Jim’s Mold-A-Rama page

Jim’s pressed penny page (mainly Disney World)

Link to my auctions: 

 

 

Mold-A-Rama collecting is a lot of fun, but the resources on the Internet are rather sparse.  Many websites that purport to be complete listings are woefully out-of-date.

 

I will never be able to compile a complete listing of Mold-A-Rama designs, locations or colors.  Nonetheless, I have decided to post parts of my collection to help give a more complete picture of the toys that are available.  More will be posted as I photograph the collection.  Worth noting: there are no Mold-A-Rama machines at Disney World or Disneyland.

 

Recent updates:

October 2017 – Henry Ford Museum

May 2018 – Museum of Science & Industry, Field Museum

 

 

 

 

Third Man Records, Detroit

 

Third Man Records is a record label owned by Jack White of The White Stripes.  He opened a retail store in Detroit on Black Friday (November 27) 2015.  Among the novelty machines in the store – which also serves as a museum and will include a record manufacturing plant – is a Mold-A-Rama machine.  It takes 3 dollar tokens (sold at the sales counter) and produces a very large truck representing the record label’s mobile record store. 

 

There is reportedly a Mold-A-Rama at the Nashville Tennessee branch of the store, too.  That machine made red guitars when the Novelties Lounge portion of the store opened in 2012.

 

This sample was harvested on November 28, 2015 – the second day of operation.

 

UPDATE: NOVEMBER 2016: The truck mold was so big that the machine kept malfunctioning, creating toys that didn’t have enough plastic.  In 2016 the store replaced the mold with a smaller truck that has a better success rate.  They also changed the faceplate of the machine to remove the Mold-A-Rama name, as shown in the “2016 photos” below.  The new version was purchased on November 26, 2016.

 

2016 PHOTOS:

 

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Side-by-side comparisons (2016 version on left)

 

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2015 PHOTOS:

 

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The real truck

 

 

 

Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago

 

Harvested April 2014.  4 machines are located on the ground level.  Each costs $2.  The designs are: Tyrannosaurus Rex (red); Apatosaurus (green – same mold as Brontosaurus at Lowry Park Zoo); Triceratops (light blue); giraffes (orange).  The giraffes were added in late 2013 or early 2014, replacing another dinosaur mold.  The giraffes are advertised as part of a special exhibition (“The Machine Inside”), so they may change when that exhibit has run its course.

 

Each dinosaur has the mold name on one side of the base, and “Field Museum Chicago” on the reverse of the green and red figures, and “Field Museum” on the Triceratops.  The giraffe mold has only “Field Museum” on the base.

 

April 2018 update: The cost is now $3 per mold, and the machines take coins, currency or credit cards. The current designs: red T Rex, medium blue Triceratops, dark green Apatosaurus, and orange elephant. The information desks have a list of locations.

 

2018 photos:

 

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2014 photos:

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Lowry Park Zoo, Tampa, Florida. 

 

Harvested April 2013. 8 machines available, cost $2 each.  4 have been switched to dinosaur molds during the dinosaur exhibit, which runs through late May 2013.  It is expected the machines will switch back to the molds shown below after the special exhibit has run.  The dinosaur molds have the dinosaur name, but are not marked with the zoo’s name.

 

The dinosaur molds are stegosaurus, brontosaurus, T-Rex, and pterodactyl.  These temporarily replace the panther, tiger, rhino, and manatee molds.

Of the other 4 molds, 2 have had color changes: koala and elephant.  The monkeys and giraffe molds are the same color as last year.

 

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Harvested April 2012 (below).  There are 8 machines available, and the toys cost $2 each.  The black manatee is the same mold as the silver TECO manatee viewing area design.  The machines are located outdoors, except the manatee machine (located under an overhang at the manatee underwater viewing building).

 

The machines have the same basic design and color scheme.  Most are painted green.  The exceptions are the koala machine (yellow) and the monkeys machine (blue).  Designs: dark green elephant; black 3 monkeys; dark gray manatee; pink panther; orange tiger; red giraffes; dark purple koala.  Not shown: rhino (green).

 

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Lowry Park zoo machines

 

 

Tampa Electric Company (TECO) manatee viewing area, Apollo Beach, Florida.  Harvested in January 2012.  This facility is open seasonally, and is closed during summer months.  There are two machines on-site; each takes $2 to produce a toy. 

 

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Manatee viewing area: blue dolphin; silver manatee

 

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TECO manatee viewing center machines

 

 

Henry Ford Museum/Greenfield Village, Dearborn, Michigan.  Two machines are generally located in the lobby area of the IMAX theatre, and you can reach them without paying admission or paying for parking.  The others are inside the Henry Ford Museum.  Seasonally, machines are sometimes moved from the museum to the Village.  These examples were obtained circa 2005.  The black locomotive is the same basic design as the Museum of Science & Industry, Chicago, but with a different inscription on the base.  The colors of certain models used to change frequently, but have remained the same for a couple years as of 2017: the antique car, the F150 pickup, and the Mustang.  Abraham Lincoln is available in a couple colors and a lot of shade variations.  I am aware of only one change for the carousel horse.  Price to create your own toy: $3 each (raised from $2 in 2017). Scroll down for more recent updates.

 

Designs shown (not all are currently available): blue locomotive; black locomotive; Henry Ford; carousel horse; Oscar Mayer Wienermobile; antique auto; Rosa Parks bus; Ford Mustang; Abraham Lincoln; alligator; Ford F-150 pickup; George Washington; John F. Kennedy. 

 

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Right: Carousel horse color variations

 

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Right: antique car color variations

 

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Alligator mold was for a special IMAX movie about the bayou, and is no longer available

 

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Ford F150 pickup color variations.  The mold is marked for the “Rouge Factory Tour,” but the machine is at the Henry Ford Museum

 

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Hail to the Chiefs: Washington (Henry Ford Museum); Lincoln (Chicago Museum of Science & Industry);

Lincoln – 2 colors (Henry Ford Museum); Kennedy (Henry Ford Museum)

 

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Sign in museum in August 2012 shows a new mold: “Liberty” cannon

 

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Sign in museum in December 2012 showing seasonal toys

 

NEW INFO DECEMBER 2012: Two seasonal molds were available in December 2012.  The “Santa Claus” mold has “Henry Ford Museum” on the front of the base and “Happy Holidays” on the back of the base.  A second toy, the blue locomotive, is offered as the “Polar Express” to complement the IMAX movie shown during Christmas season.  The base has “Henry Ford Museum,” but does not say “Polar Express.”  Other than a slight color variation, this is identical to the blue locomotive that has been available at the museum for years.  The two designs temporarily replace the Mustang and F-150. 

 

Here are photos of the Santa Claus mold and the machine for the Polar Express:

 

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“Liberty” cannon; typical museum Mold-a-Rama machine

 

NEW INFO SEPTEMBER 2013:There are two new molds this year – President Kennedy (which is actually an older mold returned) and the 1961 Kennedy limousine.  In addition, there are some color changes: the smaller steam locomotive is now a silver grey instead of black, which makes the features easier to see.  The Liberty Cannon is now red instead of dark grey.  The Rosa Parks bus is a more olive shade of green.  Lincoln is a different shade of tan/fleshtone, and the antique car is now black.

 

The machines are all located in the Henry Ford Museum.  Two are in the IMAX lobby (JFK bust and red Mustang).  Seven are lined up along the museum’s front wall (Oscar Meyer Wienermobile, Rosa Parks bus, Lincoln bust, JFK limo, liberty cannon).  Two are along the front wall, but closer to the railroad exhibit (Henry Ford standing and small locomotive).  The final machine (antique auto) is located behind the Model T and assembly line display (which does not adjoin the regular auto displays). 

 

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Kennedy car and bust

 

Color and shade variations as of September 2013:

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What heaven looks like!  And this isn’t even half of the machines at the Henry Ford Museum (Oct. 2013 photo).

 

NOVEMBER 23, 2013 UPDATE: Santa returned to the M-A-R machines at the Henry Ford Museum this week.  The mold is available in red (like last year).  Santa replaces the Ford Mustang in one of the IMAX lobby machines.  The Polar Express train has not appeared yet; the John F. Kennedy bust (in blue) remained through the weekend as part of the JFK commemorations at the museum, but is expected to be replaced next week.

 

DECEMBER 2013: The Polar Express toy was available for the Christmas season and into January.  The regular locomotive color was changed to a very dark grey.

 

JANUARY 21, 2014 UPDATE: The Polar Express train and the Santa mold are gone.  In their place are the red Ford Mustang and a blue Ford F-150 pickup, both of which have been available before in these colors.  The gift shop area is undergoing renovation, so the machines normally found in that area have been distributed to other areas of the museum.  A sign near the machines has a map of the temporary locales.  The John F. Kennedy mold is retired for now.  The loco is back in silver, which shows its details very well.

 

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The sign omits the black Antique Car, which is still near the Model T assembly exhibit.  There remain 10 toys at the museum.

 

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Mustang and F-150 machines near IMAX lobby – notice no description in the windows on the right

 

NOVEMBER 28, 2014 UPDATE: There are now 3 Christmas-themed molds at the Henry Ford Museum, installed today.  They will be there through the holiday season (mid-January if past practice holds true).  This year they have the red Santa Claus toy, the blue locomotive (for Polar Express), and a new mold: a green Christmas tree.  The tree mold has “HAPPY HOLIDAYS” and “HENRY FORD MUSEUM” on the base.  This mold temporarily replaces the Rosa Parks Bus mold inside the museum.  Photos below ▼

 

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November 28, 2014 photos

 

August 4, 2015 UPDATE: The Liberty Cannon design has been replaced by a new mold: Thomas Edison’s lightbulb.  The mold was replaced around July 2015.  The new design is red, and is inscribed on the side panel “THOMAS EDISION’S FIRST LIGHTBULB 1879 HENRY FORD MUSEUM DEARBORN MICHIGAN.”  The toy is 3.5” tall x 3.5” wide x 2.25” deep. 

 

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New in 2015

 

November 28, 2015 UPDATE: The Christmas molds returned a few days before Thanksgiving.  In the IMAX lobby, the blue “Polar Express” locomotive replaces the Ford F-150 pickup truck and the red Santa replaces the Ford Mustang.  Inside the museum, the Rosa Parks bus has been replaced by the green Christmas tree.  See the photos from the 2014 update – they haven’t changed.

 

November 20, 2016 UPDATE: the Christmas molds are in place. 

 

October 29, 2017 UPDATE: the price was raised to $3 per mold some time during the year.

 

 

Museum of Science & Industry (MOSI), Tampa, Florida.  One machine (red butterfly) is located on the first floor, beyond the Information desk, near the back door leading to the outside amphitheater area.  There may be other machines in the museum – some listings show 3 machines without revealing their locations.  The butterfly machine can be reached without paying museum admission.  Price of M-A-R: $2.  (info current as of June 2012)

 

2018: This museum has closed.

 

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Museum of Science & Industry (MSI), Chicago Illinois.  Early to mid-2000s.  Also see the Abraham Lincoln design shown with the Henry Ford Museum collection.  It has a base (the Henry Ford Museum example does not have a base).  These same designs remained available in November 2013.  Although the museum had a Disney exhibition in 2013, it did not present any Disney-related MARs.

 

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Locomotive; farm tractor; space shuttle; color variations for U-Boat (grey & black)

 

Chicago machines:

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CLICK HERE FOR MORE DETAILS OF MACHINE LOCATIONS

 

NEW MACHINE: JET AIRPLANE

Added late 2013 or early 2014 to the simulator area on the upper (balcony) level.

 

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April 2018 update: The price has been raised to $3 per mold. The machines take coins, currency, or credit cards.  Machine locations are shown on the guide map.  I verified the following machines during this visit: locomotive, tractor, U-boat, space shuttle.  I believe the jet fighter is still in place (it is still shown on the guide map). 

 

 

Brookfield Zoo, Chicago Illinois. Harvested around August 2008. 

 

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Miscellaneous sources:

 

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Mickey Mouse – base says “Mickey Mouse,” and back base has copyright info for Walt Disney company.

Origin unknown, but most likely a museum in Chicago or Dearborn.

 

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Dinosaurs – Yellow Rex is marked “Tyrannosaurus” on one side and “COSI” on the other – from COSI Toledo

Beige Rex is marked “Tyrannosaurus” on one side, and no markings on other side.  Mold is otherwise identical to yellow Rex.

Blue stegosaurus is marked “Stegosaurus,” but with no origin noted. 

red Stegosaurus is old, and is from the Sinclair traveling World’s Fair exhibit – marked “Sinclair Dinoland”

 

Busch Gardens, Tampa, Florida: I have not been to Busch Gardens, but my son tells me the price was $3 per figure (in 2012).

 

On occasion I will list Mold-a-Rama toys on eBay.  Link to my auctions: 

 

Jim’s pressed penny page

New 04/29/2012

Revised 05/03/2018