Simmons Model A

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Simmons Coin Machine Co., c. 1934, 16". This is an underappreciated machine. It has strong, attractive art deco styling and works reliably despite a mechanism that a knowledgable friend once told me was machined rather crudely. You put a penny into the slot, push it over by sliding the lever in front, and then turn the knob for a handful of goodies.

The machine is made of porcelainized cast iron, and the cast iron must be thick because the machine weighs a ton. The vast majority of these were red, but I've also seen yellow, green, and black. Silent Salesmen Too mentions that chrome was also a finish, but I've not seen or heard of a chromed version. The globe has been reproduced, and based on ebay auctions there appears to be far more reproduced globes than machines to put them on.

The color of the knob and the "slide gripper" often differ from that of the body and lid. Those parts can be interchanged between machines, but I've seen enough 2-tone machines in that regard to think that many came that way from the factory. Those that are 2-tone seem to have red knobs with different colored bodies, although I think a red knob with a green body would look mismatched.

The examples above are 100% original, except for the decal on the yellow machine.



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