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Gramophone Needles

Gram. Needles

A word of explanation is called for here.  Following on from the merger of The Gramophone Co. (HMV) and Columbia to form EMI in 1931 several machine models were produced under the two different names that were identical in almost all respects except for the badging they carried.  The HMV No. 21 although basically identical to the Columbia 15a bore the usual dog and horn logo whereas the Columbia version had no logo on the front but the word "Columbia" on its backplate and had it's identifiable "Maltese Cross" cut out as the 15 below.  The 21/15a appeared on the HMV97/Columbia 204 gramophones with the exception of some wartime models that carried the later HMV 23/Columbia 24 soundbox shown below.

HMV and Columbia Soundboxes

1933 - c1940 HMV No. 21/Columbia No. 15a

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NB Only the HMV 21 is shown as it is identical to the Columbia 15a except for the logo

c1933 - c1961 HMV No. 23/Columbia No. 24

As with the HMV 21 and Columbia 15a the HMV 23 and Columbia 24 adopted the same design with different referencing of the models and logos, The 23 bears the dog and horn logo in the centre of the front plate and the Columbia the magic notes logo in the centre of the front plate as well as the word "Columbia" on the back plate. The soundbox was used on the HMV 87 and 88 as well as their Columbia parallels the 205 and 211.  The soundbox also found its way onto wartime HMV 97's and its parallel the Columbia 204.

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NB Only the Columbia 24 is shown as it is identical to the HMV 2 3except for the logo

c1928 Columbia No. 9

I have one on each of my Columbia 109A (Junior) and Columbia 112A (Standard) machines from the late 1920's.  Just when it replaced the Columbia No 8 ( a soundbox not in my collection) I know not but it would seem to coincide, if only approximately, with the introduction of the Plano Reflex arm of 1928/9.  It seems there were at least two variations of the No.9, the other one differing from the one shown in the photos by having a rounded instead of flattened front cover.

c1930 Columbia No. 15

I have one of these on my Columbia 201 and 202's including the 202C from 1937 so it can be assumed that the soundbox made the transition when HMV and Columbia merged in 1931.  Ultimately it became the basis of the HMV 21/Columbia 15a listed above.

c1928 Columbia Floating Soundbox

According to advertising literature of the time this soundbox was specially designed for the 113 series (and 160 series in the USA) of gramophones.  It bears a strong similarity to the No 15 and was available with a polished brass finish for the 113a series and a nickel finish on the 113.

Click on photos for larger image

Note: The soundbox listing is not comprehensive.  It merely relates to the soundboxes on my collection of gramophones.