In the comments to the Burgie Beer UFO story, drkptt wrote: "I remember the Mold-A-Rama machines at the service plazas on the Florida Turnpike as a kid in the '70s. Here's a great story about their history and the last Mold-A-Rama service/sales man keeping his grandfather's business alive in Florida."
How can you resist?! You slip in your money -- $3 at Busch Gardens, $2 at Lowry Park and MOSI -- and watch the gee-whizzery thunk into place. That "H" stands for hydraulics. First, camshafts lock together two sides of an aluminum "mold": a cockatoo, T-rex, a girl on water skis, U-505 submarine; there are hundreds of molds available.
Polyethylene pellets, melted at 225 degrees, are injected into the mold. Air is blown into the sculpture (sounds like you're inside a bathroom hand-dryer now), making the once-solid toy hollow; if you look at the bottom of your sea lion, fighter jet, Harry S Truman, there are two holes, one for drainage, the other for a hold.
Coolant is then pumped into the mold, before that big dramatic scraper chisels free your prize, which kerplunks! into a sliding-glass chamber. The 3-inch toy is now hot and threatening -- but fun hot, fun threatening! After all, you made it!
And now for the best part, the part you'll remember years later, when you're grown up and your kids are no longer kids and you have the gray hair to ponder things like this: that Mold-A-Rama smell. That clean, chemical whiff of your new souvenir.
It smells like July, like freedom, like Mom and Dad and summer and youth.
When our family would go to the Denver Zoo, the Mold-A-Rama was the most-anticipated attraction for me and my sister.
Waxing nostalgic: In 30 seconds, Mold-A-Rama makes memories, toys to last a lifetime
Donald Trump’s press secretary Sean Spicer inaugurated his first day on the job by telling easily falsifiable lies about the relative sizes of the Trump inauguration crowds and those of the Obama administration.
A group of Wyoming legislators in the state’s House and Senate — all representing coal country and all avowed climate deniers — have introduced a bill that would ban Wyoming power companies from using solar or wind power by 2019, and requires non-renewable power to account for 95% of the state’s power by 2018.
In a new paper in Progress, Oxford economist Vuk Vukovic argues that the key to re-election in local politics is to be just corrupt enough: giving lucrative contracts and other benefits to special interests who’ll fund your next campaign, but not so much that the people refuse to vote for you.
Looking to upgrade your weekend? Here are three randomly awesome products on my mind this week.#3 FRESHeBUDS Pro Magnetic Bluetooth EarbudsAs more and more phones and gadgets switch to Bluetooth-only compatibility, you’ll need to get Bluetooth headphones like the rest of us. I’ve been super impressed with these affordable magnetic headphones. Pull the magnetic earbuds apart to auto-connect […]
Traditional folding wallets are designed for paper bills—but these days, carrying cash is rarely a necessity. More often than not, I don’t carry cash at all. This Bogui Clik Wallet is the best answer I’ve found for avoiding the hassle of those tight-fitting credit card pockets.This attractive, minimalist wallet features a protective lip, so my cards don’t […]
Using my iPhone while it’s charging is always a hassle. With tucked-away outlets and the meager length of included lightning cables, comfortable scrolling while plugged in is annoying. These 10-Ft MFi-Certified Lightning Cables are super convenient and probably the best iPhone accessory purchase I’ve made.At over three times the length of normal cables, these reach anywhere you […]