Tin Mania, vintage mechanical and clockwork toys

Tin Mania finds and sells vintage mechanical and clockwork tin toys. It exists for the collector, the enthusiast and lovers of nostalgia. On this site we celebrate the great European toy makers from the Victorian era up to the mid 20th century.

It was this period, fuelled by the industrial revolution which in the words of Jac Remise, “brought about radical change to the world of toy making, not only through the increased use of machines and new techniques of metal casting and engraving, but also through the increased buying power of large portions of the population. In the space of sixty-odd years, the toy industry so expanded and diversified that this period from 1850 to 1914 can truly be called THE GOLDEN AGE OF TOYS…There were toys to suit all pocketbooks and tastes, and the humour, the freshness and the ingenuity of the craftsman was still everywhere to be seen.

Today, over one hundred years later, those toys that escaped the ultimate fate of destruction have been given a new lease of life by collectors and museums. They have lost, of course, their original usefulness as objects of play; but they have gained instead the pleasant, antiquated grace of nostalgia. The passage of time has given them poetry and a soul, and their second existence is a calm and contemplative one.” Jac Remise, The Golden Age of Toys

Each toy listed for sale on this site is the only one of its kind we have in stock. Whether they are rare or simply hard to find we always strive to find the best example we possibly can. We don’t sell reproductions and wherever possible we sell only toys that are in their original state. If any parts have been replaced or repainted we will always make that clear in the description.  We also sell rare and out of print books on the subject. If you would like to be added to our mailing list or have a question for us please 'Leave Your Card'.

Happy collecting.

Latest Tin Mania TV posts

Minstrel sand toy

Made in France c.1870, a fantastic sand powered toy which has managed to survive the passage of time and still works well.   Read More...

Arnold Mac 700

Following the second world war, Karl Arnold was under American control, and their toys were stamped with "Made in US Zone Germany." The 1950s version of the motorbike featured a civilia... Read More...