Adios to Buckyballs

Mike Krumboltz
The Sideshow

Buckyballs, the popular magnetic desktop toy (for grown-ups!), are being discontinued. Maxfield & Oberton, the company behind the minimagnets, released a snarky statement explaining why.

"Due to baseless and relentless legal badgering by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Maxfield and Oberton is discontinuing production of the world's most popular adult desk toys this week to focus on new products and our popular Bucky Bigs and Buckybars lines."

The feud began after the CPSC alleged that Buckyballs were a health risk to children, who might (and in some cases, did) swallow them. The CPSC sued the makers of the desk toys, a legal tactic that the agency had used only once before in the past decade, according to the Washington Post. In one instance, a young child swallowed three of the magnets, thinking they were candy. In some cases, surgery was required to remove them.

The company's other products, Buckybars and Bucky Bigs, are larger than the troublesome Buckyballs and will remain on the market. According to spokesperson Andrew Frank, the bars are about an inch long and the Bigs are "almost the size of a quarter." The CPSC has "not said or asked anything about them," Frank said.