More on the Destruction of ViewMaster

a-viewmaster

It did not die a natural death

In November, I posted here news that had come to me in a mass email from Las Vegas’ 3Dstereo Store, a report that Mattel would no longer produce ViewMaster reels that might appeal to adults.  Today, another mass mailing from the same source brings more bad news:

Since the the end of last year, the news from the world of View-Master has been earth shaking, but then hasn’t all the news been earth shaking.

Scenic and Custom Divisions Close:
Late last year, Fisher-Price notified all its dealers that the Custom Division which encompassed the Scenic Division was closing permanently. All of its products, every scenic title of View-Master, and the Model L viewers will be discontinued. Custom and commercial reels will never again be made. The factory in Mexico where everything from Beaverton, Oregon was moved, will close. And the remaining View-Master products (children’s View-Master) will only be produced in China at the location that produced the poisoned Mattel/Fisher-Price toys which brought Mattel to the edge of destruction in the first place.

The economy can be blamed for a lot of changes in this world, but the demise of View-Master came unassisted at the hands of Mattel/Fisher-Price executives.

But one thing that Mattel/Fisher-Price will never kill is the joy that tens of thousands of View-Master collectors will always possess in the fascinating product that thrilled the world for 70 years. 

Short Card Reissues:
Before production stopped, several new short card 3 reel sets emerged from production: New England Covered Bridges, Cliff Dwellings Museum, Mt. St. Helens. These titles as well as all other titles remain available at 3Dstereo until stock runs out.

The URL comes to live at 3Dstereo:
The Ultimate Reel List, the most comprehensive listing of View-Master reels, originally conceived by the late Keith Baird has moved to 3Dstereo.  It is available to all on the internet by clicking on 3Dstereo.com and then the URL box in the upper right corner of the screen.

The Ultimate Reel List is a running narrative listing the View-Master products with an explanation of the numbering systems and a history of View-Master. We plan to fill it with galleries of images of the reels and packets. Right now there are detailed lists of View-Master reels, 3 reel packets, 3 reel sets on cards, military reels, and commercial reels and more.  It is the consummate reference that will continually be updated and expanded as more products are unearthed. Some of the links are still under construction, but the move is close enough to completion to begin serving the View-Master community. Check out your Ultimate Reel List.

In my previous post, I explained why I thought this story matters.

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4 Comments

  1. cymast

     /  March 27, 2009

    “The economy can be blamed for a lot of changes in this world, but the demise of View-Master came unassisted at the hands of Mattel/Fisher-Price executives.”

    Maybe all the Mattel/Fisher-Price executives need is billions in bailout $$$. Maybe the millions aren’t enough.

  2. acilius

     /  March 27, 2009

    Mattel is getting federal bailout money? Yikes!

  3. cymast

     /  March 27, 2009

    I don’t think Mattel is getting bail-out money.

  4. acilius

     /  March 27, 2009

    I’m glad to hear that! They don’t deserve any.

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