Philip Vielmetter – The Artist Drawing Toy w/5 cams & Box
Uploaded on Jul 11, 2009 by HansFilip
A very rare and clever toy produced in Germany approximately 1885 until about 1905. The little hand-cranked tin artist draws with a graphite stick onto paper via ‘programmed’ double-cams (x and y axis).
I read about it in a book about magic/illusions, printed approximately 1899, when I was in 2nd grade and became obsessed with finding it.
Some texts say it was an expensive wealthy person’s toy, and other texts mention it as a give-away to favorite clients of the firm Phillip Vielmetter Mechanische Werkstatten of Berlin, Germany. This ultra-rare original box was repaired by Randy’s Toy Shop.
I suspect the 5 cams are from various production dates.
They are labeled (in German): HAHN, KAKADU, GLADSTONE, HARLEKIN, AFFE. There are several more cams that I do not have, such as Napolean, Balzaax, Queen Victoria, and still others.
There are signs of hand-painting touch-ups over the rear base of the neck and the right arm made during the original production process over 100 years ago. You will find these features on every Vielmetter ever made.
Unfortunately the sharp metal pegs on the easel look like they have been repaired, replaced, or re-inforced. The bottom easel pegs look re-inforced and the top right peg is untouched. The easel legs/frames look oddly scratched (horizontal lines) but this is another misunderstood trait found in every one of these toys that I have seen. These horizontal lines were likely caused by the tooling that formed/bent the sheet metal into the easel shape.
There are other rare versions of this toy, and when I get my books & notes from storage I might make a serious video on this topic.
One of my all-time favorite toys, and I am putting it here to test selling it on ebay July 10, 2009 for a starting price at what I think I paid for it 8 years ago. This may be a once-in-a-lifetime chance to acquire such a set.
rubixcube6 4 years ago
thats a $1,000 – $2,000 toy! it was featured in that movie called “where the toys come from” that I used to watch as a kid.
Gina Monc 2 years ago
Are you a collector? are you selling this beautiful piece?
normanhathaway 5 years ago
please upload the rest of the cams drawings!
henrikdrescher 6 years ago
Andy Flint 3 years ago
My late father had one of these when he was a child in the 1930’s
He always remembered it fondly and wished he’d kept it…So do I !!!