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My latest find.
http://forum.talkingmachine.info/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=41584
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Author:  epigramophone [ Tue Aug 13, 2019 1:30 pm ]
Post subject:  My latest find.

Most UK collectors are familiar with the Columbia No.113a, that large portable with the padded crocodile cloth case and lacquered brass fittings, but it's predecessor the No.113 is little known.

Based on the American Columbia 160, the 113 was introduced in late 1927 and cost ten guineas. That is £10.50 to the decimal generation. It has a British made Garrard No.11a double spring motor and an 11 inch turntable. The early No.15 soundbox has a mica diaphragm and bears a British Patent number. It's most unusual feature is the record storage pocket, lined in polished mahogany, which opens from the outside of the lid and has room for both ten and twelve inch records. At 12.5kg it is twice the weight of the contemporary HMV101.

Soon replaced by the even heavier 113a, the Columbia 113 is rare. When one appeared at a specialist sale in the 1990's it was the only example the auctioneer had ever seen. It was purchased by the late Roger Thorne, and when his collection was sold in 2011 it was still the only known example. It is now in the collection of another CLPGS member.

Some years later a second 113 appeared at auction. This may or may not be the one owned by the late Graham Barber, and pictured on his website http://www.graham-ophones.co.uk.

I knew of no more 113's until a third one was offered on eBay in July 2019. Collection only from Birmingham would have put many potential bidders off, but down in Somerset I had a plan. My daughter-in-law's mother lived minutes away from the seller and was happy to collect the 113 if I was successful. To my surprise I was the only bidder, and I won the machine for the starting price of £25. On her latest visit to her mother, my daughter-in-law picked it up and delivered it to me on her way home to Cornwall.

The 113 is in untouched original condition, with a few blemishes consistent with age and use. All I have done is clean and lubricate it. Among the following pictures it is shown next to my 113a for comparison, and next to a Columbia record carrying case which matches it perfectly.

I still cannot understand how no-one else spotted it.

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Author:  nostalgia [ Tue Aug 13, 2019 1:38 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: My latest find.

Congratulations:)) I am very happy for you, and it is a beautiful gramophone, and excellent and well planned find:)
I was myself out today, "finding" a nice red HMV 102, so I know your feeling:))
Congrats again:)
-Nostalgia-

Author:  epigramophone [ Tue Aug 13, 2019 1:46 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: My latest find.

Thank you for your kind words. The French advertisement for the 113 made me smile, translated "For the mountain, the countryside and the sea." I would not want to carry it up a mountain!

Author:  Orchorsol [ Tue Aug 13, 2019 1:56 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: My latest find.

Wonderful, and how astonishing! Congratulations.

Author:  OrthoSean [ Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:07 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: My latest find.

What a nice portable, the record carrying case is especially neat as well! Congrats!

Sean

Author:  Phono48 [ Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:22 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: My latest find.

Oh well done, beautiful machine! I sold the one that was Graham Barbers' to him, as I had two, but if it was his, it's easily identifiable, as it had a replacement needle bowl, which was just a round bowl with a hinged lid, as opposed to the one pictured. Just one query on yours though, if I may. A No.15 soundbox with a mica diaphragm???? I know it's an early version of the NO.15, with a different arm fitting, but the same one on mine, and the two similar ones on my 113As all have the standard aluminium diaphragms. Hmm.....

Anyway, here's mine.

Barry

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Author:  emgcr [ Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:38 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: My latest find.

Many congratulations Roger---a great story and a superb machine. How does it play ?

I wonder if you have come across the model 164-A which has a "plano-reflex" tonearm ? It is also rather heavy ! This one was owned by my grandfather. I have had a very quick look on the 'net but can find little information available.

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Author:  epigramophone [ Wed Aug 14, 2019 3:54 am ]
Post subject:  Re: My latest find.

Phono48 wrote:
Oh well done, beautiful machine! I sold the one that was Graham Barbers' to him, as I had two, but if it was his, it's easily identifiable, as it had a replacement needle bowl, which was just a round bowl with a hinged lid, as opposed to the one pictured. Just one query on yours though, if I may. A No.15 soundbox with a mica diaphragm???? I know it's an early version of the NO.15, with a different arm fitting, but the same one on mine, and the two similar ones on my 113As all have the standard aluminium diaphragms. Hmm.....

Anyway, here's mine.

Barry


Thank you Barry, we now have four or possibly five surviving 113's. The diaphragm on my soundbox is definitely mica (I can see through it!) but I have no way of knowing whether it is the original or a later replacement. I might find out if and when I dismantle it to renew the gaskets.

Roger.

Author:  epigramophone [ Wed Aug 14, 2019 4:07 am ]
Post subject:  Re: My latest find.

emgcr wrote:
Many congratulations Roger---a great story and a superb machine. How does it play ?

I wonder if you have come across the model 164-A which has a "plano-reflex" tonearm ? It is also rather heavy ! This one was owned by my grandfather. I have had a very quick look on the 'net but can find little information available.


I think the 164-A is an overseas model, possibly from Columbia's Japanese factory. Apart from the No.9 soundbox and the leathercloth covered motor board it appears almost identical to my 220 pictured below, which I know started life in the far east. The pictures flatter it and it has since been sold. With 25 portables at the last count I cannot keep everything!

At present the 113 is not playing well. The gaskets are probably perished and in need of replacement, a job for a wet day when I have nothing else to do.

Roger.

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Author:  emgcr [ Wed Aug 14, 2019 4:25 am ]
Post subject:  Re: My latest find.

Quote:

I think the 164-A is an overseas model, possibly from Columbia's Japanese factory.


Ah--thank you. That makes sense as my grandfather worked for the Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank and spent much of his life in the Far East.

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