Toys and games from 1986

Featuring Rambo action figures by Coleco, Zoids by Tomy, Crossbows and Catapults by Action GT, Robotix by MB, and more – taken from the Autumn Bargains Catalogue, 1986, UK.

Action GT toys and games. Autumn Bargains catalogue. 1986. UK.

Rambo action figures. Tonka toys. BMX Ultra Burner. Autumn Bargains catalogue. 1986. UK.

From Tomy: Merry-Go-Copter; Little Crib Concert; Super Cup Football; Zoids. Autumn Bargains catalogue. 1986. UK.

Robotix and Lego. Autumn Bargains catalogue. 1986. UK.


Thanks for looking 🙂

Britains Toy catalogue, 1979

Featuring toys from the world famous British toy manufacturer William Britain, as seen in the 1979 English, French, and German language mini catalogue. Britains are well known for producing durable and highly detailed painted toy figures, play sets, and vehicles, with sets such as the ‘Deetail’ line being much sought after by collectors in today’s vintage toy market.

On a personal note, as a child, I collected the Britains American Civil War soldiers, 7th Cavalry, Cowboys and Indians, and German Infantry figures. I also had one of the wagon and horses sets, and a selection of farm animals, and one of my brothers had numerous animals from the Wildlife range. This catalogue brings back a lot of happy toy memories 🙂

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Ertl farm, country, and construction toys

Ertl Hickory Grove Farm. 1990.

TVTA is pleased to present images from two 1990 Ertl export catalogues. Ertl, founded in America in 1945, specialises in die cast vehicles and is notable for its production of farm, country, and construction toys, featuring brands such as John Deere, Massey Ferguson, Ford, Caterpillar, and Case International.

Click images to go bigger.

Ertl Farm Machinery. 1990.

Ertl Farm. 1990.

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Carrera – slot car racing since the 1960s

Carrera’s origins can be traced back to 1920 when Josef Neuhierl started manufacturing tin toys in the Franconian town of Fürth, Germany.
In 1963, Josef’s son Hermann Neuhierl launched the Carrera Universal system – the first electronic 1:32 scale Carrera racetrack. It was an instant success. In 1967 the larger scale Carrera 124 continued the success and led the way for the brand to gain further popularity throughout the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s. To date, the company continues to manufacturer innovative slot car racing sets, and is a recognised leading brand around the world.

TVTA is pleased to present selected scans from the Carrera 2001 catalogue, plus Carrera print adverts from the 1970s and 1980s.

Carrera cover 2001 catalogue. France.

Carrera 2001 catalogue. France.

Carrera Evolution vehicles.

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GoBots, Robo Machines and Machine Men – Bandai’s family of transforming robots

Robo Machines. UK. 1983.

GoBots. Model kits by Monogram. US. 1985.

I name thee…

GoBots, Machine Men and Robo Machine(s) are some of the international names given to Japanese toy company Bandai’s transforming vehicle/robot toy line first sold in 1982.

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Heller – vintage model toys beautifully illustrated

Heller catalogue 1979 N° 607 La Sardane.

Welcome to a new entry for TVTA’s toy archive… Heller models.

I have to say it’s been raining here for three days + storms + flooding. I live near the sea, and at the moment I feel like I’m living in it. What better way to begin today’s post with some vintage marine images – courtesy of the 1979 Heller catalogue from France.

Heller catalogue 1979. N° 603 Le Capricorne par J Blanche.

Heller catalogue 1979 N° 604 Marie Jeanne par Roger Chapelet.


Heller is a French toy company founded in 1957 specialising in model yachts, military ships, cars and racing, aircraft, motorcycles, toy soldiers, and military vehicles. TVTA is pleased to present a selection of Heller’s models from the 1979 range as featured in its tri-language European catalogue. Also included are the full scans. The paintings are quite exceptional I think, with care taken not only in representing the intended model toy but the staged backgrounds too.

Artist Name Hunting

It took me a few good hours to research the French artists responsible for the catalogue images, and the ones I came up with are: Francis Bergèse, J. Blanche, Roger Chapelet, and Olivereau. It was worth the effort, as the images you see in this post are simply magnificent and deserve to be credited. Although plenty of original artwork was commissioned to sell toys during the later half of the 20th century, not much of it is credited. When you do find an artist’s signature on a catalogue page, advert, or toy box, it’s usually grainy and unreadable. So, trying to track down Heller’s 1979 catalogue signatures was a good challenge for me, and I’m pleased I managed to find the majority of them.

Click images to go bigger and enjoy the art!

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Latest ads – simple toys, simple times

Les Poupées de Lisette. France. 1960.

Congost toys. Spain. 1977.

Primo washing powder toys. France. 1960.

Things were simpler back then. A more innocent time?

TVTA takes a quick peek at some 1940s – 1980s print adverts from Spain, Denmark, France, the US, and the UK, featuring simple toys and ideas.

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My Dog Has Fleas! Ideal toy shop catalogue, 1980s, France

My Dog Has Fleas (Sacapuce) game from Ideal.

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Robo Machine (very mini) mini catalogue

Robo Machine (sometimes Robo Machines) was a transforming vehicle/robot toy line made by the Bandai company in the 1980s. It was the European version of the Japanese Machine Robo toy line.

When I say that this Robo Machine catalogue I recently acquired is not much bigger than a postage stamp I’m not exaggerating! Here it is all in its tiny, little glory. Small is beautiful.

Robo Machine Command Centre Play Set. The top left picture of the transforming vehicle on four legs reminds me of  a very famous vehicle as employed by the Empire in certain Star Wars films!


Thank you for transforming with us 🙂