No. 359. Die cast metal model, 22 cm long. Green metal nose cone & fuel pods, white metal pod (detachable using catch button) with opening red plastic doors (hinge open to form steps), red engine bottles and silver nozzles. Side jets yellow plastic, spine moulded white plastic over metal. Legs with spring suspension. Red strips for pod supplied as water decals. This model, and the Freighter, were still in production when Dinky-Meccano went into liquidation in 1980.
Box initially 25.5 x 11 cm blister pack, later 25.5 x 6 x 11 cm box with plastic window showing model (mounted either in card or in an expanded polystyrene diorama). A 6cm tall top flap showed photos of Koenig & Helena (year 2).
Various colour advertisements appeared in children's comics, featuring colour artwork of a launching Eagle and a panel illustrating the "action features". "EAGLE zooms into the year 2000!" and "EAGLE blasts into the future!" were the titles. A flash promised "From Gerry Anderson's New TV Series Space: 1999. On Your TV Screen Soon!".
Note: a white version of the Eagle Transporter never existed. There was a white Eagle Frieghter, and you could swap the pods to make an all-white Eagle Transporter. In the 1970s kindly toy shop owners allowed children to open both boxes in shops to swap the Eagles and pods. Since then, collectors have done the same, and claimed it was a rare Dinky variation. Nevertheless, an all-white Eagle Transporter never left the Dinky factory.
Below: US in-store display with a box "Be sure to watch Space 1999" with spaces for channel, day and time.
UK £2.99, later £4.99 1975-1980
No. 360. Die cast metal model. The model appeared shortly after the Transporter. The Eagle main body was identical to the Transporter, though in different colours; pod is a metal platform with a revolving disc to store 4 yellow plastic cylinders (with metal top), and a winch line with magnet to carry cylinders. Initially wet transfers were supplied for the cylinders (showing the radioactivity symbol & words 'Danger Waste Material'), later being replaced by adhesive decals.
Eagle was at first white with red side jets, engine bottles & pod. Later it was painted blue with a white pod.
Boxes as Transporter.
Advertisements appeared in children's comics featuring artwork of the Eagle in exactly the same pose as the Transporter adverts. "The year: 2000... Identity: Eagle Freighter... Mission: Nuclear Waste Disposal".
((In 1979 an 11 year old girl named Marianne Fleckery found some of the hollow cylinders in the garden of her home in Langley Crescent, St Albans, Herts. She persuaded firemen to visit in anticontamination suits and take the cylinders to the then-government radiation centre in Amersham. After the incident Meccano, Dinky's parent company, promised to remove the radiation symbol and words.))
UK 1975 (Never commercially released)
32 part die-cast metal model, to be sold unassembled and unpainted. A single Eagle, with both the Transporter "life support module" and the Freighter winch pods. The box was to be a rectangular carton, featuring artwork of the Eagle with both pods, and the text "Two Toys In One!". The serial number was to be 1035, although this was used later for another kit. The design of the box appears as an illustration (incorrectly identified) in "Dinky Toys and Modelled Miniatures" by Mike and Sue Richardson, in the Hornby Companion Series (1981), and is shown here (thanks to Gerry Forrester).
Copyright Martin Willey