Cleaning American Flyer track

There are any number of approaches to cleaning American Flyer track, and the right way to do it really depends on whether the track is on the layout and can or cannot be removed, and whether the track is just dirty or if it is also rusty. So here is how to clean the track to get it working and something you can do so you may not ever have to clean it again.

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Are cassette tapes worth anything?

Are cassette tapes worth anything? Are cassette tapes worth collecting? Those are not the same question, and the answer to both is changing. There was a time when very few cassette tapes were worth anything at all. But they are starting to become collectible.

When audio tapes were new, they were all about practicality. Vinyl records and CDs had major advantages over cassettes unless you were listening in your car, or needed a smaller form factor for any other reason.

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Fix slimy plastic

Rubberized plastic has a tendency to degrade and get slimy as it ages. So what was once a nice input device becomes too gross to use right about the time it gets retro enough to be cool again. Fortunately you can fix it. Here’s how to fix slimy plastic.

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Model Products Corporation, or MPC

Model Products Corporation was a leading brand of plastic model kits from the 1950s to 2011. It frequently went by the acronym MPC. It should not be confused with another contemporary toy company, Multiple Products Company, which was a leading maker of plastic army men from 1954 to about 1979. This company also went by MPC.

In the context of Lionel, “MPC” refers to this company, Model Products Corporation, that was also owned by General Mills in the 1970s and 1980s. General Mills merged the two company operations, hoping for synergy.

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How much did VHS tapes cost in the 80s?

How much did VHS tapes cost in the 1980s? How much did VHS movies cost? A lot more than they should, at least in the case of pre-recorded movies. The concept of VHS tapes can be hard to wrap your mind around if you didn’t grow up in that era. And companies had a hard time for a while figuring out how to price them. So VHS tapes were surprisingly expensive in the 1980s.

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Fighter Jets on Chouteau Avenue, St Louis

At the intersection of Chouteau and Cardinal avenues, near downtown St. Louis, there is a curious sight. Sitting outside the Bissell Auto and Body Company is a Lockheed T-33 Shooting Star. And if you look behind it, you can see the hulks of numerous other airplanes and helicopters, in varying states of (in)completeness.

The airplanes on Chouteau Avenue near downtown St. Louis aren’t an airplane graveyard. They are the private collection of Dan Bissell, the owner of the garage whose lot they occupy.

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