Audio Guide

The Valencian Toy Museum of Ibi is located in what was formerly the first ever factory set up in the town.

The first toys from Ibi were made in the tinsmith’s workshop owned by the Payá family which, at the end of the 19th century, was already making miniature household objects that were sold in the flea markets: buckets, cups, watering cans…for children to play with.

In 1905 Rafael Payá sold the tinsmith’s workshop to his sons and this is when toy making started to gain ground. The modernist wooden display case that stands in the lobby of the museum was used to exhibit more than one hundred pieces that had already been collected by 1909. This display cabinet was built by Luís Ferrando who was a wood carver at Payá. Years later, together with other employees, he would set up a new factory that, after having a few other names, would finally be called “Juguetes y estuches”.

The display cabinets on the left wall contain examples of the toys made by different companies that were based in Ibi, because Payá was the first but not the only toymaker: Rico, Juguetes y Estuches and Claudio Reig followed his footsteps during the first third of the 20th century. After the interruption of the Civil War and despite the related difficulties, new companies were founded in the forties. In the 1950s the toy industry in Ibi really took off, which is when the use of plastic in toy making caught on. By 1970 there were more than seventy toy factories in the town.


Toys of different origins, made in Ibi and other parts of Spain and the rest of the world, are

kept at the back of the museum and they are part of our permanent exhibition.

The collection is predominated by tin toys, but there are toys made of other materials on display too. They are all organised into themes and they have been classified into colours. The first display cases we come across in the here are in the green category, they are related to nature and country life. There are all kinds of animals, tractors, carts…including the tartana two wheeled covered cart, a very popular vehicle in those days, which, as a toy, has become a symbol of Ibi. This is because the first catalogue that was published in the town featured a model of the tartana with reference number 1.

The tin toy making process is explained in the showcase on the wall. First of all, a life-size prototype was made, normally out of wood and the thin sheets of metal were put over it to make the patterns used to make the templates, which would be cut out and folded into different pieces of the toy that would finally be put together by hand.


We move on to the blue area of planes and boats, the sky and the sea.

These toys used to have wheels on them to move them around manually or with the help of certain mechanisms. There were boats too, just like the one on display in the first show case that is made of wood, with a fabric sail, which children would sail. It is patín a vela (single sail, rudderless type of catamaran) from 1952 made by the Gozán company of Ibi.

The toy mechanisms gradually became more sophisticated, such as the helicopter from the German brand Arnold, made in the 1950s. It has a wire attached to a little box, which is a remote control.

Part of the old factory that is still intact can be seen from the large window. To be precise the “Nave del engafe”, the bay where the toy assembly chain was located. The name comes from the small flanges around the pieces of tin, called “gafas”, which were folded to assemble the toy; this process was called “engafe.”


The train area is red, which is associated with the flames of the fireboxes in the real steam trains.

The first toy trains were small and simple and they moved by pushing them on the floor. Some of these can be seen in the display case on the right. Some manufacturers sold different versions of the same train, such as the one that is in its box with four carriages. There is another one that is the same beside it, although it is longer because it has more carriages. This made it easier to sell them, the fewer carriages they had the cheaper they were. Over time, pull string mechanisms and then electric mechanisms were incorporated. One of the first electric trains made in Spain, in Ibi, in 1931, is on display in the centre show case; this machine has the reference 984 from Payá. The trains in this show case are made in the so-called Gauge 0.

The train was a toy that only a few could enjoy because it was exceptionally expensive, but in the 1960s when the standard of living started to improve, the problem was that the majority of houses weren’t big enough to accommodate a whole train set. That is why the use of a smaller modelling scale such as the H0 became popular, which was used to make some of the carriages that are in the display case on the left.


The household area is a reminder of daily life. There are charcoal irons, cheap stoves, refrigerators and other pieces of furniture that were commonplace in our grandparents’ era, along with more modern versions such as the gas cooker and the super automatic washing machine.

On the wall there is display case of dolls made of different materials such as cardboard, in which case the children had to make sure the doll didn’t get wet otherwise they would be left without a toy; there is a German doll from 1909 made with celluloid, a small terracotta doll and two felt dolls, one of them has a little dog, both from the Valencian company Muñecas Layna. There are also examples of the plastic dolls that predominated a whole era such as the Geyperman, the Nancy doll made by Famosa, the Sindy doll from de muñecas Florido and the Lissi doll made in Ibi by the company Guillem y Vicedo.


Around the City there are lots of different characters, a boy being chased by a dog, a couple dancing, circus clowns and a postman, along with all kinds of vehicles that are used in cities such as the fire trucks, police cars, ambulances, trams and even a dustcart.

In the display case on the wall there is a collection of musical instruments: a wooden barrel organ, drums, trumpets, a combination of both, a trumpet-drum duet and also a film projector. Parchment paper was used for the films in the old toy film projectors. The stories were drawn onto it in two rows, with small variations in the pictures from one row to the other. In the projector the film alternated from the top strip to the bottom one to produce the sensation of movement. In Ibi, the Payá Factory together with that of Claudio Reig invented the sound film “cine sonoro Rai” in 1934 whose films also had holes in them that was nothing more than the “sound track”.


In the last part of the permanent exhibition there are real vehicles and others taken from films, such as a car with wings. The fame of celebrities from all eras is also conveyed in the toys. One example is a ballerina from the beginning of the 20th century, Isadora Duncan, who is driving a silver racing car, with the number 63 on it, which was made by the company Sanjuán y Cía.

There is a big pedal car for children to drive that stands out in the collection, the “Veteran” car, made by the company from Ibi INJUSA in 1960 and next to it, a Hispano-Suiza car made by Rico in 1934, which at that time was the most popular tin car.

In the display cabinet set aside for motorbikes, it is easy to imagine the races that were organised in 1932 with the Velocette motorbike game from the Picó factory. Beside this there are motorbikes made of different materials from different eras, including those from the factories in Ibi Juguetes Sanchis, Román y Guiloy.

On the wall space there is a building box that was used to build toy car models by putting together the pieces, which are accompanied by a few modern cars such as the Citroën DS Payá or the Mercedes from Rico and the “Saint car” from the TV series that was popular at that time, made by Palau in 1967.

All these toys that are permanently on display are part of our funds. The rest are exhibited in temporary exhibitions that are organized at the museum during the year.