Woodward fortune tellers

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vincent16
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Woodward fortune tellers

Post by vincent16 »

https://www.sworder.co.uk/auction/lot/l ... 6&pn=1&g=1

I saw this the other day with an estimate of between £200 - £300 and thought, that looks nice, would be fun to get it going again but I've just watched it sell for £1,700 plus 35% commission. I'm curious really as I know nothing about these sort of machines and wondered if that is a normal price or whether it's just another case of not many machines on the market at the moment v lots of pent up demand from buyers?
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treefrog
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Re: What does your future hold machine?

Post by treefrog »

Errr, answer is no it is not normal.

Problem with this machine, there is little to compare against. It reminds me of Bolland cast machines, which do fetch plus a grand sometimes. Never heard of of Woodward, and is not in any guides I have, and looks to be cast aluminium. That is £2300 with commission. :shock:

Sworders is an expensive auction house and hope to get people with too much money attending, being near a wealthy money belt. Most of the Salvage Hunters restorers items from the TV show have been selling there, including a few in this auction.

Maybe someone else will have a different view. If a collector, they must be keen; if a opportunist, they may get their fingers burnt, like has happened there before... Of course there is no limit on what a collector may pay if really wanted, so value irrelevant. :didact:
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shersh2
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Re: What does your future hold machine?

Post by shersh2 »

I too agree that this is a pretty high price. I had an interest in this machine but there were some issues - the top glass was not right, the lights are missing, I could not see the card weights, and it looks like it has just been painted.
Having said that I still would have really liked it, but it's an auction and there were a couple of people who were prepared to pay much more than I had for it. Nice machine though, and they don't appear too often.
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treefrog
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Re: What does your future hold machine?

Post by treefrog »

I was wondering whether it would have been backlit. If so, the image in the round window is probably wrong.

I used to automatically check the Elephant House to see if an item had sold there, but it appears this facility has now gone, but I did find the machine here and it did sell at the Elephant for £1500 (1650 inc comm) in Oct 2016....... It did look familiar.....so there you go. :HaHa:
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pennymachines
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Re: What does your future hold machine?

Post by pennymachines »

I dropped a bid on it yesterday (based upon the estimate) and don't believe I've ever been so thoroughly outbid in my life. :lol:
I did wonder though, because clearly if it was to sell in that range someone was going to take a big loss after its previous EH appearance.
It's a cute little machine though; quite rare, and the cast aluminium front gives it a bit of class. There's also an X-Ray version - basically the same with a lens and different light up.
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X-Ray version
X-Ray version
from EH sale
from EH sale
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treefrog
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Re: What Does Your Future Hold machine?

Post by treefrog »

That answers the question about the round window as it should look like the yellow one with a lens, obviously been butchered !OMFG!
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coppinpr
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Re: What Does Your Future Hold machine?

Post by coppinpr »

obviously been butchered
I don't think so TF, I think the company(or companies) that offered this machine simply used the casting from the X ray for the fortune teller and covered the round hole with a blank square as the fortune didnt pretend to look at you like the x-ray
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brigham
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Re: What Does Your Future Hold machine?

Post by brigham »

Can it only answer that one question, then?
I suppose the Operator changes it weekly, like the film at the Odeon.
What does the X-Ray version give you? A picture of a skeleton?
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pennymachines
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Re: What Does Your Future Hold machine?

Post by pennymachines »

Exactly that... Ahead of it's time really, because you select the gender. !!IDEA!!
X-RayCard.jpg

In the early 1900s, when X-Rays were all the rage, a machine which purported to produce them must have been novel, but I assume they were always a bit of a joke, certainly once you saw what it dispensed. I wonder if 'What Does Your Future Hold?' started as an X-Ray and was converted when the joke was getting a bit old. Certainly the Woodwards version is a late-comer, compared to some of the examples here, but Bolland were still making them in the '30s.
See also: Love Letter, Fortune, X-Ray Photography, etc. Cards
sweetmeats
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Re: What Does Your Future Hold machine?

Post by sweetmeats »

This is the same machine that sold in the elephant house auction. It was sold on by the purchaser for a profit the following year. I tried to buy it, but put off by the price required. I also left a bid in today's auction like pennymachines. My bid was £700, which I hoped would be plenty... not so!

The machine had the wrong top card - it should have been screen printed glass to read 'Whom shall I Marry?' to match the small square glass, which was original. There would originally have been two small bulbs to light up both glasses connected through the back of the machine to an electric plug. I know of a third machine 'Your Fortune By Cards'. This has both original glasses and original wiring - see pictures.
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