By Steven Leckart at 11:16 am Wed, May 13, 2009
I think we had that Skil Craft set!
Notice no gloves or aprons, either! Some of those chemistry sets had some nasty stuff in them, too. Oh, for simpler times…
Love the retro art. I keep expecting to see references to the recipe for Jet or Rad-X
Yeah me 3. We figured out how to make smoke bombs and the Star Trek episode with the rubber lizard man inspired us to make Gunpowder. It actually worked to a certain extent. In fact as I am typing I seem to recall the search for black powder resulted in the smokebombs.
Then we discovered my buddies Dad’s shell reloading powder. We called it code V for vigerous.
good times good times
That kid in the third one is a total rapscallion. I bet he terrorized his younger sister all the time.
I had the set in the bottom photo. Still have some of the vials of chemicals in the basement.
Now I go to http://www.unitednuclear.com/ for most of my chemical needs.
The kid in the third pic doesn’t need goggles because he’s testing out the alcohol content of his homebrew
The sets being produced when I was a kid were similar to those in the bottom photo. I never had one, mind you, but they were around.
Even then I knew they were a cheap cheat, compared to the old sets that were still around. A friend up the street had an amazing set from (guessing) the early 50s. Metal case, alcohol burner, rubber tubes, a couple of dozen (?) bottles of stuff. The illustrated book showed a square-jawed Race Bannon sort of guy teaching two kids about the uses of chemistry. The only project I remember was a water softener.
I kept expecting to see, as the last picture, a pic of some kid with blasted, empty eye sockets.
“Goggles! We don’t need no stinkin’ goggles.”
And I didn’t. I made all kinds of acids and explosives and nasty smelling (and tasting) stuff.
No goggles, no apron, etc. But, I did have thick gloves that I also used when I did lead-casting in my basement. (That’s something else you cannot find anymore because of the lead.)
Oh, the memories. My brother had a chemistry set. (I think I had an EZ Bake Oven.) I used to play with it when he had it out, unsupervised, unprotected, utterly clueless. I’d combine substances in test tubes to see what would happen. One time I created a beautiful azure liquid; it was so pretty and bubbly. What I really enjoyed, though, was playing with the asbestos insulation pad. It had a delightfully nubby but still smooth texture. I can’t believe I have lived this long. Ooh, also, my brother and I used to enjoy playing with mercury. It was droplets but not really, and so shiny!
my brother had an old chemistry set… and we had to clear out our basement with fans because he accidentally made chlorine gas…lol
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