There’s a certain nostalgia that comes with a vintage Lego set. For many, it evokes lots of happy childhood memories. It allows you to relish the time you received your first set and the hours of endless play that followed. Vintage sets also recall a feeling of excitement as you browse through the catalogs for the newest release and the joy of entering a toy shop filled with all things bricks.

To some, vintage Lego sets also relive the tragedy of not owning one or losing a piece. Others may recall the pain of parting with a cherished set due to a yard sale. Still, specific Lego themes bring back the memory of a favorite movie or fictional character.

True, Lego isn’t just a child’s toy. It’s also for sentimental AFOL or adult fans of Lego. Apart from being serious builders, they also double as collectors wanting to rebuild an entire collection of vintage Lego sets and, perhaps, reclaim a piece of their childhood.

Vintage Lego Sets Defined
Lego introduced its plastic brick sets in January 1958, so everything they produced from that time until the early 2000s is considered vintage. While this may seem short, this period includes hundreds of Lego sets from different themes. It also consists of some of the brand’s firsts—wheels, minifigure, vehicles, and even its first-ever theme.

You may find vintage Lego sets interesting for several reasons. Apart from the nostalgia you get from owning a set you once had, you might also be interested to know that it has a significant resale value. A study even shows how Lego sets are worth more than gold and other investments.  

So, if you’re looking for a vintage Lego set to satisfy your inner child or, perhaps, make a profitable investment from discontinued sets, below are several tips to help get you started. 

How To Find Vintage Lego Sets?
There are several ways to find vintage Lego sets. The search not only requires some effort on your part, but some bucks as well.

  • Your Personal Stash

You’re lucky if you have one stored away in your attic or basement from your parents’ collection. While it looks good with the box intact, having complete pieces makes it better.

Vintage Lego sets have several distinctive features. The earliest bricks had a hollow rectangular base and were made from cellulose acetate until 1963. They also didn’t have instruction manuals, which were introduced in 1964.

Expect vintage Lego sets to have black, blue, red, white, and yellow bricks. If yours comes with a mini figure, it’ll be yellow and have a smiling face.

Aside from vintage sets, you can also find re-released sets in brick-and-mortar stores. These sets were retired for a time, then relaunched with additional features, such as new items or instructions. The Lego Creator theme has some re-released sets that you can explore.

  • Online Toy Shops

If you no longer have one at home, the Internet can provide you with several options. It’s best to consider a theme for your vintage Lego collection so you can refine your search. For example, you can choose to find sets about Space, the first-ever Lego theme, or look for vintage train sets.

Alternately, you can also find a movie-themed vintage set featuring the Lego Star Wars Range, which includes the Millennium Falcon, TIE Fighter, and Death Star. You may also find Harry Potter or Marvel themes as a starter for your collection.

  • Second-Hand Marketplaces 

Lego vintage sets also come in two kinds: used and new. You can find these on several Lego auction sites and online selling platforms. Vintage sets can command a high price, so it’s best to look around before you decide to buy.

Before you place a bid or close the deal, make sure to check the set’s condition. Inquire if it includes the box, if it’s intact, or if the set is complete or has missing parts.

Online marketplaces are also excellent sources of discontinued sets. Lego has a policy of retiring some sets after several years, which increases their resale value. Retired sets can be very profitable, especially if you choose some of the most popular Lego themes.

What About Missing Parts?
If ever you find a good deal for a vintage set with missing pieces, you can always go to the Lego website and check if it’s in stock. You can search the site using the element or design number.

If you can’t find one, you can ask other Lego builders for some advice. Several Lego communities online can help you find a missing piece or add a few more sets to your collection.

Do You Keep Or Sell It?
Finding a rare set can be very rewarding for toy collectors and serious Lego builders. You can keep it as part of a collection you can play with or display.

There’s also an option to resell them given the high demand for discontinued sets or those with complete pieces. You can also sell part of the collection to add more sets. Ultimately, the decision to keep or sell is up to you.

In sum, vintage Lego sets are a great way to travel back in time and relive your childhood. Finding one in your personal stash or getting one online can be very rewarding. Discontinued sets aren’t only collectors’ items as they can also serve as lucrative investments for Lego lovers of all ages.