Category Archives: Atlas Dinky

Atlas Dinky 25B Peugeot D3A “Mazda”

By Maz Woolley

 

The latest release I have received in the Atlas Dinky Toys collection is another French Dinky: 25B Fourgon Tolé Peugeot.  I hesitate to say the latest release as I frequently hear of other collectors getting the models from Atlas in a different sequence to me.

The D3A was originally launched by Chenard-Walker in June 1946 with a little 1,000cc two cylinder engine and a flat fronted forward control layout.  Citroen launched the H van late in 1946 creating strong competition so a 1133cc engine was bought in from Peugeot and the “pigs snout” added at the front to accommodate the longer unit.

The D3 was smaller than the H and well adapted to light and urban delivery activities. Peugeot took over Chenard-Walker in 1950 as it was a major creditor and could see Chenard-Walker going out of business. It took the van and uprated the engine again to a four cylinder 1290cc unit and called it the D3A. An identical looking D4 with a 1496cc engine from the Peugeot 403 replaced the D3 in 1955 and it ran until the introduction of the J7 in 1965.

The Lampe Mazda livery is interesting. “Mazda” was a trademarked name registered by the US General Electric company in 1909 and licensed to companies around the world to allow bulbs to be made to a standard tungsten filament design and a standard socket design. In France Compagnie des Lampes were licensed  to produce them and traded as Mazda.

The Mazda Lamps liveried version of this model was launched by Dinky in 1953 and was one of their earliest models sold in a yellow box. It was deleted in 1955 by which time Dinky had started on a  long series of alternative liveries on this casting which include Postes, Cibie, and Esso, The rarest D3A versions seem to be those produced with no livery at all. The D3A casting seems to have been produced in one form or another until the early 1960s.

The Atlas replica is very well painted and printed and a nice item for the collection. I wonder what French Dinky model we will see next in this series.


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Atlas Dinky Trucks – 942 Foden 14-Ton Tanker “Regent”

By Maz Woolley

All photographs by, and copyright of, the Author except for the excerpt from a June 1955 Dinky Magazine advert.

The latest issue from the Atlas Dinky Truck collection is 942 Foden 14-Ton Tanker “Regent”.

A model originally launched in 1955 using the second type of Foden Tanker casting as shown in the extract from the advert in Meccano magazine in June 1955 shown below.

 

This model followed 941 which was the same tanker in the equally attractive Mobilgas livery. By 1957 both had been deleted from the catalogue to be replaced by the same tanker in Esso livery. Atlas have chosen to model this in the nostalgic Regent livery. The Regent company was bought by Texaco and in the 1960s all their petrol stations in the UK were rebranded as Texaco.

The Atlas replica has been finished to the usual high standards with the Regent Livery beautifully printed on and the 20 sign on the rear mudguard well printed.

The tank fittings of hatches and crawling ladder are very well done with the ladders nicely pressed out of thin plate. The tank ends are neatly pressed on.

Elsewhere the radiator is well printed as are the lights and the front bumper. Just like the original red wheels are fitted which fits with the Regent red tank.

This series is continuing to meet the expectations of its subscribers. Although we have had a small number of models from Dinky France the majority are of products from Binns Road. This is unlike the Dinky Toys collection where the next model appears to be yet another French model a Peugeot D3A.


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Atlas Dinky – 811 Caravane

By Maz Woolley

Yet another French Dinky in this series. It is now some time since the Aston Martin DB3S which was the last model from the UK Dinky range in this series and that was issued at the end of 2016. I imagine that many collectors are now stopping collecting the series if postings on the web are any indication.

811 Caravane was issued by Dinky France in 1959 in beige or cream with a white roof. Dinky never stated the make of Caravan modelled but it is stated to be a Hénon in many reference books. This Caravan was never sold by Dinky UK. At some point in production it was slightly modified so the tab holding baseplate down at rear looked like a number plate.  Atlas have chosen to reproduce the model in Cream with white roof. The Caravane had been withdrawn by 1964 by which time it was looking old fashioned.

Although Dinky chose a “real” caravan to model, rather than make a generic one as earlier Caravans in the range had been,  it seems very plain as the big windows open on a completely vacant interior. Indeed the full length window on both sides makes one wonder how the interior was arranged.

Although glazing is boasted on the box it merely emphasises the lack of interior. Pictures of the Caravan suggest that they mostly had lots of curtains and some representation of curtains would have lived up this model,

A large tow hook is fitted at the front of the Caravan suitable for use by French or British Dinkies. This gave the Caravan great play value.


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Atlas Dinky Trucks – 32 AB Panhard SNCF

By Maz Woolley

 

The latest model from Atlas in this series is a replica of a French Dinky model 32 AB Tracteur Panhard et Semi-Remorque S.N.C.F.

This model was first introduced by Dinky in 1952 and the livery had an outline of France with a railway engine on it. This was deleted in 1953 and in 1954 a second type as modelled by Atlas appeared with an outline of France with SNCF across it. The second version was renumbered 575 in 1959 and was finally deleted from the catalogue in 1963. A very long run but the French Railways livery is very attractive and the model a neat one.

Dinky got their value from this tractor unit and trailer as it appeared in Kodak, Calberson, and Esso liveries as well. The tractor unit also appeared hauling an Esso fuel tanker.

The Atlas replica is generally well done though there is clearly some imperfections on the cab casting which have not been disguised by the paint. It is otherwise a rather nice replica with good printing of the SNCF livery and nice masked painting of the chrome.

Investigations show that the second release of this model had two different liveries over time. One which not only had SNCF over an outline of France surrounded by light blue but the initial letters S N C F printed in blue as well. This was used on vehicles with concave hubs. The second type with France surrounded in green and no contrast colouring on the leading letters was fitted to vehicles with convex hubs.  Atlas has chosen it to be printed in the second style which is appropriate as the vehicle has convex wheels.


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Atlas Dinky – 80b Hotchkiss Jeep

By Maz Woolley

As we have come to expect the latest in this series from Atlas is another French Dinky replica seen already in the Continental Dinky collection. The Hotchkiss Willys Jeep 80b.

For once the Postman had no problems delivering this through the letter box. The box seems tiny compared to other vehicles in this series at only just over 7cm in length and under 4cm in height. The Atlas replica box may convey the spirit of the original but the end flap is re-arranged as some text has been removed, “C’EST UNE FABRICATION MECCANO” the lowest line on the original box is absent. In addition French Dinky credited the artist who created the box art but on the reproduction the signature of J. Massé is absent.

Hotchkiss made about 32,000 Jeeps under licence from Willys in France until the mid 1960s. Production was originally at a factory in St. Denis in Paris but was later moved out to Stains which is a suburb to the north of Paris. It would appear that these were largely assembled from parts taken from Jeeps left in Europe when the US forces went home after the Second World War.

French Dinky had already sold a WiIlys Jeep as number 25 J in the early 1950s but I believe that this was the same casting as the Dinky UK Jeep which is considered to be less accurate than 80b. 80b was introduced in 1958 and was short lived being re-numbered as 816 in 1959. Some models were fitted with a driver but this replica is not and there is no hole in the casting for one to fit in either.

This replica has lovely even matt paint and the lights are neatly coloured. The tinplate screen is well replicated and the three spoke steering wheel is on a delicate shaft. The scale of this model is said to be 1:48.


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Atlas Dinky Trucks – 25O Studebaker Laitier

By Maz Woolley

 

The latest Atlas Truck sent to subscribers is the French Dinky  25O Studebaker Laitier (Milk Truck) in Nestlé livery. The original model was launched in 1949 and remained in production until 1954. Interestingly the same rear section was sold with a Ford chassis/cab from 1951 to 1955 and under the same serial number. Dinky France certainly got good use out of this Studebaker cab and chassis as it also appeared as a tow truck, a farmer’s truck, and a tipper.

The box for this model is a replica of the original box used for this model. Completely different to any others seen in the series so far but nicely made and as the photograph below shows it has been replicated internally as well to a high standard.

The model itself is nicely painted and detailed. As can be seen below the silver painted lights are painted as dots and are much too small for the real vehicle but this is entirely faithful to the original model. The model is unglazed as all these Studebakers would have been.

The rear section fitted out to carry the milk churns supplied is also very faithful to the original model. It has the tin tow hook and spare wheel of the original too.

This model was never sold in the UK but was sold for short periods in the Netherlands and the USA.

A different but interesting model and I believe that means that the last of the models listed on the original paperwork supplied by Atlas has now been produced.


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Atlas Dinky 24B Peugeot 403 Berline

By Maz Woolley

 

The latest Atlas Dinky to ship in the UK is a casting already seen several times in the Continental series. That series appears to have included both the original unglazed release and the later glazed one. For the UK Atlas has presented the earliest form of the casting in black with white tyres and numbered 24B. The casting was later re-numbered 521 and glazed. The model first appeared in 1956 and was re-numbered in 1959 lasting in the range until 1961.

This model is a nice replica of the original which was a good likeness of the real Peugeot 403 Berline. Many readers will be aware that the Tin Tin comic books featured many cars, and the 403 was one of them. I am convinced that Hergé often drew the pictures from toys rather than pictures of the real car, the picture below illustrates what I mean.

(c) Tin Tin copyright owners

The model certainly has a period charm that Dinky Toys on both sides of the channel had in the mid-fifties. It is an excellent reproduction of a toy that captured the real car, albeit in a stylised way. It was a good seller in France at a time when children wanted models of the cars they saw around them.

I can find no record of this model ever being listed by Dinky in the UK so it would have been a very unusual model for a child in the UK to have.

Atlas has given an estimate of 45 issues to be made in this series and it would appear likely that most or all of the rest will already have been seen in the French series already.


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Atlas Dinky Trucks – 512 Guy Flat Truck

By Maz Woolley

 

The latest Atlas Dinky to arrive is #512 Guy Flat Truck. The flat truck is just one of several variants Dinky made using this chassis units. Others included a flatbed with tail board and a version with “wooden sides” round the rear platform. Each of the versions was made in multiple colour combinations as well so the original toys are fairly common at toyfairs though not cheap.

From 1954 the toy was sold in the Supertoy striped box that Atlas have had replicated and the blue and red combination with mid blue wheels was sold from 1955 onward. The model was renumbered over time to 912 in 1956 and 432 in 1958 when it was also updated with a newer Guy cab.

I believe that the Guy modelled by Dinky was the Vixen Four Ton Chassis.

The Atlas model is to the usual standards with crisp casting and detailing. It replicates the original well and has a lustre to the paint that few originals now share.

This is another classic Binns Road Supertoy which will be welcomed by collectors.


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Atlas Dinky Collection – Auto-Union, Panhard, Hotchkiss and Triporteur

By Maz Woolley

This posting has been adapted from an article originally published on the old mar.zeteo.com website that is no longer available. 

This series is made by Norev in China for Atlas. These are not made from the original moulds but are copies of the originals. The UK Atlas Dinky collection was launched in 2014 whilst the continental series has been running for over three years.

23D Auto-Union Racing Car

This model was part of Dinky’s pre-war 23 series of racing cars and appeared in red, blue, green or silver.

Dinky chose to model the car in its fully streamlined form which was a rare sight. This supercharged sixteen cylinder racing car set a record of 320 KPH in 1935 driven by Hans Stuck.

When re-released in 1946 the car was only available in red and silver. Atlas have decided to have it produced in red for the UK collection whilst it produced it in light green for the Continental collection. I would rather have had it in the more realistic silver.

The model is very simple and is complemented by a post-war style box.


524 Coach Panhard 24 C

 

This model was made by Dinky France but was catalogued and sold in the UK.

In France the model was available in steel grey and in white and was available from 1964 to 1969. Here in the UK it was only available in grey and was sold from 1965 to 1967. The model had two unusual features: plastic light lenses; and sliding front windows both replicated on the Atlas model. The Atlas reproduction box seems rather fuzzy and with more saturated colours than those of the original packaging.

The 24 C was one of the last Panhards launched before Citroen took them over and Panhard Cars were dropped altogether. Panhards were powered by small two cylinder engines of 848cc which were highly tuned to give them a good turn of speed when combined with a light body created through much use of lightweight materials. The 24 C was a rather good looking Coupe but failed to sell in the volume needed to keep Panhard independent.

The Atlas model is an excellent reproduction of the original toy.


23B Hotchkiss Racing Car

 

Dinky introduced this model in 1935 in blue, red, yellow and orange and production ceased in 1941.

It appeared again in 1946 and was produced until 1948 in the UK and 1951 in France in red with a silver flash or silver with a red flash.

Atlas have chosen to reproduce the car in its post-war Silver with red flash finish. The model would be more accurately described as a record car rather than a racing car and is based upon the car driven by Captain George Eyston in 1934 to take several speed records.


14 Triporteur

 

Another model having its origins before the Second World War, and produced by Dinky France from 1935 until 1952.

Atlas have chosen again to replicate the model as it appeared after the war with the number plate moulded into the box. Atlas suggest that the model was imported into the UK and sold as 14z but I can find no trace of this in my reference books, perhaps a reader can confirm whether this was the case.

None of the lists produced by Atlas so far suggested that this model would be released in the UK range.


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Atlas Dinky Collection – Jaguar XK120 and Volvo 122

By Maz Woolley

This article was originally written for the first MAR Online site in March 2015. It is one of the items which we collected from the old site before it is was turned off. It has been adapted to the new site. 

This series is made by Norev in China for Atlas. These are not made from the original moulds but are copies of the originals. The UK Atlas Dinky collection was launched in 2014 whilst the continental series ran for over three years.

157 Jaguar XK120

 

This Dinky casting of the XK120 Fixed Head Coupe was issued in 1954 just as the XK120 was replaced by the XK140.

Atlas have chosen to have it painted it in one of the two-tone finishes released in 1956 and produced until 1959.

The yellow and grey paint finish has been well replicated. Like all Dinky two tone finishes the colour scheme has been chosen to please the toy buyer and does not replicate an offering from Jaguar.

The reproduction box shows a different two tone scheme on each side and includes a colour dot to indicate which model is in the box on the end flap.

184 Volvo 122S

 

This casting was launched in 1961 and stayed in the UK range until 1965.

The original was mainly seen in red or white apart from models painted and assembled by Dinky’s South African importer which also used mid-blue and the lilac shade Atlas has chosen to reproduce.

The model has already seen in the continental range where it was painted in white.

The reproduction box is in English on one side and Africaans on the other.


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