Johnny Astro Base by Ideal

In the early 1960s, Ideal Toy Corp. designed what is now one of the most collectible of the 'big plastic' (the main unit stands over 18 inches tall) battery operated toys. This is very similar in spirit to the Ideal Electronic Fighter Jet.

The toy ran on 4 D Cell batteries. Besides a power switch, it had several features that includes the following modes of operation:

Astro Scope: Switch to Astro Scope and a scene of spaceships, rockets, and jets rotates through a view finder just below a radar dome on the top of the toy. A button on the console let the user "fire" at objects seen on the screen, which would pause the rotating images and emit a machine-gun style sound.

In "Space Lock" mode, using the yellow rotary control on the upper right you can make the door on the right side to open and a chain hoist with a hook will deploy to pick up things. Reversing the chain hoist, you can bring things inside the Astro Base with the door closing behind the hoist when it is fully retracted.

Scout Car: The scout car can be plugged into a port on the console and controlled by a two position switch marked "turn" and "drive" that can actually be used to steer the vehicle with a bit of practice. The scout car also has missiles that can be launched.

Ideal made two variations of the Astro Base. The original "all red" version featured a lighted Astro Scope that illuminated the pictures spinning around the Astro Scope. Ideal Toys discontinued this version and offered the common "red and white" version.

Download here the original Astro Base manual

Updated: 11 October 2020

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Astro Base value and price guide

What's your Astro Base worth? Here are some recently sold items.

Picture Title Date Price
1960 ideal astro base no 4803 operating 1960 Ideal Astro Base No 4803 Operating... 03/2021 $17.30
1960 ideal astro base scout car vehicle astronaut 1960 Ideal Astro Base Scout Car Vehicle Astronaut... 03/2021 $41.00
astro base red version by ideal toys 1960 for Astro Base Red Version By Ideal Toys 1960 For... 03/2021 $49.00
complete ideal astro base space toy astronaut Complete Ideal Astro Base Space Toy Astronaut... 02/2021 $300.00
astro base red version by ideal toys 1960 complete Astro Base Red Version By Ideal Toys 1960 Complete... 02/2021 $249.99
no pictureSee all sold items on eBay for more prices05/2021$-.--

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