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MMD > Archives > October 1997 > 1997.10.30 > 01Prev  Next

Dimier Freres Cylinder Box No. 3116
By Nancy Fratti

Well -- just when you thought you'd never see another !!

Ian McDonald told us about his rare Dimier Freres music box and asked for
any info on any others.  I just got a box in for repair -- early lever-
wind -- opened it up and... guess what?  A Dimier!!!!!  Here's the specs:

Tune card has "Dimier & Cie.  Hambourg" in cartouches on the bottom, and
"Dimier & Cie.  A. Geneve" on the top.  There is a cartouche on either
side of the tune card.  In the left cartouche is a large capital C, the
right one is empty.  In the top center cartouche is #3116; the cylinder
has the number 1298 scratched in it.

It plays 6 tunes:  (forgive the spelling, it's very ornate writing)
  Valse, L'esoile du Nord.  by Marcaillhou
  Les Vepres sicilienes.  L'automne, by Verdi
  Polka.  Une suit a Bagrcolles, by Tasta
  Il Trovatore, vivea cosituide il gui..., by Verdi
  Mazurka. Les Vepres sicilienne, by Verdi
  Introduction.  Macbeth, by Verdi

This is the first I've ever seen Macbeth on any cylinder box!

Cylinder is 10 inches long.  Bedplate is cast iron.  Winding handle is
solid steel with tapered handle to hook your finger around.  The handle
is pointing towards the inside of the box and has a little ball turned on
the end of it.  The spring barrel bridges and governor screw in from the
underside of the bedplate.

The on/off and change repeat levers are brass and the divider board has a
scalloped brass cover on it.  The case is very much like a keywind
case: simple lid edge of a 1/2-rounded edge, 3 strips of banding on lid
and 2 on front.  Natural wood finish.  The lid is veneered and has a
large hexagon on the lid where the inlay would be.  I don't know if it
original or not... don't think so, but you never know!

The underside of the case has stenciled on it:

    D & C
    No. 3116

There are a few lines on the bottom cartouche of the tune card in pencil,
but I really can't tell definitely what they are.  The first looks like
'amt'; the second looks like '1 11 75',  except that the '11' has a bar
through the top.  The third looks like 'L1.25'.

So, this might be the second one that Ord-Hume mentions in his book, or
it could be a third.  The cylinder is being re-pinned and the comb needs
help, so I don't know what type of sound this will have.

Tune in next year to find out!

Nancy Fratti - Panchronia Antiquities
PO BOX 210 - Whitehall, NY 12887-0210 USA
518-282-9770  or fax: 518-282-9800
Disc & Cylinder Musical Boxes - Musical Box Restoration Supplies

(Message sent Thu 30 Oct 1997, 17:46:37 GMT, from time zone GMT-0500.)

Key Words in Subject:  3116, Box, Cylinder, Dimier, Freres, No

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