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MOUBAL SETS

If you have a set not shown on this page, PLEASE let me know!!!


THIS PAGE IS STILL A WORK IN PROGRESS


CHRONOLOGY OF SETS

In 1924, Moubal started with two sets, Set 1 and Set 2. In the years that followed this was expanded to 16 sets, in a rather hap-hazard manner:
      1924: Set 1, Set 2
      1925: Set 0, Set 1a (make-up set from Set 1 to Set 2)
      1926: Set 00, Set 3, Set 4, Station No. 1, Station No. 2
    ±1930:
Set 2a (make-up set from Set 2 to Set 3)
    ±1931: Set 000
      1935: Set 01 (also known as 0-1), Garage No. 1, Garage No. 2
      1936:
Set 0a (make-up set from Set 0 to the new smaller Set 1). Parts count in Set 1 is reduced, and increased in Set 1a.
      1938: Small Garage

Van Mouwerik & Bal also made two windmill sets, Windmill No. 1 and Windmill No. 2. Although they were made using the same materials and techniques as Mobaco, they are not really part of that "modular" series. The name Mobaco appears nowhere on the boxes, and they do not appear on the Mobaco price lists. Dating of the these sets is uncertain, but they were likely introduced in 1936.

In Sets 2a, 3 and 4, the list of contents does not quite match the number of parts on the price lists:
Set 2a is listed as having 432 parts, but actually has 436 parts, 4 more. Set 3 is listed as having 880 parts, but actually has 890 parts, 10 more. And Set 4 is listed as having 1135 parts, but actually has 1233 parts, 98 more!

There is also a discrepancy in the make-ups sets 0a, 1a, and 1a*. Only Set 2a is correct.

Set 0 + Set 0a = Set 1*:
Set 0 has 111 parts, Set 0a has 80 parts, together they have 191 parts, which is 17 parts more than Set 1* (174 parts). The extra parts are: 6x no. 26, 4x no. 27, 2x no. 40, 1x no. 41, 1x no. 42, 1x no. 44, 1x no. 51 and 1x no. 86.

Set 1 (original contents) + Set 1a (original contents) = Set 2:
Set 1 has 252 parts, Set 1a has 203 parts, together they have 455 parts, one more than the parts count of Set 2 (454). The extra part is no. 202, a 4x4 ground plate.

Set 1* (later contents with fewer parts) + Set 1a* (later contents with more parts) = Set 2 (unchanged):
Set 1* has 174 parts, Set 1a* has 282 parts, together they have 456 parts, two more than the parts count of Set 2 (454). The two extra parts are no. 202, a 4x4 ground plate, and no. 204, a 3x3 ground plate.

Set 2 + Set 2a = Set 3:
Set 2 has 454 parts, Set 2a has 436 parts, together they have 890 parts, which is the same as Set 3 (890 parts).
Note that Set 3 was listed in the price lists as having only 880 parts.




CHRONOLOGY OF BOX DESIGNS

Over the years, the design and material of the boxes changed. This helps date your set.

The boxes always consist of two parts, a bottom and a lid.

The lids are made with gray cardboard, over which colored paper is glued. The colored paper is wrapped around the sides of the lid, into the inside. Then white paper is glued to the inside of the lid, leaving a few mm of colored paper exposed.

The paper used to cover the lids varies: early on is has a faint structure, reminiscent of finger prints. From a distance is looks like hammered paint. Later, there is a strong texture with a craquelé effect. The Windmill sets use that same paper, but in turquoise. Later they revert to smoother paper. There are some exceptions, as detailed below. See the bottom of the Parts page for more info on paper.

In the early series, text was embossed into the lid, later it was printed on the colored paper before it was glued to the lid.

Construction of the bottoms is similar. Generally, the same colored paper is used as on the lid. Sometimes, the bottom is covered with a different paper than the sides, see the Parts page for the chronology.

The corners of the bottom and the lid are usually reinforced with metal corners, but their attachment isn't very durable, and many boxes found today have torn corners. See the Parts page about the chronology of the reinforcements.

Unlike the post-war Jumbo boxes, Moubal never puts dividers in the base. All the parts are densely packed into the box, with the manual on top. Very efficient, but requires you to neatly fill the box when you're done playing.

Moubal produced several "series" of boxes, with some exceptions here and there. Differences between series are sometimes subtle. Here an overview (subject to change as more information becomes available!):




Series 1 - 1924

Made with smooth, reddish cardboard (verify).

Printing on the lid is embossed with black ink.

The word MOBACO is in plain serif letters, surrounded by a double border.

Below the double border are the words Made in Holland and Trademarked.

Location of the logo varies, sometimes top, sometimes bottom (verify)

The set number is identified with the prefix "No." with a single underline and a period after the o.

Nothing is glued to the inside of the lid. However, a 5-digit serial number is handwritten in pencil.

Set 1 exists in this design. Likely Set 2 as well.



  
Series 2 - 1925?

Lid made with lightly textured red-brown paper.

Logo is along the top of the lid.

Lines in double border around logo are spaced further than in Series 1.

Made in Holland is moved to the side of the double border, sometimes to the left side, sometimes the right right side. Below the border are now Registered Trademark and
Gedeponeerd Handelsmerk (which means the same), and these are sometimes interchanged as well.

Nothing is glued to the inside of the lid.

A 5-digit  serial number is handwritten in pencil inside the lid.

Sets 00, 0, 1 and 2 exist in this design.

    
 
Series 3 - 1926?

Same as Series
2, except logo is towards the bottom of the lid.

Nothing is glued to the inside of the lid.

A 5-digit  serial number is handwritten in pencil inside the lid.

Sets 0, 1 and 1A exist in this design.


    
Series 4 - 1926?

Similar to Series 3, except now with one of four fun images. These exact same images are also found on the first Price List.


Text around the logo comes in two variations:
- Made in Holland to the left side of the double
  border, same as in Series 3
- Made in Holland and Producción Holandesa
  (=Spanish) above the logo.

This is the last series with Registered Trade Mark on the lid.


Nothing is glued to the inside of the lid.

A 5-digit  serial number is handwritten in pencil inside the lid.

Sets 0, 1 and 1A exist in this design.

There is a variation with leather paper texture and embossing around the image. So far, only found in Set 1.


      
 
 
Series 5 - 1928?

Very similar to Series 2 with the framed logo along the top, except now with an illustration of a house glued to the lid.

The house is Design no. 39 of Set 2, but drawn from a different vantage point. The illustration has 4 spot colors (red, gray, green, tan), which are often faded, especially the green.

There is a black border around the image, printed on the lid.

Missing are the mentions Gedeponeerd Handelsmerk and Registered Trademark. Instead, text around the logo now states:
- Nederlandsch Fabrikaat
- Made in Holland
- Produccion Holandesa

Nothing is glued to the inside of the lid. A serial number is handwritten in pencil inside the lid.
 
Sets 00, and Station No. 2 exist in this design.


    
Series 6 - 1929?

Very similar to Series 5, but but framed logo is at the bottom of the lid, and the image on top.


Nothing is glued to the inside of the lid. A serial number is handwritten in pencil inside the lid. This is the last series with serial numbers.
 
Sets 00, 0, 1, 1A, Station No. 1 and Station No. 2 exist in this design.

There is a variation of Set 1 with brown paper with lightly embossed curly structure, same as the paper used in Series 4, and a variation with light brown paper.

       
    
  
Series 7 - 1931?

This new series is much nicer. The lid is wrapped with shiny brown paper with a distinctive embossed pattern with a "hammered" look.

Printing is silver or gold, with a new, cursive logo. The undelining extends to the left of the letter M. On larger boxes, the underlining is a bit shorter. This logo is shown in the 1931 article in Natuur & Techniek.
The logo will remain like this until the end of the Moubal series, with minor variations.

The illustration is glued on. It is the same as in Series 4 and 5. It is cropped to fit Sets 00 and 0. There is a silver or gold border around the image, printed on the lid.

Text around the image is the same as in Series 5 and 6, in a modern typeface. But the Set number designation is still in traditional type.

Glued inside the lid is an illustrated parts list, printed with the same 4 spot colors as the house on the lid (red, gray, green, tan). The window is shown with square openings, while the house on the lid still has round windows!

No more hand written serial numbers.
 
Sets 00, 0 and 1 exist in this design with silver printing, and Sets 1A, 2A and Station No. 1 with gold printing.

In Set 0, the M has a double curl.


   
   
 
Series 8 - 1932?

This is clearly a budget box, perhaps due to the economic crisis? This box is only used for Sets 000 and 00.

Rather than their usual production method of wrapping colored paper around a cardboard lid brown ink is printed directly on white cardboard, which is then folded at the corners and stapled with metal clips. Despite the metal corner reinforcements, these boxes aren't very sturdy.

Set 000 is t
he only Moubal box lid featuring finger cut-outs on the sides. Set 00 does not have them.


The image on the lid is of Design no. 34 for Set 2, but shown here from a slightly different perspective. The picture has round windows, but the contents were always with square windows!

Text around image is the same as Series 7, but smaller.

Set 000 has an illustrated table of contents printed on the inside, but with a square window.
Set 00 has no printing inside the lid.

Set 000 came out in 1932. This cheap version of Set 00 possibly came out in the year that they lowered the price from fl. 2.00 to fl. 1.50, which was either 1933 or 1934.


       
Series 9 - 1933?

Same as Series 7, but house has square windows, and grooves
in columns are not shown.

The square windows now match the square windows in the contents shown inside of the lid.

Sets 00, 0, 01 and 1 exist in this design, with silver printing.

The example of Set 01 may be a transitional set, as it has 4 languages around the illustration and more modern typeface for the number. Layout is identical to Series 12.

     
  

Series 10 - 1935?

Similar to Series 9, except the logo is modified: difference between thin and thick lines in the cursive script is less pronounced, the a and the c are less elegant, and the underline is shorter, starting further to the right.
 
Printing is either silver or gold.

The paste-on illustration is by artist Harmsen van Beek (it has his initials). It has 6 spot colors (red, gray, green, yellow, tan, brown). It's similar to the drawing that appears on the 1934, 1935 and 1936 price lists, and identical to the 1935 price insert. Set 01, which came out in 1935, has this design.


The text around the image now also includes French: Produit Néerlandais.

In some sets, the typeface of the number is more modern.

Inside the lid is still the same illustrated table of contents, printed with 4 spot colors (red, gray, green, tan).

Sets 00, 0, 0A, 01, 1 and Small Garage exist in this design in silver, and Sets 1A and 4 in gold.

There is a variation of Set 0 with a more curly logo and a more traditional typeface.

The two Windmill sets, although not marketed as Mobaco sets, fit in this series. The paper has the same embossing but is green, and the printing is gold.


  

   Transition set with "curly" M, old typeface for No. 0, and 4 languages around the picture.

       
   
 
Series 11 - 1941?

Similar to Series 10, except printing is in dark green.

The paste-on illustration and the associated border is now more square. The image has been replaced with a somewhat clumsy copy of Harmsen van Beek's illustration, cropped closer to the children. It now only has 3 spot colors: green, red and yellow. Pink, gray and brown are made using a half tone grid (raster). There is a printer code in the bottom-right corner.

Box paper still has
the distinctive embossed pattern with a "hammered" look used since
S
eries 8.

Only Set 0 exists in this design. Perhaps this set is actually part of Series 12, using left-over paper from Series 10?


    
Series 12 - 1941?

Generally the same as Series 11, this series uses flatter paper which makes it feel cheaper.

Added text is still the same:
- Nederlandsch Fabrikaat
- Made in Holland
- Produit Neerlandais
- Produccion Holandesa

Inside the lid is an illustrated parts list printed with 4 spot colors (red, gray, green, tan).

Sets 00, 0 and 01 exist in this design.

Set 01 is a bit of a hybrid, as the layout is like Series 10, with the larger HvB illustration, while the paper and typeface put it in this Series 12.

       
 
Series 13 - probably 1948

Same as Series 12, except printing is silver or gold.

The illustration is the same as in Series 11 and 12, but the red half-tone is applied differently (see forehead sitting boy) and there is no printer code on the illustration.

"Nederlands Fabrikaat" is (finally!) in modern spelling.

Sets 00, 0, 0A, 01 and 1 exist in this design in silver, and Set 1A in gold.

These post-war sets were available until ±1952 when Moubal ceased making their own sets and only produced Mobaco parts for Jumbo.



       
     
  
 
  
Series 14 - 1935

The two Garages don't clearly fit into the chronology of sets. They are produced starting in 1935 using light textured paper, in a period that Moubal is using heavy textured paper for all other sets.

Otherwise, the design is similar to Series 10, except the small illustration of kids playing has been replaced by a large drawing of the garage. The illustration shown on the lid of Garage No. 1 is actually Garage No. 2, except the columns are colored tan instead of gray.

Garage No. 1 is printed in silver, Garage No. 2 in gold.

Series 15 - probably 1947

The construction of the lid is very different from all the previous series, using flat copper staples at the corners. The paper is red, with a leatherette structure, and the printing is black.

Otherwise, the design is the same as Series 11, 12 and 13.


The illustration for Set 0 has a printer code and is identical to Series 11 and 12. For Set 1 it's identical to the illustration of Series 9, with square windows.

"Nederlandsch Fabrikaat" is still old spelling, which suggests this series may pre-date the Thirteenth Series.

Inside the lid is an illustrated parts list printed with 4 spot colors (red, gray, green, tan). It has a printer code.

So far, only Sets 0 and 1 have been found in this series. Under Set 0 is a 1947 price-control sticker. These are probably the first sets produced after the war.


     


Below, all known sets are shown. Per set, lids are shown in chronological order (insofar I know!).

Click on a cover to see more details about a set.

If you have a set not shown here, please let me know!!!





MOUBAL SET 000

Set 000 is probably introduced in 1932, the year we see it appear in numerous newspaper ads, and in Price List Undated #4.
There is only one version of this set, in a rather flimsy box. The only other set in a similar box is Set 00.









MOUBAL SET 00

Set 00 is introduced in 1926. With 49 parts and a 3 x 3 hole base plate, it's substantially smaller than Set 0, which has 111 parts and a 4 x 4 base plate. Set 00 remains Mobaco's smallest set until Set 000 is introduced in ±1932 (with 36 parts and a 3 x 3 base plate).

The size of the box is determined by the 3 x 3 base plate. The manual is sized accordingly.

              

         






MOUBAL SET 0

Clearly, there was demand for a smaller set than Set 1.
Set 0 is introduced in 1925, just one year after Mobaco is launched. In order not to change the numbering of their existing sets, Moubal decides to name the new set zero. Later they even bring out a double zero and a triple zero set!

The size of the box is determined by the 4 x 4 base plate.

   

 
 










MOUBAL SET 0A (make-up set from Set 0 to Set 1)

Introduced in 1936 at the same time as the new, smaller Set 1, this upgrade set has the same size as a Set 1 box and is large enough to contain all the parts of Set 0 and Set 0A.

The height of the box is determined by the size of a 4 x 4 base plate. The width of the box accommodates the longer #3 poles.







MOUBAL SET 01


Introduced in 1935, this set with 160 parts fills the gap between Set 0 (with 111 parts) and Set 1 (with 252 parts).

A year later, in 1936, Moubal introduces a smaller Set 1 with 174 parts, at which point the difference between Set 01 and Set 1 becomes rather small, although Set 1 has many larger parts missing in Set 01.








MOUBAL SET 1
Contents changed in 1936

     
 
 
 
  





MOUBAL SET 1a (make-up set from Set 1 to Set 2)
Contents changed in 1936

      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden








MOUBAL Set 2

      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden








MOUBAL SET 2a (make-up set from Set 2 to Set 3)



  Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden







MOUBAL SET 3

      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden







MOUBAL SET 4

      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden







MOUBAL TRAIN STATION SET 1

      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden








MOUBAL TRAIN STATION SET 2

      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden








MOUBAL GARAGE SET 1

      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden








MOUBAL GARAGE SET 2

      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden








MOUBAL SMALL GARAGE SET

      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden








MOUBAL WINDMILL SET 1

Dating of the Windmill Sets is uncertain, but there are a few compelling clues. In the installation instructions, they mention the availability of Set 01, which came out in 1935. So the instructions must be from 1935 or later. A second clue in the instructions is the mention of Part 203 for 40 cents. 1936 was the last year you could get it for that price. This indicates that the instructions were produced in 1935 or 1936.

There are newspaper ads
in 1936 and in 1937 that mention the windmill sets. And, starting in 1937, the illustration on the Mobaco price list shows a windmill in the village, which suggests they might be available, even though they're not listed in the price lists.

Because there are no windmill ads in 1935, I think these sets come out in 1936.
They are very rare.


      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden








MOUBAL WINDMILL SET 2

      Box lid dimensions yyy x yyy mm

      xxx parts

      xxxx kg

      Came with manual xxxxxxxxx

      xxx designs



Photo courtesy Leen Kalden





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