Keith Meyers, The Space Station!

Stock #8178 Major Matt Mason Astro-Trac Gift Set.

 

Astro-Trac Gift Set. Photo by Larry Chin. From the
collection of Larry Chin.

#8178 ASTRO TRAC GIFT SET
Copyright 1967 --first year available, probably 1968

A special mention and thanks to Larry Chinn of San Francisco, CA for whom I dedicate this page for finding this previously unknown M3 play set. This exciting new find included for the first time an Astro Trac, Mobile launch Pad, Satellite launch Pak to be packaged with astronaut figures, Major Matt Mason and Sgt. Storm!

This also is a third variation that these three items, Astro Trac, Mobile Launch Pad and the Satellite Launch Pak were offered. Previously these items were presented each in individual packages and all three were included in #6327 Astro Trac Missile Convoy Set.

This is also a third time that both Major Matt Mason and Sgt. Storm would appear together. Previously the two were part of the contents of #6341 Firebolt Space Cannon Super Action Set and #6337 Space Mission Team.

This unusual boxed gift set was available only to Canadian MMM young astronauts through Simpsons-Sears and Simpsons stores, Mattel Canada LTD. But since this is not a Canadian version of already existing American boxed play sets and has it's own stock number, I include it here as part of the Major Matt Mason stock number list.

Usually most foriegn Major Matt Mason items are just repackaged or slightly renamed copies of existing items. These are notable mainly for the differences in language, however, this is one of only two or three examples of truly unique variations that existed in other countries.

PACKAGE DESCRIPTION:
There are no color photography labels on this box that strangely enough, according to Larry Chinn, was the same overall dimensions as the regular #6302 Astro Trac box. All sides displayed the usual "blue", "black", and "white" line illustrations. Very unusual, how did they cram all this stuff in that lil' ol Astro Trac box. Well Larry since you started this, let's find an old store stock one. :)

DEALER CATALOG SPECS:
Unknown

VARIATIONS:
Canadian Logo: Mattel, Canada Ltd.

Major Matt Mason Logo with Sgt. Storms name added, a unique feature as well.

COMMENTS:
The fact that this is news to myself and many loyal MMM fans, does not mean that this set has never appeared to another collector's hands. Obviously somewhere in our Canadian brothers' basements and closets there are more to be found. I've never even heard Christian De Grandpre' of Canada, whom has collected Matt Mason for many years speak of this set.

I have not as of yet contacted him on this matter. But Larry Chinn is the first I know of to offer this important info and that's whom I credit the find. My vote for the best new find of 1997! Great work Larry! This is even better than finding another lunch box or wallpaper roll to me, because I knew they at least existed.

ALSO INCLUDED IN:
See these Mattel stock numbers for more info about each of this sets contents:

#6300 Major Matt Mason Flight Set-carded
#6317 Sgt. Storm Flight Set-carded
#6328 Mobile Launch Pad-carded
#6306 Satellite Launch Pak-carded
#6302 Astro Trac-boxed

 

Copyright 1997 Keith Meyer. All rights reserved.
Revised: February 25, 2006.