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Info wanted on US Army wind up phonograph WW2


River Rat 1

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I found a WW2 US Army phonograph you wind it up and put those old records if you drop one they break not the vinyl ones it's green all in a built in case with US on lid in working condition with extra needles and five records the price is right I think I just want to know what they sell for before I buy it I did see one sell on fleabay for some crazy price any info and what they sell for info please I remember I read they were for recreation purposes in WW2 I just don't want to over pay it's kind of neat.

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I found a WW2 US Army phonograph you wind it up and put those old records if you drop one they break not the vinyl ones it's green all in a built in case with US on lid in working condition with extra needles and five records the price is right I think I just want to know what they sell for before I buy it I did see one sell on fleabay for some crazy price any info and what they sell for info please I remember I read they were for recreation purposes in WW2 I just don't want to over pay it's kind of neat.

 

They play the old 78 records, which often were shellac instead of vinyl. The reason they have so many needles is that each needle was only good for perhaps 7 or 8 plays.

 

Prices on these Signal Corps models do seem to vary, but I have seen them in the neighborhood of $80-150. These would have been used for recreational purposes (big time radio shows produced special versions on disk for distribution to troops in the field) and also would have had use in training as for recorded instructional materials.

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I paid $75 for mine about five years ago.

 

DO NOT take it apart to clean the mechanism!!!! I learned that the hard way. Google for a shop that repairs spring-powered Victrolas and let them do it. Probably won't be cheap, but it will be worth it.

 

Tom

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  • 8 years later...

They go for $400-$500

The needles are only good for two songs and then you replace them.

You can get replacements on ebay cheap.

The records are made of clay.

They are fairly durable unless you drop them.

I found that one of the most important things to do when you get one is to oil the reproducer (part that holds the needle) arm at its base.

The arms tend to stiffen up and then they will not flow easily over the record.

This will result in the songs skipping.

PM me with any questions as I own 3 of these.

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  • 1 year later...

Prices have went up dramatically I would say $750-1200. There were approximately 900 V Disks produced for the us army plus the navy had their version. Collecting them is a hobby into itself. My 4 daughters learned to swing dance with our phonograph! 

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