Calculating MachinesPinwheel Calculating Machines
A second mechanism for entering numbers in a calculating machine was the pinwheel. As the name suggests, pinwheel machines had a series of wheels (initially mounted vertically) with nine retractable pins mounted around the edge. Setting a digit released a corresponding number of pins. Rotating the crank transferred the digits of the number to the mechanism of the machine. The pinwheel calculating machine was invented in the United States by Frank S. Baldwin and in Russia by the Swede W. T. Odhner. Odhner’s patents formed the basis of Swedish, German, French and later American calculating machines.
"Calculating Machines - Pinwheel Calculating Machines" showing 1 items.
- This ten-key, non-printing electric pinwheel calculating machine has a black metal frame that is painted green under the keys. Two rows of black plastic keys are in front, a metal bar is on the left, three registers are above the keyboard, and a rod with sliding decimal markers is above the result and revolution registers. One may enter numbers up to nine digits long, record up to eight digits in the revolution register, and computer results of up to 13 digits.
- The machine has an electric cord.
- A mark on the front reads: “World FAMOUS” [/] 10 KEY CALCULATOR (/) AMERICAN AND SWEDISH PATENTS. Another mark there reads: R.C. Allen (/) MODEL ‘35’. A mark on the back reads: R.C.Allen (/) 10 KEY (/) CALCULATOR (/) FACIT SYSTEM (/) R.C. ALLEN BUSINESS MACHINES, INC. (/) GRAND RAPIDS, MICH.,U.S.A. (/) PATENTED (/) MANUFACTURED IN THE UNITED STATES (/) LICENSED UNDER FACIT PATENTS. A mark on the bottom reads: 29433 (/) MODEL 35
- R. C. Allen, Inc. (later R. C. Allen Business Machines) was founded by Ralph C. Allen (1884–1967) in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in 1932. By 1938 Allen was a distributor of Facit machines. It would distribute and manufacture cash registers, calculating machines, and typewriters. During World War II the firm began manufacturing aircraft instruments, and would come to focus on this business.
- According to the donor, this machine was manufactured in 1948 and had an original cost of $397. It came from his personal collection of calculating machines.
- American Office Machines Research Service, vol. 3, 1938.
- Currently not on view
- date made
- R. C. Allen Business Machines, Inc.
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- maker number
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- Data Source
- National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center