Linear Dividing Engine, Société Genevoise 0001

Linear Dividing Engine, Société Genevoise 0001

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This linear dividing engine is screwed to a rectangular wooden base. The engine consists of a metal frame with two long rectangular sides and crosspieces at both ends. One end also holds supports for a graduated brass gearwheel with brass handle, outer brass ring calibrated from zero to 180, inner steel dial calibrated from zero to 90, and vernier. A long screw extends from the gearwheel through the interior of the frame and underneath a steel platform. This platform fits across the middle top of the long sides of the frame. This platform has three rows of holes, with seven holes in each row. The tracer mechanism and a mount for a microscope or other device are both affixed to the back of the platform and frame. The tracer mechanism has a steel blade that moves forward and backward by a handle. The interior of the frame on the other side of the platform is empty. However, a disjoint metal piece has been placed there. This is a steel frame in which a brass rectangle may be raised and lowered on a gear shaft. A brass square at the top of the rectangle moves on a spring.
An open wooden box (26 X 10.5 X 5 cm)of parts is stored separately It contains tools and spare parts: 2 screwdrivers, 1 joint tightener, 3 cogged devices, 1 metal bar, 1 U-shaped metal piece, 9 clamps with screws, 1 guide, 4 scribers, 1 spanner wrench, 6 loose screws, 1 washer, 1 hook, and 1 bent metal rod. These generally are rusty. The box has museum mark on the outside: 87.692.1.1.
A small card measuring 12.7 X 7.5 cm came with the instrument and is stored separately. It is marked in ink: Dividing Engine - Gift of the Class of 1883 [/] Geneva Society $250.00.
The instrument was collected for the Museum of History and Technology in 1965.
Compare 321597.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Dividing Engine, Linear
date made
Mount Holyoke College. Department of Physics
Societe Genevoise d’Instruments de Physique
place made
Switzerland: Genève
overall: 34.5 cm x 95 cm x 30.5 cm; 13 9/16 in x 37 3/8 in x 12 in
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Gift of Mt. Holyoke College, Department of Physics
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Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Science & Mathematics
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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