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What is this machine?

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Bodger Brian21/12/2018 21:00:02
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This picture has been posted in a Facebook group that I’m a member of, along with a query as to what it is.

Are there any knowledgeable persons here who can shed some light?

27586ba6-88bf-4b52-9d5a-6fcdbcdd02d0.jpeg

Brian

Peter Simpson 121/12/2018 21:09:17
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Sumlock Comptometer ?

Bodger Brian21/12/2018 21:20:08
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Posted by Peter Simpson 1 on 21/12/2018 21:09:17:

Sumlock Comptometer ?

But why only numbers up to 5?

Brian

Michael Gilligan21/12/2018 21:24:22
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dont know It might be something special

So far as I am aware [and I see that Brian has noted] all standard comptometers have buttons numbered 1 to 9 in each column.

MichaelG.

.

https://www.jaapsch.net/mechcalc/comptometer.htm

Edited By Michael Gilligan on 21/12/2018 21:25:50

SillyOldDuffer21/12/2018 21:29:32
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Agree it's a Comptometer - a mechanical calculator. My mum operated one until pregnancy got her the sack. (Me causing trouble even before seeing daylight!)

If anyone fancies a serious metalwork project, making a calculating machine would keep you busy for a weekend or two! The ultimate was the highly collectable Curta.

Does anyone make this kind of machine?

Dave

Michael Gilligan21/12/2018 21:31:58
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19599 forum posts
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Got it !!

See "abreviated keyboards" and  "Comptometer Educator" on this page : **LINK**

http://www.vintagecalculators.com/html/operating_a_comptometer.html

MichaelG.

.

P.S. My Auntie was a 'Comptometer Operator' at the Austin factory

Edited By Michael Gilligan on 21/12/2018 21:34:02

SillyOldDuffer21/12/2018 21:39:32
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Posted by Bodger Brian on 21/12/2018 21:20:08:
Posted by Peter Simpson 1 on 21/12/2018 21:09:17:

Sumlock Comptometer ?

But why only numbers up to 5?

Brian

The advantage of having fewer keys is it saves desk space. The disadvantage is more keystrokes. Six is entered by hitting 3 twice, seven by 3 followed by 4, eleven was 4, 4, 3. (Eleven was necessary because of £sd.)

Dave

Bodger Brian21/12/2018 21:45:36
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Posted by Peter Simpson 1 on 21/12/2018 21:09:17:

Sumlock Comptometer ?

A bit more internet research reveals that it’s indeed a Comtometerg, with an abbreviated keyboard in order to cut down cost. To enter a number greater than 5, one merely pressed two numbers that added up to the required number. It’s claimed that some operators could work just as fast on such a machine, as their handspan could cover the whole keyboard, which wasn’t possible with full size machine.

Thanks for putting me on the right track.

EDIT : Looks like SOD & Michael G beat me to it!

Brian

Edited By Bodger Brian on 21/12/2018 21:46:23

Edited By Bodger Brian on 21/12/2018 21:53:59

Journeyman21/12/2018 22:05:03
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Posted by SillyOldDuffer on 21/12/2018 21:29:32:

If anyone fancies a serious metalwork project, making a calculating machine would keep you busy for a weekend or two! The ultimate was the highly collectable Curta.

Does anyone make this kind of machine?

Dave

I don't know about making one from metal but there is a 3D printed version on *** Thingiverse ***

John

John Reese22/12/2018 04:08:23
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1016 forum posts

There must be quite a few seniors on this forum. I know what a comptometer is but I can't recall actually seeing one and I am 81.

the artfull-codger22/12/2018 05:09:11
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.I have the same one that I rescued along with the large smiths clock from our old works on sunderland road Gateshead the clocks on the front of our cottage & the comptometer resides in the back of the workshop [might come in handy someday!!] Graham.

the artfull-codger22/12/2018 05:09:12
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283 forum posts
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.I have the same one that I rescued along with the large smiths clock from our old works on sunderland road Gateshead the clocks on the front of our cottage & the comptometer resides in the back of the workshop [might come in handy someday!!] Graham.

the artfull-codger22/12/2018 05:10:47
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283 forum posts
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Grrrr stereo again!! sorry about that I haven't got two!!

Speedy Builder522/12/2018 07:30:12
2500 forum posts
196 photos

another way of adding '6' is to add 1 in the next column and subtract '4' from the original column. I am 72, and used several mechanical and electro mechanical ones at BAC Weybridge. I still have a small collection of them, but no real value to them.

RMA22/12/2018 09:22:30
302 forum posts
4 photos

I recognise this as a Comptometer but I don't remember much about them...............I do however remember one of the operatorswink

Bob Mc22/12/2018 09:44:46
205 forum posts
26 photos

John Reese says.....

" There must be quite a few seniors on this forum. I know what a comptometer is but I can't recall actually seeing one and I am 81."

Yes... in my first job at the Equitable and Cooperative Society in 1965... ie The Co-op...I had the pleasure of using one for a full week but not like the one shown in the picture, the one I used had a handle , when you put in the amount to be added you then pulled the handle towards you and this was added to the last total..

As there were quite a few other comptometer operators in the room, mainly young ladies,, wink there was a lot of noise from the little machines, it was difficult to keep your mind on the job .....due to the noise... honest...! I got sacked shortly afterwards....

...Bob...

Jon Lawes22/12/2018 16:03:53
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733 forum posts

I've always wanted a Curta, but the prices have gone insane.

Bazyle22/12/2018 17:57:31
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6180 forum posts
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It was normal for the sixth form in my school to be taught to use an adding machine during their last term. However in '72 our physics master who had a Curta had bought a HP calculator for only £275 so it was recognised that mechanical machines would soon be obsolete and we weren't given that experience. At university the metallurgy department had electronic calculators as small as a shoebox with a 6 digit Nixie display.

Oldiron22/12/2018 18:21:40
911 forum posts
40 photos

I have a very large collection of mechanical adding/calculator machines also slide rules. My wife and I show them at steam fairs etc. We only collect and never sell any as we are trying to save them from the scrap pile. We do take some machines as donations but are willing to pay for unusual items. There are some pictures in my album. Would be very interested in that machine as we do not have one like it..

regards

Edited By Oldiron on 22/12/2018 18:22:15

CHARLES lipscombe22/12/2018 20:27:02
119 forum posts
8 photos

As a school lever in the late 1950's I was employed as a trainee chemist by May and Baker who were (are) pharmaceuticals makers of Dagenham,. We had a Burroughs (?) machine in our lab which was obviously a de-luxe model about the size of a 1960's typewriter. It did its job fine but the service engineer once told me its fatal design flaw - it had a flat top where people used to perch a cup of coffee. You can guess the rest.

Regards, Chas

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