REVERE AUXILIARY SPRING ATTACHMENT       

  Revere Camera Company, Chicago, Illinois        circa 1950

Larger and heavier than the camera itself, this Revere Auxiliary Spring Attachment was a spring-powered motor drive that permitted the user to run through an entire 25-foot spool of film without the need to stop and rewind. The spring unit itself weighs 3 pounds and 4 ounces, with the Model 99 camera weighing only 2 pounds and 5 ounces.

 

Shown here on Revere's Model 88 and Model 99 8mm movie cameras that were introduced in 1940, it's believed the company may have offered this external motor-drive unit about 1948 or 1949. This is based on the July 29, 1949 filing for the patent covering its design, and the patent drawings depicting its use on a Revere Model 88. Introduced in 1940, the Model 88 would remain in production through at least 1952. Revere transitioned to wartime production in 1942, eventually being released by the military of their contractual obligations in 1948 to resume the manufacture of consumer products.  However, as reflected in wartime magazine advertisements, Revere continued to market their existing line of movie cameras and projectors, and to develop new models that were introduced in the 1946-1948 post-war period.

 

This external motor-drive unit was designed by Joseph J. Golick and Robert L. Moore under Patent No. 7,613,761 granted October 14, 1952 and assigned to the Revere Camera Company. Per court proceedings filed March 13, 1962 in the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, in Revere Camera Company vs. the National Labor Relations Board, documents indicate Joseph Golick was in charge of production for the Revere's Chicago factory. Although Robert Moore's capacity hasn't been established, he is also believed to have been an employee of the company with his name being attached as patentee or co-patentee for numerous patents assigned to Revere in the 1950's and 1960's:

 

       

                     Source:  U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

       

                     Source:  U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

       

                     Source:  U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

       

                      Source:  U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

        

                     Source:  U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

       

                     Source:  U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

 

Summarizing the drive's features from the patent's wording, the design:

 

  - Eliminated the need to rewind the camera's spring numerous times during the course of exposing film contained in a single loading (25 feet)

  - Prevented spoilage of film or a scene due to the camera's main spring running down, slowing down or stopping

  - Permitted an entire roll of film to be exposed without interruption

  - Permitted the drive to be easily attached and removed without having to modify the camera

  - Rendered the drive readily usable with all makes of amateur motion picture cameras commercially available, with the change of a simple base member

  - Provided a simple universal joint to transmit power from the unit's spring to the camera's power train

  - Provided an automatic brake when the unit was attached or detached, thus preventing the unit's spring from winding down

  - Provided a control on the unit itself, to stop and start the camera's action

 

Other than the Revere name appearing on the winding handle, both examples shown here are devoid of any external identification. Further hindering research, the company's records were apparently destroyed when 3M acquired the Revere Camera Company in 1960.

 

Rather ungainly because of its size and weight, it was nevertheless an attempt at improving the capabilities of amateur movie cameras. With little information to go on, it must have been somewhat expensive and apparently short-lived. Aside from the two units featured here, one other example can be found on Bruce Jones' "BJ's Movie Camera Collection" website:

 

https://shikan.org/MovieCameraCollection/cameras-8mm.html

 

So far, no references to this external drive have been located in Revere's factory literature or in advertisements. It's also believed that production of this external drive probably ceased prior to the issuance of its 1952 patent. Revere's Model 88 appears to have been discontinued in 1952, as it no longer appears in Revere's catalog for 1953. The Model 99 is believed to have been discontinued by 1949, as it disappears from Revere's advertisements by that time.

 

Sadly, considering Revere's investment in its development and tooling along with what appears to be very few units ever produced, it must have been a colossal failure. But, it's the discovery of an ingenious item like this which I never knew existed, that keeps collecting interesting!

                            Model 88                               Model 99

                            Model 88                               Model 99