Steve Kovens, A&A Global Industries, Harby Komet vending machine, bulk vending, vending machine, bulk vending machine, toy vending machine, unknown vending machine, weird vending machine, Don Lempke, Harold and Ruby Probasco, Komet vending machine, Kompak vending machine, King Koin vending machine stands
The mysterious bulk vending machine pictured in our September issue has been identified. The piece, discovered in a Canadian thrift shop, is an elaborate clown-themed vender bearing no name or markings, fitted with an equally anonymous coin mech. The new owner asked us for assistance in finding the origin of the apparatus, and we published this request to our readership.
A number of industry veterans reported that they remember it. The most comprehensive response came from Steve Kovens of A&A Global Industries (Cockeysville, MD), who is a longtime collector of bulk equipment and a bulk vending historian.
He told us the machine is a Harby Komet (shown above), manufactured between 1969 and 1975. It was produced as a joint venture between two West Coast firms, Harby Industries (Van Nuys, CA) and Advance Manufacturing (Sun Valley, CA).
Advance, founded by industry legend Don Lempke, was acquired later by A&A. Harby, a less well-known enterprise, was founded in the early 1960s by Harold and Ruby Probasco. The company produced a range of bulk venders under the Komet and Kompak names, as well as King Koin stands.