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New Outfit Packaging (1959)
see details of the new packaging

During 1959, much brighter packaging was introduced, to compliment the new colours.  This consisted of a box lid design showing a full-width Meccano logo, and a pair of crossed perforated strips.  A model from that outfit was also shown on the lid.  Stringing was abandoned for the most popular outfits in the series, which were now packed in yellow vacuum-formed trays.  Outfits 00, 7, 8, 9, 10P and 10D, and all the accessory outfits remained strung, as before.  The contents of all outfits, and the manuals,  remained the same as before.  Click here to see details and photos of the new packaging.


Other Changes in 1959
The E20R electric motor was discontinued, and supressors were added to the E15R motor (now E15RS).

The Mechanisms Outfit was introduced, packed in the same crossed-strips design and yellow tray as the other new outfits.

The Marshal II and Marshal III power supplies were introduced towards the end of the year.

1959 Sales Leaflet

This sales leaflet from August 1959 now shows the sets in the new boxes and the 'New recessed moulded trays'.

Leaflet 8/59

Leaflet 8/59

 The set shown on the right is outfit No.2, but the actual layout of the No.2 set was nothing like that shown in the photo!  (compare with the actual set below).  This photograph was retouched and corrected in the 1960 leaflet.


Right:  This page from the 1959 leaflet shows the four motors available at that time.

The E20R had now been discontinued, but the E020 (cricket ball) motor was still being sold alongside the E15R.

Compare these with the four motors at the end of the period.

Leaflet 8/59


Marshal Power Controllers
Adverts for Marshal II and Marshal III Power Controllers.  These were intended for use with Hornby Trains, as well as Meccano.  The Marshal II unit had outputs of 12v DC (variable) and 15v AC.  The Marshal III unit had a second 15v output and a pulsed DC output, neither of which were really relevant to Meccano.

Marshal advert

Marshal advert

Marshal Controller.  This converted low voltage AC from a separate transformer into DC suitable for driving a motor.  The controller provided On/Off/Reverse and speed control. Marshal III Power Control Unit.  This was a Marshal Controller with the addition of an internal transformer to allow direct connection to the mains.

1959-60  Outfits

The 1959 outfits 0 to 6 were in the new boxes and yellow-tray packaging.  The publicity photos are taken from the August 1959 sales leaflet, which now shows the small parts boxes with the yellow Meccano logo from the 1958 sets.  However, in 1959 the logo had actually changed again, and was printed in white, as can be seen in these photos.  Details and confusions of the parts boxes.  The outfit lids underwent a number of colour changes, see this page for details.  Unless stated otherwise, the photos are of outfits in my own collection.

Outfits from 1959 and 1960 are shown together on this page, the only differences being the colour of the parts tin, Conical Disc, and Wheel Flange.  See here for details.

1959 outfit 00

1958-61 Outfit No. 00

This outfit was sold in the pre-1958 packaging right up until it was discontinued in 1962.  Only the small parts box changed.  Two mint outfits are shown here:  The top one is dated March 1959 and still has the pre-1958 small parts box.  The bottom one is dated May 1961 and has the early 1959 parts box!  The 00 outfit must have been a very slow seller, which would explain why it took a considerable time for the changes to filter through.  Not surprisingly, the outfit was discontinued in 1962 due to poor sales.

Outfit 00


1959 outfit 0

1959 outfit 0

1959-61 Outfit No. 0
Click here for Dutch No.0 set.


1959 outfit 1

1959 outfit 1

1959-61 Outfit No. 1

1959 outfit 2

1959 outfit 2

1959-60 Outfit No. 2
My introduction to Meccano (but not this particular example!).  I almost wore my set out playing with it.


1959 outfit 3

1959 outfit 3

1959-60 Outfit No. 3


1959 outfit 4

1960 outfit 4

1960 Outfit No. 4


1960 outfit 5

1960 outfit 5

1960 Outfit No. 5


1959 outfit 6

1960 outfit 6 tray

1960 Outfit No.6
This was the largest outfit to be packed in the yellow trays, and came in a 2-layer box.  The publicity leaflets at the time only showed outfits up to No. 6!

Note that the bottom layer is shown upside down in the sales photograph to avoid a profusion of red parts, and make the set look more interesting!  The gold parts tin was changed to green during 1960.

1960 outfit 6 box


1959 outfit 7 lid

1959 outfit 7 tray

1958-60 Outfit No. 7
Outfits 7 and above were still strung onto card in the same way as the pre-1958 medium red and green outfits.

Outfits 7 and 8 were both in 2-layer boxes with a deep compartment down one side to house the large parts such as boilers and other cylindrical parts.

(Photos courtesy G. Rahn)

1959 outfit 7 box


 1958-60 Outfit No. 8
8 manual

1959 outfit 8 lid

1959 outfit 8 tray

1959 outfit 8 box

Click here for Australian No.8 set.


 1958-60 Outfit No. 9

1959 outfit 9 lid

1959 outfit 9 box

1959 outfit 9 tray

1959 outfit 9 card

This outfit from 1960 has been meticulously restored to its original condition by Greg Rahn.  The top right card of wheels and gears was still factory strung. Some of the yellow stringing cards in the other two trays are also original.  The cellophane pack containing the axle rods is original and laced to its original spot. The other cellophane pack containing tools, driving bands, chain, etc is a reproduction.  The hanks of cord are in the boiler, which projects through a cut-out in the central tray.
(Photos courtesy G. Rahn)

1959 outfit 10P

10P advert

1958-60 Outfit No.10P
This is the 'Presentation Chest' version of the outfit 10.  This outfit was marketed alongside the new 4-drawer cabinet version until 1960.  The chest had two internal lift-out trays.  The photograph shows an outfit from 1959, with the parts still strung onto the stringing cards. The 10P outfit was very rare, only being made for two years, and presumably most customers would have opted for the new 4-drawer cabinet if they were presented with a choice.
(Photos courtesy Eugenio Zalazar)

Accessory Outfits
Accessory outfits were used to convert one Meccano set into the next higher one.
(So a set 2, plus a set 2A would equal a set 3, etc.)

  The accessory outfits were still being packed in the pre-1958 red boxes right up until 1962, although there were slight printing variations.  For example, the words 'Accessory Outfit' were smaller than those on the 1958 boxes.

1958-61 Outfit No.00A
(Photo courtesy R. Jaggard)

Alternative label (both these sets are from 1959)
(Photo courtesy R. Jaggard)

1959 outfit 0A

1959 outfit 0A

1958-61 Outfit No. 0A.  Note that the assortment of parts on the box label bore no relation whatsoever to the parts inside the box!!  The Road Wheel was still shown in the old red and black colours. (photos courtesy J. Evans)

1959 outfit 1A

1958-61 Outfit No.1A
(Photo courtesy C. Weston)

1960 outfit 3A

1958-61 Outfit No. 3A
(Photos courtesy J.Thorpe & G. Rahn)

1959 outfit 4A 

1960 outfit 5A

1958-61 Outfit No. 4A
(Photo courtesy C. Weston)

1958-61 Outfit No. 5A
(Photo courtesy C. Weston)

1959 outfit 6A

1960 outfit 7A

1958-61 Outfit No. 6A
This outfit usually suffered from collapse of the stringing card because of the heavy parts that were unsupported in the void needed for the boiler in the middle.

1958-61 Outfit No. 7A
This 1960 outfit contains one early 1959 small parts box with a green label, and the other one is the later version with a black label!  (Photo courtesy C. Weston)

1960 outfit 8A

1960 outfit 8A

1958-61 Outfit No. 8A  This 2-tier outfit from 1960 shows that the Conical Disc and Wheel Flange both changed colour to blue before the new green parts tin came along.  The boiler projects through a cut-out in the upper layer.  (Photos courtesy R. Jaggard.  Larger images of this set, can be found on this page from the NZFMM web site.)

1958-60 Outfits No.9 and 9A

Notice that the 9A accessory outfit is far bigger than the main No.9 outfit!  Such was the step-up from a No.9 to a No.10.

(Photo courtesy A. Ortiz)

  1958-61 Outfit No. 9A


Special Outfits

Mechanisms advertMechanisms advert

1959 Mechanisms outfit

The new Mechanisms Outfit from the 1959 sales leaflet, and an actual outfit from 1959.
Unlike the Gears outfit and the later Elektrikit this was a completely self-contained outfit, capable of building and experimenting with lots of interesting mechanisms.  This outfit actually had more gears than the Gears Outfit!  Mechanism Set lids.   (Outfit photo courtesy C. Weston)

1959 Gears outfit

1959 Gears outfit

Advert for Gears outfit

The Gears Outfit B (above and right) continued in the old-style box until the arrival of the new outfits in 1962.

The box differed very slightly from the 1958 box in having the picture printed directly on the box wrapper, instead of being in the form of a stuck-on label (although it was printed to look like a stuck-on label!).
(Photos courtesy R. Jaggard)

   Collectors' Corner

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