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32,825 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Tintoys was based in Hong Kong. Their castings first began to appear in the 1970s. Their logo is noticeable different from the ones know as DTC and/or Tins' Toys used in their casting line up. Although they do share some of the same similar casting names in their respective castng ranges - really only about 25% of the known models overlap with each other by name. The primary difference between them is their prefixed letter numbering system. The use of a 'WT' numbering prefix on Tintoys plastic bases is noted and a 'T' on the Tins' Toy models.

In the logo design below, a letter 'W' can be seen above the Tintoys name as the bottom edge of the red color field. This is thought to coincide with the the WT designation used by Tintoys on their base plate numbering system.

.... image by joschik at HobbyDB

During the 1970s, their "Diecast Sports Car Fast Wheels", a series of race cars, were available on blister cards. They were also available in window boxes but called "Fast-Speed Wheels Die-Cast Mini Sedan". Their packaging noted a 'doll driver' was included in each race car. They were also fitted with fast-speed wheels, chrome plated hub-caps and exhaust pipes. They were finished in brightly colored metallic paints with sticker type decorations. A four pack set of these early race car castings was also available called "Mini Racers".

Another issued series was called "Models of Classic Cars". These were of a larger scale and measured around 3.75" in length from end to end.

A military series called "Die-Cast Armored Car" models was also available. They are noted to have been geared toward enthusiasts who wanted an authentically detailed casting for accurate realism. These had tan colored wheels and are done in a noticeably smaller scale than other Tintoy models available at the time.

The "Mini Coach" (and "Bus") series was made up of buses said to be copies of Matchbox and Tomica castings. Some of these same copies were used within another series of castings that were fitted with an internal pencil sharpener and were called appropriately enough "Mini Cars Pencil Sharpener".

Not all 'WT' prefixed models were issued just by Tintoys though. Others who were offered them were -

In the 1970s, the Imperial Toy Company offered them as the "Might Mini" series.

Around 1980, EFS* is noted to have been marketing "Flash Cars" and commercial truck models as "Flash Trucks" with the "WT" base plate numbering system used on them. But both series are also noted to have been using castings made by Welly and Universal, not Tintoys.

K-Mart* also offered (Tintoys (?) at their American store locations.

Lido Products marketed Tintoys line of 'WT' marked military tanks.

During the1980s, Arkin A-OK Products Co of Markham, Ontario and its subsidiaries marketed 'WT' castings in their "Speed Wheels" and "Military Speed Wheels" series.

Borgfeldt Toys aka Borgfeldt & Co Ltd of Scarborough, Ontario distributed Tintoys to their Canadian markets.

In the early 1980s, Canadian Tire Corporation issued a promotional tractor-trailer rig numbered as 'WT707' in the early 1980s.

IMCO was a New York based company that marketed Tintoys made military castings with the "WT" prefixed base numbers as "Attack Force". They also marketed their racing and sport cars castings as "Speed Wheels".

In the mid 1980s, Lash-Tamaron Distributors added their own brand identification label to Tintoys' "Fast Wheels" blister carded offerings.

In 1984, Soma issued a series with the 'WT' prefixed base numbered models, in their own (2) pack offerings known as "Speed Wheel".

Several "WT" models (?) continued production under High Speed***, another well known Hong Kong diecast maker. These models are cast with a new numbering system that is often viewed as arbitrary (?) by their collectors as to origin.

Up to the late 2000s, Tintoys was still in business. Several large-scale models were available with a faithful reproduction to actual vehicles. Several examples were available at the Western States Toy & Hobby Show held in (?) at Pomona, California. But, it was not known which firms were to market or distribute those examples. Other large scale models were also available, often with poor detail quality. They could be found in open displays with models from other manufacturers mixed in together with them.

Although no official evidence of a true association is known to Tins' Toys - they do share many (really only about 25%) of the same casting models by name. And Tins' Toys carries the base plate casting number prefix of a 'T' instead. They were both available from Kingsbury** (Kingsway**), a USA based distributor, during this same time period.

*The diecast encyclopedia references 'WT' prefixed #ed castings as being made by Tintoys. But, the EFS listing attributes them to having being made by Universal and Welly. While the Universal reference does have an association to EFS' "Super Wheels"; it does not have the corresponding 'WT' prefix reference. Welly also has a brand asscoiation listing to EFS, but no reference to the 'WT' # prefix system either. Note here that the reference for a Universal made casting is for the circled U logo only. Both the Tintoys and WT reference also ask you to see EFS as well.

** The referenced entry made in the diecast encyclopedia notes to also see Kingsbury. However; their is no additional entry for Kingsbury in the encyclopeda. There is though an entry for an American based dirstributor named Kingsway. That entry unfortunately also mistakenly identifies them as Tintoys with a 'T' prefixed casting number system and not as Tins' Toys. Adding further to the confusing entry information is that this same entry goes on to mention that the same castings models - only marked as 'WT' prefixed #ed castings were also marketed by K-Mart. (Perhaps this is were the notion that Tintoys and Tins' Toys are the same or related began?)

***Note that the High Speed encyclopedia entry does not carry a corresponding reference to 'WT' prefixed castings either or similar casting models.

Sourced references -

Tintoys | hobbyDB
Tins Toys | hobbyDB
Encyclopedia of Small-Scale Diecast Motor Vehicle Manufacturers - Sahakangas, Foster & Weber (2006)
Tintoys & Tins' Toys

32,825 Posts
Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Today, I seperated Tintoys and Tins' Toy based on references made at other sources and the conflicting information noted by the diecast encyclopedia. An additional reference for DTC was also added which tends to support the seperation of these two companies. Their indiviual brand assocations and information was also added to each hisory.

It would also be nice to see a comparision of the two casting lists and their overlap and which castings are exactly the same.


32,825 Posts
Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Working on the Ts again this morning and noted the "T" letter brand index for Tin's Toy which always leads back to Tintoys (WT) as well - so I did another focused review on them both again.

I updated some of the year date distribution times for other brand names and noticed another potential error regarding the WT base plate #ing system by EFS to Welly and Universal. Neither of those carry the same reference back to EFS although both did market their own castings with EFS under other (later) series names.

I also add Borgfedlt Toys to the known distributor associations.
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