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        by Published on 02-17-2011 05:49 AM     Number of Views: 24055 
        1. Redlines

        Hot Wheels were introduced commercially by Mattel on September 7th, 1968, launching what is known as the Redline Era (1968-1977).

        There certainly is irony in that name. The struggle against civil rights abuses and the war in Viet Nam pushed the US dangerously close to the redline.

        In looking back, I was struck by the extraordinary number of life changing events of 1968 and the lasting effect they had on our culture and identity. It truly was an amazing year.

        Jan 1 Evel Knievel fell in an attempt to jump Caesar's Palace Fountain.
        Jan 7 First Class Postage rose from 5 to 6 cents.
        Feb 1 Richard Nixon announced his presidential candidacy.
        Feb29 The Beatles' Sargent Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band won a Grammy.
        Mar15 Life magazine called Jimi Hendrix the most "spectacular guitarist in the world".
        Mar16 Robert F. Kennedy announced his presidential campaign.
        April 4 Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated.
        April11 President Johnson signed the 1968 Civil Rights Act.
        May 2 Gold hit a record high - $39.35 per ounce.
        May25 The Rolling Stones released Jumping Jack Flash.
        June 5 Sirhan Sirhan shot Bobby Kennedy. He died the next day.
        Jun26 Iwo Jima and Bonin Islands were returned to Japan.
        Jul 1 USA, Britain, USSR and 58 other nations signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
        Jul18 Intel was incorporated.
        Aug 1 Canada started replacing silver in coins with nickel.
        Aug30 The Beatles released their first album under the Apple label, Hey Jude.
        Sep 7 Hot Wheels were launched by Mattel.
        Sep 7 Jimmy Page's recently formed band — Led Zeppelin — played their first concert in Gladsaxe, Denmark.
        Oct20 Jacqueline Kennedy married Aristotle Onassis.
        Oct31 President Johnson ordered a halt to the bombing of North Vietnam.
        Nov 6 Richard Nixon was elected 37th President of USA.
        Nov11 John Lennon and Yoko Ono appeared nude on the cover of "2 Virgins" album.
        Dec12 Arthur Ashe became the first black ranked #1 in tennis.
        Dec28 The Beatles White Album hit #1 where it stayed for nine weeks.
        For any of you that haven't seen it, here is an early Hot Wheels TV Ad from 1968.

        Although Summer of '69 was actually released in 1984, I think it sums up the feelings many people have of the Redline Era. What was Bryan Adams doing in 1968? He was a nine year old kid strumming his 6 string and playing with Hot Wheels!

        I'd love to hear your thoughts on 1968 and Redline Era. Please leave a comment.

        by Published on 02-12-2011 04:06 AM     Number of Views: 6127 
        1. Blackwalls,
        2. Johnny Lightning,
        3. Diecast,
        4. Redlines,
        5. Dealers

        The following interview with Joel Magee of fxtoys! (fxtoys) by Chris Drag (turboice) was originally published Jan-28-2011 on his website: It is the first in a new series of interviews by Chris with toy car dealers and collectors. Joel and Chris are both members of Redlines Online forum.

        The vintage toy and collectible market is hotter than ever. It is a multi-million dollar industry that is not slowing down. 40 years ago, children played with all kinds of toys, such as redlines Hot Wheels, GI Joe figures, train sets and more. Today these children are grown up and want to rekindle their youth. Sadly most toys — especially toys for boys — were brutally destroyed and will never see the light of day. However, those who meticulously kept their treasures in mint condition can sell them today for a hefty premium.

        One of the biggest players in the vintage toy and collectibles market is Joe Magee. I'm sure if you are a toy collector, you know him as fxtoys!. Since I collect vintage toys — redline Mighty Mavericks to be precise — I have purchased a number of Mavericks from Joel.

        Even with hundreds of items ending each week, he has always found time to answer all my questions. Once I sent him a email at midnight and had a response by the next morning. During one of our phone conversations, I had the priviledge of interviewing Joel about fxtoys!. While we were talking, he was sorting through an awesome redline collection he just purchased:

        What is your name and ebay id? Joel Magee – eBay ID: fxtoys!

        Do you have a website? No, I only sell through eBay.

        How did you get started in this hobby? I started back in the late 80s and started buying lunchboxes from TV shows that I watched as a child. I started collecting and then quickly realized that it could be turned into a business.

        What types of items do you sell? Which sell best? I sell anything toy related from 1960s and older. Redlines Hot Wheels and television show toys sell the best.

        What is the most an item you owned sold for? In the late 1980s, I sold a vintage 1950s tin rocket for $14,000.

        Do you think there are treasure still yet to be found? Absolutely! Everything is just waiting to be found.

        What is your outlook for 2011? Do you think collectibles will become rarer and bring in more money? The market will shift up and down during the year but overall 2011 should be a solid year.

        Do you have a personal collection? What is your holy grail? I collect disneyland posters from the park. They are made exclusively for disneyland and not sold to the general public. They are about 5 feet tall by 3 feet wide. My holy grail is my flying saucers poster. It is worth well over $10,000.

        How many items do you sell a week? 500.

        You have the cream of the crop when it comes to collectibles. Where do you find all these items? We have many contacts all over the country. Many people contact us through eBay. We also buy many collections and also do consigments once in a while. People will send us their collections to sell without us even paying upfront because of the well known repuation we have with our customers.

        Just about every collector knows fxtoys!, you are talked about on forums and have handled more collectibles than 99% of people will in their lifetime. How does it feel to be a collectibles guru? That is an honor. We have strived to be the very best at what we have been doing for the past 20 years and I feel like our reputation brings people back because they trust us and we always strive for 100% customer satisfaction.

        Is there anything you regret not purchasing in the past? Boy, this happens all the time. It never ends.

        What is the funniest or strangest question someone has asked you? Probably the stupiest question — it happens all the time — is when someone asks me how big or long an item is when it is written in the title and description.

        After finishing the interview, two things stuck in my mind:
        1. The variety and condition of these highly collectible, rare sought after toys. Joel has items that I have never seen before and colors that I only dreamed of. If there is something rare and unique you are seeking, Joel is the man to contact.
        2. The prices. Yes, the prices he gets for these cars is amazing.
        Joel is a great guy and has extraordinary items for sale; stuff I will never see in my lifetime. Check out his auctions at fxtoys!. If you see he has something unique for sale, make sure you snag it. One other thing: fxtoys! also pays finders fees to people who help him find collections.

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