Girders and Panels by Kenner

Girder & Panel is a toy construction building set, appropriate for ages 6-13, with which you can build buildings (as well as bridges with the Bridge & Turnpike building set, and powerplant with the Hydrodynamic building set). The completed structure is made to resemble real-life sky-scrapers, fire stations, bank buildings, bridges, pumps, and so on. Originally introduced by Kenner Products in the 1950’s, there is an entire generation of engineers and architects that have many fond memories of playing with this set as children.

The sets include plastic columns and beams which are interlocked together to create the basic outside frame (just like real buildings are built using iron beams and columns). Then, thin plastic panels are added to the outside of the frame, creating solid walls, windows and doors on the frame. The building is completed with roofs, decorative flags and signs! Because the parts are scaled to the common HO scale (1/87), many accessories such as cars, trucks, trees, and trains can be added to your model city.

The initial sets were inspired by the construction of a new office building in Cincinnati, OH, home of Kenner Toys. Kenner president Alfred Steiner was intrigued by the modern steel beam and girder structure of the new building, and the steel and glass wall panels that were later applied to that framework. This led to the development of these construction toy sets.

Most adults today who had Girder and Panel sets back in the 1960s remember the famous building and turnpike sets. These were unforgettably characterized by hundreds of red plastic girders and beams, green masonite baseboards, yellow electric motors and pulleys, grey plastic road pieces, and bright orange, yellow, and brown plastic wall panels. The all-time best-selling set was the motorized #8 set: Combined Girder-and-Panel Bridge-and-Turnpike set.

Girder & Panel differs from other construction building sets in that it lets children experiment with real engineering principles. Because the buildings are actually 1/87 scale of real buildings, children investigate how to build strong buildings and bridges, and how to make water flow for the Hydrodynamic building sets.

Bridge Street Toys

The products have been produced by several companies since 1957 and since 2005 by Bridge Street Toys, although I'm not sure if they still exist. Their website is offline.

Hydro-Dynamic Sets

The set that has inspired many chemical engineers! This set has tanks, valves, and piping (plastic tubing) to move water. First you design and build the structure, add water, and then enjoy playing with this water set for hours and hours. Children learned how it is to be hydraulic engineers with the Hydro-Dynamic sets. These came with pumps (battery operated) and could pump water through plastic tubes. The sets (#11 and #12) contained many clear plastic parts consisting of dippers, storage tanks, funnels, spray heads, turbines, and small and large liquid chambers.

A small amount of classic Girder and Panel and Bridge and Highway pieces were included, to allow an office to be built as part of the chemical plant, with roadways leading to it.

Around 1968, production of Girder and Panel sets had stopped and didn't start again until 1974, when Kenner (now owned by General Mills), introduced the larger 1,100-piece Sears Tower (set #72001) with black girders and panel. This set could make a 5-foot-tall model of the Sears Tower.

Beginning around 2005, and continuing to the present (not sure about this!), the Girder and Panel sets are again being produced and now sold in some speciality shops and on the internet by Bridge Street Toys (site is offline). They have produced a number of different sets, along with matching parts for the older Kenner Toys and Irwin Toys sets.

List of all sets

Find Girders and Panels Building Sets and prices

Updated: 26 Juy 2021

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Kenner Girder Panel value and price guide

What's your Kenner Girder Panel worth in 2021? Here are some recently sold items.

Item Title Date Price
kenner girder panel of 3 building sets working elevator Kenner Girder Panel Of 3 Building Sets Working Elevator 11/2021 C $230.13
kenner general mills girder panel action building set Kenner General Mills Girder Panel Action Building Set 11/2021 C $37.26
1961 kenner s girder panel hydro dynamic building set 1961 Kenner S Girder Panel Hydro Dynamic Building Set 11/2021 C $65.92
kenner s bridge turnpike girder panel building set Kenner S Bridge Turnpike Girder Panel Building Set 10/2021 C $12.44
kenner s girder panel no 2 building set 1957 Kenner S Girder Panel No 2 Building Set 1957 10/2021 C $74.57
no pictureSee all sold items on eBay for more prices12/2021C $-.--

Kenner Girder Panel forum

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Comments (8)
Tom - September 10, 2021
As a kid, I had a Hydrodynamic set with the subtitle Pipe it, Pump it, Light it, that had grain of wheat light bulbs included in the 2 pump set. I don't see any mention of this anywhere on the 'net. It was my last and probably 5th or 6th Kenner set. I now work in municipal water and wastewater treatment :)
Todd - January 25, 2021
I own a number of sets which have been cmbined over the years I am looking to put them back in their boxes to sell. Does any one know the part inventories for the sets: Kenner Panel & Girder #2, #3, #6, #8, #9, Modern as Tomorrow Girder & Panel Building Set, Kenner Panel and Girder Action Bridge & Highway Set. Many thanks if anyone can help with sorting the parts out to the right set(s)
I'll forward any message I get Todd!
Chris - June 11, 2020
I'm looking for:1959 Kenner Combined Girder
Paul - May 2, 2019
I had several of these sets when I was a kid. I would use them on every H-O train layout I built!When I went into the Army, I put them away in what I thought was a safe place. Two nephews found the
Hi Paul, somehow your story didn't get through completely unfortunately, maybe the use of special chars like quotes messed up things. If you would like to share your story again, I'll update your comment :-) Thanks!
Scott - December 7, 2018
Do you still sell these. I had these when I was a boy. And if so how much are they
Hi, I'm not the manufacturer, and I don't think they are made anymore. Best is to find vintage sets on eBay.
Robert - October 10, 2017
I wish they made them now. I think they would be great to us on HO train layouts They Look to be close if not the right on scale.
I agree!
Dennis - December 28, 2013
do you have any curved ramps?
No I'm sorry, I don't sell parts...
Itloma - September 5, 2011
What if any value have grider and panel building set and bridge and turnpike in mint condition?