"THE LONE RANGER GLOW-IN-THE-DARK SECRET COMPARTMENT RING LOT.
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Thursday, September 4, 2008 1:10:00 PM Eastern Standard Time
Auction #195-Part II
Items 994-2570 in Auction 195
From 2003 and by the Marshall Corp. (See items #2103-2106). First and foremost is mock-up countertop standee 11x15.5" containing 8 individually packaged rings. Nicely designed hard plastic ring with sliding top that comes off to reveal secret message inside. Standee pictures and notes there were to be 5 different tops produced but only 1 was ever put into production and this features classic image of Lone Ranger on Silver. Ring sides feature star designs. Only 4 uncirculated boards exist, this is one of the original 7 mock-ups and it holds 8 rings (designed to hold 15). Lot also comes with 5.5x8.25" blister card containing single ring. Display/card are Exc., all rings are Mint. This ring was proposed, approved and put into production but then quickly halted for 2 reasons. First was a production issue in which the sliding top did not properly stay in place and as such was a choking hazzard. However, this was addressed and would have been solved in the next manufactured order. The second issue was with sales, all the major national retailers who were contacted wanted a guarantee of the ring's success, partly based on the possibility of a new Lone Ranger movie. These issues ultimately forced the company abandon the project. An expanded story can be found online as part of this item's description.
The full, expanded story as relayed to us is as follows-
The Marshall Corporation after successfully developing and marketing a children's metal Lone Ranger ring with collectible packaging that sold retail for $30, decided that an inexpensive plastic ring that could be sold in a blister pack off an end cap in retail stores and also off a point-of-sale board would be the answer to ultimately selling hundreds of thousands of rings. Projected retail price was $2.98 for the new ring. After the PLASTIC GLOW-IN-THE-DARK SECRET COMPARTMENT RING was designed and approved for distribution by the licensor (Classic Media), a small order for 3,000 units of rings in blister packs was manufactured in China. These were to be used solely to generate orders and at the time seven point-of-sale boards were mocked up to promote the marketing idea of the product off a point-of-sale board in conjunction with the blister packs. What brought down the project was two issues - first the rings when they sat in a warehouse would lose the integrity of the sliding top staying firmly on the ring (this was being addressed and would have been solved in the next manufactured order)...the real blow to the project was that all the major national retailers were contacted directly either by the Marshall Corporation or by the manufacturers' reps we had trying to generate orders who all wanted the same question answered...what will you do to pull these rings out of a retail sotre (the talk of a long awaited Lone Ranger movie wasn't enough)? They wanted proof that a movie was being developed and a release date for it so this issue and with no help from the licensor in opening doors to the product, ultimately forced the company to abandon the project. Only 4 uncirculated boards exist and this is one of the original 7 mocked up. It's stocked with 8 rings (board originally designed to hold 15 rings) with 5 different tops so the children could collect all five rings. Only one top was ever developed.
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