Charlie is a freelance writer with 20 years of writing experience. He also has an interest in collecting vintage toys.
I am always looking for more online sources to find the toys I collect. Even though I still use eBay, I am finding there are a lot of other sites out there with quality vintage toys. Here are five websites that I think rival, if not surpass, eBay in content, price, and ease of navigation and shopping:
Good luck collecting!
Goodwill Sells Cheap Vintage Toys Online
You may be surprised at the deals you can find on shopgoodwill.com. I've had mixed success in their brick and mortar stores—it seems like location is everything. The quality of the finds differs greatly between different geographical areas. The online store removes that obstacle.
I collect Tonka toys and I have seen a few of the Tonkas up for sale. I've seen an original 1947 Tonka Steam Shovel (current bid $81), a 10x22 inch Tonka Winnebago (current bid $46), and multiple construction Tonkas, such as graders and backhoes.
There are several toy categories, so whether you collect board games, Barbies or something in between, you'll most likely find something of interest. The site is easy to navigate and has a nice search function. My only complaint is shipping—the options seem to be limited to individual stores. Some sellers offer multiple shippers, but some only offer one.
Search for Collectibles on RubyLane
RubyLane specializes in Antiques & Art, Vintage Collectibles, and Jewelry. Most of the items I looked up were definitely retail price, but everything I found was really neat and in very nice shape. The site has an easy-to-use search feature and even displays okay on a mobile device.
Some of the unique vintage toys I found included an ABC TV control room with camera and man. This vehicle was made by Dinky between 1962 and 1969.
The site accepts most common payments methods, such as PayPal and credit card. Some stores also accept bank wires and checks, and some even offer layaway. The site also offers several useful newsletters with content ranging from interesting articles to the latest deals you can find on the site.
Etsy Has Some Great Deals
Etsy is a well-known site with a very clean, easy-to-use layout. The listings are filled with images, and all the item and seller information is readily available on one page. The site is also a treasure trove of vintage toys.
My search for 'Tonka" yielded nearly 800 items and unlike some sites, most of these are bonafide vintage and/or collectible toys. For example, on the first page of search results, I found a 50s/60s dump truck, several unique firetrucks of various sizes, a 1960s earth mover, and, my favorite, a 1960s car carrier.
They also have a huge selection of more than 7,000 board games.
Bargains may be a little harder to find because most sellers seem to know the value of what they have. However, if you are looking to complete a collection or need to find a certain item, this is definitely one of the first sites you should try. When you visit the site, be sure to check out the blog, community forums, and apps page.
eBid Is a Great Auction Site
eBid.net is definitely trying to compete with eBay—it has more than 12,000 categories and more than 6 million listings. I have bought items from this site and it is a very similar process to eBay, so there is not really learning curve here. There are no fees to buy on this site, but sellers pay a subscription to place items (which seems to be considerably cheaper than eBay's pricing).
The search function is very easy to find and use. Like many online auction sites, eBid has online stores, which simplifies the shopping process once you find a seller you like. When I did a search for "Tonka," it returned nearly 200 items. For whatever reason, this site seems to have a lot of the plastic McDonald Tonkas, but it does have rare ones as well—like a vintage Marshall Field & Co. semi-truck ($449) and a Goodrich Race Team Truck Set ($90).
If you are looking for a lot of products this is probably the best site for you. However, just like eBay, there may be a lot of stuff to browse through before you discover the unique find you're looking for.
Bonanza Is a Hidden Gem for Toy-Lovers
When you visit the homepage of this site, you would not presume it had any vintage toys of interest. The landing page makes the site seem more like a modern discounted clothing site, but if you enter a search term—or scroll to the bottom of the page for categories—you will see that there are a lot of items of interest.
I did a search for "Tonka" on this site, and it returned more than 300 items (the toy category is considerably larger overall). Most of the Tonkas were from the 1980s or later, but there were some older ones, like a six wheels Ruff Rider and a garbage truck from the 60s. The was also a vintage Tonka TWA Airlines boxed set that was really cool.
The layout of the site is great. Once you enter a search term, the items have a 'quick look' option that allows you to open a pop up of the item. Everything you want to know about the item is immediately available, from photos, price, shipping to payment options and seller information. I think the item's "details" page is actually much cleaner looking and more user-friendly than eBay's by a long shot.
The site says it has 4 million items and 25,000 sellers. Another big plus, I think, is that no login is required to buy on the site. If you see something you want, you can quickly go through the checkout system.
Toy Auctions Are Another Way to Find What You're Looking for
AuctionZip is an excellent way to learn about auctions in your local area that have toys or collectibles you may be interested in. More specifically, the site has a toy auction page that lists current auctions featuring toys from throughout the country. As the site name suggests, search for auctions based on your zip code.
In addition, AntiqueToys is a great resource for retail-priced toys from the 1850s to 1960s.
Cheri L kelvin on January 11, 2020:
Hello. Wonder if anyone know the name or how i can fond an old boxing game. It was a copy of rockem sockem robots, however it was with men and I believe Sears sold it. I dobt remember the name
Carl D. Reyes on December 07, 2019:
I have a 1979 Star Wars Boba Fett Tri-Logo 14in loose figure in excellent condition. Looking to sell as it has the removable back pack and firing hook with attached rope, and also has the attached wrist rocket. Here is a list of things I put together.
STAR WARS 1979
Boba Fett Kenner GMFGI 39140
14" Pose able Large Sized Action Figure
With "see-thru" viewpoint lens in helmet
Clicking pretend range finder on helmet
Backpack containing hook and attached rope
Swiveling jet pods
Lensatic "life support" indicator in chest plate
Articulated head, shoulders, elbows, wrists, knees and hips
xlrate55 on November 18, 2019:
HI Janet, wondering if you ever received a response? Just saw this site for the first time today. To answer your question, assuming he's selling the collection as a whole, I would recommend a facebook forum specific to that. There will either be someone on the site that will want first shot at it, or they will be able to point you in the right direction. I personally dislike FB very much but in this case, its a good tool. Lastly, you can check ebay for a fairly accurate value when you search out an item under "sold". Hope this helps and if its stuff you've heard already, sorry!
JANET CATHERINE BOND on October 25, 2019:
my brother has approx. 80 old dinky and corgi cars from 50s 60s and 70s all in mint condition, never been played with. how would he go about selling them
CRAIGCTHOMPSON from LOS ANGELES on August 14, 2019:
I am searching for the vintage toy call the Bloop. It came out in about 1960 and was advertised on television. It was made of red and yellow plastic.
You manually pumped the handle like a bicycle tire pump and when enough pressure built up inside a cone, the cone would pop off and fly in the air. It made a loud "Bloop" noise.
Kurtis Faux on July 20, 2019:
Need some advise on selling antiques, vintage dolls, nick nacks, etc. ?
Angela M davis Fuller on July 05, 2019:
I have Molly from the American Girl collection. She is in perfect condition. I saw online that she is worth 5,000 dollars. where can I sell her and not get riped off.
EC on April 26, 2019:
I have 4 origanlly packaged Ninja Turtle pls I’d love Ike’s to sell & im not sure where to. IVE looked up the prices for them and I’m willing to go way cheaper for each or all together.
Latoya on March 27, 2019:
I have 1937 wooden Pinocchio.. in great condition..
Lacie on March 22, 2019:
Where can i sell old marbles
Angela on January 30, 2019:
Hi how much would my 1940s vintage yellow Coca Cola delivery toy truck be worth today?
Christina Cortinas-Garcia on April 12, 2018:
Would like to know if you know how much the evil twin from TM Hot Wheel number it's from the metal collection and it's a joker Highway 35 from 1968 through 2003
And then Matchbox collectible Wonder Woman the amazing princess Justice League and that's from TM and that's be 5741
Celia betts on November 28, 2017:
I have a 1959 barbie doll and package special edition reproduction 35th anniversary barbie trying to find out how much it worth
James on October 23, 2017:
Shop Goodwill is a little expensive on shipping and handling
Infomanian on June 28, 2016:
Good article, very well done.
shopgoodThwill com was new to me. Thanks!
Kathy Lester on January 04, 2015:
Bidzinger is also a great place to buy and sell vintage toys online.
toy fanatic on December 02, 2013:
I have a rare 1966 black knight batmobile in good condition with working motion and lights. .. can't figure out what it's worth. I'm curious
Charlie Claywell (author) on September 10, 2012:
Besides Tonks, I've started checking out some of the Structo toys -- my problem is I want all the old toy trucks from the 30s-50s and, of course, just not enough money or room to accommodate that!
mactavers on September 10, 2012:
Thanks for your informative Hub on where to buy toys. I collect Cracker Jack toys and am always looking for new sites to browse. Some of the early metal toys for Cracker Jack were made by Tootsie, so I always check under Tootsie Toys too.