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Mechanical Slide & Rotary Adders


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J. Louis Troncet Arithomgraphe 1889

Read: History of Addiators and the Magic Brain Calculator brand of slide adder made in the United States. (need author's name).

Slide Adders are a flat mechanical hand-held mechanical calculator that is used principally for addition and subtraction and for the most part were pocket-sized. They were sometimes assembled onto the back side of a closed body slide rule. The invention of the slide adder was described by Abaque Rhabdologique of Claude Perrault, a Parisian doctor, in about 1669. The Frenchman Caze (1720) and the Russian Kummer (1847) build the first commercial calculators based on this principle. Louis Troncet (1889) was one of later producers. J. Louis Troncet of France's first version was called the Arithmographe.

One of the most popular versions of the slide adder was the Addiator, which was newly designed by Carl Kübler (born 1875) and manufactured in Germany as Addiator GmbH. Küubler capitalized on the fact that the original patents by Otto Meuter had expired. Introduced in 1920, over 100,000 units were sold in the first year, and versions of this device remained in production as late as 1975. Featuring a novel carry mechanism, the Addiator could be used to add or subtract, but addition and subtraction required two different control panels. In early versions of these devices, the two panels were provided by flipping an overlay on the front or by having the addition function on the front and the subtraction function on the back (later models had two separate panels on the front). The addiator is comprised of three components, the body containing multiple slides used for calculation, a stylus, and a handle to reset the addiator. The calculations are performed by inserting the tip of the stylus in notches in the metal plates in the addiator. There are other variations involving dials or tables as shown in the gallery. The narrow versions of Addiators were incorporated on the back of some models of Faber-Castell slide rules, and others. Note, although there were many other manufacturer's of slide adders, the name Addiator (by the German firm of the same name) has become synonymous amongst collectors of these devices just like Xerox for a photo copy and Kleenex for tissues.

This page has four sections - click the pictures to jump to the desired section


Addiators/Troncets


Slide Rules with Addiators
on back


Rotary Adding Machines


Addiator Besuch
Factory Tour


Addiators/Troncets


One of the best sources of history on Addiators is Friedrich Diestelkamp's website www.addiator.de in German and
Non-Decimal Calculators in English which descibes the above evolution of sizes.

ISRM Ve-Po-Ad
Adding Machine

Atticus Cleo
Shadburn
ISRM Ve-Po-Ad Adding Machine
Marked as Distributed by Lyons Associates, Chicago, Illinois. Sold for $2.95 c1925

Belonged to Atticus Cleo Shadburn (1889-1954) US Navy Lieutenant Commander. Buried at the Golden Gate National Cemetary, San Bruno, California.
Donated by granddaughter Dorthy Cobb and husband Dick Cobb.



Addiator Calculex

Addiator Calculex
This is basically a multiplication table.used to obtain percentages.of values.

ISRM Magic Brain Calculator (Generic)

Made in Japan

ISRM Compact Calculator

(Same as Magic Brain) Made in Japan

ISRM Chadwick Magic Brain Calculator

ISRM 16.07.06.01
Made in Japan
Gift of Bert Kolts, Estes Park, Colorado.

ISRM Addfeet Junior Addiator


ISRM PIC German Calculator

Archive photo

ISRM Midget Adding Machine, in Cardboard Folder

12 x 7,7 x 0,3 cm, USA (Missing Stylus). This was a low-cost version of Ve-Po-Add.

ISRM Addiator Adding Machine


REF Addiator Saldo-Maschine, System Kübler-Meuter

Friedrich Diestelkamp Collection, Germany

ISRM Ve-Po-Ad Adding Machine

Reliable Typewriter and adding machine
company. Chicago, Illinois.

A07 Arithma Addiator

ISRM Addiator Universal Standard Model

Archive photo

A09 Addiator Universal S

ISRM Addimult


ISRM Produx Addiator


Tasco Pocket Arithmometer

ISRM 17.04.01.01
13,6 x 7,5 x 0,5 cm, Bright Metal
Gift from Peter Turk of Canada.

A01 Sterling 565 Adding Machine


REF Picma Unis Elpe' France
Archive photo

REF Soviet Addiator
Archive photo

REF Accurator Pocket Calculator (Hong Kong)
Archive photo

REF Soviet Addiator
Archive photo

Slide Rules with Addiators on Back



Faber-Castell 1/54A Darmstadt with Addiator

ISRM 13.08.12.07
Faber-Castell 1/54A Darmstadt with Addiator
Made in Germany
Front Scale (extended)
27cm, lg // K, A [ B, C1, C ] D, P || sin/cos, tg/ctg
Back Slide: [ CF, CIF, C ]
Well (Channel): Inch scale 12 to 22-5/8 inches
Note: The stock is 12" long. When you extend the slide, the reading of the left edge of the slide on the inch scale in the well gives the overall length of the stock and slide.
Cursor (wrap around edges): 7 hairlines/gauge marks A-B Scales: s, kW, HP. C-D Scales: kW, s, HP. Lg, sin, tg scales
Back: Mechanical Addiator for addition and subtraction. Instructions.
Note: The Stylus for the Addiator is mounted in a bored hole at the left end of the stock.
Original Owner/Location: J.W. Hand of Christchurch, New Zealand.
Gift of Phillip Rodley, Upper Hutt, New Zealand.



Faber-Castell 67/54 RB Darmstadt/Addiator

ISRM 07.02.12.01

Faber-Castell 67/54 RB Darmstadt/Addiator
Made in Germany - Slide rule fron. addiator back
Front Scale
14cm // L, K, A [ B, CI, C ] D, P, S, T
Back Slide: [ LL1, Ll2, LL3 ]
Cursor: Multiple hairlines
Note: The slide was found accessible by a puppy (see teeth marks)
Donation of Russell Fox, Anchorage, Alaska


Faber-Castell 67/87b Rietz with Addiator

ISRM 13.10.07.06
Faber-Castell 67/87b Rietz
Made in Germany - Date Code 865 (Aug 1965)
Front Scale
14mm // L, K, A [ B, CI, C ] D, ST, T
Back slide: blank
Multiple hairlines
Back Addiator
Note: Stylus for addiator kept in zippered hardcase.


P266 Alco Personal Calculator
Alco Personal Calculator
Made in Japan - Aluminum Addiator and Slide Rule
Front Scale
Mechanical Addiator (+ / -)
Back:
A [ B, CI, C ] D


P154 Faber-Castell 63/98R
Elektro with Addiator
Faber-Castell 63/98R Elektro
with Addiator Hybrid

Made in Germany
Front Scale
14cm // LL2, A(KW) [ B(PS), CI, C ] D, LL3 \\ 5.5in
Back scale: [ Sin, Lg, Tg ]
Well scale: Dynamo/Motor n=%, Volt
Original Owner/Location: M.Bachmann/Germany

Rotary "pocket" adding machines



Add-A-Mite Circular Pocket Calculator

ISRM 16.07.06.01
or
1.6MB PDF

Add-A-Mite Circular Pocket Calculator
Made in USA by Monogram of California, 2500 18th ST. San Francisco 10, Calif.
Aluminum and steel construction, circa 1940-1950, Patent Pending
Front Scale: Mechanical Adder (+ / -) $0-$25
Note: Knob zeros dollar digits. Rotating indexing lever CCW adds cents, CW subtracts cents
Gift of Bert Kolts, Estes Park, Colorado.


Hewig Graphic Calculator

ISRM 14.09.21.08
Hewig Graphic Calculator - For Addition And Subtraction
Made by Hewig Company, New York. Made in U.S.A. Pat. Applied For.
Note: A search of the US patent Office shows no record of a patent being issued.
Construction: Cardboard with riveted disks. Size: 22cm x 6.5cm x 3mm
Front: 6 dials.
Back: Instructions
Unlike other rotary calculators, this aid requires the operator to carry the sum to the left manually. There are no interconnecting gears. Gift of Edward T. Wright of Odenton, Maryland.


Lightning Adding Machine

ISRM A04 (display case)
Lightning Adding Machine c1953
Size: 3/8 x 12 x 2-1/2 in
Made by the The Lightning Adding machine Company in Los Angeles, California. This U.S. dollar oriented analog adding machine adds up to $99,999.99 using 7 dials. As a dial crosses over from 9 to 0 the digit to the left rotates one increment. Results are seen in the little round windows above the dials. The calculator is set to zero by pulling on the slide on the left side.


Addometer Model C (Feet & Inches)

ISRM A12 (display case)

Addometers were made in 3 models (as listed in Nov 1928 Popular Science Ad on left).
  • Fractional Decimal Model A counts to 99,999.99 7/8. Ideal for general use.
  • Standard Decimal Model B counts to 999.999.99 (no fractions). Designed for folks who deal in very larg numbers.
  • Lineal Measure Model C counts up to $999,999 feet 11-7/8 inches. Particularly valuable to architects, etc
  • Addometer Model C (Feet & Inches) c1928.
    "The Portable Adding Machine For Home Or Office"
    Size: 296 x 50 x 15 mm (11.75" x 2.0" x 0.6").
    Made by the Reliable Typewriter and Adding Machine Co., Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A., 1900s - 1960s.
    In this feet and inches version, there are 5 decimal wheels for feet plus two for inches. The wheel second from the right has numbers to 11 for dealing with inches. The wheel on the right deals with eigths and quarters of an inch. As a dial crosses over to 0 the digit to the left rotates one increment. Results are seen in the little round windows at bottom inside each dial. The calculator is set to zero by pulling on the slide on the right side.

    Internals, photo courtesy of vintagecalculators.com

    Model B and Model C Instructions courtesy of reliquarie.com


    Kesling Pocket Adder
    ISRM 04.10.09.01

    Kesling Pocket Adder
    The Hart Vance Company
    Made in USA, St. Louis,
    Missouri. US Patent #2,450,668 (shown on left)
    Gift of Shell Thuet in 2007 (See Webpage). Professional Motorcycle race tuner.
    Shell Thuet was inducted in the American Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2001. The Nomination Letter written by Mike Konshak, one of his past racers, who is also the curator of the Slide Rule Museum and also the author of Shell Thuet's Biography. Shell built and tuned winning Indian Scouts, Enfield's and Yamahas. See also his Pickett 800-ES

    The pictures (left to right) are from 1946, 1953, 1963 and 1975. Shell Thuet passed away in Victorville July 8, 2011 at age 98.



    Sterling 565 4-Digit Dial-A-Matic Adding Machine

    ISRM 04.10.09.01
    Sterling 565 4-Digit Dial-A-Matic Automatic Adding Machine
    Made in USA by Sterling Plastics, Mountainside, NJ.
    Front: Four dials - Thousands, Hundreds, Tens and Units


    Sterling 566 4-Digit Dial-A-Matic Adding Machine and Pencil Box

    REF
    Sterling 566 4-Digit Dial-A-Matic Adding Machine and Pencil Box
    Made in USA by Sterling Plastics, Mountainside, NJ.
    Note: This unit slits in two and rotates about the rivet to get access to the pencil box.
    Front: Four dials - Thousands, Hundreds, Tens and Units
    Archive - ebay photo


    Sterling 567 5-Digit Dial-A-Matic Adding Machine

    REF
    Sterling 567 5-Digit Dial-A-Matic Automatic Adding Machine
    Made in USA by Sterling Plastics, Mountainside, NJ.
    Front: Five dials - Ten Thousands,Thousands, Hundreds, Tens and Units
    Archive - David Riches collection, UK


    Sterling 568 6-Digit Dial-A-Matic Adding Machine

    ISRM 14.09.08.07
    Sterling 568 6-Digit Dial-A-Matic Automatic Adding Machine
    Made in USA by Sterling Plastics, Mountainside, NJ.
    Front: Six dials - 100 Thousand, Ten Thousands,Thousands, Hundreds, Tens and Units
    Gift of Edward Wright, Odenton, Maryland

    Addiator Factory Visit (Addiator Besuch)

    Promotional brochure for Addiator customers. Gray box, 1x folded, with a photo insert card. (reproduced here from rechnerlexikon.de)