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Selling your items to Tortoys

We purchase both single items and collections, so if you have something to sell please contact us.  If we are interested, we will email you a link for sending photos.  Alternatively, you could upload your photos to a shared folder in 'the cloud' (e.g. OneDrive, Flickr, Dropbox, Google Drive) and send us the link.  Unfortunately we cannot offer to purchase items from lists without photos, although a list as well as photos is always helpful.  If you prefer, you are welcome to bring or send the collection to us for evaluation if arranged in advance.  And if you are fortunate enough to live in sunny Somerset we can come to you!

What we buy

Generally speaking, we prefer to buy scale models and toys that were made for children to play with, not for adults to collect. The items we are most interested in are:
  • Diecast toy vehicles by Matchbox, Dinky, Corgi and others, especially those made before 1980. We buy boxed and unboxed models that are in good, excellent or mint condition (see Condition Ratings below).
  • Britains Floral Garden, Farm and Zoo items, especially if made before 1980. These include figures, vehicles, trees and buildings.
  • Constructional toys made before 1970, especially those from the 50s and 60s. These include Bayko, Arkitex and Meccano, and we prefer these boxed.
  • Slot racing vehicles and accessories made before 1970, boxed or unboxed, especially Scalextric and Minic Motorways. However we don't buy Scalextric sets and track because they are too bulky!
  • Occasional tinplate vehicles and mechanical toys.
  • Old toy catalogues, pre 1980.

You can also get a good idea of what we buy by looking at this website!

What we don't buy

We do not usually buy the following:
  • Collections of Lledo/Days Gone, Cameo or post-1978 Matchbox Models of Yesteryear (including all those with straw-coloured or red window boxes).
  • Heavily worn items with a lot of damage to paintwork and/or parts missing.
  • Restored items.
  • Items of recent manufacture that are still available in the shops.
  • Modern character merchandise, e.g, Star Wars, Transformers, Ninja Turtles, Thomas the Tank Engine, McDonalds toys.
  • Model railway items.
  • Dolls, puppets, soft toys and Beanies.
  • Board games and jigsaws.
  • Wooden toys.
  • Outdoor toys.
  • Radio control planes, cars and boats.

How much will we offer?

We cannot buy everything we are offered, and may not be able to make an offer if:
  • Your items are not the sort of things we normally sell (see above).
  • Your items are in too poor a condition.
  • We already have a large stock of similar items.
  • We've already spent our budget for the month!

The amount we offer will be less than the insurance or 'book' value. However, unlike an auction (online or otherwise), there are no listing fees, commission, seller's premiums or VAT to pay - so it may be the most cost-effective and hassle-free way to dispose of your collection.

We aim to give a fair price, and if there are any valuable rarities in your collection we will tell you so and reflect this in our offer. Please note that our offer will be lower if you are located outside the European Union because we have to take account of import duty and tax.

We don't haggle! Our policy is that our first offer is our best offer, as we think this is the most open and honest way of doing business. If we make you an offer it will be valid for at least 14 days, to give you time to obtain other quotations.

What happens next?

If we make you an offer and you decide to accept it, simply send the items to us by tracked delivery service. We can advise on this if required. As soon as the items are received we will pay you by your choice of method: cheque, bank transfer or PayPal. You are of course welcome to deliver the items in person if you prefer, in which case payment may be in cash. If the items we receive from you are not as described we reserve the right to return them to you at our own expense.

Valuations

We don't supply itemised valuations free of charge, because it takes considerable time and effort. If you would like a formal valuation of each item in your collection we will be pleased to quote a price for doing it. This would be refunded in the event of you selling your collection to Tortoys.

Condition ratings

We buy items that are in Good, Excellent or Mint condition, as defined below:

MintAs new
ExcellentJust one or two very small defects which prevent a Mint ranking, perhaps a very small chip in an inconspicuous place. Boxes will show signs of having been opened and closed.
GoodGeneral chipping but still good enough to display. Boxes may be creased or slightly torn but are still the right shape and no parts missing.
FairExtensive chipping, damage to decals or cracked windows, but no parts missing. Boxes may have flaps missing.
PoorBadly damaged, parts missing, very rusty, and/or repainted. Not suitable for display. Boxes completely mangled.

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