Here is the 313 register I found locally. These are
difficult to ship as they are heavy and dense, weighing about 83 pounds.
As can be seen here, it's in very good physical condition. This
particular 313 was made in 1914 , so it's over 100 years old.
The original guarantee paperwork is on the drawer bottom, and the
register serial numbers match.
If you notice the 15c flag is slightly up and the 15c key is halfway
The register keys are jammed in this position.
The other things noticed, the counter reset key is broken off in the
lock, the top glass appears to be loose, the counter glasses are both
First step was to remove the exterior
Nickel plated parts to gain access to the mechanism
When this was done , there was surprise, what appears to be the
original top glass broken
in 2 fell out of the back, allowing the 15c to go down fully
This freed up all the keys and restored it's operation.
Here are the 2 pieces of glass that fell out of the back
I was able to find a replacement counter reset lock, before attempting
to remove the broken off key in this register's lock
I replaced the lock and purchased a new key
It's seen in this picture. I did disassemble the original lock to
get the twisted broken key out.
I was able to re-assemble it, using the new key to help position the
So, now I have a backup.
A few other things need to be done. Including restoring the "NO SALE"
flag as it is the only flag in poor condition.
It will be removed stripped of it's paint, repainted and new lettering
The drawer rails have almost no plating left on them, this will also be
There is also one Key Check (Oval Number) that appears to have
gotten more use than the others,
not all that surprising, given the register age - the number 5 ,
this will be replaced after I determine the best method to
remove the ring that holds the checks in place without damaging the arm
that it's attached to or the ring itself.
On the register back there are hanging pieces of metal that look like
ties, one set is missing.
Finally, one small casting's does not match the finish on the rest and
replaced with a newly Nickel plated one.
Here is the back of the register
You'll notice the 5th position from the left is missing a double stack
of hanging "ties" along with the screw to hold them.
It was suggested one of the missing parts may have been moved to the
These parts stop 2 keys from being pushed fully down at the same time.
The missing parts were obtained and replaced, thanks Mike Novak
Here, is the restored flag and new spring with all new glass
Besides the glass being the wrong thickness, the top glass was the
wrong size, matching the size of the other 2 pieces, instead it should
Here is the original #5 key check along with the "tool" I found which
works perfectly to remove it and the new "old" old installed
cleaning original Here the "new" old #5
To remove the old the original , after asking those that have
restored cash registers and told pliers along with a screwdriver
or a bottle opener.
I didn't like the idea of using a screw in conjunction with a
pair of pliers, so I looked into the bottle opener idea.
The reason it's difficult to get these off besides the fact that they
may have been on there for over 100 years!, the rings are a tight fit
and they are thin.
I finally found the perfect tool for
the job, though made to open beer bottles.
You'll notice these are a little different than most bottle openers as
the area that would contact the cap is arced for more contact also
thinner than most.
This will remove the key rings without damage.
A late discovery of something
else wrong was found once I started to put it back together.
I cleaned the lid counter and polished. But I found it was not working.
This because the first two geared wheels in the chain of indicators had
their teeth worn to the point where they no longer made contact.
Another lid counter in poor physical condition was located and donated
it's wheels to resurrect this counter, again, thanks Mike
What you see here is mostly dirt not rust, the back side was not plated
The replacement wheels were installed and the counter was once more
It did take a little adjustment of the pin located on the front cover
hinge/serial casting. That pin presses through the notch seen on
the lower left.
This advances the counter by 1 each time the lid is opened.
Here it is installed, now fully working. The key protruding from the
cover is a new key used to reset the sales totalizer counter.
It replaces the one that was broken off in the lock below it.
Note: the little bit of color discoloration seen is from
The left lower counter (sales
counter) was also inoperative. That was found early and corrected by
removing it and re-installing it this time assuring both "U" shaped
arms made contact with both sides of the "total sales" & "no sales
Here as found, you see the arm on the left is lower than the one on the
right. It is not engaging the sales counter at all.
The one on the right counts how many times there is a "No Sales"
Still more to do, the one casting where the serial # is will be
replaced or replated.
The drawer rails will be replaced with newly nickel plated ones.
Here is what the register looks like back together and polished at this
Case design by Tiffany
following information was found while doing some research on the
National 313 cash register at the Brasscashregister.net
Width = 10 1/2"
90c, 70c, 50c, 35c, 25c, 15c, 5c
1$, 80c, 60c,
40c, 30c, 20c, 10c, No Sale
Locks: Numbered #1, #2,
#3 in the castings
Lock#1 : Locks the top lid, which covers the totalizer counter as well
as the sales counter,etc.. Turn 1/2 turn to the right to unlock.
Lock#2 : Located on the left side of the register, disables the
register. Turn 1/2 turn to the left to unlock
Lock#3: Again located on the left side, enables or disables the
bell from ringing.
info. on operating the register
To enter a sale of 50c press the 50 key all the way down, remove your
finger and the key returns by itself, the bell will ring and the drawer
will open. The 50c
flag will show in the window. The amount will be added to the counter
and the sale counter will advance too.
To enter amounts that require
more than an single key, for example $1.50, both keys must be started
at the same time. However they can can not continue down
together, only one key can complete the transaction for the 2
To open the cash drawer, there are a few ways, under normal use, press
the No Sale key and the way down and release it. The drawer will open,
the bell will ring and it will be recorded on the sale counters.
If the lid is open, there is a release lever in the center area that
will also open the drawer, but not ring the bell.
To remove the cash drawer, there is a hidden rod located at the back of
the drawer on the right side, lift it up and the drawer will now be
able to get past the frame
when pulled forward.
The lid counter which counts the number of times the lid is
lifted, an not be reset. It will count to 99,999 then return to zero.
The totalizer counter can be reset by turning the reset key right in
it's lock (teeth to the right) until it stops, the counter should show
It must show all zeros, when reset or the register will not work.
The No Sale and customer counter are reset by turning the knurled wheel
on the lower right under the lid.
For those wondering where to find parts on these 100+ year old
registers I strongly suggest Mike N.
He should be able to help you.