Antique and Vintage Toy Model Fire Trucks

  • Firefighting Memorabilia, From Crown Coaches to Cairns Helmets I started collecting firefighting memorabilia in the 1960s around the time I became a volunteer fireman here in Orange County. My great grandfather was a fire chief in Massachusetts, so I guess it’s in my blood. After we moved from Massachusetts to California in the ’60s, I could hear from my house the volunteer fire department’s siren going off several times a week. That created an interest in fi…
  • Attack of the Vintage Toy Robots! Justin Pinchot on Japan’s Coolest Postwar Export Everyone is always looking for the next big thing. In the 1960s, it was going into space. In the '40s and '50s, the frontier was technology, with a particular focus on "What's going to make our lives easier?" For the very first time, you had cars with automatic-transmissions, automatic washing machines, and perpetually cooling refrigerators. I mean, we were coming out of an era when you scrubbe…
  • Dave Rasmussen Knows Show Rods I got interested in show rods as a boy in the late 1960s. We all built models back then. There was no Nintendo and only three or four TV channels. So kids did a lot of active stuff—playing outside—as well as doing things with their hands. Building models was primarily a male activity. I don’t think too many girls did it. It had a heavy post-World War II influence, with models of planes, ships, tan…
  • Japan's Best Postwar Export? Tinplate Cars I used to have a huge collection of diecast 1/43rd-scale Dinky Toys, Corgi Toys, and things like that. I had so many that it got to the point where the collection was no longer interesting to me. So, in 1990, I sold all of it to a Los Angeles-based collector of Dinky Toys. With the money, my wife and I decided to start investing in tinplate toys. I bought a lot of them, sold some, and continued to…
  • Collecting Toy Cars, from Diecast Chevys to Lithographed Tin Ron Sturgeon: I had an automotive repair shop in about 1976 and spent a lot of time repairing Mercedes. About 1979 I decided to start collecting Mercedes toy cars. I was young and naïve and thought I could own every Mercedes model ever made. I’m still very interested in Mercedes, and that is the bulk of my collection, but I’m into a lot of things these days, more quality and very rare models. This…
  • Toy Cars, A Healthy Addiction I’ve been collecting vintage toys since 1982. I started slowly and methodically, partly for lack of information, mostly for lack of finances. I used to collect any metal transportation toy that I found interesting, anything that caught my eye (and that I could afford). In the late 80s, a Canadian-made Chime tin wind-up racecar toy from about 1935 came into my collection and suddenly, I had to find…