The Talking Machine Forum — For All Antique Phonographs & Recordings

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 Post subject: Machine
PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 10:01 pm 
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Victor Jr
Joined: Tue Mar 12, 2019 9:48 pm
Posts: 1
We recently acquired a Cecilian Melophonic hand crack phonograph. We were wondering if anyone has any idea what year it is. There is no plate on it anywhere with a serial number. We are under the impression that it is late 30’s.
Thanks for your help.


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 Post subject: Re: Machine
PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 10:09 pm 
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Victor V
Joined: Tue Jan 21, 2014 12:55 am
Posts: 2168
Location: Eugene/ Springfield Oregon USA
More likely the 1920s. Where in the '20s we can better determine by seeing the mechanism.


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 Post subject: Re: Machine
PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 10:52 pm 
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Victor IV
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2016 7:12 pm
Posts: 1455
The Cecilian Melophonic line was sold by Montgomery Wards starting around 1926, and competed with the Sears Tru-Phonic phonographs and other models. Basically, these were lower priced alternatives to the Orthophonic Victrola, the Columbia Viva-Tonal, the Brunswick Panatrope, etc.--all designed to play the newly introduced electrical recordings with greater fidelity than older models.

There have been a few posts about Cecilian Melophonic phonographs on this forum. For instance -- viewtopic.php?f=2&t=2903

Your model probably dates from around 1926 or 1927, or slightly later. By the late 1930s, about the only all-acoustic, wind-up phonographs sold in the US were portable units.

OrthoFan


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 Post subject: Re: Machine
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:51 am 
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Victor IV
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2009 12:53 pm
Posts: 1213
Location: Michiana
Yes, with that strange upright listed in the 1938-9 Sears catalog being the exception which proves the rule I do wish that I had not lost mine!


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 Post subject: Re: Machine
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:54 am 
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Victor IV
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2016 7:12 pm
Posts: 1455
Uncle Vanya wrote:
Yes, with that strange upright listed in the 1938-9 Sears catalog being the exception which proves the rule I do wish that I had not lost mine!


You mean the one shown here? -- viewtopic.php?f=2&t=97&start=20

I'd love to come across one!

OrthoFan


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 Post subject: Re: Machine
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:07 pm 
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Victor IV
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2009 12:53 pm
Posts: 1213
Location: Michiana
Yes. That oddity.


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 Post subject: Re: Machine
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2019 1:21 pm 
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Victor IV
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2016 7:12 pm
Posts: 1455
Uncle Vanya wrote:
Yes. That oddity.


Not to take this off-topic, but after looking again at the photograph of the Sears phonograph's horn, which appears to have been installed in sections, I'm wondering if it didn't lose it's front section (bell) somewhere along the way. The illustration of the tone chamber that appears in the Sear's catalog ad clearly shows the bell extending all the way to the grille; and the horn, itself, matches some of the saxophone-shaped horns installed in the earlier Sears Tru-Phonic models.

As for the OP's Melophonic, it would be great to see some additional photos, showing the player compartment and the grille.

OrthoFan


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