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EDISON SPRING MOTOR PHONOGRAPH
With 14 inch horn and listening tubes.
In 1895 Thomas Edison began manufacturing and selling the Spring Motor Phonograph (Class SM) through the United States Phonograph Company of New Jersey. Up until this time Edison offered only the Class M Phonograph, powered by a large Bipolar DC Electric motor, which required the use of cumbersome wet-cell batteries. In the early 1890’s other’s began marketing spring motor driven phonographs using the upper works of the Class M, notably the Chicago Talking Machine Company using a Motor designed by Edward Amet. The demand for a spring motor driven machine continued to grow. Edison employee Frank Capps designed a robust triple spring motor capable of providing a firm and prolonged drive, dubbed the Trition. In 1897, George Tewksbury wrote in “A Complete Manual of the Edison Phonograph”, “a variety of non-Edison spring motors generally bad, has been made for the phonograph. The common fault is imperfect regulation.” of the Triton he wrote that the results were no less satisfactory than electric. This Triton style motor in various forms served to power certain models of Edison phonographs well into the 20th century.
When introduced, the Spring Motor Phonograph retailed for $100 in late 1898 the price was reduced to $75. The machine has an oak cabinet with accessory drawer. The lid completely envelops the inner cabinet. The bedplate and upper casting are painted black with gold pen stripe decoration. There is a shaving attachment and the machine played 2 minute records. A 14 inch horn was available as were listening tubes and a speaking tube for recording.
This particular example is from my personal collection and is in excellent condition. It has an original cabinet with original finish with a brown oak patina. The Crank is the very early U.S. Phonograph tagged type. Most tagged cranks are the later “National Phonograph Co.” type. The motor is the very first style of the Triton which has ball type governor weights and skeletal type gearing, serial number 1751. The upper casting is the early Class M type casting with bold corner decoration, serial number 23750. It has original finish and decoration. The casting has the idler pulley lugs and the straight edge for the carriage is held in place by screws. The mandrel is the correct early brass type with the recessed end and the carriage is the early class M style as well. The bedplate is original but has been re-painted and re-stripped. The nickel plated Spring Motor tag is original with original nickel. The end gate is a high quality reproduction. I have an original later style end gate that is available if you prefer it.
The motor runs smoothly and evenly and will play several records on one winding. The original 14 inch black and brass horn is in very good condition and has “PAT APLD FOR” stamped into the body. The listening tube set is original except for the tubes which are new hand made rubber. The listening tubes are perfect for playing early brown wax recordings which typically are very soft and hard to hear through a horn. The machine has an Automatic reproducer that has been re-built using a glass diaphragm. It is designed for playing early Brown Wax Cylinders. I am including one good smooth rim black wax Edison record.
Overall, this is a great, early Edison Spring Motor Phonographs. Finding and Edison machine for sale that dates prior to 1900 is very uncommon. The rarity of the Spring Motor Phonograph has been underappreciated. This is a great opportunity to add to your collection.
I will double-box thephonograph andpack everything carefully and properly. It will be boxed in 2 parcels, one for the cabinet, horn etc. and the other for the mechanism. Ican assure you thatutmost care will be taken to assure safe delivery. I have been shipping antique phonographs for years and I know how to do it correctly. Local pickup is also an option and I will be happy to work with you if this is your wish. If you're not already familiar with how tooperate this machine,I will provide you with simple, easy to understandinstructions regarding set-up and care. I will also be glad to answer any questions about its use in the future if the need arises. Buyer pays actual shipping charges.I have listed a flat rate of $125 to ship in the continental USA. If shipping is less than this I will refund the difference. If it is more I will payit.
International buyers pay actual shipping costs. Please contact me for a shipping quote. The ad rate IS NOT CORRECT!
PayPal okay. Additional photos on request. I am happy to answer any questions. Thanks for looking!