Dinky Toys, the last few decades.

It takes time with any hobby I think to try to figure out what exactly draws you to it, and also what  keeps you interested. That is how it is for me and my love of old die-cast models, especially those made by Dinky Toys, that once great British company that was the original grand-daddy of diecast model cars, but which sadly is no longer with us.

I’m not really sure what my fascination is with this one brand. It could be their age, the era I love is after all the 1960’s and 70’s, the era of my own childhood. It could be just that the company no longer exists, and that therefore what’s out there in its name is definitely limited, which to a collector is a big plus.  Personally though I think it’s that Dinky Toys are somehow very unique in themselves. They are slightly more basic than their modern-day equivalents, heavier, more traditional even than were the Corgi or Matchbox rivals of their day.  That in part led to their downfall, to slow to change, to unwilling to keep up with the fashions. They did try to adapt towards the end, models in the last decade or so gaining ‘whizz-wheels’ and a variety of working gadgets, and loosing some of their weighty feel or the expense of jewelled headlights to keep down costs. Eventually though it was all to no avail, and Dinky Toys by Meccano finally ceased production in 1980.


With this site I hope to help keep alive the memory of those last Dinky Toys, those mainly for me from the last few era’s, as there are plenty of sites that concentrate on the generally more expensive models of earlier decades. I have started a library section on here that I hope in time will be a source to any who want it, of Dinky Toys models from the sixties and seventies.  Mainly my collection was the ‘blister boxed’ Dinky Toys, with their card stands and plastic bubble packaging, and also ‘picture boxed’ kit’s.

Along with collecting Dinky Toy’s, I’ll also be showing a way to appreciate the older and more worn out models that don’t generally make it into a collectors display case, namely the hobby of restoration and ‘code 3’ing.  To this end I’ll be adding workshop articles and other reference guides or supporting information as I get chance, for anyone who would like to have a go.

Code 3’ing is in simply hobby speak, altering a model from its original look into something either totally new, or in the spirit of what Dinky Toys ‘might’ have made. This is a fast growing, highly creative and relatively inexpensive hobby, that add’s another side altogether to die-cast collecting. Old models that might otherwise have been worn out and thrown away can be revitalised now, into models that will again do a collector’s display case proud. Have a look at my ‘from the workshop’ pages to get the idea. The Pullmore transporter pictured below is also a Code 3, it is very Dinky in it’s overall style, but it and it’s cars have been painted in colours not used in this set combination by Dinky, and the box has been especially made.

  As with all such sites,  these pages will be a constantly developing project, so if you are a collector interested in perhaps some of the toys of this company and era, someone new to the hobby or even to the idea of old toys as a hobby, or just someone who loves looking back at of your youth. Have fun browsing these pages and do pop back from time to time or hey, sign up for updates, hopefully there will always be something new and interesting to see …

Should you wish to find out more about diecast collecting / Code 3’ing, the links below I’ve found very handy over the years.

Biggest spares supplier for most models.                 http://www.model-supplies.co.uk/

Toyfair main events calender                                      http://www.collectors-club-of-great-britain.co.uk/Toys-Games-and-Other-Collectables/Events/_ch34

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Matchbox K-3 Farm Trailer, ‘Cooper Cars’ Race Transporter Trailer, Code 3.

This gallery contains 15 photos.

Ok, well this is my first non-Dinky Code 3 for a very long time, but it is to be used with a Dinky set, in this first incarnation a Dinky Cooper race set as you can see. so hope you’ll … Continue reading

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Dinky Mercedes LP 1920 Race Car Transporter – Code 3

This gallery contains 53 photos.

      This is a Dinky Mercedes LP 1920 Truck, code 3’d into a race car transporter. It is inspired rather loosely by the Lancia picture above, but with added features that I felt would suit the Mercedes model better. … Continue reading

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Bedford ‘Ferrari’ Transporter & Race Car Load, Code 3.

This gallery contains 25 photos.

  Now the first thing some of the eagle eyed amongst you may be noticing, is that the black & white picture at the top of the page is not in fact a Bedford, but a Morris Transporter. I include … Continue reading

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Dinky Toys Bedford / Antar Code 3.

This gallery contains 46 photos.

I had often thought that the Bedford OB would look good with a ‘beefed up’ chassis, and having had a look round decided on the heavy duty Antar transporter as the second part of the Code 3. It proved a … Continue reading

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Dinky Toys Pullmore Restores & Code 3.

This gallery contains 33 photos.

The Dinky Bedford Pullmore transporters are among the more collected and popular Dinky Toys, and some of the first restorations I did were with them. This first is one of my favourite Pullmore Code 3 revamps. It is a straight … Continue reading

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Dinky Toys Guy ‘Short Wheel Base’ Code 3.

This gallery contains 22 photos.

The Guy lorry is one of the best known Dinky Toy’s of the fifties and sixties and was produced in flatbed, highback and container versions. Many are Code 3’ed simply be being given an alternative paint scheme, however they can … Continue reading

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Dinky Toys Code 3 Mac Truck, ‘Honest John’ Rocket Truck.

This gallery contains 1 photo.

I have made many Dinky Code 3 Truck’s over the years, and am always on the look out for a new conversion. Having tried my hand at military conversions I soon became aware of the missile truck, and  the Honest … Continue reading

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British Railway inspired Dinky Toys Code 3.

This gallery contains 10 photos.

One of the themes I first collected when I became interested in diecast was that of British Railway liveried vehicles. It wasn’t a widely covered series and when I couldn’t find any more to buy, my first steps in Code … Continue reading

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Dinky Toys 984 & 985 Code 3 Transporters

This gallery contains 28 photos.

One of the more popular Code 3 conversion’s I’ve made is for the Land Rover transporter. I started off with a 989 set that was in need of restoration, and a picture I found on a greeting’s card which bore … Continue reading

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Dinky Toys Bedford ‘Pallet’ Jekta Van

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Possibly one of the most innovative models produced by Dinky was the Bedford Pallet Jekta Van, based as can be seen from the picture above on it’s own company trucks. These lorry’s had a moving floor within to enable the … Continue reading

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