This machine, which uses regular Columbia components, dates to 1909 or later. It was known in the trade as a "scheme" machine, which meant that the machine was featured in a promotion: in this case, you bought goods from your local merchant and received coupons which could be redeemed toward a free talking machine.
The catch was that the records only fit a proprietary, oversize spindle, and so the purchaser was locked into the purchase of the special records.
The golden oak cabinet and colorful red decal are quite nice on this example. There is quite a bit of typical, nice weathering on the blue horn.
I have gone through the motor, re-greased the mainspring, etc. I replaced two bad brass gears in this motor. In addition, I replaced the turntable drive gear which is always problematic in Columbia derivative machines such as this. The drive gear was working because it was slicked up with the old graphite grease. I could have doused it with more graphite, but after a while it would go bad on you, and the machine wouldn't run. Please keep in mind that all Columbia motors on this type of machine are going to require this type of maintenance, and that if you are looking at a machine like this on a venue such as ebay it is going to require work down the road, and sooner rather than later.
I have also rebuilt the reproducer on this machine.
The machine is now running properly. There is some typical rumble from the motor, not discernible under the record.
You usually don't receive a lot of the special records with these, but I have a bonus twenty records to give with this Standard Model A.
Buy this if you want an original funky machine of this era that you can demonstrate once in a while. If you are planning to listen to a lot of 78s this isn't your best choice, and I would instead recommend one of the outside horn Victors on our website.
We buy, sell, and repair antique phonographs and music boxes.
Pick-up and delivery possible in many parts of the midwest,south, and northeast.