Tonka has been making miniature toy trucks and cars since 1945. Their other toys include stuffed animals, action figures, and miniature replicas of real-world vehicles.

What kinds of toys does Tonka make?

Tonka toys include many different product lines, from stuffed animals to trucks. Here are some of Tonka's product categories.

  • Vintage: Starting in the 1950's, Tonka began making metal toys. These toys were mostly construction-related vehicles and included dump trucks, trailers, cranes, and delivery trucks. Over time, this line expanded to include a broader variety miniature cars.
  • Plastic: Near the end of the 20th century, plastics became the industry standard and the company began using plastic to make their toy cars and trucks. Most later Tonka trucks use plastic.
  • Steel: Tonka toys continued to include some solid steel trucks and miniatures of real-world vehicles. Some of the vehicles in this line include pick-up trucks, Volkswagen Beetles, firetrucks, and other construction vehicles.
  • Diecast: This toy type usually refers to metal, and it simply means that the metal was poured into a die. Using dies, factories can make the same trucks again and again.
  • Pound Puppies: In the 1980's, Tonka released the Pound Puppies stuffed animal line, which then went on to become a national television show. The Pound Purries line includes stuffed cats with similar appearance.
  • Action Figures: In addition to miniature vehicles, Tonka also produced action figures including the Tonka Town line. These action figures include miniature truck drivers and machine operators. They also include movie characters such as Yoda from Star Wars.
How can you classify vintage Tonka trucks?

If you're looking to start or add to a Tonka truck collection, here are a few key facts to keep in mind.

  • Year: If you want to add vintage toys to your collection, be sure to look at the year the toy was made.
  • Scale: If you're looking to set up a display, keep in mind that not all Tonka trucks have the same scale. Vintage Tonka trucks generally fit into one of four size categories: Mighty, Regular, Mini, and Tiny. Trucks in the Regular category have a 1:18 standard scale, meaning that this truck miniaturizes a real-world vehicle so that it is exactly 1/18th the size. The Tiny versions use 1:64 and the Mini use 1:55 scale.
  • Parts: In addition to above considerations, many Tonka trucks come with adjustable parts like wheels and doors. In some cases, limited edition box sets also include vintage artwork and certifications.
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