What BAYKO Can Do

Simply, BAYKO is an architectural toy and can be used, depending on the quantity of BAYKO and the breadth of ambition of the modeller, to build a wide range of buildings from a simple shed to a Skyscraper “limited only by the child's imagination”, as early literature said.
Painfully, it has to be admitted that LEGO was/is infinitely more versatile, but BAYKO wins hands down on realism.
Modified version of the Town Hall model from the 1950s manual made with late 1950s polystyrene windows and slightly earlier bricks
The 'play value' of linking BAYKO to HORNBY and DINKY toys wasn't lost on Plimpton's marketeers, forging a link with MECCANO long before the take-over.
The ‘Toyman’ articles in 'MECCANO Magazine' epitomised this…
Partly because of its period of origin, BAYKO is usually thought to be in scale with O-Gauge model railways, though it's unlikely to satisfy the rivet counters. [Does anything?] However, there's definitely another perspective…
…personally, for 'public buildings', like railway stations, which are usually much more grandiose than domestic ones, I think BAYKO better matches O-O Gauge. I am in the process - an embarrassingly long one to date - of building a modular O-O Gauge BAYKO model railway which can be made up to to a full scale mile…
…69 feet 6 inches or 21.2 metres!…
…so far I'm almost halfway there!
One extremely useful fluke, should you choose to embark on a comprehensive O-O Gauge BAYKO model railway - five BAYKO Bases lengthways, or seven BAYKO Bases crossways, [i.e. 35 bricks in total] is exactly ⅔ metre. Straight PECO SETRACK comes in multiples of ⅙ metre, so can be made to fit absolutely perfectly - well to within 0.0125% anyway!!! Surely even the rivet counters can't better that, can they‽
Like many of the world's most successful toys, BAYKO was intended to be expandable through repeat purchases both of conversion sets and spare parts. This would have been a major revenue stream for the company.
Leo's BAYKO model of the Empire State Building
That way you could build almost anything that took your fancy - “limited only by your pocket” as the BAYKO literature perhaps should have said!
The instruction books BAYKO provided with each set showed a wide range of models which could be built with the set.
Today's BAYKO collectors / modellers generally enjoy producing original designs for the models they build…
…the occasional masochist even copies real life…
…though few people would contemplate what Leo did!
The model to the right is Leo's truly magnificent BAYKO model of the Empire State Building…
…that's Leo on the right of the group.
Plenty of people today still collect and play with BAYKO - why not join them? - join the BAYKO Collectors Club!
The basic BAYKO rubric could hardly be simpler, making getting started easier, and then progressively more fun as you try to get round those rules!
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Latest update - August 10, 2022
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