Essex Models and Miniatures archive
Category: Construction Plant

Dinky, Coles mobile crane

by Peter
Categories: Coles, Construction Plant, Diecast models, Dinky
Tags: No Tags
Comments: Leave a Comment

Based on the Ulysses 3 ton Mobile Yard crane which had been introduced in 1949, the Dinky Coles Mobile Crane.  It had crank operated jib and hook and 360 degree  rotation.

First numbered 570 when it was introduced in 1949 and later became 971 in March 1954.

Dinky Coles crane1

This model was withdrawn in 1966.

Dinky Coles crane2


The real cranes

Information on the real cranes is sketchy to say the least but a useful page I found was here—1960

From the above webpages the following is the description of a yard crane in general

Yard Crane

Self mobile cranes with either cantilever or strut booms designed for lifting moving and stacking goods both inside and outside industrial works and storage sites. There loading capacity is lower than the industrial crane but this rating can be raised for static lifting if outriggers are fitted stabilising their base. Movement and lifting are operations are both carried out from operating cab mounted in the slewing deck. They are more moveable than the Industrial Unit.



Lone Star and Dinky Exhibition, WhiteWebbs museum 2014

This year at the annual Lone Star Exhibition I had a stall to show my own Lone Star collection, it had been extended to include Dinky Toys too.

Last year I visited this show for the first time and learnt  alot about Lone Star and this year was no different.

My own small collection

Whitewebbs DC expo 9

The red crane with the white jib is new and bought at the show, boxed and mint.

Whitewebbs DC expo 10

Most of the models here have already been written about and you can find out more by searching Lone Star on this website.

So lets have a look around the Exhibition.

On the table next to me was this Lone Star Treblo electric layout, and fully operational, Treblo or OOO was the father of British N gauge.

Whitewebbs DC expo 1

A  few static diecast  Treblo layouts showing a vast number of the range that was available by Lone Star.

Whitewebbs DC expo 2

Whitewebbs DC expo 3

Lone Star were well known for their diecast cap guns of many types and in fact gained the name solely because of the western theme they had adopted, this stall had one of the biggest ranges I have ever seen.

Whitewebbs DC expo 7

Even more Lone Star weapons.

Whitewebbs DC expo 8

This is Ian Dorrell and his amazing collection of all things Lone Star, probably the largest collection in the UK, in fact many of the pictures in the reference books I use are of  Ian’s collection.

Whitewebbs DC expo 6

There was plenty of stalls selling Lone Star as well as other makes, and as already said I have added a Lone Star crane to my collection, a few other things caught my eye and worthy of adding here.

First this set of Dinky A4 locomotives, around N gauge in size, According to the “Great book of Dinky Toys” The Green one, Light blue one , the Silver and Red one and the Silver one Are from 1937–1941.  The Dark Green one is obviously after 1948 with that BR crest.  The one in Dark Blue can either be Pre or post WW2…

Personally I had not seen these before.

Whitewebbs DC expo 4

Another Dinky set and was really tempted with buying it, but alas,  I didn’t.

This is also Dinky no. 18 Tank Goods Set produced 1934–1941.

Whitewebbs DC expo 5

As the theme was Lone Star and Dinky diecast, I was suprised they had a large O gauge Hornby 3-rail layout, but Frank Hornby did produce the Dinky range as well as Hornby trains and of course Meccano, the following pictures are of the layout which I had great pleasure in watching much of the day.





For more information on Lone Star or a copy of the books I myself use as reference go to


Ertl, small scale construction machines

by Peter
Categories: Construction Plant, Diecast models, Ertl
Tags: No Tags
Comments: Leave a Comment

Even after all the time I’ve been involved with diecast collecting, every now again something comes up I’ve not seen before.

These tiny machines, made by Ertl are about 1:144 scale or in the model railway world N gauge.


A rare find and little can be found on these models, and after many searches will leave this to our readers to inform me of production dates and ranges.

Lone Star, fork lift

by Peter
Categories: Construction Plant, Diecast models, Lone Star
Tags: No Tags
Comments: Leave a Comment

Today another Lone Star find.


This full operational fork lift has the tilt mechanism and a winder to raise and lower the forks, great play value.


This would of had a white plastic canopy when new, although this one has long gone missing.

This was number 1254 in the Lone Star range and produced between 1978 and 1979, it was one of a few marketed under the ‘Speciality ‘ lines and didn’t come as part of a series or set, the numbering and production dates puts it in with the earlier ‘Highway Constructors‘ series and probably of the same scaling.

For more information on Lone Star or a copy of the book I myself use as reference go to