The Virtual Apple Parer Museum.  Dedicated to the exhibition and educational study of antique apple parers which have both historic and artistic value.














Image of Reading 78

Reading '78

The Reading '78 adds two features to the '77. First, the main drive wheel is designed to place gears within gears thereby increasing stability and adding protection. Second, a locking mechanism prevents the machine from being rotated in the incorrect direction. With the '78 the Reading Hardware company may have designed the ultimate turntable, which is supported by its popularity and longevity. The '78 underwent multiple changes throughout the years that help collectors approximately the date of manufacture (Lambert, 2018).

Reading 78 Apple Parer Ad 1885

'78 Apple Parer (Reading Hardware Co., 1885, p. 1)

A company poster illustrating apple parers c1880 found on Worthpoint includes the '72, '74, '75, '76, '78, and the GEM. It is interesting to note the '77 was not included on the poster (Worthpoint). Eventually, Reading reduced their apple parer offerings. The company was only making the '78, '72, Baldwin (a version of the '75), and the Advance (a lathe style parer) by 1931 (Reading, 1931, p. 343).

When the Reading Hardware Co. was liquidated in 1950, Sterling Withers purchased the patterns and remaining inventory for the '78. Withers continued to make the '78 until he sold his rights to Lehman Hardware Co. of Kidron Ohio in 1993 (Ennenga, 2001). Lehman's offered the '78 from 1993 to 2020.

Reading 78 Apple Parer Ad 1931

'78 Apple Parer (Reading Hardware Corp., 1931, p. 343)


Ennenga, J. Reading '78 Apple Parers. ISAPE September 2001, Issue 51., 4-8.

Lambert, J. The Reading '78: A Dating Nightmare. ISAPE April 2018, Issue 108., 2-7.

Price List and Illustrated Catalogue of Hardware Manufactured by the Reading Hardware Company, Reading, PA., U.S.A. 1885. Reading, PA: B. F. Owen, p. 1.

Reading Builders' Hardware: Shelf Hardware, Door Closers, Exit Devices, Lawn Mowers, Catalog No. 21 Manufactured by Reading Hardware Corporation, January 1931, p. 343.

Worthpoint, Original 1880 Reading Apple Peeler Poster, 22 x 28, Antique Hardware Store Sign. accessed 28 March 2021,


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