Magic Copier from Tyco (1991)

Company: Tyco | Release date: 1991 | Where to purchase: eBay

In 1991, Tyco released Magic Copier, a kid-sized equivalent to the adult-office version.

Designed for ages four and up, the Magic Copier was small enough for a desktop and operated on two C-batteries. Junior artists used a special stylus to draw pictures on the copier screen, then pressed the Copy button to have a copy of their design emerge from the toy.

The “magic” behind Magic Copier was good-old-fashioned carbon paper. As a child wrote or drew on the toy’s screen, their design was automatically duplicated onto a second sheet of 8.5-inch x 11-inch paper hidden below it. Pressing the button activated the Magic Copier’s only electrical component: a rolling mechanism that pushed out the copy.

Drawings on the screen were easily erased, providing children with a blank slate to start over and countless repeat uses.

Magic Copier shipped with five sheets of carbon paper in three colours (blue, red, black), 20 sheets of paper in three colours (white, yellow, pink) and printed instructions. Tyco also sold refill sets separately, comprising six sheets of multi-coloured carbon paper and 40 sheets of copy paper.

The toy was popular enough that Tyco released two alternate versions: Travel Magic Copier, which made copies on smaller, 5-inch x 8-inch paper; and Super Magic Copier, which added an automatic paper feed to the fun.

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