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MMD > Archives > March 1997 > 1997.03.28 > 03Prev  Next

Symphonion Info
By Gerry Bay

I am new to the mechanical music area but I am interested in collecting old instruments. I recently saw a "Symphonion" in an antique store which had a delightful sound. It works by playing a metal disc about 15 inches in diameter. I don't know much about these devices and would like to know more before I consider buying it.

Is a Symphonion a generic class of instrument and, as such, are there many different types around? Or is that a particular manufacturer of a mechanical music instrument? Are these devices rare or common like Edison machines? What are the price range for these instruments?

The dealer wants $4900 for this machine. Is that pricey or a bargain? Are there books or price guides available for these types of instruments? (E.g., like "The Compleat Talking Machine" is for early phonographs).

What should one look out for before buying such an instrument? Are there stores or people which specialize in selling mechanical music instruments in the RI, CT, MA, NY area? How do I contact them? Etc., etc.

Thanks for any help you can give me.

Gerry Bay

[ Another "Welcome Bow" for you, Gerry. We have musical box experts
[ here in MMD who can surely help you. I hope they will say "the
[ price is right" and you can buy a fine instrument ! Good luck.
[ .-- Robbie

(Message sent Sat 29 Mar 1997, 03:06:59 GMT, from time zone GMT-0500.)

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