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Curtas and their nearest desktop equivalents

 
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Rubberswan



Joined: 19 Apr 2016
Posts: 19
Location: UK

PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:59 pm    Post subject: Curtas and their nearest desktop equivalents Reply with quote

Hello Everbody!

Apart from my two Curtas, I have a number (nearly 100, if you're asking!) of other mechanical calculators, comptometers and adding machines. In an idle moment I caught myself wondering which of my other machines represent the nearest equivalents of the Curtas.

The Curta 1 has an 8 digit Setting Register (with Control Register), 11 digit Result Register, and 6 digit Revolution Counter (with tens carry and manual direction selection).

In practice it's difficult finding a full-size machine with exactly these attributes - either they have a back-transfer facility (which disqualifies them from the comparison), or if they don't, the revolution counter doesn't carry tens (which also disqualifies them); or the counter direction is set automatically.

The nearest equivalent machine I have to the Curta Type 1 is a Triumphator Model KN, made in East Germany in about 1960. It has a 7 digit Setting Register (without Control Register), 11 digit Result Register, and 6 digit Revolution Counter (with tens carry and manual direction selection). So the only difference in capability is actually in the Curta's favour - one more digit in the Setting Register, and the presence of a Control Register.

Here's a photo of the Curta Type 1 and the Triumphator Model KN:



Now for the Type 2. The Curta Type 2 differs from the Type 1 only in that the capacity is greater; the Setting Register has 11 digits, the Result Register has 15 digits, and the Revolution Counter has 8 digits. Again, I had difficulty finding a full-size machine with similar capacity, but lacking the back transfer and auto-reverse capabilities.

I managed to find one full-size calculator in my collection with the same capabilities but slightly different register capacities. This is the USA made Marchant Model XL from about 1930, which has a 9 digit Setting Register (with Control Register), 18 digit Result Register, and 9 digit Revolution Counter (with tens carry and manual reverse). So the Marchant has a couple of digits less in the Setting Register, but 3 more in the Result Register and 1 more in the Revolution Counter.

Here's a photo of the Type 2 and the Marchant XL (which has clearly seen better days, but it works just fine!):



I'd be interested to know if there are any closer matches out there!
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Curta 1 - 61153
Curta 2 - 508965
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murff



Joined: 27 Oct 2009
Posts: 386
Location: Switzerland

PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2017 5:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for this excellent post ... and pictures!

The only non Curta calculator in our household is the Archimedes of my wife - a model D-16 with a 9/16/9 register combination...


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2010*smiths



Joined: 18 Apr 2013
Posts: 41
Location: Bogota, Colombia

PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice idea for a thread Smile

I have a 10/13/8 and a 8/13/6, although the Alpina can't really be described as 'full sized'.



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murff



Joined: 27 Oct 2009
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Location: Switzerland

PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 8:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

for a better overview... Very Happy


[ Curta Type II - the 11 setting registers and the 15 result registers ]
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rq3



Joined: 15 Mar 2017
Posts: 10
Location: USA

PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="murff"]for a better overview... :D

[ Curta Type II - the 11 setting registers and the 15 result registers ][/quote]

Alright, murff. Can you share how you took that photo? It's beautiful!
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murff



Joined: 27 Oct 2009
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Location: Switzerland

PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 7:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

it's described here:

Curta Type 2 360 degree view
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Pete



Joined: 04 Mar 2010
Posts: 183
Location: Great White North

PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2017 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Love that pic, murff, cheers
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stenella



Joined: 03 Jun 2008
Posts: 42
Location: Antwerp, Belgium

PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think I have anything with the exact same rather unique capacities as the Curta's - but I will offer these two gems, that are even less useful than a Curta I!





www.crisvandevel.de
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rq3



Joined: 15 Mar 2017
Posts: 10
Location: USA

PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="murff"]it's described here:

[b][url=https://curta.org/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=326]Curta Type 2 360 degree view[/url][/b][/quote]

You have a very steady hand!
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curtafan



Joined: 01 Jul 2005
Posts: 20

PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

don't forget the Multifix 4-function calculator from Norway - it is very small, too

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curtafan



Joined: 01 Jul 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 11:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

it has nearly the same size as the Alpina:

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Pete



Joined: 04 Mar 2010
Posts: 183
Location: Great White North

PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You guys make me jealous, I've been concentrating too much on vintage wristwatches these last couple of years and not my Curtas. Very nice Alpina example, that Marchant and the Multifix...they're all fascinating. And that Archimedes!
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stenella



Joined: 03 Jun 2008
Posts: 42
Location: Antwerp, Belgium

PostPosted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 9:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just noticed the pictures disappeared in the photobucket fiasco ...
Here they are:





www.crisvandevel.de
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