I am not sure when my collection was started as it began in my childhood where my parents (primarily Mother) bought me my first Dinky Toys. I have no recollection as to which model it was. My Mom and sisters bought me additionally models as Christmas and birthday presents. When I had jobs (paper routes, washing pots and pans in a deli, etc.) I added models to my collection. I eventually collected about 100 models plus a Meccano set (believe number 8 - large 2 layer red box which disintegrated). When I had my own children (2 boys and a girl), my 2 sons became very interested in pre-65 VWs. My oldest son collects VW literature (mysamba.com is his WEB site for VWs) while my youngest son collects VW toys. My youngest son convinced me to add more Dinky Toys to my collection. I began to add to my collection and then several men broke into our house and stole between150-200 models from my collection. I have continued to add to my collection and now have about 600 models. I have gone through various phases (i.e, collect all VW models (my sons), collect fire engines because my grandson (toddler age) wanted to be a fireman). Now I just add interesting models that are not in my collection (primarily 1960 and older) and staying within my limited budget. I do have a very large and almost complete military model collection. I have a Gift Set # 4 (race cars) from my childhood which my wife now claims as her Dinky Toy.