Camel Pull Toy

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Project by johnhutchinson posted 12-15-2013 04:35 PM 4298 views 3 times favorited 18 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"

18 comments so far

View hunter71's profile


3298 posts in 3383 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


117328 posts in 3774 days

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

Wonderful design,very well done.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View luv2learn's profile


2871 posts in 2499 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 1844 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


1243 posts in 1826 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


4081 posts in 2090 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


6283 posts in 3200 days

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

Great toy, I am sure it will be used often

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View aussiedave's profile


3114 posts in 2021 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.......If at first you don’t succeed redefine success....

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 2489 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 2370 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


1243 posts in 1826 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


3591 posts in 2615 days

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

very cool project!

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View RogerInColorado's profile


321 posts in 2151 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


1243 posts in 1826 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 2372 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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