Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Futuro - House of the future


As I have mentioned before, I am a big fan and collector - ok, ok, I am obsessed, with things from the 1950's - 1970's.

I have a collection of furniture, transistor radios, Flip-clock radio alarm clocks, eight-track players, record players, televisions, hand-held computer games, toys, bar and cocktail stuff, cigarette lighters, boxes, makers, pipes etc - you name it, and I probably have more than one of them!

Amongst my collection I have some pretty bizzare stuff which I may start posting here as a bit of a diversion from the politics and stuff that challenges my sanity on a daily basis.


Anyway, several months ago now, an aquaintance of mine (Brian, who owns the very excellent Weekend Sun Newspaper in Tauranga) who must have been aware of my fascination - ok OBSESSION with this kind of stuff asked me if I had a flying saucer!
This really scared me, because I know some people think I'm crazy, but to be placed in the category of UFO spotters, conspiracy theorists and time travellers kind of took me back a bit. Still, I digress! The flying saucer he was talking about was the one pictured above. a fibreglass HOUSE, made in the 1970's called a FUTURO. Brian informed me that he had seen one parked on the side of the road in a town called Thames. I was so excited at this news that I booked the next day off work, and drove off to Thames, which is approximately 100kms from where I live. I drove around a few times, but couldn't find the thing, (you can understand my hesitancy in asking for directions to the "flying saucer!") Anyway, after a while I finally spotted it on a piece of waste ground by the railway lines. Using my finely honed detective skills (I asked a bloke across the road, who was watching me closely) I tracked down a man who used to own it many years ago - in fact, he was one of the original franchise owners in New Zealand. Futuro's were originally made in Christchurch by Orbital Homes Ltd, under licence to a man called Noel Cumming, who is now no longer! The man I was speaking to actually owned this very Futuro, but he sold it, or to be more accurate, traded it to a man by the name of Mike Peti for a Holden Stationwagon! As well as the Futuro house, he also gave Mike the MOULDS for casting or making the fibreglass sections of the Futuro. Mike Peti on-sold the Futuro to an infamous character known as Mike Zero! Mike was, I believe, the owner of a very cool shop in Auckland called Hunters and Collectors, that bought and sold anything that was old, or cool or unusual and interesting, from leopardskin Dr Martin boots and brothel creepers (crepe soled rockabilly shoes) to dope pipes, leather jackets, old microphones etc etc. Rumour has it that Mike obtained a fierce appetite for ingesting illicit substances, and lost everything he had - including the Futuro. The present owner of the Futuro lives in Auckland. One day when I have accumulated some spare cash I shall give him a phonecall - I have a landing site all prepared. As you can see in the pics above, she is obviously in no fit state to fly any more, but check out the link here, to see what she could look like with a little (a lot) of care and attention.

6 Comments:

Blogger Rick said...

I like it okay.

Sure I saw one in Auckland. I think its on the east side of the Southern Motorway somewhere you can see driving past.

7:40 pm  
Blogger The Tomahawk Kid said...

Hi Rick - thanks for that - I may make it a bit of a mission to track down as many of these as I can.

Where abouts on the southern Motorway - give us a clue!
Mangere?
Greenlane?

Anyway - how long have you been in Aussie for?

9:38 am  
Blogger Phil Howison said...

When I was very young and living in the South Island, my Nanna lived next to one of these homes. It was by one of the rivers and had a garden around it, but you couldn't see much of it from the road. I was very impressed by the "flying-saucer house".

I think at one stage they were considering using them for housing in Antarctic bases?

Anyway, thanks for re-awakening some old memories :-)

3:46 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi.. Hope you do get her.. she sure could use some tlc & hate to see her waste away in the heap :)

Btw, I have some information on the Futuro, including the ones in OZ & NZ -- and the Antarctic bases, on my website --
http://www.futurohouse.com


Thanks you for the information again. Len

6:40 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey tomahawk kid Im tracking down the locations of these futuro homes in nz ,a bit of a project you may say would you remember the name of the guy you mentioned who was one of franchise owners you mentioned from thames ?

regards

regan

regan@rjlowphotography.com

8:20 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi I currently own two of these houses. Get in contact with me at nick_mcquoid@hotmail.com

9:13 am  

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