Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The zeppelin in my apartment

One of the coolest things I've ever been given is this block puzzle that Bill Cobb found at a garage sale in Pennsylvania. Its "Made in Germany" label identifies it as a pre-war product, as do the images formed when the blocks are assembled correctly. These depict nearly every form of transportation of the era, from sailboats to the Graf Zeppelin, and include the Schienenzeppelin or "Rail Zeppelin," a strange device that used a BMW aero engine to set a speed record for rail vehicles that stood for more than half a century. If I'm correct, there's also a BMW engine in that airplane, which I think is the Dornier Whale, a plane that could land and take off from the water.

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