Lone Ranger Atom Bomb Ring Spinthariscope (1947 - early 1950s)

 

 

 

This ring spinthariscope was known as the Lone Ranger Atom Bomb Ring and advertised as a "seething scientific creation."  The Lone Ranger was more closely associated with silver bullets than atomic bombs but that's what it was called.  When the red base (which served as a "secret message compartment") was taken off, and after a suitable period of time for dark adaptation, you could look through a small plastic lens at scintillations caused by polonium alpha particles striking a zinc sulfide screen.

 

Distributed by Kix Cereals (15 cents plus a boxtop), the instructions stated: "You'll see brilliant flashes of light in the inky darkness inside the atom chamber. These frenzied vivid flashes are caused by the released energy of atoms. PERFECTLY SAFE - We guarantee you can wear the KIX Atomic "Bomb" Ring with complete safety. The atomic materials inside the ring are harmless."

The following advertisement was appearing in newspapers in early 1947.

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Last updated: 05/10/11
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