Andrew J. Toti (24 July 1915 – 20 March 2005) was a world-renowned American inventor. Toti was born in Visalia, California, and died in Modesto, California. He held more than 500 U.S. patents at the time of his death. Toti was honored by the Edison Society in 1995.
Among his many inventions, the most famous include an inflatable lifejacket (nicknamed the Mae West), an automated chicken plucker, light-weight construction beam (commonly used in Australia), and the EndoFlex endotracheal tube (co-invented with Michael H Wong and Jay Kotin). He invented a combination lock when he was 12 years old.
Toti attended Modesto High School through tenth grade. He completed his education through correspondence courses.
Toti related that his mother was the inspiration for the invention of the Mae West life vest. He had built a boat, and his mother was worried because he couldn't swim. He designed a personal life preserver filled with duck feathers. However, that was too bulky and heavy, so he used air. Toti sold the rights to the Mae West life vest to the US War Department in 1936 for $1,600.
Toti owned and operated Tro-Pic-Kal Manufacturing Company of Modesto for approximately 60 years.
Toti worked at a pet project, building a perpetual motion machine. The physical laws of thermodynamics mean such a machine is impossible: if it were possible, it would offer a limitless energy supply.
Toti's machine was both mechanical and electromagnetic. He said he had reached 95% to 97% levels, meaning a power conversion loss of 5% to 3%. He believed his 3% energy loss is the lowest anyone has achieved.
"I still believe it's possible," he said.
- Spouse: Marion Toti
- Daughter: Andrea Pimental née Toti
- Stepson: Raymond Webster
Toti's parents, who immigrated to the US from Italy, bought a delicatessen when he was nine years old.
- Unknown child