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Tractor Talk Discussion Forum

ERTL farm toys

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09-10-2010 15:29:25

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Does anyone know when China started making farm toys for ERTL. I always thought they were made in Iowa. I bought a John Deere 80 toy tractor. What a disapointment. China made. Alot of plastic parts. I had to send it back twice till I got one without having the back of the seat broke off. You cant tell till the box is open. They wouldnt stand up to kids playing with them anymore. Ray

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09-11-2010 00:53:03

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 Re: ERTL farm toys in reply to farmallray, 09-10-2010 15:29:25  
I think the detail and quality has gone way up since the ones I played with in the 80s with hard plastic tires and hardly no detail or model numbers on the tractors or implements of course I"m not playing with them. Any more either and they are way more expensive but I think they are worth it for the detail and if anything they are more correct than my older ones

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09-10-2010 21:45:33

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 Re: ERTL farm toys in reply to farmallray, 09-10-2010 15:29:25  
I think it was a couple buy outs ago. Scale Models I think is still USA as much as I know. Joe Ertl the owner is a good friend, His dad was the original Ertl.

Joe got ripped off by his workers twenty years ago, they were stealing him blind. His work schedule for parents was soooooo far over the edge......come to work when you get the kids off to school......take the kids to the doctor if you need too. And yet there were some who stole toys from him.

I know the main man in charge of shipping from China, a friend for fifty years. I think he said NEXT years x-mas toys will be ordered in October.

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Brad Gyde

09-10-2010 19:59:19

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 Re: ERTL farm toys in reply to farmallray, 09-10-2010 15:29:25  
I kinda give up on the larger scale, but I still manage to spend about a hundred bucks a year on 1/64th toys.. Larger variety of toys in the smaller scale.. I'm a pushover for combines and 4 wheel drive tractors..
The smaller scale has improved, in my opinion, since when I started playing with them in the mid 80's (at least as far as detail) I have some toys that I had got in the early to mid 90's that say made in places other than USA ( some China, and I believe some were made in Mexico too, and seems like I've seen another country or 2 on various toys.. would have to start looking at them all)
Spec cast does make some toys, which is Ertl's business.. but the 2 of them I have leave some to be desired for the cost, in my opinion.. But if they make a replica of something I want to add to my collection, I'm going to buy it, even if it has some flaws.. I hate to say it, but I'm gonna buy toys regardless of where they're made.. It's a shame that they aren't made here, but I'm not going to give up on my hobby (and going to make a little boy go without toy tractors) because of it.. The way I see it is even if we all stopped buying, it isn't going to bring the production of the toys back to the states.. it'll just cause a total cease of production, which in turn would mean no toys for generations to come.. As far as cheap plastic toys.. it is disappointing, but on the other hand.. in 1985, a 1/16th articulating JD was about 50 bucks (so my parents say).. Last Christmas I really wanted to get the little boy a articulating tractor.. I was working out of town, stopped at a Rural King.. Large toy assortment, and snatched one up.. close to 100 bucks.. as i walked towards the checkout, they had a pile of a similar tractor for about 35 bucks.. (it was evidently cheaper, as it was far lighter, fewer details, and more plastic) but I went with the cheaper.. not cause I'm tight, but because I know as a kid I broke 4 of the articulating tractors.. so there's not a lot of sense to buy the better one, cause if he's anything like me, he'll break a few too.. It really amounts to the lesser of 2 evils.. What's a person to do??
Sorry for the long post.. Brad

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09-10-2010 19:19:25

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 Re: ERTL farm toys in reply to farmallray, 09-10-2010 15:29:25  
I'm not sure if they went to China before or after they were sold to Racing Champions, but I noticed the quality/durability has really dropped off since they became RC-Ertl. A few are still good - made of cast metal. Mr. Ertl has started a new toy company (I think it's Spec Cast? In Dyersville, IA) that is making toys like Ertl did in the '70's.

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09-11-2010 08:49:14

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 Re: ERTL farm toys in reply to Fordfarmer, 09-10-2010 19:19:25  
They went WHEN they were sold to Racing Champions. That was about the same time that the editor of Toy Farmer died and pretty much ended my interest in collecting. I went to the antique tractors and horse drawn plows about that time.

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The Dukester

09-10-2010 17:59:37

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 Re: ERTL farm toys in reply to farmallray, 09-10-2010 15:29:25  
Apparently most people are buying the Chinese built toys.....or poor old Ertl just can't pay Iowa wages to the toy makers there I guess. I've all but stopped buying any toys or models since they started building them in Chinkland. Few years back I bought the "Special Key Model" JD G and was very was assembled wrong in three ways and very poor design the way they did the rear wheels...also the computer must have hic-cupped because the grill is mis-scaled badly too. Lotta detail, but way too many mistakes...definately not a $100+ tractor....poor quality control. I've quit buying model tractors for my brothers' Christmas gifts....none of 'em are worth what they cost...too many mistakes in all of them. Too bad, we all had nice collections started.

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Will Herring

09-10-2010 17:13:40

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 Re: ERTL farm toys in reply to farmallray, 09-10-2010 15:29:25  
This is why I hang on to my old ones since they're made of metal and will last for years upon years longer than the new plastic ones.

I bought one of my cousins' little ones a John Deere tractor for his birthday and it was a metal tractor WITH A PLASTIC LOADER BUCKET. Most ridiculous crap ever. :shock:

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