HOWTO make toys from tin cans (ebook)

"How to make tin can toys" is a $9.95 ebook version of an old book explaining the fabrication of all manner of toys from tin cans. Judging from the table of contents, it covers a lot of basics, from soldering to tool-use, and has projects for making cars, trucks, boats, trains, as well as several mechanical toys, including a steam turbine and boiler.

Update: Thanks to commenter Corvinus for pointing out that this public domain book can also be legally downloaded for free here.

How to make tin can toys (via Making Light)



  1. My dad got a couple of home made Christmas toys like this that were made by his dad in the 1940’s… a steam powered tractor and a thrasher. (They were farmers in Southwestern Ontario).

    They were pretty simple, and were made with old coffee and Campbell’s soup cans.

    He said he played with them for years, and they’re still on a shelf in his home office today.

  2. These are a little more complex (steam powered tractor… awesome) but the basic concept – toys made from cans – is alive and well in certain parts of the world. Any touristy area you may venture into in Thailand will have people selling models of Tuk-Tuks and other things made from Thai beer and soda cans.

    They make them themselves, while they’re sitting there selling them… which in my mind kind of undermines their operation. Would you buy one knowing how easy it was to make (setting aside for a moment the question of whether or not it is even a nice souvenir…)?

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