Bayko, a building kit toy so irredeemably awful that even my dad didn’t join in (ie reduce me to spectator status). It was made of Bakelite – the material of the future. Sharp, brittle and annoyingly unconvincing, the tiny “brick” pattern panels slid onto bendy (and sharp) steel rods that you set into the holes in the base in a rigidly predetermined pattern. There were also exciting window features – the bay was the most glamorous – and non-opening doors. Roofs were panels to which the ground plan had to conform, and rested in place or, as was more likely, didn’t. The end result of an hour or so of frustrating labour was a static model of a despairingly grim nineteen-forties suburban home which you displayed with pride until you thought of using it for airgun practice. Unlike other construction toys, you couldn’t make anything other than the house on the box lid. You could try sticking Airfix wings on it, or wheels from write-off Dinky cars, but the thing remained what it was – a model of a house you hoped to God you’d never have to live in. The larger the Bayko kit, the more aspirational the suburban monstrosity. Top-of-the-range kits featured sexy extras like sheds and detached garages. Bayko was truly the Crap Toy to end all Crap Toys, and I don’t care what you have to say on the matter.
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