Posted 10 years ago
The Victor “Baby Grand” is a really nice gumball machine. Or I should say “are” nice gumball machines. As far as I can tell, there were three basic models. All have wooden bodies. There is the largest one with the big round windows on the sides, the middle one with the oval side windows, and the smaller one with no windows on the sides. In my searches I’ve seen a few variations, but the differences are usually with the shape of the plastic front panel, or attachments to the machine.
For some reason, I really don’t have much interest in wooden gumball machines. I don’t know why. However, there are exceptions to everything. My exception in this case is the Victor Baby Grand. I noticed one on Ebay several months ago and thought it looked very interesting. About a month ago, one came up for auction on Ebay from a seller I had bought a few machines from before. I took a chance and bid, then I won the auction. Unfortunately, I really wasn’t impressed. It was dirty. It had a crack in the wood; the plastic front panel was very scratched… I could go on, but I won’t.
Not long after that, I noticed another Baby Grand like the one I had up for auction. This one looked to be in excellent condition and the bidding was much lower than what I paid for mine. I watched the auction and not really expecting anything spectacular, I went ahead and bid. I ended up winning the auction and I am so glad I did. This machine is in way better shape than the pictures made me think. The wood has a little stain on the top, but the rest looks like a furniture finish! The machine is clean and I cannot find any rust or corrosion anywhere on it. The seller did not have either key, but being that I know a thing or two about locks, keys are no problem. As it happened, the key to the top lock (for filling the gumballs) was the same key as the Baby Grand I already had. The lower compartment (MONEY!) I can easily make a key for, but I don’t think the lock on that door is original. It is a single-sided key where most other Baby Grand machines that I’ve seen have double sided keys on both locks. I think I’ll take the original lock off of my other Baby Grand and install it on this one just to keep it as “original” as I can.
This model of the Victor Baby Grand is usually called the “Five Star” Baby Grand. There are five stars on the top panel along with the words “Baby Grand”.
The first picture shows a full front view of the machine. The second picture shows the top panel with the five stars. The third picture shows the machine with the front panels removed revealing my magnificent fortune of SIXTY-FOUR pennies that were in the machine when I received it. (BONUS!!!) The fourth picture shows the inside mechanism. This machine is so clean, I believe it was never actually in use on location.
All in all, I think this baby is GRAND. More grand, dare I say, than a Steinway.