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Vintage Audio (record players, hi-fi etc) Amplifiers, speakers, gramophones and other audio equipment.

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Old 14th Jun 2018, 11:11 pm   #1
lucysharp
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Default Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on value

Apologies if I have put this in the wrong forum wasn't sure where to put it...
I bought this a few years ago at an auction I just loved the look of it, I'd managed to get someone on here to have a look at and get her going but haven't really used it since.
My question is how much is it worth?
I don't want to put it up for sell either to high or low and would rather a collector had it than someone who's not going look after it.

It has what I believe are the original documents/ manuals and price tag.

Thanks in advance

Lucy
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Old 15th Jun 2018, 12:24 am   #2
dave walsh
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

It's probably the Deccalia [circa 1957] Lucy. It has three speeds so it can play vinyl records. The first version seems to be a decade earlier and 78's only!
There is no reason to suspect the paperwork is anything other than original so that adds value I suppose. Items like this [ie record players in particular] have shot through the roof in recent years due to a dubious "retro" boom. It's a bit of a shark tank now and sadly, you can never be quite sure who you are dealing with these days! However, I'm very impressed that you even recognise the enthusiast aspect and are concerned about it. Who restored this for you? The strictly financial approach would probably be to start around [maybe 100] although others may well disagree on all levels. Alternatively you might make a choice on other grounds ie appropriateness but dealers could be circling already . If you offer it here [instead of on an auction site] you will HAVE to state a price so that makes it much more difficult perhaps. I hope that helps you a little!

Dave W
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Old 15th Jun 2018, 10:01 am   #3
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

Hi if you look on ebay completed listings you can see what similar record players have sold for, this will give you an idea as to what is achievable. It will only give you a guide as location will have an effect on non post-able items.

If you look at the bid history of auction items you can also see how many bidders went after it which again is only a guide but it helps you to judge how popular or desirable the item was.

The thing about record players I have found is that it's not always the best quality ones that make the money. Hackers and some Bush models are superior to some of the Dansettes and Fidelitys but prices achieved don't always reflect this.

Hope this helps.

Rich.
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Old 15th Jun 2018, 10:18 am   #4
nicam49
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

Hi Lucy, it's also important to advertise it accurately what it is, as some interested parties will either have set up an automatic alert (on Gumtree) or Google a specific name regularly. In your case, you've got a Decca 'Deccalian 81' and it looks a beauty! And it's on legs-an extra selling point. Especially good if it's a 3-speed deck too! If you do get what you think is a good offer, you could aways see if someone on here could match it. Take a look on Gumtree, see what price others are asking for record players... around here 150 is what Dansettes are being offered at by one restorer, tho' they are sticking a bit...
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Old 15th Jun 2018, 11:14 am   #5
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

Do you have both heads? The brown one in the photo is for 78s, 33 and 45 records need the red one.
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Old 15th Jun 2018, 1:40 pm   #6
Edward Huggins
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

This looks earlier than 1957, more like 1952. Decca Collectors will know all about these.
A downside is that without (expensive) modication, it cannot play Stereo LPs which form the greater part of most record collections. It will be fine for older LPs and 45s, if you have the seperate head for it. You have the 78 head and I would put it at c.45.00/50.00. If you can find the other head then c.90.00. But even at these prices, non-Decca fans may be unlikely to buy.
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Old 15th Jun 2018, 3:03 pm   #7
lucysharp
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

Thank you for the information guys much appreciated I will do bit of research before putting it up for sell...

Its Says Garrard Model T & TA three speed single record playing unit on the operating & maintenance

I only have the brown head when I got it.
3 of the legs have a little metal around the bottom one is missing the metal bit and the little piece holding the arm is snapped off apart from that it really is a nice looking record player.

Lucy
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Old 15th Jun 2018, 3:09 pm   #8
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

That's a nice looking Deccalian you have there Lucy. Does it still play? I can understand your liking for its somewhat quirky 'contemporary' 1950s appearance. It was even exhibited at the 1951 Festival of Britain on the South Bank.

It's interesting because it was introduced by Decca around 1950 in order to play their innovative LP records (they were the first to introduce them into the UK some 3 years ahead of EMI). As Bill says, you need the red plug-in head to play LPs. The brown head in your pictures is for 78s. It's a good quality head - one of the best sounding means of playing 78s.

Decca changed the turntable on the Deccalian a couple of times over the years. The earliest models used specially designed turntables by BSR. Judging from the pictures, yours has the slightly later Garrard TB 3-speed unit. I think that was introduced around 1954.

The Deccalian is a good performer. It was popular with schools in the 1950s. Although its heads are heavy by later standards, they track well and record wear isn't unreasonable. Of course, as Edward says, they're not designed for stereo records and you'd suffer groove jumping and excess wear. The highest output heads have a green sole-plate and are wound with extremely fine wire which can break over the years. Rewinds are possible though - perhaps via this forum.

Value is a difficult estimate because it isn't a Dansette. It's better than that but doesn't possess the magic nostalgia. A good working head (known as the XMS) can fetch 60 on its own. Strangely, a complete Deccalian, complete with two working heads, working turntable and working amplifiet, may not fetch much more than the value of the heads, namely 120.

Best of luck with it - it's a nice piece of record player history.

Martin
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Old 15th Jun 2018, 3:12 pm   #9
dave walsh
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

Looks like Edward is much more spot on with 1952 Lucy. For some reason I confused the record in your photo with a vinyl LP and moved your player forward in time but I can now see it's a [Parlophone] 78. The earliest model seems to be 1947 but that's unverified

Dave

While I wrote that Martin's information seems to head us in the direction of 1947 but not quite. Very knowledgeable people on here!
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Old 15th Jun 2018, 3:21 pm   #10
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

Quote:
While I wrote that Martin's information seems to head us in the direction of 1947. Very knowledgeable people on here!
There was a similar styled model Deccalian introduced just post war - it may well have been 1947 - but that was 78 only, with a Garrard variable-speed governor motor and the predecessor of the XMS head. It was an excellent 78 player.

Martin
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Old 16th Jun 2018, 6:14 pm   #11
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

Hello Lucy - I have one of the early 78 only Deccalians that Martin mentioned - 1946 or 7......along with one or two others......and I'm in Bristol. I really should not be tempted but I am very fond of these old things. Whereabouts are you? Just the area, if we go into detail we'll do it by private message.

Roger
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Old 18th Jun 2018, 10:18 am   #12
lucysharp
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

Its currently in Brislington
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Old 20th Jun 2018, 11:19 pm   #13
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Default Re: Decca model 81...Help I have just moved house and need to sell but not sure on va

PM sent
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