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"I just bought a Master addiator , made in Belgium. I don't have an image of it, but a similar one is in Pisa. Only the color scheme is different. If you look at the picture, you'll see 2 "frog's eyes" at the rear. One is red, the other is green and they contain light bulbs! The machine has an old type battery (graphite stick, cardboard shell) and some wires disappearing in the machine.

My guess is that the red light warns for not proper carrying tens. There is no set of slides for subtraction, so the lights can not be used for indicating negative numbers (which was my first assumption). I tested the electric connections of the Master 'electric' addiator It works a bit different as expected. I thought the red light would indicate 'forgotten carries' but instead it indicates when to shift the slide up.

The slides are made of two electrically isolated parts: the lower part is unpainted, as usual, and is connected to the green light; the upper part is red, and is connected to the red light. Putting the stylus in one of the holes connects one of the slide parts with the body of the machine, and thereby closes one of the circuits. IMHO it is quite useless: the paint on the slides already indicates the shifting direction, and you are already looking at the slide when selecting a digit. So why bother looking at the lights first ?

To my surprise the two light bulbs still worked, and so did the electrical connections. Of course the battery (a cardboard covered 3 Volts Fulgor No.37 'Haute Capacite') was empty.

At first I used a wooden toothpick as a stylus (the machine is missing the original one) and I expected that only sliding the slides completely down would cause the red light to burn. That's why I initially thought the connections were bad!

By the way: it is not a *chain* adder, it has metal slides with holes like any cheap addiator.

The machine has also a provision for printing the result on strips of paper. Well, you have to write it down yourself, but the machine provides the paper!  Why there are *two* strips of "printing" paper is still a mystery.

Zeroing is done by a very robust two-gear crank system. The machine has a nice alligator-like surface. The crinkles are not just painted, in some places they are actually pressed in the metal. The machine weighs about 3 kg, has rubber feet and is surely intended for desktop use.

This is only the third machine of this kind I have ever encountered (the others being the one in Pisa and one on Ebay about a year ago)

Do you know anything about this machine and its maker ? It has a Belgian or French patent, but a number is not given."  Andreas De Man

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X-Number World