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Old 22nd Aug 2020, 3:55 pm   #101
Radio Wrangler
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

It's obviously been around the block a few times. The label on the underside might suggest Mr Francis was the first owner. How many and what happened since, who knows?

Are those metal plates the mountings for castors or for round legs?

Castors would mean the threaded bushes would be perpendicular to the base. Legs would most likely have them inclined a bit outwards. Something on legs made to stand square is liable to rocking on the legs. With the legs splayed outwards, you get much better stability. Horses know this well and naturally stand with one leg off square because their position feels more secure. Dressage competitors lose points for halts that aren't square so it takes a bit of skill from the rider to get a good score. Who'd have thought there was common knowledge shared by neddies and radiograms?

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Old 23rd Aug 2020, 10:19 am   #102
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sparkymike View Post
Seeing the underside of the record player board, it definitely looks home made to me. Hopefully that lamp was low voltage or inaccessible to prying fingers !!
My late ex wife married a chap by the name of Francis from Dartford Kent.
I can make enquiries to find out if he was a relation to the above gent.
Those feet brackets look to me like the type that a lot of furniture had in early 60's and round thin long feet screwed in, usually splaying out at an angle.
One question to Wessex. Is the gap between the shelves high enough to stand a 12" record in ?
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Shelves are exactly 13 high. Perfect for LP storage.
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Old 23rd Aug 2020, 10:38 am   #103
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

Or 12" 78rpm albums of half a dozen or so discs.
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Old 23rd Aug 2020, 2:06 pm   #104
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

The holes drilled are not stained and look more recent, so obviously for wiring for a couple of bookshelf type speakers to be stood one on each right hand shelf space one above the other for the later hi-fi amp and deck conversion. If the holes are thought to be original, then they would likely to have been for battery packs as I said earlier. The left hand cupboard would have been used for record storage.

The knobs are all fake and decorative, being made of wood and turned on a lathe by someone. The knobs on the original chassis would probably have been Bakelite and went with the original chassis when it was removed, or just got lost in time.

The motor board is original and, as I said earlier, shows the oblong hole where the light plug socket fitted. As I said earlier, this would be low voltage from the valve heater supply - you can see it's a low voltage bulb in the fitting. It may or may not have had a cover fitted, but probably no cover by the looks of the fitting, so could be a later addition. The bit of wiring on the underside of the board looks a bit home done.

The bottom plywood cover under the base of the cabinet is obviously non-original. It's funny that the also non-original bottom board in the gram section has those vent holes, as the only thing that they'll be venting is the closed off area between the two boards - a bit of 'home thinking' that didn't quite work out!

The castor plates are likely to be original. Many of these big old radiograms were fitted with castors from manufacture and even some of the big console TVs of the time were. They were always inset up inside the plinth so that it looked from a viewers point of view as though the cabinet was actually sitting straight on the floor. On a carpet it would appear as though there was no space under the plinth at all, but the cabinet could still easily be moved on its 'wheels' if necessary. Radiograms often had just three castors fitted, two at the front and one in the middle at the back to prevent the 'wobble' effect on hard and slightly uneven floors. these castors sometimes got caught in carpets and got damaged or broken off - probably what happened to the ones on the cabinet shown.

It looks like a bit of tinted glass or plastic has been fitted behind the round hole in the front so that the later amplifier's valves could be seen glowing, but that's obviously just a guess, just like a lot of the other observations.
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Old 23rd Aug 2020, 3:58 pm   #105
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

As an additional observation that I forgot to add to the above post, the bit of wiring on the underside of the record deck mounting board looks like it has something to do with the supply and switching of the lid light when said lid is opened and closed. There's some sunk in metal strip work that looks like part of a home made switch. There's also some very strange goings on with channeled out wood for wiring with even one which seems to lead to a fixing screw hole. If I looked long and hard enough at the pictures, I could probably work out what was actually going on and how it was supposed to work, but I'll leave that to someone else if they want to take the time out to do it!

It's all very interesting - I bet the OP never imagined in his wildest dreams that such a story would unfold regarding this cabinet, which only has the lid light and its wiring and plug as the only bit of (original?) electrics left fitted.
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Old 23rd Aug 2020, 9:06 pm   #106
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

Thanks all. Techman’s right regarding the unfolding story, which remains, and without a lot of time and effort is likely to remain a puzzle. But there is now some background history to it that seems fairly certain. H E Francis owned it at some point. Probably mid-war as it ends up in a depository in Harrogate - an area GPO staff evacuated to. Whether he disposed of it before he died in 1970... who knows. The alterations... while he had it or after. How it got to Southampton and what it originally started life as; unknowns.
We’re very much inclined to keep it. I like the wood effect and I’m sure we can find some new use to it - although unlikely to be audio/visual.
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Old 24th Aug 2020, 8:00 am   #107
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

Those insulated cable clips were much used in the 50's. My father had a pack in the garage always to hand.
Mike.
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Old 27th Aug 2020, 12:51 pm   #108
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

I am still attached to the ship idea. There must be a number of ways to retain a radiogram even when fitted on castors - it could be trundled onto a plinth of some sort for example. Did the big liners pitch about a lot?
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Old 27th Aug 2020, 1:21 pm   #109
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

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Did the big liners pitch about a lot?
I can only say that in a storm force 10 they did.

Lawrence.
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Old 27th Aug 2020, 2:36 pm   #110
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

I believe that proper liners, as opposed to modern cruise ships, were built to plough through whatever the weather within reason. Even the old IoM steamers happily ventured forth in a force 9 as I well remember. The liners tried to keep up with the schedule rather than worrying too much about the comfort of the passengers an the basis that if you took a transatlantic crossing in February you might expect to be in for a rough time.

I don't suppose that listening to records would be the first priority in those circumstances!
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Old 27th Aug 2020, 7:51 pm   #111
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

I’m not wanting to pour cold water on the ship idea, however I think the reason it ended in Southampton is due to family links. I’ve taken a trial subscription to an Ancestry website and details on that site plus a copy of a will (not that of Mr Francis) from the Probate service shows that Mr Francis had a relative in the suburb of Southampton where the Oxfam furniture store was/is.
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Old 27th Aug 2020, 11:24 pm   #112
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

Much more likely. The old liners had orchestras and bands, not record players, which would surely have been impractical even with the massive pickups of the day.
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Old 28th Aug 2020, 1:15 am   #113
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sparkymike View Post
Those insulated cable clips were much used in the 50's. My father had a pack in the garage always to hand.
Mike.
They may be still available, I've not checked. I know I've still got a small stock of them somewhere.

I still think that you may have been on to something with your 'Alba' suggestion. I didn't think so at first, but on a second study of those other pictures I changed my mind. I've not done any research myself, but for anyone wanting to go further into it, it could be worth investigating whether Alba, or its parent company, made their own cabinets or had them made for them and whether any units were made to special order.

And, as regards to those 'borrowed' pictures that I posted, I ended up confusing myself with them when I stated that the left hand cupboard was for records, when of course I was thinking of the 'borrowed' pictures and not of the OP's pictures, which shows his unit has a cupboard only on the right hand side. This cupboard would have originally have been for records, as I'm pretty sure that the holes drilled are not original and were drilled for the wiring for later speakers that stood on the two shelves. It could even have been that the speakers had long enough leads that when the unit was in use, the speakers could be removed from the cupboard for placing in positions externally for proper stereo - and then put back on the shelves and the door closed when not in use.
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Old 28th Aug 2020, 1:56 am   #114
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Default Re: Identifying radiogram. Value?

Some passenger vessels were fitted with gramophone reproducing equipment, but as part of installed central entertainment systems, presumably with appropriate mountings to allow safe on-board operation, as shown in the attached item.

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Cheers,
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