It’s not particularly attractive, there are no side rails, no air tires, it doesn’t event have anti-tipping steering. It’s the basic pickup truck of the wagon world without much appeal…So why is it still one of the top selling wagons in 2019?
We’re talking about the Radio Flyer Classic Red Wagon (AKA model 18) and it’s been around for decades delighting kids. This basic all steel wagon has withstood the test of time because of its power of imagination and flexibility.
Let’s go back in time for a minute… way back, before the internet, social networks and video games. Imagination was a huge part of growing up – to keep from being bored we had to use our imagination to invent outdoor fun and the Radio Flyer Wagon was a huge part of that, turning itself into; submarines, race cars, parade floats, go-karts, and stagecoaches. This classic red wagon was tough enough to tackle the tallest hills, even when we couldn’t stay in (no anti-tipping steering, remember?). What happened when we turned too hard? busted heads, stitches and broken bones at times… “but we liked it like that!”
Ok, enough reminiscing about the good ol’ days… fast forward to the new generation of wagon owners and this Classic Red Wagon is still a versatile vehicle at an affordable price. Let’s review the features:
- All-steel seamless body with no-scratch edges – Powder-coated (baked on paint) for longevity and no rust
- Extra-long handle – it folds under the wagon when not in use /transporting
- No-pinch ball joint at the handle base – keeping fingers where they should be
- Controlled turning radius – so we can’t roll it anymore and wind up with stitches
- 10” durable steel wheels with solid rubber tires – long lasting but tough on bumps
- A very respectable 150 pound payload capacity
Keep in mind there are no side rails on this wagon so if you’re hauling little ones, this may be an issue (you lurch forward, they fall backwards). But around the homestead this is a great option to throw some bags of rocks/bark/fertilizer/mulch in.
Admittedly, with all its faults and challenges, this is the wagon I gave to my nephew 15+ years ago – and guess what… it’s still there at the house. He’s off at college now (UCI) earning his engineering degree. Maybe this Radio Flyer Classic Red wagon unleashed his engineering creativity at an early age. Maybe he’ll be up on stage accepting his diploma this year and giving his valedictorian speech and in it, he’ll say, “I owe it all to Radio Flyer and they’re awesome wagons!” Yeah, maybe not.
But you never know. And for less than $100, it’s not a bad bet to place because nowadays more than ever we need to get our kids away from the screens and into their dreams! And what greater vehicle to do that than the Radio Flyer Classic Red Wagon!?!
Happy Trails –