My original decision to create a Ding-A-Ling web site was sparked by my memories as a child of the only toy I truly loved. I thought a plaything that could leave such a lasting impression on a man almost thirty years later had to have an influence that touched other people in a similar fashion. It would be an understatement to say "Boy was I was right". Below are some of the personal stories of the people who have visited the Ding Site. Some of these stories are humorous, some packed with fond reminisces and some are downright heartbreaking. I think they all illustrate the importance a child can place on a plaything that serves not only as a toy but sometimes a friend as well. Many, many thanks to those of you who agreed to let me publish your stories.

Daniel

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It was Christmas 69 or 70 for sure that is the only thing I am not sure of the rest will be etched in my mind forever I hope. We have cousins in Boston we live in Connecticut. My father thought last minute to go so we left and it was 2 days before Christmas we got there and low and behold on Christmas all our cousins got gifts from Santa. We saw them open the gifts my brother and I got nothing not one gift all I could do is feel bad inside but I was small so it passed quickly but as you can see I held it for quite all of my life. Coming home after Christmas wasn't good either a three hour ride turned into 5 or six hours snow deep snow check weather history it was bad that year after we got home we had a big yard and i saw my grams and poppas car in our driveway on the way into our house now that I look back my grandfather made sleigh marks in the snow to look like Santa was here. We rushed into our house to find dinner cooking and all the gifts under the tree you see my gram and poppa drove in that snow to put the gifts for us under the tree and under that tree was king ding for me and the pyramid set for my brother he also got an extra pack and Boxer I can still see the boxed King Ding like it was yesterday. we had trouble getting the power-packs to work so my uncle the mechanic put a shirt button behind the battery tabs and low and behold the dings game to life wow look there upside down just like the commercial said it would do and the Kings Ding's Brain moved up and down wow he looked 20 feet high as a kid to me you see my gram and poppa made that day special for us and that toy was everything to me. Years later I discovered EBay and all thru my life I wondered if could find another one but I couldn't remember the name then one night on EBay I type in robot and there it was a King Ding I knew as soon as I saw it. So here we are today trying my best to keep this toy up and running its a selfish reason but if someone can get there stuff going again hey I did my part I owe this toy thank so much for sharing this me happy holiday and please help me with this gear I am not making big bucks off this trust me its all about the toy for me thanks Tony

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Had Had a King Ding and Brain when I was a young. Born in '68, so I must have been very young. Very vivid memories of King Ding. I almost thought I had imagined the name or that it was a name I had given to the robot myself as a child because I thought--- who would name a robot King Ding other than a child? Was I shocked when I googled/Ebay searched King Ding to find that it was in fact his name and not one I had given my plastic robot. Brain's name I only learned after finding several websites on King Ding and the Ding-a-lings. I don't think I ever knew his name as a child playing with him. I remember that secure feeling I had-- I must have only been 4 or 5 years old--- watching Brain go up inside Kind Ding's head. Sounds corny, but I can remember wanting to be Brain, thinking how safe and secure he was inside King Ding and what a cool place that would be inside Ding's control center in his head. At that time, King Ding was a gigantic and incredibly complex toy to me. I want one again like I can't believe!

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I too played with many Dings. I am 33 years old, born May 25, 1966. I had the Space Skyway, King Ding, and many other Dings. My mom was the type that gave away items to less fortunate children, so I'm not sure what became of those guys. My first reunion was with a Claw, back in North Carolina around 1993, my next was a Constructo with Power Pack at the 1999 FX Convention in OrlandoFL. I couldn't actively seek these guys because I was in the AF for 10 years, and stationed in Europe from 1993-96. Desert Storm didn't help much either. I just became internet savvy 3 years ago. Now I actively seek Dings, complete at good prices. One sad story. My King Ding was my favorite. I could make Brain go up and down all day and not get tired watching that little video drum flip by. One day, he broke. He just jammed. My mom said, put him in a corner of the house so my dad would see him after work, he could fix anything. Problem was Dad never had the time. My dad commuted close to 2 hours from NY to Long Island each way, each day. Each morning I'd check King Ding, no repairs. I'd dust him off and proudly put him back in the corner, waiting for dad to fix him. I was happy to know that he was the first thing you saw coming in the front door to our apartment. Well, it never happened. King Ding made way to Billy Blastoff, Zeroids, and other wonderful toys. I discovered GI Joe and that was it. Yet King Ding has always held a special place in my heart. I wish to get a hold of one, but they're so expensive. I acquired a Mattel Shougun warrior Raydeen for $50 at FX 2000 this weekend. They usually book for over $150, he too was another childhood want. I looked all over the show and found only Fireman.

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My King Ding was my favorite. I could make Brain go up and down all day and not get tired watching that little video drum flip by. One day, he broke. He just jammed. My mom said, put him in a corner of the house so my dad would see him after work, he could fix anything. Problem was Dad never had the time. My dad commuted close to 2 hours from NY to Long Island each way, each day. Each morning I'd check King Ding, no repairs. I'd dust him off and proudly put him back in the corner, waiting for dad to fix him. I was happy to know that he was the first thing you saw coming in the front door to our apartment. Well, it never happened. King Ding made way to Billy Blastoff, Zeroids, and other wonderful toys. I discovered GI Joe and that was it. Yet King Ding has always held a special place in my heart.

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My name is Wayne, and I would like to share my Ding memories with you. It was the summer of 1971 when I first saw a Ding in a store. Boxer was the one and only Ding they had on the shelf. A week or so later, he was joined by Claw, Constructo, and Fireman, as well as King Ding himself. In the following weeks, I acquired these, and really wanted Rocky, Twirly, and Answerman, but these were not to be found in the stores around here. About this same time, I remember seeing the Ding TV commercial for the first time. Near Christmastime, the J.C. Penney catalog had the Super Return Skyway in it, which my cousin got for Christmas, and it had (believe it or not), Spy included!Spy had a small yellow door at the lower center part of his body (which I noticed is missing in the scan on your website), which by pressing the button on top of his head, a camera popped out from behind. After a year or so, I was finally able to beg my cousin into giving Spy to me. I also got Rocky for Christmas of '71 from the Penney's catalog, as well as the Ding Mobile. By this time, I had 5 or 6 power packs. I remember that each one seemed to have different characteristics; some were faster than others, some ran smooth and quiet, others were very noisy, but all had one thing in common, a voracious appetite for "AA''batteries!


By summer '72, the Dings had disappeared from stores and TV, and I never did find my beloved Twirly. In late '72, I went to a local Kent's store (which was very much like a Dollar General Store, if you're familiar with those, low quality items), and lo and behold, there was Claw, Constructo, Boxer, Fireman, and... Answerman! For 25 cents each! I bought 2 Answermen that day. (They also had Major Matt Masons, Sgt. Storms, and Doug Davises for 25 cents each as well, ofwhich I bought many).

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All of my Dings met with a untimely demise in the following years. Only Claw survived, along with one power pack. I got Claw out yesterday, and after doing a bit of soldering on one of the motor terminals, and finding a motor gear on one of my son's broken robots, my Claw roams the earth for the first time in many a year. I found a Twirly for sale on a website, mint in box with a mint in box power pack, for $50.

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"I have long told my friends of these toys and how I used to go to the local toy shop and admire the "King Ding", trying to save up enough to buy one. I was often laughed at. I had spent much time trying to Find us more but the search, until I found your page, was fruitless. I would have believed I made it up if it wasn't for my brothers sharing the memories of building the tracks and playing with them and my Mom who about 4 years ago found an intact "Claw" Ding-a-ling in her basement and sent it to me (Alas, my sons got a hold of it and broke it). I have always wanted the "King Ding" and of course, "The Brain". I remember the commercial quite vividly. Are there any out there that you know of?"

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"I was so happy to find your site, I first got the SRS Skyway set (which came with Claw) for Christmas years ago when I was little. Years later in grade school I traded my way into the Pyramid set( which came with Answerman). I can remember wondering if I made a mistake when I was a kid I had to trade a lot of what I thought was "good stuff" at the time!) But later my parents found Fireman and Boxer for me at a local drugstore. I have them all still and now I am married with two young sons. When I found your site it was like being that little kid all over again! I never had a chance to see King Ding (except for the back of my boxes) and never knew which ones there were. Nothing but the highest complements for this site! Write me and let me know where you can still find them, I'm curious now!"


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"The Ding A Lings were probably my favorite toys and spawned one of my closest friendships in grade school (who was reluctant to come over and play until he found out that I had the majority of the Ding A Lings). Whenever I could put my hands on $1.99, I was off to supplement my collection...but they remained only a memory to me until recently. I looked through toy collectible magazines, and browsed a couple of nostalgia stores, but mostly got blank stares and a few giggles when I said I was looking for the Ding A Lings. I also collect a lot of television nostalgia and could not locate a copy of the highly redundant TV ads. I thought it was near hopeless. I figured they were a limited distribution product and/or just too obscure. Much to my surprise, my mom located "Claw" for me at a 60s convention and it was one of the biggest birthday shocks I ever received. I located your web site by searching on "Topper"... I don't know how you escaped my prior inquisitions. Regardless, Claw has only whet my appetite. I don't have anything for trade, but would appreciate any contacts you can provide where I can purchase additional Ding A Lings, Power Packs, and the track arrays for them. I will be deeply indebted!!"

 

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" I have been periodically checking the internet for a web site about Ding-A-Lings since I discovered search engines. It was getting to the point that I considered taking down my "Droids" web site and replacing it with a Ding-A-Ling web site of my own. I thoroughly enjoyed your web site. I myself have collected Ding-A-Lings since 1971 when they could be purchased for 50 cents a piece and still have my original Claw and Constructo robots (Actually I had to buy a new Constructo every couple of weeks, his head kept breaking off) I'm glad that someone finally put up a site that really knows something about these marvelous toys. My collection isn't very large consisting only of 3 Constructos (2 mint in box), several boxers (my least favorite), 2 Claws, 2 Saucers, 1 Answerman (traded my other one), 2Brains (no Kings though), 1 Fireman and the Pyramid play set. I collect almost all robots but the Ding-a-Lings are among my favorites. I have a photo of myself playing with a Constructo when I was 6 or 7 years old. Keep up the good web site, I've bookmarked it for future perusal."


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" I have been trying to remember the name of this long lost friend for years and years. My King Ding was my favorite toy until one terrible day. It was a very nice, early spring morning and I was sitting on my parents porch ready to go off to school. I saw the garbage men walking by, one was carrying a large orange plastic garbage can. The sun was shining behind them and silhouetted in the garbage can I could clearly see my King Ding robot. I was a little boy, and I was too scared to ask the garbage man to let me have my robot back. I remember feeling very ashamed that I didn't speak up and save my friend and I have literally thought of that moment in my life quite often, as a lesson of sorts to myself. I never spoke about it for years because it upset me for a number of reasons. If you hear of a complete King Ding for sale, would you please let me know? I would really appreciate it. I also had an Answerman and if I had the opportunity to get one of those again I would like to as well.


Thanks SO MUCH for your site, and for reading this letter."