"...I bought a couple at Toys-R-Us. They are
now made by Duncan (the yo-yo people). They only sell the rounder
version, not the wedge, but still a great chance to own a classic for
under $5..." I have also heard that they are avaliable at Target
stores as well! These new Wizzers work every bit as well as the
original ones and come with some of the basic trick parts. Someone
sent me a few in the mail a while back. I will try and have a picture
I am desperate for more information about this series of toys. If you have any other information please drop me a note at email@example.com. I need pictures of many of the accessory sets and would like to have some pictures of the various "can" shaped Wizzers.
One of my favorite toys as a youngster was the tiny gyroscopic self contained top called the Wizzer. Aside from a sort of silly sounding name this toy was a lot of fun and came in a variety of colors and models. From the basic model shown above to soda and soup can varieties to integrating it into the Upsy Downsy series of toys the Whizzer was a lot of fun.They cam in a variety of sizes and colors. Oddest of the ones pictured here is the Mini-Whizzer (far left) These were really a disappointment as a child as they would not stay spinning for very long at all. The two basic shapes were the round globe shape ( called a "Rounder" shown center left) and the sort of top shape (Called "The Wedge" shown center right)
This Wizzer was called the Mach-1 and it had racing stickers!
Many of the later Wizzers came with customizable sticker kits. The one on the far right came as a plain Wizzer which you would decorate. As a child I had a Rounder Wizzer with a bunch of way cool flame stickers on it. It was called Spin-Fire and was molded in orange on the bottom and purple on the top. The Bonehead Wizzzer may have had a black bottom with a glow in the dark top section! Anybody know for sure? There were several other designs as well asides from the ones shown in the instruction manual. What colors dis your Wizzzer come in? Please e-mail me with your information firstname.lastname@example.org . Later on there were barrel or can shaped Wizzers. The only one I had was a Hawaiian Punch Wizzer. These were great product placement aimed at kids. Not only was it a spinning toy, but it was a lasting advertisement. I also seem to remeber a can of green beans or some other vegetable. This new picture is of a Bardahl oil can. I wonder if this was a premium at gas stations? I know Mattel loved premium tie-ins so this could be. Anyone out there know of any others? What a pioneer Mattel was! Anyhow I understand that there were a variety of these can shaped Wizzers made with a variety of food and drink labels on them. If you have any other information on these please drop
me a note at
email@example.com. I need pictures of the
various "can" shaped Wizzers. Kevin
Anetsberger pitched in with this picture
of the packaging for one of these "Canned Wizzers" as they were
called. Anyone else know any other varieties? Which ones do you have
in your attic? I have a Hawwian Punch one. I need to get a pictre of
it for the page, but have been lazy. the chance.
From gopakman comes the following information:
Sorry, I don't have a picture of it or an instruction sheet but my FAVORITE Wizzer toy was a rainbow making Wizzer. I have no idea what its name was but it was a "rounder" with a solid yellow bottom and a clear plastic top. You could actually see inside this Wizzer! Inside on the metal wheel was a red, blue and yellow disc divided like a pie with a black curved plastic fan directly over it. When you spun the Wizzer it would seemingly change colors: green, red, orange, purple, etc.
Unfortunately my brother for some unknown reason destroyed it years ago by throwing a metal barbell weight on top of it. He called it "target practice." What I called it is unprintable!
Years later Mattel used the exact same mechanism
inside the Hypnos action figure (part of the small Pulsar line). I
believe Hypnos was released in 1978.
The last incarnation of the Wizzer (as far as I know) was in the Upsy Downsy series of Mattel toys. These were a series of tiny dolls for girls. Two of the figures rode in Wizzers with painted faces and a chair built into the top. Both had wild colored hair and a strange face (which was both bolded and painted) on them. Each had a particular name, which I have long forgotten. They had little handles to keep the occupants from flying off. Kevin Anetsberger came through with a wonderful picture of this rare Hairy Hurry Wizzzer as well!
Miles J. writes in to tell all about the two different Upsy Downsy Wiz-z-zer Sets.
The FURRY HURRY Wiz-z-zer (#3837) was Orange with big Yellow Teeth, and Bright Red Yarn Loops of Hair. The Furry Hurry had Two Pink Arms atop its head to support its passenger, Blond-Haired, Blue-skinned Upsy SKELTER HELTER.
The HAIRY HURRY Wiz-z-zer (#3838) is sort of Teal Blue with a Pink Yarn Shag Hairstyle. It has an Orange-ish Lawn Chair Perched atop, with slots in the back to secure the frames of the Huge Glasses worn by its rider, An unususal Downsy with Long Purple Hair, and a Green Face But Pink Arms and Legs. Her name is Thithery Hithery.
The Upsy Downsy Wiz-z-zer Sales balanced Asst. #A3863 (24, 12 of each set) was listed in the 1971 Mattel Toy Catalog as weighing 22 Pounds?!
Also on the subject, are You aware of the two Wiz-z-zer-inspired He-Man Action figures, made by Mattel in 1987? Their names are Rotar (GoodGuy Human) and Twistoid (Bad Guy Robot). Each was a cool Wiz-z-zer top with jointed arms, and each came with a variety of gyro-powered gadgets and accessories. There were even plans to produce a vehicle (The "Gyrattacker", it was called) to power up the tops and launch them. This item never came to pass. "
Kevin Anetsberger also sent this interesting picture of a Wizzzer Hockey Game. This has to be the strangest itme of all. I guess as they wizzzed around they might just toss the puck into a goal... more likely across your kitchen table!
Many Wizzzers came with stickers which you could apply. One was a patriotic affair with a white bottom and red sticker stripes as well as a blue top to which you would apply white stars. Amazingly enough the ones I have with stickers on them still seem well stuck today after all these years. Other Wizzers came with preappointed patterns already on the toy. The boxes featured a tiny hole so you could see the two colors of your Wizzer (the top and the bottom) which were often garishly mismatched. The box shape changed over the years as well. The original boxes (not shown here) were rectangular and had a stand up flap in the back so they could be hung on store pegs. Later boxes took on a more triangular shape (thus giving them more shelf space and more visibility) shown here is the Night Winder box. This box also contained a variety of trick devices including a strange orange ring. I remeber as a kid being confused by this strange orange ring and trying to get my Wizzzer to use it as a hoola hoop... These were at first only the Rounder and the Wedge, but as the toy line expanded lots of accessory sets were added. My favorite of these (though I can no longer find it) was the "Trick Tray" which had quite a few things you could do with it. First of all you could use it to toss your Wizzer in the air or have mini battles between Wizzers. It also came with a plastic pressure sensitive carbon paper like stuff which the Wizzer would leave trails on. Picking up the top layer cleared it off so you could do it again.. There were a maze which you could guide your Wizzer through, and the back side (not shown) had a set of trick ramps. There were pattern disks which by placing your Wizzer on would spin creating very flashy patterns. It also came with blanks so you could make your own. It I recall the inserts for this toy were in a slightly off yellow while the actually tray was molded in bright blue. i think there were other inserts as well but my memory is not all that good on this topic.
To operate a Wizzer what you would do is hod the toy at an angle to the ground so that the tip (made of a semi transparent plastic with a metal point) could contact the floor, but your fingers and the side of the toy would not. Mothers across the country complained that the metal tip would often mark linoleum floors. Later models of the toy do not have this effect.
There were quite
a few tricks you could do with a Wizzer, but many of them described
in the road map line manual required either another Wizzer (Gee,
could this be a sales ploy?) or a variety of accessory sets (also
sold separately), but some of the later Wizzer did come with a few
nifty gadgets. The base could be stuck in the bottom of the Wizzer
and you could watch your Wizzer roll around madly on its side. Some
of the Wizzer 's came with a larger base which could be used sorta
like a wheel. The small yellow item could be used to balance a
whizzer sideways on another Wizzer. This was a truly odd looking
thing when you got it to work.The Green stilt could be attached to
the Wizzer for some odd results, and the orange ring could be placed
around the green pole to make a Wizzer do the "Ring Dance". This is a little
hard to describe, but it was interesting, colorful, and over rather
quickly. A picture of the "Ring Dance" is shown to the right.
Recently someone sent me this picture of a a very special Wizzer. It was given out to company employees to celebrate the 25th year of Mattel making toys. The bottom half of the wizzer is transparent. On the inside it sayz "Our twenty fifth year" The top half was a shiny chrome material. I would love to find one of these toys. I recently traded some old Upsy Downsy tosy for a Spin Buggy. I had one of these as a child and they were a lot of fun. What it was was a very think plastic car body with a hole in the top. Into the opening on the top you would place a round Whizzer while it was spinning. This would transfer power to the car and the car would scoot off very quickly. I think there were two versions of this vehicle. This picture matches the toy I have, but I seem to recall a red car with a different design.
This was a similar toy to the Hockey set. Another toy which did not quite live up to the concept shown on the box. The problem with Wizzers is that they slow down too quickly, thus making complicated stunts very tricky.