The HW Guide has now moved to hobbyDB!

hobbyDB Logo (Internet)We have teamed up with hobbyDB to create the most comprehensive Hot Wheels online database. You may be asking, what is hobbyDB and what do they know about Hot Wheels?

hobbyDB is the internet archive of all things collectible. It was founded by collectors and is managed by collectors. Their Advisory Board includes 58 of the respected collectors from all over the globe. At hobbyDB, you can research, document, track, wish, buy, and sell collectible items. There are many new features that are now available that South Texas Diecast did not have time or the resources to offer.

All the information that you’ve had access at South Texas Diecast is now available on hobbyDB (see the Casting Page and the Series Page in the top menu). In addition, the hobbyDB website has the ability to also document code 3s, card variations, customs, errors, and everything Hot Wheels related (comics, posters, hats, t-shirts, key rings, trading cards, store displays, printed catalogs, and many more). Members have the ability to add their own items that aren’t currently documented in the catalog. There are subject pages dedicated to many of the Hot Wheels designers, authors, and convention events.

Add to My CollectionThe most popular feature is being able to keep track of what is in your collection. Members can add items to their ‘collection’ and document condition (package and item), price paid, how and when it was acquired, storage location, additional notes, and add photos/images of their item. You can also choose to have the items private or public. This is also a great way to document your items for insurance purposes.

Add to Wish ListAnother popular feature is ‘Add to Wish List’. If there is something that you’ve been wanting to add to your collection but can’t find it, you can add it to your wish list. When that item becomes available, the system will notify you via email.

hobbyDB also has the ability to for subjects/castings to have ‘curators’ and ‘champions’. These are members who are experts on certain subjects and castings. The curators ensure that the listings are accurate and complete. Champions have additional tools to keep the database accurate and managed.

The goal at South Texas Diecast has always been about documenting the history of Hot Wheels. hobbyDB has provided the opportunity to keep this project alive and well for many generations to come.

We at South Texas Diecast and hobbyDB have worked hard on putting together this information and features for all collectors. If you see something that needs improvement or tweaking, feel free to email with your suggestions and comments. The hobbyDB team is very attentive to improving the collector experience for everyone.

Casting Spotlight: Dairy Delivery

Dairy DeliveryThe Dairy Delivery, designed by Phil Riehlman, debuted in the 1998 First Editions series. It is loosely based on the Divco Dairy Truck which was produced from 1926 to 1986.

The first release was White with Light Blue, Dark Blue, and Pink decoration. It has “Got Milk” on the sides which was a famous advertising campaign at the time. This first release was manufactured in Malaysia and China and has been found on Red or Blue cards.

In 2008 the Dairy Delivery was voted as number 22 into the Top 40 Hot Wheels of all time, today it might rank even higher (there are now more than 150 variants!).

This casting is very popular with customizers due to the large surface areas to apply their graphics/designs.

What does the Year on the Baseplate mean?

So you’ve found an old Hot Wheels car at a garage sale. You tried to find out more information but nothing matches the year on the base. This is a very common issue with all Hot Wheels.

Baseplate Year
The year is not an indication of when it was manufactured. It is the year that the casting design was copyrighted.

In the example, the ’57 Chevy has 1976 on the base. The first Hot Wheels ’57 Chevy wasn’t released until 1977. Most ’57 Chevys, regardless of when they were made, have 1976 on the base. In most instances, the date is one year before it’s initial release. The example above wasn’t produced until 2009 and was part of a 10 pack release.

What is a ZAMAC car?

A ZAMAC car is basically an unpainted car. ZAMAC is the material that Hot Wheels are casted from.

A normal painted version and the ZAMAC version

The term ZAMAC car was first used in 1998. There were 25 carded versions available at the ’98 convention along with a baggy Zamac and a 4 ZAMAC car set. Kay-Bee Toys also had some 2 car sets (Same casting, one painted, one unpainted or ‘ZAMAC’). In 2004, Mattel released some of the First Editions in ZAMAC. These were a Toys ‘R Us Exclusive but were later found at Target stores as well.  In 2013, Walmart issued 18 unpainted mainlines for their exclusive ZAMAC series.  These have a ZAMAC logo on the cards and are numbered 001 to 018.  Walmart continued these releases in 2014 and 2015 (18 cars each year).  Walmart also issued a premium ZAMAC exclusive car for their Rewards program in 2013, 2014, and 2015.