Saturday, March 03, 2007

March 3

There has been a long period of inactivity here at 'Paul Daniels Ebay Transactions' but that's because it's been a long time since Paul Daniels bought or sold anything on ebay. However, I'm delighted to tell you that he's got back on the ebay horse in style by purchasing this spectacular item... an unrestored, 50s vintage MOBO toy bronco tin horse!

This is quite an item that Paul has snapped up because this toy horse actually walks. It works by depressing the stirrups (see picture, right) and then releasing which makes the legs move! I bet Pauls grandkids are going to love this... or will the diminutive magician be able to use it himself? Or maybe it will form part of an illusion, who knows? Paul Daniels, that's who!

You'll be glad to know that this rare genuine 50s Vintage Tinplate Bronco Mobo Walking Horse that now belongs to Britain's fave illusionist is in good working condition.

That said, it is unrestored so there are quite a few scrathes to the paint work and some surface rust to it. The seller, heellbound (two 'L's!!) included lots of photos with his listing which is great because then Paul and the other bidders were able to assess the state of the toy in advance and therefore make an informed decision about how much they were prepared to offer.

It still has its original paintwork but it is missing the reins. It is some 30 inches high, 26.5 inches long and 20 inches in height from the ground to the saddle. The words “Made in England” are on the Saddle strap and the “MOBO” decal is on the chest & stirrups

The listing went to great pains to point out that "IT IS ON WHEELS AND THE HORSE BRONCO’S WHEN IT IS SAT ON (BY A YOUNGSTER) & THE PEDALS ARE PUSHED. It Still works beautifully."

Heellbound very wisely gave some history to the item telling us that it has been in his family for some time. It was given to his aunt, a lady who has recently celebrated her 50th birthday, many years ago when she was a small child and it was second hand even then. He'll no doubt be delighted to learn that it is in the hands of a more important family now.

The postage/courier costs for the item were really quite high - £50 - but that is an inevitable function of its size and weight. However the seller did suggest that alternative arrangements could be made if the buyer wanted to collect the item in person. Alternatively he was prepared to drive it to anywhere within 50 miles of Milton Keynes for the cost of his petrol. Unfortunately for Paul, his home in Wargrave is 70.48 miles from Milton Keynes so that wouldn't have been an option.

But then again, if I was the seller and I realised that if I delivered the item in person I'd get to visit Paul Daniels and Debbie McGee, I don't think I'd be quibbling over an extra 20.48 miles or the petrol costs!

I think it is most likely that Paul will decide to drive over himself and collect it as I know from his blog of February 28 that he has recently taken a new car for a test drive and decided to order one. He doesn't say which model it was, just that "This car seems to fit all my needs - my act goes in the back of it; on the test drive it did 51mpg; it is half electric and very quiet with zero emissions when it is at traffic lights or in jams, and so on. Sadly, the governments have not subsidised the hydrogen cell system yet, and this seems the next best bet, so I think I will order one."

Obviously I'm disappointed that Paul didn't decide to purchase a car on ebay but that is his right after all. He doesn't have to help me with this blog, he can be as selfish as he likes with his purchasing choices.

Anyway... back to the item. It was made by
D. SEBEL & CO., ERITH, KENT, ENGLAND between 1947 and 1950 (which means the listing describing it as 50s vintage was cautious at best!)

David Sebel had emigrated from Russia around 1912 and set up in partnership as a Wheelwright in East London some 9 years later.

The name 'Mobo' came from a brain-storming session when 'Mobile Toys' had been rejected.

The most well known toy they made was the BRONCO, the ride-on horse.

So, I expect by now you're wondering how the bidding went! Well, Paul really has demonstrated his ebay-mastery once more. The first bid of £20 came from creme2007 (clearly a beginner!) but that was soon pipped by catmary444 who came in with £21.05. creme2007 had another go with £23 but they soon fell by the wayside when catmary444 upped the ante with a £30 bid. This was then pushed to £35, £40 and then £44 which proved to be their limit because Paul then snapped it up for just one extra pound. (£45)

Naturally Paul received positive feedback from heellbound saying, "very fast payment, pleasure to do business with, many thanks" although Paul has disappointed us all slightly by not leaving reciprocal feedback for the seller. Maybe that will come.

It's great to think that maybe one of Paul's grandkids will soon be scooching about on the back of an old tin horse instead of sitting around playing computer games like so many yobs these days! More importantly, from an ebay-observer's perspective, it's great to have Paul back and whoever gets to ride around on the walking tin horse I'm sure it will be something they truly enjoy. Not a lot!


Liz said...

I LOVE your blogs - hilarious, but most importantly highly informative!

Its great the way you give us step by step info on the bidding - keep going, all blogs should be this brilliant

falconw said...

Dear Paul. I've just come across your ebay Mobo Bronco purchase and I am pleased another Bronco has gone to a good home. In fact your version is the steering version, press down on the left hand side stirrup and it goes left and the same to the right. The Bronco was first made in 1947,as non-steering, the steering version came in in February 1950 and was continued until 1970, so the seller was right with his dating.
The easy way to tell is the bar across the stirrups. Reins are available from OneStopMoboShop in California. All the best Andy Doran

Paul Daniels said...

Thanks falconw/Andy Doran for your informative message. Very interesting. But you should be advised that the Mobo Bronco horse is not MY purchase, it is the purchase of international magician and former BBC TV star Paul Daniels. I am not the real Paul Daniels - a fact I try to make clear on the blog.

I run this blog which is dedicated to annotating all of the real Paul Daniels' ebay transactions and while THE Paul Daniels has left a comment here before now, there is no way I can guarantee that he will read yours. Nor do I have any way to pass on your comment.

You can find Paul and tell him more about the Bronco at his own site:

stephanotis said...

Am writing a childhood history and saw an old photo of me with my Mobo Bronco, when I was three. My parents weren't well off and to get that for me must have been a sacrifice. Thought I'd look up the reference for Mobo Bronco and found this site. My "horse" didn't have steering but I loved it and often wondered where it ended up.

Heather said...

Just a silly note on this- I went to Mark Twain's museum in Virginia City and there was a Mobo Bronco there!

Susan said...

I have another of the same horse. The leather rein is worn but otherwise it is in great shape as it was mine.
I may be putting it up for sale and I am planning on moving from NY to Chicago