[78-L] Winged RCA tonearm was [Got one of these in your attic?)

Michael Biel mbiel at mbiel.com
Sun Jun 23 12:20:28 PDT 2013

From: David Lennick <dlennick at sympatico.ca)
>>>> http://santafe.craigslist.org/clt/3858202243.html
From: David Breneman
>>> Can anyone explain why the early RCA electric tonearms had those huge metal
>>> "shoulders" behind the pickup?  Was it to trip some record changer mechanism
>>> only installed in some models or...  ...What?!

If you look at these pictures again you will see that this is not a
change so that is not the purpose.

From: "Ron L'Herault" <lherault at bu.edu>
>> It's a counterweight, not enough of one in some respects but that's what it is.

Actually the wings are stabilizers to keep the arm level.  There are
torsion wires under them. It's been a while since I looked at the
mechanism and manuals, but the wires also might go to springs for weight
adjustment, but I think that is really under the tailbone at the back of
the arm.  
>> I have an additional slip on weight that I believe was part of a "kit"
>> sold to reduce wear on the Victor "LPs" that were introduced in the early
>> 30s. I have a second one that slips on the end of the straight tone arm
>> that has an inverted U cross section too. They have felt linings the same
>> color as Victor turn table felt.   Ron L.

In the photo in the center at the back of the turntable is a an inverted
U felt-lined weight.  If this is what you are referring to, it is not a
counterweight to lighten the tone arm pressure, it is to slip onto the
reproducer to make it HEAVIER to make the recordings on the pre-grooved
plastic discs. 

From: George Epple <gkepple at msn.com>		 
> I have been told that the wide RCA tonearms were designed to extend
> frequency response and in fact do. These RE series sets, when properly
> restored have great fedelity!  George

That would mainly be a function of the reproducer, not the "wings", but
the stable arm might allow for the reproducer to resist movement on its
own which would distort the sound. 

Mike Biel  mbiel at mbiel.com


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