Finding replacement parts for old toys can be challenging.
Finding replacement parts for old toys can be quite a challenge. Vintage and antique toys often were produced by manufacturers who are no longer in business. Some old toys have no identifying marks such as dates, company name or patent numbers, which makes locating replacement parts even more difficult. Replace parts for old toys by locating parts through online replacement toy-parts services or from flea markets or antique stores. Old toys with identifying marks are remarkably easier to find replacement parts for through online sites and price guides that provide resource lists. Does this Spark an idea?
1. Examine the old toy for any markings. Company name, manufacturer’s date, country of origin and patent numbers are some markings for which to look. Old cars and iron toys sometimes have etched or embossed markings on the underside. Figures and dolls have markings on the back of the head or torso, inner thigh or sole of the foot. According to This Old Toy, old Fisher Price toys have model numbers etched into the bottom or base of wood or plastic toys or printed on the paper lithos. Fisher Price dolls or animals have model numbers on the sewn tags. If your toy can be identified, proceed to Step 3.
2. Identify your unmarked toy from photographs of similar toys in books and price guides. Identification of your toy is vital to finding replacement parts. Compare details, such as measurements, with photos of toys in books and price guides. You may have to read a lot of books and price guides to identify your vintage toy, so you can then search for its replacement parts.
3. Locate an identical toy in vintage or antique toy price guides or in books about specific toys or toy manufacturers. Compare the toy’s markings to determine if you have the exact toy. Some popular vintage toys with books detailing the toy and/or toy company history are: Lionel, Marx Toys, Mattel, Vogue, Disney, GI Joe and cast-iron toys. Books and price guides can be found in bookstores, online and in libraries. Look in the books and price guides for resource lists that provide services and companies that sell replacement toy parts.
4. Search online for websites and auction sites selling the replacement parts you need for your identified old toy. Many vintage toys have fan clubs, chat groups, newsletters and print magazines devoted to specific toy companies or toys. These collector’s resources are offered free of charge by subscription and are a wealth of information for locating replacement parts for your vintage toy. Purchase the replacement parts necessary for your old toy. It may take a long time to find replacement parts for very old or rare toys.