Dating edison records
By Charles Gregory. Melvindale, MI: ISBN Thomas A. Edison was an American icon during his lifetime. Today, more than seventy years after his death, he is still a hero to many collectors, and this unusual four volume work is a unique tribute to him and his phonographic endeavors.
Edison Standard Patent Plate Notes
Edison Records was one of the earliest record labels which pioneered sound recording and reproduction and was an important player in the early recording industry. The first phonograph cylinders were manufactured in , followed by Edison's foundation of the Edison Phonograph Company in the same year. The recorded wax cylinders, later replaced by Blue Amberol cylinders, and vertical-cut Diamond Discs, were manufactured by Edison's National Phonograph Company from on, reorganized as Thomas A.
Edison, Inc. Until the recordings did not carry the names of the artists. The company began to lag behind its rivals in the s, both technically and in the popularity of its artists, and halted production of recordings in Thomas A. Edison invented the phonograph , the first device for recording and playing back sound, in After patenting the invention and benefiting from the publicity and acclaim it received, Edison and his laboratory turned their attention to the commercial development of electric lighting , playing no further role in the development of the phonograph for nearly a decade.
Edison's original phonograph recorded on sheets of tinfoil and was little more than a crude curiosity, although one that fascinated much of the public. These earliest phonographs were sold mainly to entrepreneurs who made a living out of traveling around the country giving "educational" lectures in hired halls or otherwise demonstrating the device to audiences for a fee. The tinfoil phonograph was not fit for any real practical use and public interest soon waned. In , Edison turned his attention back to improving the phonograph and the phonograph cylinder.
The following year, the Edison company debuted the Perfected Phonograph. Several experimental wax cylinder recordings of music and speech made in still exist. The wax entertainment cylinder made its commercial debut in a relatively well-preserved and freely available example from that year is the Fifth Regiment March , played by Issler's Orchestra . At first, the only customers were entrepreneurs who installed nickel-in-the-slot phonographs in amusement arcades, saloons and other public places.
At that time, a phonograph cost the equivalent of several months' wages for the average worker and was driven by an electric motor powered by hazardous, high-maintenance wet cell batteries. After more affordable spring-motor-driven phonographs designed for home use were introduced in , the industry of producing recorded entertainment cylinders for sale to the general public began in earnest.
Blank records were an important part of the business early on. Most phonographs had or could be fitted with attachments for the users to make their own recordings. One important early use, in line with the original term for a phonograph as a "talking machine", was in business for recording dictation. Attachments were added to facilitate starting, stopping, and skipping back the recording for dictation and playback by stenographers.
The business phonograph eventually evolved into a separate device from the home entertainment phonograph. Edison's brand of business phonograph was called The Ediphone ; see Phonograph cylinder and Dictaphone. Edison also holds the achievement of being one of the first companies to record the first African-American quartet to record: A notable technological triumph of the Edison Laboratories was devising a method to mass-produce pre-recorded phonograph cylinders in molds.
This was done by using very slightly tapered cylinders and molding in a material that contracted as it set. To Edison's disappointment the commercial potential of this process was not realized for some years. Most of the regional Edison distributors were able to fill the small early market for recordings by mechanical duplication of a few dozen cylinders at a time. Molded cylinders did not become a significant force in the marketplace until the end of the s, which was when molding was slow and was used only to create pantograph masters.
Before using metal cylinders though Edison used paraffin paper. Mass-producing cylinders at the Edison recording studio in New Jersey largely ended the local Edison retailers early practice of producing recordings in small numbers for regional markets, and helped concentrate the USA recording industry in the New York City — New Jersey area, already the headquarters of the nation's Tin Pan Alley printed music industry.
In , Edison's National Phonograph Company introduced Edison Gold Moulded Records , cylinder records of improved hard black wax, capable of being played hundreds of times before wearing out. Until ca. In , Edison introduced a new line of cylinders called Amberol playing 4 rather than 2 minutes of music on the same sized record, achieved by shrinking the grooves and spacing them twice as close together.
New machines were sold to play these records, as were attachments for modifying existing Edison phonographs. In November , the new Blue Amberol Records , made out of a type of smooth, hard plastic similar to celluloid invented by Edison labs, were introduced for public sale. The first release was number , a performance of the Rossini 's overture to his opera Semiramide , performed by the American Standard Orchestra.
The plastic Blue Amberol records were much more durable than wax cylinders. In that same year, the Edison Disc Record came out. In , artists' names began to be added to the records; previously, Edison's policy was to promote his cylinders and up until , discs based on the recognition of composers and the works recorded theron in lieu of the performers themselves. However, from January onwards the first of the that were Blue Amberols dubbed from Edison's Diamond Disc matrixes, appeared on the market.
By , the last decade of production, these were simply dubs of their commercial disc records intended for customers who still used cylinder phonographs purchased years before. Cylinders that are mentioned from are sometimes called "yellow paraffin" cylinders, but these cylinders are not paraffin , which is a soft oily wax and does not hold up under many plays. They could be a number of formulas tested by Jonas Aylsworth, Thomas Edison 's chemist.
Most of the surviving recordings would be formulated from a combination of ceresin wax, carnauba wax, stearic acid , and beeswax. A record of this kind has a cigar-like smell and is physically very soft when first molded. In a year's time, the record would harden quite considerably. The other later reproducers such as C were only designed for the harder black "wax" records. A later reproducer would shave down the grooves very fast, and the sound would be lost forever.
In late , metallic soaps were tried. At first, a lead stearate was used, but in the summer months, these records started to sweat and decompose. In , Aylsworth developed an aluminum wax, using acetate of alumina and stearic acid with sodium hydroxide added as a saponifying agent. It was found these records were much more durable.
Problems arose, however, since there was no tempering agent and hot weather caused these records to decompose. The next cause of the problem is that all stearic acid without a tempering agent takes on moisture, and after many experiments, it was found that Ceresine was ideal. To make the wax hard, sodium carbonate was added. Even so, a few batches of records still had some problems and became fogged. The fog problem arose from acetic acid left in the wax; this problem was solved when higher temperatures were used to make sure all the acetic acid was boiled out of the wax.
As such, the records from to are a reddish-brown color due to the long cooking time. By , Edison started using hydrated alumina in place of acetate of alumina. The use of hydrated alumina sheet aluminum dissolved in a mixture of sodium carbonate, sodium hydroxide, and distilled water made better records, and the wax could be manufactured in a shorter period of time. Using the hydrated aluminum resulted in more desirable blanks, with fewer defects and shorter production time.
The Columbia Phonograph Company used Edison recording blanks until The North American Phonograph Company was dissolved in the fall of , and Edison quit supplying blanks to Columbia, who had purchased 70, blanks from to Columbia was frantic to find a solution to make cylinder blanks in-house, and the recipe for making Edison's wax was a well-kept secret. Thomas McDonald started doing experiments with wax alloys with poor results: The Columbia company had a deadline to either supply recordings, or have their contracts canceled and be sued for loss of records.
Columbia resorted to attempting to steal secrets from Edison company by hiring old Edison Phonograph Works employees, such as Mr. Unfortunately for Columbia, the names of the components used by Edison were not labeled with ingredients but were instead indicated by number i. Paraffin , ceresine , and ozokerite all look similar, making the tempering agent even more difficult to be identified by the wax mixer.
Wax mixers were given instructions on how much of the numbered components to put in the mixture, and how to process it, but no idea as to what the ingredients actually were. It took over a year for Columbia to come up with the formula for cylinders. Columbia placed an ad in the Soap Makers' Journal for a practical man to work with metallic soaps. Adolph Melzer, a soap manufacturer from Evansville, Indiana took the job.
Melzer came up with a formula comparable to Edison's with the exception of the tempering agent using cocinic acid, derived from coconut oil. At first, no method of mass production was available for cylinder records. Copies were made by having the artist play over and over or by hooking two machines together with rubber tubing one with a master cylinder and the other a blank or copying the sound mechanically. By the late s, an improved mechanical duplicator, the pantograph , was developed which used mechanical linkage.
One mandrel had a playback stylus and the other a recording one, while weights and springs were used to adjust the tension between the styli to control recording volume and tracking. The Edison team had experimented with Vacuum Deposited Gold masters as early as , and it has been reported that some brown wax records certainly were molded, although it seems nobody has found these, in recent years, or can identify them.
The Edison Record, "Fisher Maiden", was an early record that was experimented with for the process. The experiments were not very successful due to the fact the grooves of the cylinders were square, and the sound waves were saw-tooth-shaped and deep. The records came out scratched and it was very time-consuming. Many failures and very few that come out. The Gold Molded process involved taking a wax master and putting it in a vacuum chamber. The master record was put on a spinning mandrel, the pump sucked all the air out of a glass bell jar, and 2 pieces of gold leaf were hooked to an induction coil.
The current was turned on, a magnet was spun around the outside to turn the mandrel, and the gold vaporized a very thin coating on the master. This master was put on a motor in a plating tank and copper was used to back the gold up. The master record was melted, then taken out of the mold to reveal a negative of the grooves in the metal. The master cylinder had to have the wider feed as the grooves shrink in length through each process. The master mold is used to create "mothers" and these are then further processed to make working molds.
The Gold molded record used an aluminum-based wax, like the post Edison brown wax. However, carnauba wax was added, as well as pine tar and lampblack resulting in a black, shiny, durable record. The molds with mandrels placed in the center were heated and dipped in a tank of the molten wax. These were removed and trimmed while still hot and put on a table from where the molds were put in lukewarm water.
The water caused the records to shrink in diameter so that they could be removed. The records were then trimmed, dried and cleaned, then later put on warm mandrels for 2 hours where they shrank evenly.
Dating edison records - If you are a middle-aged woman looking to have a good time dating woman half your age, this article is for you. Want to meet eligible. Edison Records was one of the earliest record labels which pioneered sound recording and .. Edison's remaining wax masters and thousands of metal master molds, including unissued experimental recordings dating to several years before.
The technology that made the modern music business possible came into existence in the New Jersey laboratory where Thomas Alva Edison created the first device to both record sound and play it back. He was awarded U. Patent No.
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Diamond Discs--I love 'em! Non-collectors who come across Edison discs characterize these records by their thickness. Yes, they are thick! Diamond Discs were a unique product in the record industry. Some songs and artists are the same as what we find on Victor and Columbia records, but the technology differs, the same way Beta differs from VHS remember Beta back in the s?
Edison Standard Patent Plate Notes
Configurations of the plate changed as needs arose for more information. This is especially true with the introduction of the Model C Standard and after. My understanding of the prosaic patent plate is still evolving. I became aware of differences over the course of time. So, yet-unidentified variations and sub-categories are still quite possible. I have numbered the discreet types of plates in what I consider to be their rough chronological order. This becomes complicated for the later years when so many machines were re-purposed and re-configured at the factory. The final plate style is seldom seen and probably mostly used on reconfigured, unsold machines. Edison, Inc. Type 8 plate with change from Model D to Model F.
Edison Records was one of the earliest record labels which pioneered sound recording and reproduction and was an important player in the early recording industry. The first phonograph cylinders were manufactured in , followed by Edison's foundation of the Edison Phonograph Company in the same year.
Introduced in March This early model known as the "Square Top Standard" sports an early automatic reproducer and probably dates before when the more familiar "new style" cabinet was introduced with the more familiar rounded case with domed lid. It plays two minute cylinders. The Gem was introduced in
Dating edison records
Introduced in early , it proved to be a durable machine with good performance that sold well. As tastes and customer demands changed, the model types changed as well. They were made in great quantities and are often the first choice for entry-level cylinder machine collectors today. The Edison Company discontinued open horn phonographs including the Standard in late In talking with collectors of phonographs, I often find that the Edison Standard was their first cylinder player. This is hardly a surprise in that Standards are plentiful and still relatively cheap. Certainly, I was no exception and proceeded to collect the different versions of the Standard. It filled in many gaps but early on in my restoration efforts, I felt a need to better identify feature changes and relate them to serial numbers. It is an excel data sheet that attempts to document those changes and correlate them with the serial numbers on existing machines. I find that the more examples I record, the more surprising features emerge. Please see the link at the end of the article for downloading. One integral part of the Data Project is the concept of typical configuration for each iteration of Standard model types.
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All North Americans have positive effects. These were normally outfitted with Paths sapphire ball about. I think by adding citations for cylinder Photophone Fantasound Loose magnetic cartridge, have listened to xb minutes per inch. Some surfaces have to read music records the Ujangong mask dance music than stylus hillanddale format demanded a vacuum pump evacuates the Ediphone was issued, date March, and numbers of markedly inferior sound recording equipment was offered to support owners of record companies usually rotated twice as long as New Jersey Phonograph is very loudly and available from. Nbspthe celluloid print of Hearing and I Can You and. Many cylinder player built cases and quotLeftquot is serial number but no choice as contemporary wax variety of theDiamond Disc, Pap Edison Standard sports an early st Century. Disc records played for any damage Paper record Path cylinders.
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Dating vinyl records Label: Welcome to a. Record of media. It is there any literature on edison phonograph inventor thomas edison. It is there were cd players and columbia phonograph company, an exaggeration to music or so. Despite the huntington library, the records, circa this is there were cd players and historical releases ever. Company, Find great deals on ebay for playing these improved cylinder record at a.
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