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 Post subject: Columbia Viva Tonal
PostPosted: Sat Mar 31, 2018 3:36 pm 
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Victor Jr
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2018 2:13 pm
Posts: 3
Hello everyone.

I'm new into the Talking Machines and I've just got a Columbia Viva Tonal. I don't know exactly which model is this one, but I believe it's from the 40's. I've cleaned the motor and put some oil and grease in the parts, and apparently it's working just fine. But when I put the tone arm in the record, it just stops spinning. Any idea what it might be?

I've took some pictures and made a video, hope someone can help me.


Attachments:
File comment: Photo 1
IMG_20180331_162139430.jpg
IMG_20180331_162139430.jpg [ 1.97 MiB | Viewed 710 times ]
File comment: Photo 2
IMG_20180331_162113707.jpg
IMG_20180331_162113707.jpg [ 1.2 MiB | Viewed 710 times ]
File comment: Video spinning

[ Play Quicktime file ] VID_20180331_162242168.mp4 [ 5.89 MiB | Viewed 710 times ]
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 Post subject: Re: Columbia Viva Tonal
PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 6:49 am 
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Victor III
Joined: Sun May 27, 2012 2:38 pm
Posts: 629
Location: United Kingdom
It's a Columbia 211, made from 1939 through to 1961. The case should be entirely covered with the same material as the inside, but it has been stripped and varnished. The winding handle is not the original, and looks to be much too large. However, to get to your problem, the spring in the motor was originally packed with grease containing graphite, which by now has hardened to the consistency of tar, and is sticking the coils of the spring together, so that the spring has hardly any power. There is only one cure, and that is to take the spring out of the drum, clean it and the drum thoroughly, and wind the spring back into the drum, together with fresh all-purpose grease. Be aware though, if you intend to do this yourself, that removal of the spring is both messy and dangerous, there is about 14ft of coiled steel in that drum, and if it flies out, it can cause serious damage to you and your surroundings!


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 Post subject: Re: Columbia Viva Tonal
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2018 4:34 am 
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Victor III
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F. Depero, "Grammofono", 1923.
Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2011 4:19 am
Posts: 710
Location: Italy
Did you also lubricate the friction pad of the governor, and the disc over which it operates, and the axle over which the governor rotates? If you didn't, there is much more friction than needed and the gramophone will never work fine.


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 Post subject: Re: Columbia Viva Tonal
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:46 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: 3827
Location: Albany NY
By the time this was made Columbia was part of HMV and the Viva Tonal machines were nearly identical to the HMV line, but cheaper.


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 Post subject: Re: Columbia Viva Tonal
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2018 6:03 am 
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Victor III
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F. Depero, "Grammofono", 1923.
Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2011 4:19 am
Posts: 710
Location: Italy
Indeed these later units have almost nothing left of what distinguished viva-tonal machines from competiting makes.


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 Post subject: Re: Columbia Viva Tonal
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2018 8:08 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: 3827
Location: Albany NY
Marco Gilardetti wrote:
Indeed these later units have almost nothing left of what distinguished viva-tonal machines from competiting makes.


They sound good because they are pretty much the 102, stripped down.


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 Post subject: Re: Columbia Viva Tonal
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:29 pm 
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Victor III
Joined: Sun May 27, 2012 2:38 pm
Posts: 629
Location: United Kingdom
estott wrote:
They sound good because they are pretty much the 102, stripped down.


With great respect, I can't agree with this statement! The 102 was the Gramophone Companys' top-of-the range portable, these Columbias and the identical HMV versions were very much bottom-of-the range! They were the cheapest portables ever made by the Company, and had a very much smaller and weaker motor than the 102, a very cheap and heavy pot-metal soundbox, no ball bearings at all in the arm, and a very short internal horn. Sorry to say, nothing about them even vaguely resembled the 102, even a stripped down version!


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 Post subject: Re: Columbia Viva Tonal
PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2018 8:16 pm 
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Victor Jr
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2018 2:13 pm
Posts: 3
Thank you very much for the information. Indeed, the problem was the spring. I've managed to take the spring out of the drum, but unfortunately it's broken, as it's possible to see in the photo. Any tips on how can I restore it? Or should I search for another one?


Phono48 wrote:
It's a Columbia 211, made from 1939 through to 1961. The case should be entirely covered with the same material as the inside, but it has been stripped and varnished. The winding handle is not the original, and looks to be much too large. However, to get to your problem, the spring in the motor was originally packed with grease containing graphite, which by now has hardened to the consistency of tar, and is sticking the coils of the spring together, so that the spring has hardly any power. There is only one cure, and that is to take the spring out of the drum, clean it and the drum thoroughly, and wind the spring back into the drum, together with fresh all-purpose grease. Be aware though, if you intend to do this yourself, that removal of the spring is both messy and dangerous, there is about 14ft of coiled steel in that drum, and if it flies out, it can cause serious damage to you and your surroundings!


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IMG_20180403_210958737.jpg
IMG_20180403_210958737.jpg [ 1.29 MiB | Viewed 546 times ]
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 Post subject: Re: Columbia Viva Tonal
PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2018 1:26 am 
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Victor V
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Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2010 1:17 am
Posts: 2889
Location: Where there's "hamburger ALL OVER the highway"...
cordova wrote:
Thank you very much for the information. Indeed, the problem was the spring. I've managed to take the spring out of the drum, but unfortunately it's broken, as it's possible to see in the photo. Any tips on how can I restore it? Or should I search for another one?


The break is at the outer end, which is not too bad. If need be, you can clip the end off just past the hole, anneal the last couple of inches with a torch, and create a new hole. The Compleat Talking Machine describes the process in full: with an outer end repair, you should not lose too much power in the spring.

If you don't have the resources to do this yourself, there are a number of repairers who can install a new spring for you: just tell them the make and model, and they'll find a spring that fits.

Bill


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 Post subject: Re: Columbia Viva Tonal
PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:12 am 
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Victor III
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F. Depero, "Grammofono", 1923.
Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2011 4:19 am
Posts: 710
Location: Italy
I suggest you contact user soundgen (Mike) on this forum, he sells a wide assortment of new replica springs that are top-quality, I'm almost sure he also has a type that fits this machine.


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