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Aderes / Adix Column Adder

Aderes Column Adder

My Aderes
Advertisements and Articles

The Aderes is a column adder that is based on the Adix machine from 1903. Column adders are small machines that allow you to sum up single digits. You use them to add up each column of a larger sum.


As a simple example I will explain how you use a column adder to add the following 5 two-digit numbers:

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You would enter the digits of the right column into the adder, to get 1+3+6+9+2 = 21. You then write down the 1 and carry the 2 to the next column.

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Reset the adder and enter the numbers of the second column, including the carried-over 2. This gives 2+7+6+5+1+3 = 24. You then write this down to get the full answer.

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My Aderes

This is my Aderes column adder. There is no serial number, and it is very difficult to say when it was produced, and it could be anywhere from the 1930s to the 1950s. It is in excellent working condition, and comes in a plain cardboard box. The instruction leaflet is missing. It has black keytops like most other Adix variants, though some Aderes-branded adders have white keytops.

Aderes Column Adder
Aderes Column Adder, Logo
Aderes Column Adder, Register
Aderes Column Adder, Clearing Lever
Aderes Column Adder, Mechanism
Aderes Column Adder, Driving Gear
Aderes Column Adder, Carry Mechanism
Aderes Column Adder, Mechanism
Aderes Column Adder, Key Plate
Aderes Column Adder, Driving Gear
Aderes Column Adder, In Box
Aderes Column Adder, Box


Below is a video I made that demonstrates how the Aderes is used and how it works.


The Adix was developed by Joseph Pallweber in 1903. He was a clockmaker based in Mannheim, Germany, and designed many interesting clocks, including an electric digital clock with flip card display (GB 1896 15,856).

The first version of the Adix had a rather convoluted method for resetting the counter to zero, which involved holding down the 1 button, and turning various gears by hand. For this reason, the machine was not enclosed in a casing when in use. Joseph Pallweber together with Adolf Bordt set up the Adix Company to develop and sell these machines. Despite the complicated reset procedure, they sold reasonably well as they were cheaper and quieter than proper calculators.

Bordt developed two other machines that were based on the Adix mechanism. Starting from about 1906 there was the Diera, which had a clearing lever and an independent extra 7-digit register on which you could manually record the results of the addition. From about 1909 the company made the Kuli, which had a 12-digit register on a moving carriage to record the result automatically. It seems these were not very successful, presumably because they were not cheap but also still not proper calculators.

It seems that Pallweber left the company around 1910 to pursue other inventions (for example an alarm system for a cash box, GB 1910 24,677). Around that time Bordt designed a new adding machine, but the company continued to make the lowly Adix machines until about 1919. Bordt then moved from Mannheim to Leipzig and set up a new company there to make his adding machine. In the second half of the 1920s he did however return to making a version of the Adix called the Certa.

Johann Zähringer was a manufacturer and supplier of many of the parts for the Adix, based in Schönenbach, near Furtwangen in Germany. In the early 1920s he took over the full production of the Adix as Bordt was no longer interested in making them. They were sold in Germany and France under various names including Adix, Aderes, Amifo, and Reports, and production continued into the 1950s.

These machines had a much improved reset mechanism, with the lever on the left, and as there was now no need to expose the mechanism, they were enclosed in a bakelite case. The keys were given button tops instead of being just metal tabs.

Articles and Advertisements

I found various advertisements for the Adix in online archives, but have not found any for the later versions such as the Aderes.

1903-10-26 Karlsruher Zeitung
1904-03-21 Koelnische Zeitung
1904-10-28 Badische Gewerbezeitung
1904-11-27 Berliner Tageblatt
1904-12-15 Deutsches kolonialblatt
1905-02-01 Koelnische Zeitung
1905-03-08 Berliner Tageblatt
1905-03-11 Satakunta
1905-04-05 Manchester Evening News
1905-04-13 Londonderry Sentinel
1905-04-15 The Graphic
1905-04-15 The Sphere
1905-05-25 Nature
1905-07-06 Keski-Suomi
1905-08-24 Algemeen Handelsblad
1905-12-22 Hamburger Nachrichten
1906-02-27 Het nieuws van den dag
1906-03-25 Hamburger Nachrichten
1906-03-28 Algemeen Handelsblad
1906-03-30 Algemeen Handelsblad
1906-09-26 Berliner Boersenzeitung
1907-01 Knowledge
1907-12-15 Uusi Suometar
1908-11-28 Die Woche
1909-10-04 Karlsruher Zeitung
1910-03-23 Berliner Tageblatt
1910-07-25 Karlsruher Zeitung
1910-11-03 Leslie's Illustrated Weekly
1919-05-11 Leipziger Tageblatt und Handelszeitung
1922-10-04 Saechsische Staatszeitungung

Here is a Dutch ad for the Diera.

1914-01-19 Algemeen Handelsblad - Diera

Here is the entries from Ernst Martin's 1925 book Die Rechenmaschinen.

1925 Ernst Martin
1925 Ernst Martin Bordt 1
1925 Ernst Martin Bordt 2
1925 Ernst Martin Bordt 3


Here are the various patents for the Adix and its variations, plus patents for a few predecessors.

PatentFiling datePriority dateNameDescription
US 7,07405-02-1850Parmelee, Du Bois D.Calculating Machine (Simple column adder)
US 314,56104-04-188431-03-1885Bouchet, MichaelAdding Machine (Three-digit column adder)
GB 1902 24,86812-11-190212-01-1904Postans, Arthur JamesImprovements in Adding Machines (The Adder)
GB 1904 11,30017-05-190407-07-1904Pallweber, JosephAn Improved Adding Machine (Adix without reset mechanism)
See also: AT 18,849 B; CH 31,794; FR 337,556; GB 1904 11,300; US 813,578.
GB 1904 29,47731-12-190427-04-1905Pallweber, JosephMechanism for adding tens directly
See also: CA 97,725; DE 173,286; GB 1904 29,477.
AT 34,309 B02-01-190715-04-1908Pallweber, JosephClearing mechanism for tens and hundreds wheels
US 1,002,26207-12-191005-09-1911Graber, Robert AlbertAdix clone with clearing lever
FR 430,84024-08-191125-11-1911Bordt, AdolfAdix with manual register for setting result, sold as Diera
DE 242,09314-02-1911Fischer, Heinrich; Bordt, AdolfShift result register pointer when column adder is cleared; used in Diera
AT 66,794 B13-09-191301-05-1914Bordt, AdolfKuli, Adix with register on moving carriage
See also: FR 462,519
AT41596B28-12-190801-11-1909Adix Company Pallweber u. BordtBordt Adding Machine
See also: CH48618 FR400314 GB190905214 US1012976
AT43683B22-10-190901-04-1910Adix Company Pallweber u. BordtBordt Adding Machine improvements
See also: FR11809E GB191021602
AT60522B13-09-191101-04-1913Bordt, AdolfBordt Adding Machine improvements
See also: CH56758; FR14782E GB191120596 US1059522


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