Camel Pull Toy

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Project by johnhutchinson posted 12-15-2013 04:35 PM 1601 views 1 time favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

There seems to be a renewed interest in wood in motion, so I thought I’d post the camel pull toy that I published with Woodworker’s Journal for the December 2000 issue.

The opening photo was taken just before Camelia packed her bags (humps?) for the trip to WWJ, and the second photo shows the original study model.

In a nutshell, a cam between the back wheels moves a pushrod that extends up through the pyramid base. The reciprocating pushrod rocks the S-shaped head/tail assembly to which the humps are attached.

The idea came from the memory of an animated cartoon that I saw as a kid.

This seems to have been a popular project because I’ve seen a number of photos and videos of the pull toy, by others, on the Internet. My favorite is a video that was posted by Thomas Kosel on YouTube.

He absolutely nailed it and I like it better than the original.

-- John - Central Ohio - "too much is never enough"

17 comments so far

View hunter71's profile


2271 posts in 2033 days

#1 posted 12-15-2013 04:49 PM

You must have a whole ZOO. Nice one.

-- A childs smile is payment enough.

View a1Jim's profile


113161 posts in 2423 days

#2 posted 12-15-2013 04:56 PM

Wonderful design,very well done.

-- Custom furniture

View luv2learn's profile


1988 posts in 1149 days

#3 posted 12-15-2013 05:15 PM

With all things electronic these days it is nice to see a resurgence of “Old School” toys.

-- Lee - Northern idaho~"If the women don't find you handsome, at least they ought to find you handy"~ Red Green

View truenorth's profile


17 posts in 493 days

#4 posted 12-15-2013 05:47 PM

Brilliant! My wife and I are planning to start our family soon (adding children) I will definitely be mqking wood toys for my youngsters!...nive work!!

-- Canada - True North Strong and Free

View johnhutchinson's profile


862 posts in 475 days

#5 posted 12-15-2013 06:27 PM

Thanks, truenorth. I’ve said it before, but I think it’s worth repeating. The best place to start with animated wooden toys is to learn the fundamentals of the mechanics and then develop your own variations. I made a number of the toys in David Wakefield’s classic book and then went in my own direction.

Once again, here’s the link to the book. It’s out of print, but a lot of used copies are available through Amazon.

-- John - Central Ohio - "too much is never enough"

View hoss12992's profile (online now)


3104 posts in 739 days

#6 posted 12-15-2013 09:26 PM

That is really cool. Great job and thanks for sharing

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

View NormG's profile


4811 posts in 1850 days

#7 posted 12-16-2013 12:20 AM

Great toy, I am sure it will be used often

-- Norman

View aussiedave's profile


3090 posts in 670 days

#8 posted 12-16-2013 12:45 AM

Very nice camel pull toy John…did not know camel humps moved up and down like that…lol
Great toy…thanks for sharing.

-- Dave.......Keep calm and make more sawdust....

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5144 posts in 1138 days

#9 posted 12-16-2013 05:34 PM

Very nicely done—another great toy!

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View Surfside's profile


3389 posts in 1020 days

#10 posted 12-16-2013 10:15 PM

Took a lot of thought to create this one! You did an awesome job.

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View johnhutchinson's profile


862 posts in 475 days

#11 posted 12-16-2013 10:35 PM

Thanks, guys. The guy who made the YouTube video is probably wondering why his views just doubled. :)

-- John - Central Ohio - "too much is never enough"

View Woodbridge's profile


3064 posts in 1264 days

#12 posted 12-17-2013 12:41 AM

very cool project!

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View RogerInColorado's profile


315 posts in 800 days

#13 posted 12-17-2013 01:26 AM

I built five of them in Alter, Ash and Walnut for my grandkids and gave a couple away to friends for their grandkids. I loved building them and it’s nice to know the author is an LJ. Thanks for the book recommendation, I’ve put it on my wish list. I think you need to re-publish the plans, presuming your agreement with WWJ has expired.

View johnhutchinson's profile


862 posts in 475 days

#14 posted 12-17-2013 03:45 AM

WOW, Roger!!! It’s great to hear that anyone built one, but five gets the prize. You made my day!

-- John - Central Ohio - "too much is never enough"

View Fishinbo's profile


11362 posts in 1022 days

#15 posted 12-19-2013 03:23 PM

That’s one beautiful and fun camel. Like the movement, it will make any kid smile. Great job!

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