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Automatic electric toasters, 1956 In our tests of 22 models, three that are otherwise high in overall quality also present a serious shock hazard. We rate them Not Acceptable.

Ecology kits, 1973 This Mr. Wizard kit, as its name implies, consists entirely of culturing molds and bacteria. That should be done only under professional supervision--even if you don't follow the kit's suggestion that you culture matter from dirty garbage cans. We rate it Not Acceptable.

Candy pellets, 1973 For a nickel, a kid who buys Orbits with Blower gets a packet of tiny, hard candy pellets and a fairly large-bore plastic straw. It's dangerous to other kids when used like a pea shooter--and dangerous to a kid who might easily inhale the pellets.

Kids' sneakers, 1956. We tested 29 brands with the assistance of more than 300 boys and girls living in four New England orphanages. Among our incidental findings: City kids wear out the soles first; country kids wear out the uppers first.

Carpet sweepers, 1959 Most are relatively easy to empty: Spread newspapers on the floor, tip up the sweeper with one hand, and reach down with the other hand to pull on a metal tab. Empty the sweeper each time before you store it, we add, or whenever it gets too full.