CIG-O-MAT (Mar, 1956)

A NOBBY novelty copped this month’s $50 Bright Idea Award. Called the Cig-O-Mat, it’s a miniature cigarette vending machine that looks just like the big jobs that dispense smokes for those who like the puffers. Made of heavy chrome, it is an eyecatching little item for your home or office. It holds nearly two packs of your favorite butts and is sold by Richards Merchandising, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio. •

  1. r peltier says: June 3, 201010:15 am

    With the price of butt now, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the cig. company’s package them in much smaller packs just for the vending machine industry.
    I don’t smoke, so maybe they already have!

  2. Mike says: June 3, 201012:55 pm

    I think they might have outlawed cigarette vending machines. (Other vending machines will soon follow)

  3. Charlie says: June 3, 20101:11 pm

    My local bar in Portland has one. It vends packs, I don’t think they’ve made single ones for a long time.

  4. JMyint says: June 3, 20103:12 pm

    I worked in vending for quite a while and I had a boss that collected unusual machines. He had a slot machine that paid out in cigarette 4 packs. He also had a number of single cigarette venders. Most places in the US cigarette vending machines are illegal or severly regulated. The main company that made them National Vending Machines quit making them over 20 years ago.

  5. jayessell says: June 3, 20106:23 pm

    I googled cig-o-mat……


  6. Mike says: June 4, 20103:46 am

    Charlie, in many states you are not allowed to smoke in bars anymore. Many states believe you need to protect the drunk children from second hand smoke.

  7. Tim says: June 4, 201010:09 am

    jayessell – interesting find. MJ Abelson was selling these in 1950, then along comes Richards Merchandising in 1956 and gets the “Bright Idea” award for it!

  8. Charlie says: June 4, 201010:54 am

    Oregon made it illegal to smoke in bars a few years ago. This one is outside on a smoking patio area.

  9. BARRY says: June 4, 20104:32 pm

    Here, In Las Vegas, NV, cigarette machines are located in almost every hotel and casino. The prices are usually $7 to $9 a pack. The machines take credit cards. I don’t know whether they dispense matches too as the old machines sometimes did. People in this state fought bitterly against anti smoking laws and smoking is permitted in all casinos, bars that which don’t serve food, and there is a chain of slot machine joints called “Dotties” which caters to smokers who like to lose money, No cig-o mats though.

  10. Andrew L. Ayers says: June 7, 20106:53 am

    We have a “smoke shop” here in the Phoenix area that has a couple of interesting machines that you top-load a hopper with cigarette tobacco the shop sells, then in another bin you put in a bunch of cigarette tubes, and then it will automatically roll and spit out 200 cigarettes, which you then put back into the cigarette tube box. 200 of these (a carton, IIRC) go for ~$26.00 (much cheaper than any other cigarette brand).

  11. Dan-o says: July 19, 20115:47 pm

    I picked one of these up recently, still in the box. One cigarette cost a penny [the slot accepts pennies, but probably accepted slugs as well), so that’s only 20 cents a pack, when they probably cost 5 or 10 cents a pack in the 50’s. It’s made for non-filter [shorter] cigarettes, but the newer Marlboro 72’s may fit. Neat little slice of smoking history.

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