A really cool "building toy" from the mid 80s made by Fisher Price. Basically you connected beams with knots (my own terminology except for knot (see below). I cannot remember if there were official names for the pieces) to make whatever you want. Other pieces available: wheels, little men, and a host of other decorative lego like objects.


Little (maybe 1/2" or so) blue cubes with small rectangle-type things sticking out on each side, allowing you to snap beams (see below) onto them.

           |    |
    ,------`    `------.
    |                  |
  ._|      .____.      |_.
  |        |    |        |
  |        |    |        |
  '-|      '----'      |-'
    |                  |
    |                  |
    '------|    |------'
           |    |

Light gray pieces meant to mate (snap together) with the knot. The most commonly found beams were rectangular, however, there were also a few other shapes including curved pieces.

front view

  |          |
  | |------| |
  | |      | |
  |_|      |_|


Planes that snap into place in the middle of beams with little tabs. If memory serves correctly they were mostly dark blue. Later on, Fisher Price made glow in the dark beams and plates.

a beam connected to a knot
                  ._| |_.
   |-------------||     |_
   |             ||      _|
   |_____________||_. ._|


my comments

The "manual" or whatever you want to call it came with this demo robot to build. I usually used the robot's feet and did the rest out of my crooked imagination. I have made hoards of robots, a telephone booth, and a myriad of bases. I was deeply saddened when I heard Fisher Price abandoned my favorite toy after only a few years. I used to look down on legos in favor of my Construx. update: I incorrectly remembered them as "Constructs". I also use the term beams instead of grays...It sounds better in my opinion. A google search will result in a bunch of neat "fan" sites often with pictures. You can find a good amount of Construx for sale on ebay. update: mkb told me the blue connector pieces are called "knots". another update - construx being spelled correctly was pointed out to me by another noder and I forgot his name..if it matters to you, /msg me again and i'll put your name on here, heh.

A few additions to the write-up above, based both on my own memories and from a website or two, regarding this awesome toy, the apparent love child of Legos and Erector Sets.

  • The first Construx set came out in 1983, which featured the gray beams mentioned above. This was followed by the "Space" series, in 1984, which featured white beams and blue panels. Perhaps coolest of all, however, was the introduction of the glow in the dark parts, such as wheels and antennae. Finally, this series also featured a cool variation on the tires, which came in a translucent, clear style. 1985 saw the introduction of both the "Motorized" and "Alien" series of construx, neither of which I had, strangely enough. The Alien series featured black beams and purple-tinted panels. Finally, in 1986, the "Military" series came out, with some pretty ugly green-brown beams, but with the way cool camouflage panels. All sets were in continued production until 1988. In 1989, there was talk about expanding the series, but this fizzled out, for some reason.

  • For a short time, in 1986, one was also able to get some oddly coloured bits and pieces for his or her Construx collection, via regional promotion in McDonald's Happy Meals. However, as they came in primary colours, if I remember correctly, they didn't come close to matching anything else in one's set, and thus were usually left out, barring desparate measures.

  • In addition to the cubic "knots" as listed above, there were also swivel knots that allowed one to create movable parts that swiveled up and down (or left and right) at about a 270 degree radius.

  • One must stress the importance of the plates, or panels mentioned in the original writeup, as they were crucial to making one's creation seem less like a skeleton and more like the Real Life (tm); They also gave the illusion of a more robust vehicle. This was most important when one was trying to intimidate a playmate, during the inevitable demolition derby that ensued. :)

Much of the historical data cited with assistance from the Construx page at thisoldtoy.com: http://www.thisoldtoy.com/fisher-price/dept-7-playsets/f-construx/a-construx-index.html

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