What are TIMPO solids?

or: 8 years of change from metal-figure to swoppet


TIMPO solids can be devided from other fields of collecting regarding three reviews

year of production, paint and technique of production.

  • The production years of the solids : the first solids were produced in 1954.

          The start of merchandising was 1955, when TIMPO introduced several series 

          of plastic figures: the farm series took part, wild west, police and guards, 

          foreign legion and arabs, knights and romains, modern army and the cadets.

  • The figures consisted of one-colour-plastic and were painted in different

          colours. Some figures only had accents in one single painted colour,

          the napoleonics were painted in seven operations. 

  • The solids marked the first plastic-figures after the era of metal castings.

          The jousting knights made of metal had already plastic lances, because

          they seemed to be less breakable. This was one of the reasons for the turn

          to plastic production. Plastic went better off the casting moulds

          a fact which was the reason for the sharp shapes of the next generation of


          The third reason were the lower costs in material and transport. Having

          rivalry with other companies an important reason for TIMPO!

          But the colour wasn't fixed enough to the plastic surface and went off.

          Moreover painting was a craftsmanship and therefore expensive. Stirred up

          by Britains-swoppets TIMPO looked for remaining colours and went away

          from painting completely. They used plastics-granulate in different

          colours and casted only single parts of the figures.

          The single parts in different colours were then plugged to another. 

          In the early times painting of small parts was still needed.

          Then the pure swoppet was born, solids were out of time.

For these reasons I'ld like to suggest only to speak of TIMPO plastic solids

in regards of painted non-swoppet figures from the mid fifties to the birth 

of the swoppets between 1958 and 1963.

Many times a figure by TIMPO, which is no swoppet and has no overmoulding 

is degraded to be an „action figure“! But those are much younger and were 

sold scince 1972, round about 10 years after. "Action packs" of the

seventies contained single coloured castings made by taking old solid moulds.

They were "ready to paint", which means not painted. Sometimes it is difficult to 

to tell a solid from an action figur painted by a child in the early seventies.

Action packs also contained figure shapes never sold as TIMPO solids. 

The moulds were bought from other companies such as lone-star. 

In the early action packs original TIMPO-plastics was used. The temporary

production by Toyway uses transparent material in a different mixture.


comparision of a TMPO solid figure and a casting from the same mould as an action pack figure