Category:Delivery Vans (Dinky Toys 28, first casting)

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The 28-Series Dinky Toys Delivery Vans, first casting have a special place in the history of Dinky Toys, not just because they were only produced for about a year (1934-35) and came in a range of attractive commercial liveries, but because they straddled the distinction between Dinky Toys and Hornby Modelled Miniatures.


The original 28-series vans used the same "1920-styled van" moulds as the original Modelled Miniatures 22d Delivery Van, and were still lead-cast (which means that the few that survive tend to be in much sharper condition than a lot of the later "alloy" castings, which tended to deteriorate with age). The 22d was in turn based on the Modelled Miniatures 22c truck, with the open payload container area part replaced by an enclosed van back. To hold this new larger back in place, 22d had an odd little clip or staple set into the roof to bridge the back of the cab and the front of the storage area, to hold the two pieces snugly together.

The main difference between the 22d and the earliest 28-series castings seems to have been the range of colours and decals. The 22d was "blank", and the surrounding letter suffixes had already been used, so when Meccano Ltd decided to produce a range of twelve differently coloured and badged models, they needed to break out of the existing scheme and assign a new number, 28 (suffixed a-h, and k-n, avoiding i and j). In line with Meccano Ltd's habit of selling retail packs in groups of six, the range was split into two sets, 28/1 and 28/2. You could of course buy them individually, but you had to buy a set of six if you wanted a box.

The 28-series arrived in April and May 1934, at the exact point in time when the new Dinky Toys marque first appeared, and their angular boxy 1920s cab design was quickly replaced by a more smoothed and "modern"-looking set of commercial vans (still numbered 28) in the summer of 1935. As a result, although the first casting of Number 28 was technically a Dinky Toys product, they can tend to be regarded as being spiritually more "Modelled Miniatures" pieces.

First Casting, Numbering



Auction prices

A liveried "number 28 type 1" van currently holds the record for the highest price ever achieved for a Dinky Toy, reaching just short of twenty thousand pounds at auction. However, that was a special case, where the red-and-green van's livery - W.E. Boyce, of Highgate - was the only surviving example. Normally, one "only" expects to pay somewhere around the thousand-pound mark (as a crude ballpark figure) for one of these pieces, although there's quite a wide spread - occasionally an especially desirable piece goes for one-and-a-half, or even nearly double that.

The "Number 28 type 1" vans are so sought after, not just because of the historic aspect of being some of the very first "Dinkies", or the fact that they weren't made for very long before the design was modernised, or even because they came in a collectable range of colours and commercial liveries that makes collectors eager to "fill in the blanks in their collections" - it's also that, because these early models were lead-cast, the items are often in exceptional condition when compared to later "early Dinkies", whose "experimental" alloy casting led to production batches whose metal was sometimes so unstable that some toys deteriorated badly with age and sometimes literally fell apart - occasionally before they even reached the retailers.

Reproductions and repaints

However, because of the high market value of some of these models, the buyer also has to beware of the possibility of reproductions passed off as originals, and of outright fakes.

External links

Pages in category ‘Delivery Vans (Dinky Toys 28, first casting)’

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Media in category ‘Delivery Vans (Dinky Toys 28, first casting)’

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