Concise 600 Science Tables and Circular Slide Rule

Concise 600 Science Tables and Circular Slide Rule

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Usage conditions apply
This white plastic circular slide rule is on a rectangular base that has a 4-inch ruler on the left side and a 10-cm ruler on the right. A black plastic tape attached along the top edge reads: MATLACK. The top of the base is marked: CONCISE (/) SCIENCE TABLES (/) AND CIRCULAR SLIDE RULE. The slide rule has a D scale along the outer rim. A rotating disc fastened with a metal grommet has C, CI, L, A, S, T, and K scales. There is a clear plastic rotating indicator, which is labeled in red with the letters for the scales. The bottom of the base is marked: BY SAMA & ETANI.
The back of the instrument has a chart for converting temperatures from Celsius to Fahrenheit and a periodic table of the chemical elements. The bottom right corner of the back is marked: © 1968 CONCISE INTERNATIONAL CO. LTD. The left edge is marked: DESIGNED BY SAMA & ETANI, INC., GROTON, MASSACHUSETTS 01450, U.S.A. (/) MADE IN JAPAN BY CONCISE MODEL 600.
A rectangular plastic card fits inside a slot in the base. The card provides various conversion tables for energy, power, the Greek alphabet, velocity, volume, mass, force, length, and area. This side of the card is printed so that the card can be pushed out halfway from either side of the base, and the printed tables will appear right-side-up. The back of the card has tables for gas constant values and pressure, along with lists of mathematical formulas and chemical and physical data. One edge of the card is marked: ©1968 CONCISE INTERNATIONAL CO., LTD. INSERT - ST.
The instrument fits in a rectangular black plastic case. There is no instruction manual, but the instrument likely was originally accompanied by a copy of: Sama & Etani, Reference Tables and Circular Slide Rule (Groton, Mass., 1969),
The donor, Glenn Matlack, purchased this slide rule in the fall of 1968 for his junior high school general science course at Tower Hill School in Wilmington, Del. Sama & Etani designed and distributed several slide rules made by Concise. For other slide rules by Concise and the company history, see 1985.0636.02, 1996.0141.01, and 2003.0012.01.
Reference: Accession file.
Currently not on view
Object Name
calculating rule
slide rule
date made
place made
Japan: Tōkyō, Tokyo
Physical Description
plastic (overall material)
overall:.2 cm x 8.8 cm x 11.4 cm; 3/32 in x 3 15/32 in x 4 1/2 in
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
Gift of Glenn Matlack
Rule, Calculating
Conversion Chart
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Mathematics
Science & Mathematics
Slide Rules
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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My model 600 (CE insert) was a handout to Engineering Technicians @ The BFGoodrich Chemical Research facility by the NUPRO Specialty Valve Company (now a Swagelok division) sales at a piping/valve seminar at the facility in 1970. It was used quite frequently in operations at the research facility. It has been packed away since approximately 1972. It is still in its original plastic pocket (nerd pocket) with the original paper reference table booklet still intact.
I found one in my dad's belongings. It says property of US Government. He was USAF assigned to the 361st TEWS. I keep it close but my eyes don't let me read the tiny numbers anymore.
Dr Sama was in the local Rotary group in Groton, MA with my uncle Jack Cleary, my brothers and I all got one for Christmas in 1969, I used it till my college years, 1980, I recently found it at the family homestead in one of the old desk drawers, Still brings a smile to me when I use it!
I was cleaning a desk drawer, and discovered my circular slide rule, still in the original case and still with the insert and instruction booklet. It was given to me by one of my chemical engineering professors in 1968 or there a-bouts. I used it every day in school (1968-1972), and continued to use it in my professional life for years before I could afford a HP 35 electronic calculator. I am not sure I could have made it through engineering school at LSU without it. I used to brag that every conversion factor and physical constant known to man were listed on the insert card.
These were issued to students in US Navy Nuclear Power School in the mid 1970's. At the time calculators were considered "unreliable" and were not permitted to be used on exams. The explanation given in the form of an oh-so-elegant rhetorical question was, "Well what are you going to do at test depth in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean when your calculator doesn't work?" Actually over the long haul its been a valid point. Over 43 years later I've been through innumerable computers, calculators and other miscellaneous electronics, but I still have the slide rule and the little instruction booklet that came with it. I recently op checked it - it had no problem powering on and cyphering away!
I still have mine. Model st-600. Bought in early '70s for college. It definitely came with a small pamphlet manual which fit in the plastic case with the rule. I've misplaced manual and plastic case.
My brother-in-law bought this (or VERY similar) as a gift for me in high school. I used it in chemistry class; I loved that this periodic table included electronegativity. And in my statistics [for business] class in college. That latter was in 1980, nearly 40 years ago. It vanished somewhere in my home some time in the past 2 decades and I would love to have my hands on it again! If I had my further druthers, I would include another insert with a table of common integrals, laPlace transforms, and Fourier transforms + their inverses. Those latter items should still be cheaper than MatLab, which has displaced the whole problem solving training of math students. Are these things still for sale anyplace? Does the Sama & Etani company even still exists (the museum aside)?
I just got one of this and the ruler. I got it at the Habitat store. It was inside a bag among other things. I payed 1.50. I don't know how to use it, but I think is really cool. Dose anyone knows where I can get the instructions?
Here is a link to a site that has downloadable PDF copies of the instruction manuals. You'll have to drill down to the specific model that you have.
What a great and timeless tool. I still have this slide rule with insert and instruction manual that I purchased as a high school senior. I keep it in my office desk and enjoy showing anyone unfamiliar with what was commonly used prior to the advent of the hp or TI calculator. I also have my straight slide rule, but this was much more convenient to carry and all the information inside was invaluable!
"I have been carrying my Concise 600 circular slide rule in my breast pocket on a daily basis, seven days a week, for over 40 years. It is in its original, white, soft-plastic, slip-case (perhaps vinyl) along with the original instruction booklet, "Reference Tables and Circular Slide Rule " (Sama and Etani, Inc., Groton, Mass., 1969), A note inside the cover page warns: "The distortion temperature of the vinyl construction material is 150 [degrees] F; therefore, exposure of the instrument to such temperatures should be avoided. " Your picture of the slide rule and its data card does not take advantage of a feature that can be useful to frequent users. Note a tiny open star in the upper left-hand corner of the rule, just above the 4-in. mark. If you look at the data card you should find one corner that has a matching star. The idea is always to insert the data card into its holder with the two stars matching, so that once you become familiar with the card you will know where to look for your data of interest without having to flip the card over and around hunting for what you want. Another feature is the combination of plastic construction with all characters and lines engraved. This combination allows for washing "...with lukewarm water and mild soap. " I use the data card fairly often and the slide rule once-in-while. What more can I say, I'm a chemical engineer."
"Wow! I have one of these, which was given to me by my dad, who got it from a coworker. I never knew I had an actual artifact!"

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