EMG Flyers

Discussions on Talking Machines of British or European Manufacture
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chunnybh
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Re: EMG Flyers

Post by chunnybh »

Oh!, and for added confusion here is another flyer courtesy of Rod Cornelius.
42 and 46mm indeed. (Metric not Imperial?). Is the 46mm possibly referring to something like an Astra soundbox? The price difference is huge, could that be 2 and 4-spring for each diameter?
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EMG-Reproducer-doc.jpg
EMG-reproducer-doc-22.jpg

IainW
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Re: EMG Flyers

Post by IainW »

As a newcomer to the forum I must admit to being mystified by the repeated references to the tuning of soundboxes for steel or fibre needles. In my ignorance I have blissfully been swapping between types of needles depending upon the condition of the record on the turntable at any particular time. Exactly how much retuning is required and today do most collectors maintain separate 'steel' and 'fibre' soundboxes? Is there a thread on soundbox tuning I should be studying?
Chunny, regarding the previous photo of the pedestal model, I would suspect from a structural point of view, if the legs were tall, the vertical grain would extend up into the frame at the corners. I cannot quite make out from the picture if this is the case.

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chunnybh
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Re: EMG Flyers

Post by chunnybh »

Chunny, regarding the previous photo of the pedestal model, I would suspect from a structural point of view, if the legs were tall, the vertical grain would extend up into the frame at the corners. I cannot quite make out from the picture if this is the case.
Very good point, the grain on the walnut veneer is horizontal so not part of the leg. I was thinking more of cabriole legs which would use only the hidden dowel. But the more I look at it, it seems like it was made that way. Perhaps a "Console" model as mentioned in the flyer.

As for the soundbox tuning question. Well that's another can of worms. I personally use one soundbox for fibers and another for steel and I only play clean records with fibers.

old country chemist
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Re: EMG Flyers

Post by old country chemist »

Hi chunny-thank you very much for posting the EMG soundbox instructions on the forum for us-very interesting!
Now, over the years I have seen variations as to what is printed on the leaflets accompanying the soundboxes. I well remember the bit where it says about placing the soundbox onto the tone arm, and pressing it fully home on the tone arm, AND THEN PULLING THE BOX BACK SLIGHTLY, SO THAT THE END OF THE TONE ARM WILL NOT BE TOUCHING THE INSIDE OF THE SOUNDBOX. I cannot remember the year it was printed, and as usual, years ago we did not value the ephemera as much as nowadays.
I always place inside the back of the soundbox a thin rubber washer with the same size hole as in the box before I slide it onto the arm.Then there is no chance of certain unwanted vibrations, if any, to be set up there Just a small point. And while I think of it, the dimple, or cone and concentric rings in a diaphragm are always, or should be, facing outwards. In about 1923 or so in one of the early gramophone papers, there was an advertisement for a soundbox, (I had a feeling it was the "Kestraphone-but not absolutely sure), had an aluminium diaphragm and it was inverted, in fact to a large degree. I often wondered how this affected the sound quality-if at all!
chunny-it is great to see all this paperwork, and information etc, coming onto the forum, and a big thanks to your friend for his input and interest. I remember one EMG owner, years ago, saying that he was proud to be part of a very special "club". I did not realise what he meant then-I do now. Great thing the forum!
Alastair.

IainW
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Re: EMG Flyers

Post by IainW »

Alastair, Your description of a thin washer mounted at the inner end of the tone arm attachment ring exactly matches the arrangement I found on the old rubber insert in the soundbox of my Mk VIII when I replaced it recently for the first time since I acquired it in the 1980's. I suppose it is either one of yours from years ago or the method was used by others. It certainly seems to make sense to me.
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Washer 2.jpg
Washer 1.jpg

old country chemist
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Re: EMG Flyers

Post by old country chemist »

Hello Iain, thanks for the pictures of the rubber ring attached to the insulating compression ring from your Mk8. And what a handsome machine it is too-the nicest I have ever seen! I had a Mk8 in about 1982. I think it cost the equivalent of 80 quid-when I say "equivalent" I meant that I obtained it by passing on to one of my old gramophone chums at the time, Roger Thorne, a 1913 Columbia gramophone which was a table, with the gramophone in the drawer! Anyway, the Mk8 was a wreck, and I knew nothing about them then. It had a crappy Meltrope 3 soundbox, and the cabinet was of sorts, a closed lid job but the lid was missing! It played quite well, and the horn strangely enough was in a reasonable state, but I was glad to move it on later, and Roger bought it back for another collector, and I did quite well in the sale of it! I have often been told in the past, that these machines were best for old jazz records, but that might be folk who do not play any other type of records on them.
Regarding the rubber compression ring. I have three of different flexibility, and it is interesting to try different ones on difficult records to see which one makes a slight improvement. I never tighten the compression ring very much, in fact I usually have it done up just enough to hold the soundbox at the correct angle.

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emgcr
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Re: EMG Flyers

Post by emgcr »

IainW wrote: Thu Feb 18, 2021 5:59 am As a newcomer to the forum I must admit to being mystified by the repeated references to the tuning of soundboxes for steel or fibre needles. In my ignorance I have blissfully been swapping between types of needles depending upon the condition of the record on the turntable at any particular time. Exactly how much retuning is required and today do most collectors maintain separate 'steel' and 'fibre' soundboxes? Is there a thread on soundbox tuning I should be studying?
Good evening Iain,

You have touched on a complex area and your questions are likely to produce as many different answers as respondents ! Your needle practices are certainly not ignorant but are fully in line with what many people do nowadays I think. There was great mystique in contemporary days surrounding soundbox tuning some of which (but by no means all) I feel was driven by commercial forces rather than exclusively following the strict path of great acoustic quality improvement. EMG and Expert both wanted the business and guarded their processes jealously. I think it is a true statement to say that nobody now (or even at the time) knows exactly what they did differently when tuning for steel, fibre or thorn. I may be wrong but I have never seen or heard anyone describe what actually went on. I think most enthusiasts today will have their own ideas about what sounds best to their ears and proceed accordingly. For myself, I mainly use one really good soundbox for every type of needle, only swapping thorn for steel when the former will not stand the modulation---usually because of a worn jazz record.

You may find Ian Maxted's really excellent and highly successful methods of soundbox tuning of assistance---posted here on 13th September 2015.
viewtopic.php?f=11&t=22907&hilit=soundb ... g&start=40

Best wishes, Graham.

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chunnybh
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Re: EMG Flyers

Post by chunnybh »

You may find Ian Maxted's really excellent and highly successful methods of soundbox tuning of assistance---posted here on 13th September 2015.
viewtopic.php?f=11&t=22907&hilit=soundb ... g&start=40
Totally agree, an excellent way to get any soundbox to a neutral state before tuning it. I remember Ian having three or four soundboxes for different types of records and the 2-spring Horseshoe being used for early Jazz records. Ian definitely knows what he is doing with soundboxes. The sound is always excellent, I hope he is still getting a chance to play with his wonderful machines.

With tuning, the final results I find are down to a level setup, room acoustics, a record you know very well and your and your friends ears.

Here is another excellent flyer from Rod Cornelius.
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reproducer-leafe-1t.jpg

old country chemist
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Re: EMG Flyers

Post by old country chemist »

Yes, I agree, Graham knows much about soundbox adjustments, also chunny, and also Master Kirtley, I hear is also doing good work in that field. I looked into the link to the soundbox "tuning" from years ago by Ian. Yes HE was the man who, like Mr Creese at Expert, knew the "ropes" How sad to hear from Graham recently that Ian is in a very poor state of health, He sold me my very first "Expert Senior"in the early 1990s. Wonderful chap, and I feel honoured to have known him over the years.

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Inigo
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Re: EMG Flyers

Post by Inigo »

Curiously enough, these tuning techniques are more or less intuitive once you've studied how the soundbox works, and have passed hours thinking about it and the physics involved. I've been for years applying these same techniques to the HMV soundboxes nos4 and 5a/b with success. It's surprising how good an altered no4 can sound when you apply these techniques, creating a gap between the backplate and the ring so to light up the pressure on the diaphragm edge (maintaining the airtightness but no more) and using soft rubber tubing gaskets instead of the pre-made thick rubber joint that was especially made for them, and changing the original back connector for a softer rubber ring. Similar things can be done to the no5a/b and the sound improves greatly...
Yet the exhibition resists... I bought three of them last year to make experiments, but I'm not yet satisfied. I believe it's because I'm still attached to the original balance springs, which are hard. I've not yet dared to alter them, for the sake of keeping it original... except in one case. I also have an exhibition junior whose balance springs were broken. I made two wire springs, U shaped, to attach the balance plate in a similar way to the Emg two spring sbx, and it sounds wonderful. I mean, I use these springs only to press the balance plate to the knife points, but not introducing any lateral resistance or damping, so a substantial alteration of the original scheme. Now all the damping is exerted only at the diaphragm edge gaskets.
these days I'm tempted to do the same to one of the big exhibitions to see how it responds....
Inigo

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