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US Patent: 16,534
Machine for cutting tenons on blind slats
Patentee:
Seth C. Ellis - Albany, NY

USPTO Classifications:
144/201, 144/223

Tool Categories:
woodworking machines : joint making machines : tenoning machines
woodworking machines : specialty machines : windowblind machines

Assignees:
None

Manufacturer:
J. A. Fay & Co. - Cincinnati, OH
R. Ball & Co. - Worcester, MA
Seth C. Ellis - Jersey City, NJ

Witnesses:
E. J. Miller
Richard Varick De Witt

Patent Dates:
Granted: Feb. 03, 1857

Patent Pictures:
USPTO pdf tiff
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"Vintage Machinery" entry for Seth C. Ellis
Description:
The 25 October 1857 issue of Scientific American describes this machine as follows: "In this machine the slats are inserted edgewise in a deep groove in the side of a suitable long cylinder, or, rather, in a series of small wheels mounted on one shaft, and the whole is then revolved so as to present every side of the projecting ends to the action of rapidly rotating cutters. The cutters employed in practice are simply circular saws, mounted side by side. The stands in which they are supported may be placed at any required distances apart, so as to produce slats of all ordinary lengths. As many as forty-eight slats have been tenoned with tolerable perfection—the cutting-off of the ends being, of course, performed at the same operation—in the course of one minute."

Ellis applied for, and was ultimately granted, an extension to this patent. The report for the patent commissioner is very interesting reading. See the "Vintage Machinery" link elsewhere on this page for details.

An April 1876 catalog from Power, Tainter & Co. has an illustration of this "Self-Feed Blind-Slat Tenoner", complete with patent date. The price as $115, or $100 for the hand-feed version. It's not certain whether this machine was made by Power, Tainter & Co., or by someone else.

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