Set 070 with cardboard inlays?

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I own a 070 universal building set from 1967 or so (photo1), but this one has cardboard inlays instead of the plastic ones you can commonly find (photo2). Does anyone has an idea whether it is an older type, or some transition box? I cannot find more info on this.   Except: the set 050 from 1964 has similar inlays (photo3)...

Thanks for helping me out!





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Interesting.  What country did this set come from?  Might just be a different packaging run using common dividers they had available, but from the (very few) photos of set 077 that supposedly replaced 070 for a short time in Germany, it appears that it might have had the cardboard inserts... so maybe something going on with that depending on where and when your example was produced.

Perhaps @LEGO Historian has some thoughts on this?

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The 070 set (with 2 trays) was produced from 1967 until the end of 1972.  It was sold in continental Europe, Britain and Australia.  Earlier sets had either paper or plastic white individual trays.  In the late 1960s and early 1970s TLG switched over to large 1 piece partitioned gray plastic trays.

Even these came in more than one variety.  The version you show is an earlier version with more partitions.  The later ones have fewer partitions (see image below).

Now for the 077 set....

In 1971 and 1972 German catalogs the 070 was replaced by the 077 set.... or so the catalogs say.  Shown below is an image of a 1972 Belgian catalog  listing the 070 set, and also a 1972 German catalog with the same model, but listing it as 077.  However... no 077 has ever been found in Germany or elsewhere.

A few years ago, when I started working on my computer desktop Unofficial LEGO Sets/Parts Collectors Guide, I asked the folks in the Billund Archives about the 077 set that was supposedly sold in Germany, and yet no one in Europe's largest LEGO market has a copy of it (no copy exists in the Billund Vault either).  The Archive folks told me that their records show the 077 version of that same 070 set was sold from March 31, 1971 until December 31, 1972.  But where are they?  No one has a copy!

The mystery was finally solved a few years ago when a USA collector got a MISB 070 set from a German seller.  When he got the set, he broke the outside seal.... only to find 2 shrinkwrapped inner trays.... AND........ a 1972 German LEGO Catalog (as seen below right).....



070-077 Sets


So it appears that the production folks at TLG told the Archive folks that they were producing an 077 set for Germany (to match the set numbers for all the other sets).... so in Germany  011, 022, 033, 044, 055, 066, 077 and 088 would have been produced there.  However someone made the decision to NOT change the set number on the box... and the different basic set numbers on the basic set boxes matched that of the rest of Europe..... 011, 022, 033, 044, 055, 066, 070, 088.

But no one ever notified the BIllund Archives (nor the LEGO Catalog folks) that the 077 set was never produced for Germany.... but the 070 was kept in production.

Another case of what I call "LEGO Mayhem".... which is very common in early LEGO.  Like I tell people... if TLG didn't make so many of these little unexpected changes to their parts and product line... my 2800 page collectors guide would only have 1/2 the pages!!  :wink:




Edited by LEGO Historian

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Hey, thanks Deraven & Lego Historian for your answers! I'm new to this site and forum, but there seem to be some helpfull people around here :-)

I bought this set in Belgium, but I don't see no indication on the box about where it originated from...

I notice now that the print on the sleeve also can vary among the sets: mine has the train at the bottom on the inside, other boxes have these set of images on the outside. And the fact that the LEGO-logo on the side is upside down (when you have the opening cover upwards, see photo) is weird too, no? Well, I guess that's just another part of the Lego Mayhem Lego Historian was talking about ;-)  

Any idea what could be the value of this set, in fairly good condition? Is it more rare than the other versions? I'm cutting down on my stuff, and perhaps this set may have to go... But I cannot find any decent price estimation (on bricklink etc...).

Many thanks again everyone!

Play well :-)




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