Sunday, August 03, 2008
I see this morning that The ToyHouse is now taking orders for Anchor Set 30A, expected in late September.
This set expands your Set 30 to Set 32.
The classic GK NF numeric series has only one more expansion set after this, to take the collection to Set 34. Well over 3000 stones, well over $3000, weighing up toward 200 lb. That is a hobby for grownups with deep pockets.
My own interests remain at the other end of the scale. For me, Set 6 is a large set, and Set 8 is "very large." At some point, I think I would like to get the 8A box so I would have a Set 10 "super large" option. I wish I could get the bridge set to go with it, but I suspect that it is, and will remain, well beyond my means. A disability check only stretches so far.
Perhaps it is partly that the end of the numeric series is drawing close, perhaps it is partly backlash to the ever-more-complex sets of recent years, but there seems to be growing interest at my end of the Anchor spectrum: William Seppeler's Anchor Stone Constructions (inspiration for Kleine Gernegroß design above) subject of complimentary mention in ankerstein.org; Donald Kenske's Don's Hobby Keep; Burkhard Schulz's new plans page specifically asking for design contributions for smaller sets.
Richter's Ankerstein production in the golden age of Anchor blocks certainly didn't neglect the low end - the huge variety of small sets produced, and the number of versions of booklets for many of these sets, suggests that the low end toy market was where the real money was then, just as it is for most toy lines now.
I suspect that more than any importance as a meaningful profit center, the high end sets were a marketing tool for the low end sets - prestige by association, reassurance that expansion was all but unlimited.
Perhaps Anker will complete the GK NF numeric series by releasing a Set 2 and Set 0 - great sizes for a desktop play break at work, inexpensive enough for trial balloons, or even - perhaps - for children's toys, if such a thing is allowed. I'd like to give each of my sons-in-law a Set O for Christmas.
Quite suitable for good Block Play.