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Dinky Toys

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Dinky toys history

Dinky Toys are die-cast miniature model cars and trucks. They first appeared in early 1934 when Meccano Ltd of Liverpool, England introduced a new line of "modelled miniatures" under the trade mark "Meccano Dinky Toys". The first announcement for the new line was made in the April 1934 issue of Meccano Magazine.

Dinky collections

In the early 1950s a Dinky Toys craze hit the United Kingdom and it seemed that all boys (and some adults) had collections. Their dual role as toy and model had no peers at the time. Most of the Dinky Toys models were in a scale of approximately 1:48, which blended in with O scale railway sets, but many buses and lorries (trucks) were scaled down further so that they were around 4 inches long. Larger models (Dinky Super Toys) were not scaled down, and started to have more action features. Notable favourites are the Coles Mobile Crane and the Horse Box (with opening doors). In 1954, the Dinky Toys line was reorganized: cars were now sold in individual boxes, and there were no series of models differentiated by a letter. A separate line of models were also made in France. Both English and French Dinky Toys were exported to the United States.

Dinky Toys

Dinky Toys trade

Nowadays there is a healthy trade in old Dinky Toys, particularly the earlier models. Condition is all important. A mint-in-box Dinky Toys car from around 1960 can easily command 10 times the price of a played with (used) one. The post-war Dinky Toys cars themselves are all but indestructible, although the tires disintegrate with age and the paint chips. Pre-war Dinky Toys vehicles used a weaker alloy and can suffer from metal-fatigue, and thus models from the 1930s in good condition are particularly rare and sought after.

Having the original Dinky Toys box increases the value considerably - the boxes by themselves sometimes command prices comparable to the models. Some collectors even collect the "trade boxes" that were never meant for customers, but were the packing for the models to go in to the store. There is nothing on the market now that share the two roles of model and toy car as well as the Dinky Toys of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s.

South-Africa

In the mid-1950s, a limited edition set of South African military vehicles were shipped to South Africa by Meccano Ltd. for the South African Defence Force. They were painted (military) green and included a Covered Wagon, a Motor Truck, a Dispatch Rider, an Ambulance, and a Van.

After South Africa withdrew from the Commonwealth in 1961, they imposed a luxury goods import tax, which made Dinky Toys very expensive, and a potential loss for Meccano. To resolve this problem Meccano began shipping Dinky parts to South Africa in 1962 where models were put together and painted locally.

The importing of unfinished goods were not subject to import tax. These models were sold in South Africa between 1962 and 1963 and it is believed that only one batch of each model was produced, making South African Dinky Toys very rare. South Africa also imported Dinky Toy parts from the French factory in 1966 and six models were assembled and painted locally.

Some of the disguising features of South African Dinky Toys are:

  • The boxes have Afrikaans lettering at the one end and 'Printed in South Africa' on the side.
  • The colours are often different from those on the same models assembled in the UK.
  • The base plates have a glossy finish, whereas the same models released in the UK have matt black base plates.

See also my pages about Dinky Toys Atlas and Dinky Toys France.

Source: Wikipedia.org

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Larry - September 11, 2010

i recently found some dinky toys in the attic which my father in law carried in his antique store. the store has not been in exsistance since 1984. can someone tell me the best place to put these items for sale as i cannot continue to store them much longer. i am relocateing out of state and downsizing living space at the same time.

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Dinky Toys 30n 343 Farm Produce Wagom NM
dinky toys 30n 343 farmC $93.00
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VINTAGE DINKY SUPERTOYS AD SHEET TORONTO
vintage dinky supertoys adC $142.18
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Dinky Toys 981 British Railways Horse Box
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DINKY TOYS 978 REFUSE WAGON MIB MECCANO
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Dinky Toys 195 Jaguar 3 4 Litre VGC
dinky toys 195 jaguar 3 4C $42.67
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DINKY TOYS LOT X14 SUPERTOYS VINTAGE
dinky toys lot x14 supertoysC $164.12
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Dinky Toys 410 Bedford Royal Mail Van
dinky toys 410 bedford royalends in 23hC $17.45
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Dinky Toys 412 Austin Wagon yellow VGC
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1954 Dinky Scout Car No 673 Military Army
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Dinky Toys 274 AA Mini Van VGC
dinky toys 274 aa mini van vgcC $60.18
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Dinky Toys 254 Austin Taxi Excellent
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VINTAGE DINKY SUPERTOYS AD SHEET TORONTO
vintage dinky supertoys adC $251.60
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Vintage Dinky Toy truck 436 Atlas Copco
vintage dinky toy truck 436C $52.52
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Dinky Toys 29c Double Decker Bus EXC
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Dinky Armoured Personnel Carrier No 676
dinky armoured personnelC $47.04
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Vintage My First Board Book 1964 Collins
vintage my first board bookC $16.36
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1984 BANDAI JAPAN Orange TRANSFORMER Dinky
1984 bandai japan orangeC $3.27
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Vintage Boxed Dinky 254 Austin FX3 Taxi
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EXCELLENT ORIGINAL BOXED DINKY TOYS 238
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dinky Toys field artillery tractor 688
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dinky Toys truck 420 Made in England
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Dinky Toys Simca 33
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dinky Toys Army recovery truck 661 Made
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Dinky Toys Pullmore Car Transporter 982 with
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