Apollo Medical Apparatus

From Kook Science

Apollo Medical Apparatus
Apollo Medical Apparatus.jpg

As pictured in Hibbard, Spencer, Bartlett & Co. catalogue (1916)

The Apollo Medical Apparatus is a portable, switch-controlled, two dry-cell battery unit in a wooden box, accessorised with various different types of electrodes (including foot plates, hand grips, sponges, hair rollers, etc.), that was marketed as an instrument for electro-therapeutic applications. The apparatus was sold by Sears, Roebuck & Co. and other vendors in the early twentieth century.


  • "Apollo Medical Apparatus", Catalog No. 61, Hibbard, Spencer, Bartlett & Co. (Chicago: Hibbard, Spencer, Bartlett & Co.), 1916,, "No. 2233-E — 8×9×7¼ in. quarter oak highly polished case, heavy nickel plated trimmings and handle, two dry cells, one nickel plated foot plate electrode, two sponge electrodes, one massage roller electrode, one hair brush electrode, two nickel plated hand electrodes, two enameled electrode handles, two silk covered conducting cords, w't 10 lbs., each ...... JGIJ $14.40" 



Per the text on the inside of the lid.

To put the Battery in operation, turn the single lever switch to the left. This Switch should always be turned off from the metal point when not using the instrument in order to avoid exhaustion of the Battery.

When starting the instrument for operation, if the spring (armature) at left of coil does not readily vibrate, give it a slight impulse with the finger; then it will continue to vibrate by the power of the battery, providing the contact screw in post is properly adjusted. The contact screw can be properly adjusted by turning it forward or backward until best results are obtained.

Do not start the machine by turning the switch until the handles and cords are connected and you are ready to use the current. Turn off the switch when not using the instrument. The strength of current is regulated by the "current regulator". As the regulator is drawn out the current becomes more intense.

The different currents produced are given out by placing the cord pegs in various combination of three binding posts marked 1, 2, 3, thus:

1 and 2 give the primary current; 2 and 3 give the secondary current; 1 and 3 give the primary and secondary current.

With the two lever switch (pole-changing) thrown to the left, No. 1 post is positive, and No. 2 negative for the primary current. No. 2 is negative and No. 3 positive for the secondary current, and No. 1 positive and No. 3 negative for the combined currents. The polarity of these currents may be reversed by throwing the pole-changing switch to the right.

The effect of "polarity" in the secondary current (which is an alternating one in most medical batteries) is produced by the use of our special condenser built into the base of the instrument, which greatly intensifies the current given out at "break" of the interrupter, and gives a current which his practically of one polarity, thus making it possible to apply the poles best suited to the treatment of different cases as specified in the Electro-Therapeutic Hand Book.

To take out the cells of dry battery when they have become exhausted, remove the screws from center of the bottom board inside the case and lift it out; then disconnect the wires from the carbon and zinc poles of the batteries and connect new batteries the same as the old, with the long wire to the carbon pole and the short one to the zinc pole.

Owning to the long life of the Mesco dry battery its use is recommended for this apparatus unless very frequently used. In this case the Red Seal dry battery will give longer service.

The appliances furnished with this apparatus consist of 2 metallic tube hand electrodes, 2 conducting cords with tips, 2 improved sponge electrodes, 1 foot plate electrode, 2 insulating wood handles for attaching to the metal hand electrodes or to the sponge electrodes, 1 massage roller and one hair brush. Moisten the sponge before using, and have same as nearly dry as possible before putting it in the case.