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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Based in Bensenville, Illinois, Kidco was organized in 1977 as a marketing operation for Univeral Toys (Products) in the USA. The Kidco brand of diecasts were issued with the copy right date of 1979 and were available through the early 1980s. Most of the castings had already been issued by Universal Group - as made in Hong Kong or Macau already. In Britian, they were issued with Dinky bases as Dinky Toys.

Not all Kidco bases - used the Kidco name though. Some were issued as only 'Made in Hong Kong'. Others used the square shaped Univeral logo or an encircled 'U'.

After Universal, owned by David Yeh, purchased Matchbox in the 1970s, they issued the Kidco "Burning Key Cars" as a Matchbox line until the mid 1980s. These castings used a key-activated launch system. This series brand is now made (?) by Maisto.

Other former Kidco series were "Tough Wheels" This line also included the line of constructon equipment made first by Mercury of Italy, then Mercury of Canada and even later by Gibbs (USA).

Themed multi packs and TV/Movie related series included "M*A*S*H*", Magnum PI, Knight Rider and others.

Another series were called "Bumper Blasters". These castings 'exploded' when the front bumper mechanism contacted a solid surface. A series of cars called "Demolition Cars" fell apart with a key activated mechanism. And "Lock Ups" used ao key to put cars in 'park'.

Another series using Laser printed packages featured a casting with (2) trading cards included.

The Technica brand was a range of 1:28 models, made up of street cars and racing cars. Some of their models were sold in the USA under the "Kidco Tough Wheels" brand.


An unspecified relationship to Irwin Toy is made here, but Irwin Toy is noted to have been a distributor of Kidco products at their resource listings.



Sourced references -

https://www.hobbydb.com/subjects/kidco-brand
https://www.hobbydb.com/subjects/eidai-brand
Encyclopedia of Small-Scale Diecast Motor Vehicle Manufacturers - Sahakangas, Foster & Weber (2006)
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Since you posted these castings here, I am going with you have them catalogued as Kidco castings in your collection - right? And that is based on the listers provided description.

I know it has been 13 years since you saved the image, but do you remember why they specified these to be Kidco? I have never seen a carded Kidco without the Kidco name visible on the card front before.

Since these are both trucks is it possible they would be from the Tough Wheels series or the Mini Dinky instead, but in the wrong blisters? :lurk5:
 

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These were sold as Universal (not Kidco), I placed them here as it's still the same company & on some vehicles the names were interchangable (ie - Hot rods of the 30's ...some have Universal & some Kidco) and as you already mentioned some were sold also as 'Dinky'.
 
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