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Collecting Toy Farm Machinery

Published: Jan. 22, 2021 at 12:51 PM CST
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - During a trip to Newman Grove, we met a toy farm machinery enthusiast who has a room full of everything from toy tractors to combines.

Dean King says he started collecting the items in 1990. “I started with cars, and continued to buy stuff that I liked,” King said. “I grew up with Allis-Chalmers, my dad drove Allis-Chalmers, and I farmed with that for 30 years, so I started into that, I guess. I’ve got memorabilia, I’ve got belt buckles. There are three different sizes that I collect. These bigger ones are 1/16 size. They made a 1/32 size, and they also made a 1/64 size. I’ve got all three sizes.”

In addition to the tractors, King has 1/18-sized cars and pickups, along with 1/24-sized pickups and cars from Danbury Mint. “I have some Gleaner combines, and they were made by Allis-Chalmers at one time,” King said. “Along with that I have gravity wagons, tractors with loaders, and tractors with corn pickers.” But King doesn’t just have Allis-Chalmers items. You can also find John Deere, International and Farmall toy tractors and machinery in his collection. He does have a favorite toy in the collection. “My favorite toy is a 12-row Allis-Chalmers planter, and it’s on a trailer,” King said. “I bought it in Iowa. It was a dealer that was closing out. He had that planter, and it’s something someone made. That is a custom-made piece.”

King is still on the hunt for toy machinery, but admits that he doesn’t have much room left. He does enjoy showing off his collection to people. Dean says he belongs to a group called the Midwest Toy Farmers. There are about 10 collectors in the membership. The group puts on a show the first Sunday after the Fourth of July at the Life-Long Learning Center at Northeast Community College in Norfolk.

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