It is worth noting that the French language documentation also helps facilitate access to Switzerland, where we know there was a BAYKO market, at least briefly.
I currently have three BAYKO documents from the French market...
BAYKO Explanation Sheets - Unknown Date 1947? or 1948?
These two images were discovered recently, in photocopy form, as part of a 'set' of the same document as translated into four languages - Flemish, French, German and Spanish.
Dating it is difficult as there is no printed information, or at least none that has been preserved, but the basic, unornamented layout suggests austerity, and is, therefore, likely to predate other similar documents.
If you can help date these documents more accurately, then I'd love to hear from you...
Set Contents
BAYKO Explanation

French language set contents information, probably from the late 1940s

French language BAYKO description, probably from the late 1940s

The above document, was intended to supplement the English language manuals in BAYKO sets #0 to #3, explaining to the lucky young collector the basics about how to play!
As I said at the begining of this entry, there are three other versions of this document format...
1950s - French Langauge BAYKO Information Sheet
French language explanation sheet
French language set contents sheet
Parts explanations.
Set contents explanations.
It is perfectly possible that this document was targeted primarily at the French market, but it was, almost certainly, used in Belgium as well.
I don't know the date of this leaflet, but I can guess...
...or at least narrow it down to being 1952, when set #3 was introduced, or later, but, obviously, before the 1959 MECCANO takeover.
There may be a further clue as to the date, because I also own a very similar Italian language sheet, which I can confidently date to 1954...
205 mm x 131 mm = 8.1 x 5.2 inches
1949? to 1951? - French Langauge
BAYKO Information Sheet
1949 to 1951 French language explanation sheet
1949 to 1951 French language set contents sheet
Parts explanations.
Set contents explanations.
There is an almost identical document displayed, as it was used, in the Belgian market...
I don't know the date of this leaflet either, but I can guess...
...or at least narrow it down to being between 1949 and 1951, based on the range of sets and parts.
This document is shown courtesy of Alan Taylor who tells me this document was included with a French BAYKO set he now owns.
1962 - French MECCANO Trade Catalogue
Front cover of the 1962 French MECCANO Trade catalogue
This is, I admit, a slightly eccentric inclusion, though not, I believe, entirely illogical!
The image [left] shows the front cover of the 1962 MECCANO Trade Catalogue which was intended for the French market. My apologies for the fact that the image is slightly tatty, but I've tried, and not really found it possible to do a good job of tidying it up I'm afraid, so I've reluctantly left it as is.
The reason for its inclusion is simple...
...there's no BAYKO in it!
The lack of any market information for BAYKO in this trade catalogue doesn't prove that it was not sold in France at the time - I believe it was - but it is certainly indicative of a lack of marketing drive, in 1962 at least. It is also possible that, as far as BAYKO is concerned, the French market was covered from Belgium.
If you would like more information on the 1963 MECCANO French language catalogue...
Or to view a contemporary French language MECCANO general products price list...
There is also a multi-lingual BAYKO sheet, which I came across in the Liverpool Maritime Museum archives, that includes a French language script.
I also have a little more information on the French BAYKO market : -
Plimpton Engineering applied for, and was, granted French Patent #794,985, which was granted to Plimpton at 14:42, on August 17th, 1935!
It's unlikely that Plimpton would have gone to the trouble of registering the patent if they had no interest in creating a French BAYKO market.
For the rest, I'm afraid I have no direct information...
...however, I do have a strong suspicion : -
I believe that Plimpton deliberately targeted Belgium, with its dual French and Flemish culture, to drive the BAYKO market throughout France and the Benelux countries.
If I'm right on this, then my Belgian market information is relevant here...
If you have any information on the French BAYKO market then I'd love to hear from you...
Below here are links to related info : -
The following 25+ other countries are known to have been export markets for BAYKO : -
Click on highlighted country names above for more info.
Click on any of the links below for related information.
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