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U.S. Submarine #2 Motorized wood toy Made in Japan. TMY and Ito Aristocraft RARE & EARLY- Sold- J Collection

U.S. Submarine #2 Motorized wood toy Made in Japan. RARE

Our sub is a very early export toys from post-war Japan that was specifically targeted for occupying American soldiers.  This toy line has a long history associated with sailors saving a weeks worth of pay to afford this luxurious toy.  We have the privilege to offer the first series of this toy line, with only about 100 released the first production.  This is number 35!

Later renditions had a more slender hull (not as much expensive wood) and other differentiating details.   As always, early releases bring a premium. At hull number 42 research indicates that the subs became 1/4″ shorter and 1/4″ narrower.  Also the engine was changed over to a “can” type instead of this early engine.

The original paint, varnish, brass detailing, and wiring are all original.  We see two aft protective rails missing and a section of hand railing missing.  We also did not have success getting this lit up.  It needs a specialist to restore these aspects, and have chosen to leave the toy as-is; noting a specialist may be our buyer.

Also, the original stand is included, a great bonus.

Note the matching number 35 penciled in on the bottom of the bridge, stamped in the same area, then number 35 stamped on the inside of the hull.

At first we thought this to be a rendition of a Gato Class submarine. From wikipedia: “The Gato class was a class of submarines built for the United States Navy and launched in 1941–1943; they were the first mass-production U.S. submarine class of World War II. Together with their near-sisters the Balao and Tench classes, their design formed the majority of the United States Navy’s World War II submarine fleet. Named after the lead ship of the class, USS Gato, the Gatos and their successors formed the core of the submarine service that was largely responsible for the destruction of the Japanese merchant marine and a large portion of the Imperial Japanese Navy in World War II. Gato’s name comes from a species of small catshark. Like most other U.S. Navy submarines of the period, boats of the Gato class were given the names of marine creatures.”

Then later we saw a N2 Narwhal match with the twin gun and taller platform for them.  See submarine photos.  This is our strongest resemblance.

Finally, we saw traces of Japanese submarine bridges creeping in with the bump shapes of the conning tower.

The N2 Narwal is likely the closest match and inspiration.  we see twin (early type) torpedo tubes up front per side.  Then we see a single torpedo tube aft.  We also see the twin guns with platforms and noted that this toy came with an American flag when purchased.

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