Vintage Playmobil Toys

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wikicollecting

2015-06-26 10:33:57

Vintage Playmobil Toys are collectible toys produced as part of the German Playmobil range.

Brief History

Playmobil are a company that boats a vast line of toys for children. The producer of these toys is the 'Brandstatter Group', based in Zindorf, Germany.

The range was initially created by Hans Beck, who is often referred to as the 'Father of Playmobil'. Beck originally trained as a cabinetmaker but his real passion lied in making models and he was usually found making model aeroplanes. Upon presenting his work to the Brandstatter group, the CEO of the company, Horst Brandstatter, requested that he make toy figurines for children.

It took Beck all of three years to create these toys as they were complex although still flexible, with Playmobil model hands possessing the ability to pick things up. Playmobil figures were created on a scale of 1:22.5, with adult models measuring approximately 3” tall, and were designed to increase the flare of children's imaginations. They did this by making the models very simply, replicating children's drawings and not giving them names, allowing children to create the names themselves.

The 1973 oil crisis presented Playmobil with a lucky opportunity to become a viable company. The significant rise in oil prices led to Playmobil being forced to fashion products that required less solid plastic material, previously they had been making hula-hoops and big plastic toys. Over the years they sold a large variety of toys for children, including figurines, pop-up books, comic books and puzzles, although nowadays many of these items have been discontinued.

Many adults enjoy indulging in collecting the toys and have also been found to make movies with them.

Guide For Collectors

Playmobil is readily available on many internet websites, for auction, trading and purchasing. An example website is that of 'www.ioffer.com', many of the vintage items on here are auction only, hence the name. It is also worth looking on eBay, many items can be sold and purchase for good prices.

Playmobil is often sold in sets as well, if you own one whole set it is likely that these are more in demand and can fetch higher prices. Example of sets sold on eBay include:

  • A system construction box-set sold for $150.
  • A vintage knights box-set sold for $130.

Singular items will often sell for a lot less, with examples including a vintage Victorian mansion doll sold for $18.99. Many collectors like to buy the 'discontinued' items, as the simple fact that they are no longer in production makes them less available and more expensive. Some of the Playmobil discontinued items include: Playmospace, Noah's Ark, Old houses, Halloween, Christmas and Easter. Any of these items will be generally high value.

Notable Auction Sales

The most a Playmobil set has sold for is currently unknown. Vintage pieces will often go for fairly high prices, as seen above. Vintage sets are significantly more expensive than buying a brand-new set, a new set will usually sell for around £40.

A notable auction sale found on eBay was that of a vintage American Cavalry set which sold for $210, this is a large amount more than most other sets sell for. Another notable sale is that of a charity auction, 11 crusaders and 3 horses sold for £210 on an eBay auction, although this set was incomplete.

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