This toy steam machine shop was built by Gebruder Bing Nurnberg (GBN), a German company. The D.R.G.M. mark on the steam cylinder stands for Deutsches Reichsgebrauchsmuster. This means it was a registered mark of the German Reich. That mark was used on products up until 1944. The engine and tools have no additional manufacturer’s marks. This steam engine is connected to a jackshaft from the flywheel. The jackshaft has pulleys to run a lathe, table saw, grinding wheel and drill press by means of wire belts. The display base with two fences made of brass was possibly made by the owner. Our estimate is that this steam powered machine shop dates from the 1920s.

Gebruder (meaning “brothers” in German) Bing was founded by Ignaz and Adolf Bing in 1863. Though they started as a kitchen utensil manufacturer, by the late 1800s they made toys exclusively. Later known just as Bing, by 1905 they were the largest toy manufacturer in the world. Located in Nurnberg, their factory produced steam toys as well as electric trains.

Exhibit added: May 24, 2011 - Last modified: May 5, 2023

Presented by The Joe Martin Foundation for Exceptional Craftsmanship