Further photos of the Lion Puck

The Puck was a brilliant invention. It was thought up by noted talking machine entrepreneur Gianni Bettini. The Puck did exactly what it was designed to do with no extra frills -- it played a cylinder phonograph record. It soon became apparent that the Puck was a virtually perfect instrument from all standpoints-- it could be inexpensively produced, sold at a reasonable price, and functioned reliably: a virtual "People's Phonograph." Many factories commenced to manufacture Pucks in Germany and France. 

The horns were proof of the fertility of the human mind -- the colors and subtleties of decoration were infinite. The problem is finding an original horn with original paint! These were ephemeral instruments at the time -- people knocked them around or tossed them out after they broke, making not only excellent condition Puck machines rare, but painted flower horns impossible to find.  And we really do mean impossible, not an exaggeration.  Most of the horns originally sold on Pucks were "plain" straight metal and not painted "flower" horns.  The instrument you see here is remarkable both for its suoerb condition, and its charming horn.

This kind of machine is loosely known as a "Lion Puck," of which there are three styles -- lion facing left, lion facing right and lion facing forward (seen here).  Of the three, though all are considered rare, the "facing forward lion" is the rarest.  These "silver based" Pucks were manufactured in France, whereas most other varieties were made in Germany. Note the amazing freshness of the original paint -- even the delicate green wash surrounding the face of the lion is still present.  Furthermore, the condition of the motor and metal components can be seen to be fresh, clean and spotless.

As fresh and clean as the rest of the machine is this original tag applied by the seller -- The "Phono-Photo Palace," technical instruments, Paris, France.  

The mechanism was uncomplicated and mounted on a metal base. The motor was essentially modified from a clock motor, very basic but amazingly effective -- it runs off a STRING -- instead of a belt, it uses a string. Pucks were phonos that grew out of the German tradition of clock-making. Here we see one of the most elaborate guards that was ever devised to protect the string that drives the cylinder from accidental contact.  This style Puck was better and more well-designed than most.  Please note -- we will supply the buyer with additional string, of a very special type, in case it becomes necessary to replace the string.  

Further proof of the above-the-usual design of this machine is a dedicated brake lever -- something usually reserved for more elaborate instruments.

Pucks were also imported into the USA. Columbia did a land-office business in Pucks distributing them in the USA. The Puck was designed with just enough technology to do its job at the time. The Puck will play through one 2-minute cylinder record when fully wound up. The sound quality can only be described as "amazingly loud and clear." The Puck is a decorative artifact which will play a cylinder with surprising results, and the simplicity of it, its technical limitations, actually adds to the appeal, in our opinion. This particular one is a really unusual and pretty example. Compare the beauty and cleanliness of this instrument with the kind of rusty, gummy, beat-up and nasty junk you see on eBay.

Care to see it in action? -- request a video of this instrument playing a cylinder record.  Any Edison or Columbia record may be used.

Price: $950.00 US, including one 2-minute cylinder record, plus s/h (NY State residents must pay tax, if applicable).

Contact: phonotim@gmail.com

Telephone: 585-244-5546  

US Post: Phonophan   

               PO Box 747

               Henrietta, NY 14467 USA

Click here for Terms & Conditions of sale

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