Petroleum Collectibles Monthly

February 2005 - The Gas Pump Showcase by Scott Anderson



Hello to all loyal PCM readers, subscribers, and gasoline pump collectors. This month we will examine the famous Wayne Model #60 electric, computing gasoline pump. Specifically, we will be looking at the “narrow” body Wayne Model #60 pump that was introduced by the Wayne Company (previously known as the Wayne Tank and Pump Company) in 1935. Next month we will continue with Part II of this article, which will discuss the “wide” body Wayne Model #60 that Wayne introduced in 1936.

As many of you already know, the Wayne Company revolutionized the service station industry in 1933 with the introduction of the first computing gasoline pump – the Wayne Model #40. Following the success of this innovative pump, Wayne pushed their engineers and designers to develop a new generation of computing pumps that would incorporate a more attractive, modern exterior, and thus enhance its sales appeal. This call was answered with the introduction of the new Wayne Model #60 (narrow body) pump, a streamline-deco inspired design that was quickly billed by Wayne as “The World’s Most Beautiful Pump”. It might be interesting to note here that Wayne had also described their earlier Wayne Model #492 (Greek Column) visible pump as “The World’s Most Beautiful Pump” in 1924.

To say that the new Wayne Model #60 (narrow body) was a “big hit” in the service station industry would be a huge understatement. With the growing trend toward modern service station design, Wayne’s timing could not have been better. Significant orders for Wayne Model #60 (narrow body) pumps were placed by many larger oil companies, including Texaco, Shell and Phillips. The demand for theWayne Model #60 (narrow body) was so great that the Wayne Company completely sold out their 1935 factory production run of Model #60 (narrow body) pumps before the end of 1935. Faced with mounting orders and a heavy sales forecast for 1936 and 1937, Wayne decided to completely re-engineer the Wayne Model #60 (narrow body) pump in favor of a new, larger version; the Wayne Model #60 (wide body) pump. The first Wayne Model #60 (wide body) pumps were introduced in 1936. Several of these wide body Wayne Model #60s are shown in comparison with the narrow body version in the Gas Pump Photo Gallery at the end of this article.

While most Wayne #60 (narrow body) pumps were manufactured in the single computer version, they were also produced in a clockface electric meter version (the Wayne Model #866) and a tandem (twin) computer version (the Wayne Model #65). These last two narrow body variations of the Wayne Model #60 are extremely rare today, and I am not personally aware of any examples of these variations that exist in collections today.

Some of the differences between the narrow body Wayne Model #60 and the wide body Wayne Model #60 include the sizes and styles of the bases, corner rails, shoulder castings, inner window reflector frames, sight glass bezel nuts, and the Wayne window nameplates (emblems). While all of these parts are similar on both version of the pump, many of the narrow body parts are slightly smaller than their wide body counterparts. As for the Wayne window nameplates, it might be worth noting that the narrow body versions always used stair-stepped sides and the wide body versions always used straight sides. Additionally, the nozzle forks or power switch (on-off) levers are different sizes on the two pumps, and the older narrow versions often used violet tinted sight glasses, where the wide version almost always used crystal clear sight glasses.

Some features that both Wayne Model #60 versions shared were the availability of generic, sunburst, ad glass inserts and a factory paint scheme that utilized three vertical paint stripes in the center of the door panel. In addition, all 1935 narrow body Wayne Model #60 pumps used door panels that were attached to their corner frames with sixteen spring loaded, turnbuckle (tab) fasteners.

It was not until late 1936 or early 1937 that the Wayne Company began offering the Wayne Model #60 (wide body) with hinged doors or showcase door versions (model #60-S). Between 1935 and 1937, all Wayne Model #60 pumps utilized the following technical operating features: a volume computer unit, price synchronizing mechanism, gallon totalizer, rotary pump unit, air separator, optional globe holder, four-cylinder piston meter, computer reset control mechanism, visible flow indicator, non-shock nozzle, explosion proof motor, and electric advertising sign (ad glass).

The following quotations from 1935-1936 Wayne Company promotional advertising tout the many positive attributes of their new Wayne Model #60 (narrow body) pumps:

“The only point of contact you have with your customers is at the island.
Everything you have invested in preparing your product for delivery to
your customers depends upon the man with the hose – for unless he
makes sales and pleases customers your other operations mean little.
How have you equipped him? The cost of the finest pumps is but a
small fraction of the total cost of any station – yet they are the most
important items in the whole plant. Surely it is unwise to buy anything
but the finest sales tools for this contact point. It may be costing you a
tremendous sum to keep your old pump. Why risk it? Wayne Model
#60 Computing Pumps have proved that they sell more gasoline and
earn more profit because they attract new trade and stop shortages.

“Wayne Model #60 Computing Gasoline Pumps – the finest island
merchandisers ever developed – impressive, beautiful, attractive to
motorists. Its accurate and speedy delivery and computation please
customers. The dial gives visible proof of delivery, brand identification,
amount of purchase, number of gallons and price per gallon. Asking
your customers – “May I give you your change in gasoline?” will increase
your daily sales 10% to 20% on each pump.

“The Wayne #60 Computing Pump is accepted today as the one and only
modern way to dispense gasoline. Customers and station owners alike
prefer the cash register protection and adding machine accuracy of the
Wayne computer. Today the question is merely “Which pump shall we
choose?” – the answer is Wayne Model #60 – for its beauty of design,
for its originality and engineering leadership, for its sturdiness of
construction and all round efficiency – and because it offers $50 greater
value than any other computing pump on the market today.”

The Wayne Model #60 (narrow body) computer pump of 1935 truly represented a high point in the evolution of gasoline pump design. The aesthetic appeal and beauty of these pumps is undeniable. In today’s gasoline pump collector market, the demand for all Wayne Model #60 pumps far exceeds their supply. While all Wayne #60 computer pumps are considered unique and popular, the supply of the wide body version probably outnumbers the earlier narrow version by about ten to one. Nice, complete, unrestored versions of both models are currently selling in the $1,000 to $1,500 range and perfectly restored versions of both models can command selling prices in the $4,000-$5,000 range.

Due to the huge popularity of all Wayne Model #60 pumps today, almost every important exterior part is currently being re-manufactured for the vintage gasoline pump restoration market. These reproduction Wayne Model #60 restoration parts are of extremely high quality and in many cases are superior to the original, deteriorated part. In addition, beautiful, complete, reproduction Wayne Model #60 pumps are currently available in the vintage gasoline pump collector market.

This concludes Part I in our review of the famous Wayne Model #60 (narrow body), electric computing gasoline pump. Next month we will continue this article with a look at the wide body versions of the Wayne Model #60 pump, including the showcase versions. Thanks for reading The Gas Pump Showcase and please tell a friend about PCM!

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