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 Post subject: Re: need help restoring a HMV 102e
PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 7:20 am 
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Victor Jr
Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2010 9:54 am
Posts: 39
hello, need some urgent help,

the 5B soundbox arrived today, but i can't seem to fit it onto the tonearm!

the rubber seems too small to fit the diameter of the arm, am i supposed to squeeze it on? i'm afraid i'd break something :)


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 Post subject: Re: need help restoring a HMV 102e
PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 7:42 am 
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Victor IV
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Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 5:40 pm
Posts: 1498
Location: Holy Loch in Argyll and Bute
Be careful! That back-plate is mazak and will crumble into a thousand pieces if forcibly applied to the tone-arm

What is that ring around the end of the arm? There should not be anything apart form the rubber insulator with brass insert in the flange of the back-plate. It might be a bit tight but that should slip over the end of the arm. Try using some vaseline applied with finger around the end of the arm / inside the rear flange of back-plate but do not force it too hard or you will break it.


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 Post subject: Re: need help restoring a HMV 102e
PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 7:56 am 
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Victor Jr
Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2010 9:54 am
Posts: 39
the ring is the rubber, has it shrunk or something? i'm afraid i'd wreck it by using too much force so i didn't try it...

what's mazak? the back plate feels like its made of metal, you mean its not? :| anyway i attached a picture of the soundbox, what brass insert do you mean? is my soundbox missing something?


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 Post subject: Re: need help restoring a HMV 102e
PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 9:06 am 
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Victor IV
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Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 5:40 pm
Posts: 1498
Location: Holy Loch in Argyll and Bute
Quote:
what's mazak? the back plate feels like its made of metal, you mean its not? anyway i attached a picture of the soundbox, what brass insert do you mean? is my soundbox missing something?


Mazak is the name of the cheap pot metal alloy used to cast the back-plate. Over time, it expands due to the non-purity of the alloy mix and cracks appear which (if forced) will open up into large fractures of the metal. Unlike Victor, HMV did not produce Orthophonic type soundboxes with brass backs.

The rubber coupling inside the back of the soundbox should have a brass ring with pin inside it. The latter allows the soundbox to be engaged with the 'L' shaped slot in the tone-arm to ensure the needle-bar / needle sits at the correct 60 degree angle with the flat record. The rubber was originally designed to isolate the unwanted vibration from the tone-arm. Over time, this does tend to harden and defeat its own purpose. However, do not attempt to remove it as the rear flanges of the s/box are particularly vulnerable.

BTW, that 5b you have pictured above does look quite poor and I would personally look for a better condition s/box.


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 Post subject: Re: need help restoring a HMV 102e
PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 10:34 am 
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Victor Jr
Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2010 9:54 am
Posts: 39
great...it looked ok on the ebay page and now i realise the problems with it...

the rubber gasket on the soundbox is way too small to fit on the arm, its warped and distorted and i couldn't force it to fit...also the brass ring with a pin you are talking about is missing/broken away. i know this because as i was trying to fit the rubber on to the arm, the entire gasket just fell out and i could see that there was no pin in the soundbox.

also there is a jagged tear on the diaphragm, something the seller did not highlight at all in the pictures or on his description page...

well there's nothing much else to be said, i'm out of resources (money) for now and i did my best to clean up the gramophone the best i could while waiting for the soundbox to arrive and it is just a wreck, might have to put this new found hobby on hold for now until i can find a new soundbox and some money to bid on it...terribly disappointed with it all :|

p.s of course if anyone is willing to part with a 5a/5b soundbox that they don't use/is in poor but working condition i'd be happy to negotiate to get it!


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 Post subject: Re: need help restoring a HMV 102e
PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2010 11:39 am 
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Victor Jr
Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2010 9:54 am
Posts: 39
managed to use electrical tape to make a temporary seal on the arm and the soundbox could fit..had to tape it crudely to the arm but its steady enough, managed to play one record and it sounded ok if not a little distorted...still disappointed with it though looks like a shoddy machine with the tape holding the soundbox in place..


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 Post subject: Re: need help restoring a HMV 102e
PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 5:24 am 
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Victor IV
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Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 5:40 pm
Posts: 1498
Location: Holy Loch in Argyll and Bute
I'm sorry you feel so deflated with the hobby at the outset. Myself, I've been doing this over 20 years and don't think I haven't had my fair share of disappointments, even when dealing with supposedly reputable dealers! My advice is to step back from it for awhile if you cannot get reimbursed for what you've already bought. Something better will come along........

Personally I don't think any machine like an HMV portable is worth restoring unless it is a very special model. The problem with your 102 is that it's a very standard late model in black. There are thousands more out there in much much better order. You would be wiser to invest your time and money in a clean example that needs no restoration. A restored 102 is almost worthless in todays money. Keep watching Ebay but always be on your guard. Most honest sellers do not shy away from providing plenty of pictures and a detailed description.

You will be far more satisfied with your purchase and eager to continue collecting once you have found a really nice condition original machine. Restored machines rarely have the same appeal unless they are early (horn machines) or rare examples.


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 Post subject: Re: need help restoring a HMV 102e
PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 5:31 am 
I have to point out that you've by chance bought a very rare soundbox indeed ! - the rubber fitting in the back is actually for use with the tonearm of a 101 and was a rare accessory to improve the tone of a 101 and not for use with a 102 at all

It will never fit a 102 ! but well done anyway

I suggest you buy another BUT keep this one for the novelty value (and its commercial value)


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 Post subject: Re: need help restoring a HMV 102e
PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 9:08 am 
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Victor VI
I have good days...this might not be one of them
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 5:23 pm
Posts: 3844
Location: Albany NY
Here's the problem with your soundbox- it was never intended to fit your machine.

From the UK Gramophone board:

"Whilst browsing the TMF i notice a chap wanting help with a 102 - he bought a soundbox and then couldn't fit it !

Why ?

Because he had the good fortune to buy a very rare thing indeed - a 5B soundbox which was sold for a short time to "Upgrade" a 101 and therefore the rubber fitting is for that smaller tonearm and NOT for the usual 102 tonearm

I have been looking for one for years but with no luck ! "


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 Post subject: Re: need help restoring a HMV 102e
PostPosted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 9:15 am 
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Victor Jr
Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2010 9:54 am
Posts: 39
are you serious?? well we're BOTH unlucky because i didn't get what i want and he didn't find this, but he wouldn't have wanted this anyway there's so many problems with it, the diaphragm's holed for one..

as i said i taped the soundbox to the arm with a combination of plumber's and electrical tape to make it airtight and stable...works fine for now...i played 'green tree boogie' by bill haley and the comets and got a shock at how loud it was!

i got a partial refund for the soundbox as it is not in good condition so i'm happier than yesterday (what a miserable day it was :P ) i guess i'll shelve this project for now until i can find something good one day!


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