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 Post subject: My New HMV 130
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2019 11:28 pm 
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Victor II
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Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 10:41 pm
Posts: 330
Location: Riverside, California
Since I'm here in the British & Euro section of the forum, I can freely admit to holding a much higher opinion of the British HMV products than that the American Victor counterparts. I'm always on the hunt for a nice HMV machine. I'd long heard that the HMV 130 was the best sounding tabletop machine (or the 104 or the 150, too?). However, being in California, I didn't much think I'd find either model out in the wild. I thought I might settle for a 104, they seem more common, even though I liked the looks of a 130 the best.

Imagine my surprise when I found a 130 listed on OfferUp--posted only a few hours previously--located about 30 minutes away. I rarely check OfferUp for anything (it usually offers junk, exclusively). What are the chances? It was listed for $250 and I didn't haggle! That might seem high to those in the UK, but I'm not one to push my luck. It took me 45 minutes to get out to the owner, traffic was terrible, but I didn't mind!

I didn't even ask if it worked. I didn't really care. I just made sure it was complete. Luckily, not only does the motor work very well, the 5B reproducer is fantastic. The nicest example I've ever seen in person. It was frozen in the vertical position, and it took quite a bit of gentle effort and oiling to free it from the stiff tonearm. Inside the throat, there appeared to be glue or hardened grease. It took more effort to clean that out and get the arm cleaned and moving freely. As I cleaned the reproducer, I was amazed to notice the rubber flange is still supple.

I oiled the governor pad and all the obvious points. The motor works very well and no thumps, so I'm thinking of leaving it alone. The finish is original, but the top looks like it had some patching and a re-coat. It honestly doesn't bother me much. I did a very quick freshen up with Goop and, although it needs a much more thorough cleaning, I 'm pretty content with it. The only area I cleaned thoroughly was the grille. That was so I could replace the grille cloth. Someone had used a thick black cotton. I had on hand some beige speaker fabric that I like because it's sonically very transparent. I think it's at least an improvement!

Besides just sharing my new pride and joy, I have a few questions to anyone kind enough to help. When was it made? I don't have a copy of His Master's Gramophone (although I hope to find one someday). I'm guessing late 20s/early 30s? There is no manual brake, and the auto brake relies on an eccentric end groove. Amazingly, the ratchet system of this brake is brilliant and silent (unlike the clicking one on my Credenza). I think the fittings look like nickel, especially compared to the bluish chrome of the 5B soundbox. Speaking of which, I assume this originally came with a 5A? I also think the crank might not be original. Anyone notice anything else "off"?

All in all I'm very happy. I got this last week but I have been very busy. I did manage to find time to build a simple record stand on wheels for it and I took some photos before moving it inside. I used some plywood that a friend gave me and it was nice to get it out of the garage--I mean use it for something! I originally intended on just building a simple, temporary cube--but then I got carried away, as always.

Does the HMV 130 live up to the hype? Well, I'll just say that I now have a list of machines I'm very comfortable to sell in the near future... :D


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 Post subject: Re: My New HMV 130
PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2019 3:35 am 
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Victor III
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Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 9:51 pm
Posts: 644
Location: USA
You should be happy. It sounds like you did well. It's great when you find one with a pristine soundbox. Unfortunately, my HMV reference books are packed away at the moment, so someone else will need to provide the dates you requested.

I appreciate that you included a photo of the horn. It is similar in style to the one in my Indian HMV 113.
Best regards ... AZ*


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 Post subject: Re: My New HMV 130
PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2019 4:23 am 
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Victor V
His epigrams are all his own, the man's an epigramophone!
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:21 pm
Posts: 2854
Location: The Somerset Levels, UK.
Congratulations on a great find, and a rare one in the USA. I think it is fair to say that most UK collectors consider the HMV130 to be the best table gramophone ever made. It was produced from 1929 to 1933 and yes, it would originally have been equipped with a No.5A soundbox. I currently have one in my workshop for record testing.

The HMV150 which replaced it had a more rounded cabinet, a different auto brake and on later examples a No.5B soundbox. It is uncommon even in the UK.

The HMV104 is a smaller and cheaper machine with a single spring motor and the old style domed lid.


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 Post subject: Re: My New HMV 130
PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2019 7:39 am 
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Victor II
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:55 am
Posts: 220
Location: Vienna/Austria
There are actually 2 versions. The 130 (1929-1933) and the 130A (1934-194?). The A version has got some chrome plated fittings, the 5B Soundbox and an "upgraded" tonearm. Yours is the A variation. Here are mine, the 130 in oak and the 130A in teak.


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 Post subject: Re: My New HMV 130
PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2019 2:09 pm 
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Victor III
Joined: Sun Mar 15, 2009 6:18 am
Posts: 990
The legs are quite unique, I think these were only sold in India, right?


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 Post subject: Re: My New HMV 130
PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2019 5:06 pm 
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Victor II
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:55 am
Posts: 220
Location: Vienna/Austria
Mine is the only known example, sadly I do not know much more than that about it :D


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 Post subject: Re: My New HMV 130
PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2019 6:33 pm 
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Victor III
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floating down stream ...
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2018 12:52 pm
Posts: 586
Location: Made it, Ma ! Top of the world !
Teak wrote:
Mine is the only known example, sadly I do not know much more than that about it :D



Oh, I found this link - maybe relevant.

http://industrialhistoryhk.org/gramophones-phonographs-hong-kong/

and epigramophone seems to have found one for sale maybe in 2014

http://forum.talkingmachine.info/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=17231&p=100323&hilit=hmv+130A#p100323

Oh, and this - the link did not work though so showing just the search result


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 Post subject: Re: My New HMV 130
PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2019 7:52 pm 
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Victor II
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:55 am
Posts: 220
Location: Vienna/Austria
Thanks for the effort, but those all picture mine. The upper one was the auction I bought it at, the lower before it was refinished, freshly imported to the uk.
Epigramophone found the auction, when it was first sold, to the person I bought it from.

By the way, its original, and glorious :D


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 Post subject: Re: My New HMV 130
PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2019 9:24 pm 
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Victor II
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Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 10:41 pm
Posts: 330
Location: Riverside, California
Thank you very much for the replies and information so far. So the first incarnation of the 130 was produced 1929-1933? And then I take it there was a 130A produced--for export only or ?

I forgot to include a shot of the badge. If I disregard the 130xxx, the number is 4728. I'm not sure, but that seems low-ish (?) However, I do notice the difference of the tonearm as Teak pointed out. Is it really as late as 1939-194(?) or could mine have been cobbled together later or upgraded from an older model? I think it highly likely that 5 soundboxes get switched around and upgraded a lot, and I just assumed someone had stuck this newer 5B on an older 1929-33 machine. I'm still open minded at the thought of it being produced later though. For export?


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 Post subject: Re: My New HMV 130
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2019 5:41 am 
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Victor V
His epigrams are all his own, the man's an epigramophone!
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:21 pm
Posts: 2854
Location: The Somerset Levels, UK.
The "His Master's Gramophone" book states that 12,611 oak 130's had been sold by February 1931, so your 4728 is fairly early.

Your 5B soundbox is definitely of later date than the machine, as it has the simplified inscription on the back plate seen on the late post war 102 portables. My 130 has an identical soundbox, and as there are only minor differences between a 5A and a 5B the likely reason for replacement is that the original met with an accident.


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