Our adventure starts on 26th May to our toy car hunting trip in Tokyo. Aaron and I set off in a empty luggage as we wanted to fill them up with minicars. We have already planned which are the minicar shops we like to go. We are to meet up with Ken (from Ken's Garage in Hong Kong) at the hotel as we booked the same hotel so that we can have some company. As we reach Tokyo one and a half day before Ken, we venture into some shops first. If you are looking for vintage Tomica, please be prepare to pay around 3000yen to 12,000yen depending on condition and variation. I am surprised that I am actually paying this money as I just tell myself to buy the model I like since I have already set aside a sum of money to buy Tomica. I just want to have a fruitful trip and enjoy myself.
FOR VINTAGE TOMICA COLLECTORS
GULLIVER Main Shop of Gulliver
Gulliver Consignment "Garage"
We bought quite a number of vintage toy cars from Gulliver. First shop and few hundred dollars gone buying mainly vintage and limited edition Tomica.
MINICAR GLOBAL Minicar Global Signage
They have a good collection of Diapet and some other vintage diecast from Japan and Europe.
Some of their vintage Tomica collection
II ADO Another shop I like because they have all brands of vintage diecast like Schuco and Diapet. Vintage Tomica variety not so many but did manage to buy just a few piece.
II Ado Tomica Section
These are Modelpet. You will never get to see one in Singapore. These are from the 1960s and very expensive as compared to a vintage Tomica.
Pooh Bear, our big brother says this is for you.
A small shop selling vintage watches and also a section on only vintage toys. TMT have a number of Dandy, Diapet and some rare Sakura.
Cool collection of Tomica Dandy and Diapet but I bought the Sakura instead because I have never seen this Sakura I bought as it is a Japanese car. Most Sakura are foreign sports car.
SHU-STOCK One of my favourite shop with all types of vintage diecast, hardly any new model with exception of Tomica. If you are looking for new Tomica only, then you should skip this shop as you need to do a lot of walking and know your direction well.
Thousands of vintage Tomica, Diapet, Playart, Matchbox, Majorette, Schuco, Corgi etc waiting for us.
Impressive show case of Tomica of new and vintage.
Tomica Domestic series in above photo. Your wallet must be thick enough to buy one of them. The price are really collector's price. I only managed to buy a few loose Tomica which I like and a few loose Modelpet.
A Day in the Life of 3 Tomica Hunters There is one day when we can experience the working life of Ken as he bring us along on a shopping spree. While we were waiting for him at the lobby, we were quite surprise that he brought along a trolley. Toward the end of my trip in Tokyo, I bought one too so I can understand why he needs one for his work. It was quite useful for Tomica or toy car hunters like us not to mention a Tomica dealer. We went to a few places which I have heard of but didn't know that they sell Tomica too. Some of the places I have been there 4 years ago.
Lots of vintage displayed like Cherryca Phoenix, Micropet and Modelpet appears live. I don't have the chance to see these rare toys in Singapore before and this only happens in Japan.
Although there are many Tomicas but the price is not cheap. As some shops like this above do know Ken, he is able to get at good price. Sometimes I wonder why Hong Kong vintage Tomica are cheaper than Japan, now I guess I have the answer now. My verdict is to buy from Ken if I am in Hong Kong next time as he quote a reasonable price after I compared the prices in Tokyo. If you ask me, I will still come to Japan again as I think there are more shop I have not explored yet. I browse through the shelves and spotted one Tomica selling at 31,500yen. Hey, I have one too but I didn't expect the price to appreciate so much. Make a guess what car is it.
This is Japan's version of our China Square but definitely better and bigger. Better because they have almost everything and many cases do have Tomica for sale.
Let me zoom in one of the shelve. Bought 2 Tomicas from this shelve, one foreign series and a Japanese racing car. There are many shelves to explore so I will buy some from a shelf once I spotted those I like.
I was here 4 years ago. This shop sells mainly new 1/43 scale model cars, train models and loose cars of various brands including Tomica. Didn't buy much there except for a Junk Tomica. Junk Tomica means it is not mint, may have some nicks or paint loss, not really a piece of junk but just that it is not in perfect condition. The one I bought is at a reasonable price and also a number of nicks around but I don't mind.
We managed to find a couple of vintage Tomica (loose and beat up) 4 years back in this shop but no luck this time. I remember the price they sell are not cheap too considering the condition of the car. Most stuff sold in the shop are vintage figurines.
SHINJUKU TOY EVENT The 1st ever Shinjuku Toy Event in Tokyo that I have attended, hope that they will continue to hold it continuously like "Wonderland". Rumoured to have it's 2nd event in August. This 1st ever event is also to celebrate the opening of a new minicar shop, Ken-Box (a subsidiary of Ken's Garage??? as I jokingly ask Ken).
It's 920am. The event starts only at 10am but there is already a queue outside the hall. The entrance fee is 500yen from 10am to 12pm and free admission after 12pm. We are lucky to get in as dealers at 930am through our friend's help. We avoided the queue and able to look at the toy cars we might be interested before the public rushed in.
This cabinet of toys are up for auction way before the event starts and you can place a bid up till 2pm on the very day.
Overview of the toy event before opening to the public.
Other booth from another shop. We are lucky that we are in early or we don't have the chance to take any pictures because the first hour is really packed with minicar collectors.
Vintage tin toys is also available in this event.
Never seen so many Tomica before right in front of my eyes. This is just one of the booth selling Tomica. There are many other booth having lots of Tomica on display and for sale.
FOR NEW TOMICA COLLECTORS
TOMICA SHOP You can buy all kind of Tomica (except vintage) in Tomica Shop. Basically all current series of Tomica, Tomica Limited and Tomica Limited Vintage are available. If you want to get something which is only available in Tomica Shop, then you should get the Tomica Factory car & Event Tomica (if you are into these). Factory car in May is RX8 Safety car, June is the Celica and June event car is the Honda Freed. I did not buy the May Factory car although I was at the Tomica Shop in May, went 2 days later (1st June) and Factory car changed to Celica, bought 6 pieces for fun, 2 Event Honda Freed, some other event cars and Tokyo Motor Show cars since my friends ask me to buy. Only intend to keep 2 or 3 cars from my purchase but total spending was more than 15,000yen which won me a Tomica Shop member card. I made a redemption for a not for sale Tomica and a Tomica Fork for free.
Tomica in Tomica Shop