Dactyle A

This is part of another piece of history that still has to be unravelled fully. The machine was sold to me as a Brunsviga A, but clearly it is not.

The reader may be aware of the long and convoluted story of French and American manufacturers selling Brunsviga machines and relabeling them, and after a while either shamelessly copying them, infringing on patents, or coming up with their own design.

Here we have an unmarked Brunsviga-A-type machine with some improvements. It looks, smells and tastes like a French Chateau/Dactyle machine, which was manufactured by the Chateaux brothers, but without a manufacturer shield. Especially noteworthy are the bell, which is on the side of the main housing, and not on the carriage, the windows for the result register, which are not closed to the sides, but rather one long cut in the metal of the carriage cover, the numbers over the result register engraved in the cover as opposed to printed on it, the "Sous" instead of "Sub", and the very chunky looking wingnuts. Once again, the machine was badly restored, and given a new wooden base, and the paint will have to come off at some point. The holes for the comma indicators are always there in a Chateau/Dactyle, but there are holes for mounting comma slider rails also - as well as for a rezeroing slider at the bottom of the top cover. Why it has no manufacturer shield is anyone's guess ... but the original base board may have contained the solution to that riddle- see Dactyle B for more information.

Dactyle A picture 1

Dactyle A picture 2

Dactyle A picture 3

Dactyle A picture 4

As to the whereabouts of the Dactyle firm - they give two addresses, an early one at the Blvd. Haussmann nr. 46 in Paris, occupied since 1912 by the Galeries Lafayette, and a later one in the Rue Lafayette nr. 4, which is right around the corner of the Blvd. Haussmann. The building now houses a chocolatier.