers.  I enjoy looking to see where the ads are from because 99% of the time I never heard of them. The last one I recognized was Franks. 

"Spook-O-Lites" ...you just have to love the name for sure!

Edited by donna123
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On 7/12/2018 at 3:29 PM, donna123 said:

And even a Spook Stick!  

Mel, I enjoy all the old ads you post and can't help remembering how dirty the black print ink use to make my fingers.  I enjoy looking to see where the ads are from because 99% of the time I never heard of them. The last one I recognized was Franks. 

"Spook-O-Lites" ...you just have to love the name for sure!

wow!!! I hate to admit it, but sometimes the old ads are as cool as the molds they advertised. 15 cent hotdog, and get a soft drink free...cool so very cool, 99 cent costumes....once again cool so very very cool

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On 7/9/2018 at 7:55 PM, Mikeymatic said:

Some collectors will pay big bucks for those fabric coated wire sets, especially if they are still in the original boxes. My dad had a load of these when I was a kid, unfortunately they ended up in the trash years ago.  The most sought after ones have the "red beads" on the wire to secure the lights to tree branches and contain the old swirl style GE or Westinghouse mazda bulbs which were a full 9 watts (instead of the 7 watts that you get now in an incandescent C9 bulb) and ran really hot to the touch. Its strange that the manufacturers of the new "ceramic style" LED retrofit bulbs haven't come up with this retro "swirl or flame" shape yet. I like the LED C9 retrofit bulbs, old school yet high tech. Here are a few pictures that I found of these old light sets...

Isn't it painful to think of all the valuable things that have been thrown away?  I'm pretty sure my parents threw away my Grandmother's aluminum tree and also one of those huge Santa heads that went over the gas lamp post when they cleaned out my Grandmother's garage.  (I did get some of the old light sets though.)

I want to share a couple things about C9 bulbs.  C9 bulbs are either 7 or 10 watts.  I don't think there are any 9 watt C9 bulbs.  I think the myth of 9 watt C9 bulbs came about because people did not know what "C9" meant and made the assumption that the 9 meant 9 watts. ( For those who are not familiar, "C9" actually indicates a "cone shaped" bulb that is 9/8s of an inch in diameter at the widest point.)  I think we can thank uninformed eBay sellers for referring to the C9s with the flame pattern in the glass as "C9 swirls".  I really don't get it as it is so obviously a flame pattern but a lot of eBay sellers don't have any personal interest in the items they sell.  I've seen all kinds of absurd statements about items in auctions (as I'm sure all of you have too).

My favorite bulb is the exterior paint C9 flame bulb like the ones in your last picture.  You can see the clear layer of glass on the outside.  The interior paint bulbs are awesome because the paint is protected by the glass so they will never chip or peel.

TED

On 7/9/2018 at 7:02 PM, Rich in Las Vegas said:

Those look a lot like light strings I pulled out of the attic last fall.  There were even some with fabric coated wire that would have been from the 1940s.  I put out a box "free stuff" at a garage sale with all my remaining incandescent lights in it. Nobody took the larger lights so they went into the trash.  I'm pretty sure I didn't include the fabric coated wire sets in the "free" box but when I checked the wiring, the fabric had not deteriorated in spite of being extremely hot in the summer.  BTW, this was before I discovered this site and realized there were people who value this old stuff.

Oh the pain....

TED

Edited by TED

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When I was teaching electrical, one year I was lucky enough to have had a sales rep from GE lighting come to visit our class for a few hours and do a short presentation. He explained how the "eights of an inch" bulb sizes worked, They also apply to fluorescent Tubes, a T8 fluorescent tube is an inch in diameter and a T12 is 1-1/2 inches in diameter....

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On 9/16/2018 at 2:15 AM, TED said:

My favorite bulb is the exterior paint C9 flame bulb like the ones in your last picture.  You can see the clear layer of glass on the outside.  The interior paint bulbs are awesome because the paint is protected by the glass so they will never chip or peel.

To correct my own mistake here, it is INTERIOR paint not exterior!  The paint is on the INSIDE of the glass.

On 9/20/2018 at 10:06 PM, Mikeymatic said:

When I was teaching electrical, one year I was lucky enough to have had a sales rep from GE lighting come to visit our class for a few hours and do a short presentation. He explained how the "eights of an inch" bulb sizes worked, They also apply to fluorescent Tubes, a T8 fluorescent tube is an inch in diameter and a T12 is 1-1/2 inches in diameter....

Thanks for sharing that.  I didn't realize it applied to the fluorescent tubes!  Now those numbers actually make sense!

TED

Edited by TED
to find the eighths.

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