Penguin Series 4 long range clockwork Cabin Cruiser (Tri-ang 423S)

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Penguin Series 4 long range clockwork Cabin Cruiser (Tri-ang 423S)

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Arch Four , Area 35
Toy and Model Boats (display)

A Penguin "Series 4" clockwork "Long range clockwork Cabin Cruiser, length 11 ins.", with red hull, white decking, and a brown hatch and green pennant, displayed with its original box.

The boat was made by International Model Aircraft Ltd, a division of Lines Brothers (better known for their Tri-ang brand-name) London, 1950s.


The Tri-ang boat range was the classic example of Lines Brothers' enthusiasm for branding. Some of the boats might be variously branded as:

  • Lines Brothers (the company),
  • Tri-ang (the company's main marque),
  • k Yachts (a range of steel-bodied boats that Lines brothers took over),
  • International Model Aircraft or IMA (a manufacturing group/factory within Lines Brothers),
  • FROG ( IMA's main brand-name for flying model aircraft, for "Flies Right Off Ground"), or
  • Penguin, the sub-sub-sub-brand for FROG model aircraft that didn't actually fly (as a penguin was a non-flying bird).

Since this boat was manufactured by IMA, and didn't fly, it was a "FROG Penguin" - perhaps with the rather strained retrospective logic that although penguins couldn't fly, they could swim.

In Tri-ang's latter years, this cascading and confusing range of potential brandnames was downplayed in favour of a new brandname for the whole range: Scalex Boats.

Various models were packaged or advertised under various multiple combinations of these brandnames, and some of the longer-lived Triang boat products have probably at one time or another used almost all of them.