Last spring, pictures of a series of Japanese train-themed rice cookers surfaced online. Die-hard train fanatics were quick to rejoice, and eagerly awaited the products’ release date. After all, what better way to show a love of your hobby than in the form of a practical, everyday object that feeds you?

There was just one little problem–these awesome appliances are actually only fan-made inventions.

The fake images which fooled dozens of unsuspecting densha otaku were originally envisioned as a joke by Twitter user “Super Express Rice Cooker,” whose hobby seems to involve creating imaginary train models to fool the masses. Starting with the Kounotori, a limited express train operated by JR West, he started designing rice cookers based on different models of trains in Japan. The public response to his creations was so positive that many people failed to realize that they were only fan-made images, and were subsequently heartbroken to learn that there are no actual plans to manufacture and market the rice cookers in real life.

Japanese website Livedoor NEWS even went so far as to check with a company that produces railroad-themed goods to find out what the real story was, but they sadly confirmed that the creative products are not about to be sold anytime soon.

It’s a real shame since these would-be appliances are so funky and creative that we think not only hardcore train fanatics, but also the general public, would definitely snap them up. Not to mention that they’re educational as well. Compare the real deal…

Kounotori, former 183 series six-car set (April 2012)


…with the imagined product!

Kounotori, rice maker edition


The inventor himself has also expressed a desire to see them in stores someday:

“The reaction to these has been so huge that I hope a day comes when these train-themed rice cookers will actually be made…”

Check out his full ‘lineup’ as of the present:






Is anyone willing to start an online petition to get these little gems on shelves now?

Source: Livedoor NEWS
Images: Twitter (@Fukutoka_3800), Yahoo! Japan Blogs (Usoden)Wikipedia (Mitsuki-2368)