Author Topic: Cannot Place this 10-hole Hohner  (Read 2796 times)

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Dannos Harp

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Cannot Place this 10-hole Hohner
« on: December 24, 2016, 02:55:32 PM »
I have a 10-hole Hohner Chromatic, with rounded tabs.  It is just listed as Chromatic -not Chromatica.  Has the 6-point Star engraved -not raised, with the circle being held by jagged sleeves.  The last award stamped was 1881 Stutgart.  Tuned to C.

From what I was able to learn, that places this between 1902-1924.  Please let me know.  Most of the info on the black box (with white interior) on the box has rubbed off.

« Last Edit: December 25, 2016, 01:08:46 AM by SlideMeister »

Offline John Broecker

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Re: Cannot Place this 10-hole Hohner
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2016, 05:54:02 PM »
Hello, Dannos Harp.

The world's first known mass-produced slide chromatic harmonica
was the Hohner #260 "Chromatic Harmonica", shown in an ad,
in the Musical Trade Review, a USA magazine, 1910 January issue.
It's USA patent #1671309 was given to David Newman in 1928.

It was set in the Richter system of reed placement (like the Hohner
#1896 Marine Band diatonic harmonica), and had leather windsaver
valves. Two years later, (1912), it's name was changed to "The
Chromonica".

The Hohner "Chromatica" was a 12-mouthpiece-holes (or 10 holes)
slide chromatic harmonica. It looked almost identical to the Hohner
#270 Super Chromonica, but the Chromatica had no windsaver valves.

The production dates for the slide chromatic Hohner Chromatica is
unknown, but a guess would be circa 1928 -1938(?). I've never
seen one in person, or in any Hohner ads in my collection.

Your Chromatica slide harp was probably made (a guess) in the 1930s,
with the engraved hexagon star in the hands & circles trademark.
The embossed (raised lettering) on the metal covers was used circa
1915-'25(?).  The jagged sleeves were also of that era.

In 1937, Hohner was ordered by the German government, to remove the
hexagon star from the trademark, and the circle has no star in the center
from that date to today.

The dating of the covers can't be 100% certain. Hohner, like other harmonica
companies, used new old stock parts throughout the 1900s, especially in the
first half of the century.

Several harmonica companies have made slide chromatic harmonicas
with the "Chromatic" model name. They would have been made after
1910.

In the 10-hole Chromatica model, it had 20 double holes, 40 reeds,
the comb set up like a 20 double holes tremolo harp, Richter system.
The reed placement system on the 12-hole model (24 double holes,
48 reeds) may have been solo system reed placement, but that's a guess.

The first mass-produced solo system reed placement harmonica
was patented (USA #863960) by W.B. Yates, Alviso, California,
on a 12-hole diatonic (no-slide) harmonica, in 1907.
 
Today, The Hohner Chromaticas are a series of no-slide chromatic
bass harps, chord harps and glissando harps, made from circa 1930
to today, with a few models discontinued along the way.

Happy Holidays

John "Shake & Bake" Broecker

« Last Edit: December 24, 2016, 06:31:20 PM by John Broecker »
Bob Uecker, Catcher, Announcer, USA Baseball: "The best way to catch a knuckleball is to wait for it to stop rolling on the ground, then pick it up."

Offline John Broecker

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Re: Cannot Place this 10-hole Hohner
« Reply #2 on: December 25, 2016, 06:41:20 PM »
Hello, Dannos Harp.

By adding the photos of your Hohner #260 "Chromatic Harmonica",
you have allowed us to say with 100% certainty that your slide chromatic
was made between 1910-1912.  It's not a Hohner Chromatica.

The slide mechanism with button has the external spring of that era(1910-'28).
In 1928, William Hausler, manager of Hohner USA, introduced the internal spring
slider mechanism (a safety pin) on all Hohner slide chromatics. Other companies
had to wait 20 years before they could use the patented internal slider (1948).

Congratulations. You have one of the world's first mass-produced slide chromatics.

Happy Holidays

John Broecker
Bob Uecker, Catcher, Announcer, USA Baseball: "The best way to catch a knuckleball is to wait for it to stop rolling on the ground, then pick it up."

Dannos Harp

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Re: Cannot Place this 10-hole Hohner
« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2016, 12:52:53 PM »
I have a 10-hole Hohner Chromatic, with rounded tabs.  It is just listed as Chromatic -not Chromatica.  Has the 6-point Star engraved -not raised, with the circle being held by jagged sleeves.  The last award stamped was 1881 Stutgart.  Tuned to C.

From what I was able to learn, that places this between 1902-1924.  Please let me know.  Most of the info on the black box (with white interior) on the box has rubbed off.

My pics are too large to post....


Hi Edward,

My apologies....I was unawares that I was wound up.  I was perfectly calm when posting.  Somebody was able to convert the pics of my harmonica, to post.  I hope you enjoy them.  I would like you input, on what you think as well.
Hey Dannos Harp...
You might want to go through the introduction process
before you get too wound up. 
You Could end up on the outside looking in again.
Introductions are kind of important.
After that, Go for the Guto..

Dannos Harp

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Re: Cannot Place this 10-hole Hohner
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2016, 01:02:13 PM »
Thank you John,

Although, curiosity nudges me to find it's worth....I am more inclined to keep and learn how to play it -lest it be too fragile to play; rather than sell it.  It does seem to be quite sturdy.  After decades of listening to rock...I am pretty burned out and have turned to jazz and big-band enticings over the last five years.  In cleaning out my Grandmother's trailer, I came across this -never having seen a harmonica of this type before.  My Dad is still alive and he may be able to give me some history of WHO owned it.

Playing with it, it does sound quite good to my untrained ear.  I will read the intro's, per Edwards recommendations.  I was on vacation and the eyes get tired squinting at a cell-phone, is the primary reason I have not.  Again, thank you for your input.  It is muchly appreciated!!

Offline John Broecker

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Re: Cannot Place this 10-hole Hohner
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2016, 08:35:16 PM »
Hello, Dannos.

I'm not an employee of any harmonica manufacturer,
seller or distributor.

If you decide to learn to play the historically important
Hohner Chromatic Harmonica, please hire an independent
harmonica repair/restoration technician to clean, disinfect
and restore it for you. Do this before you play the instrument.

Your Chromatic Harmonica is over 100 years old. It will need
to be restored to it's original playability status, if you plan to
play it.

Remember, you got it for free, so the cleaning, tuning and
restoration will probably be less expensive than buying a new
10-hole Richter reed placement slide chromatic, that has no valves.

If it was me, I'd have the instrument restored, and keep it as a historical
artifact (for display, not for playing). Hohner discontinued a similar model
(Koch Chromatic) a few years ago (2014?), and "The Chromonica" circa 2015.

Learn to play the 10-hole slide chromatic on a similar new model, made by
another manufacturer (Swan; Easttop; and Hering make copies of your
"Chromatic Harmonica").

There are expert repair/restoration harmonica technicians
here at SlideMeister. DON'T go to the Hohner company.
They may want to buy it from you, or replace it with a modern
substitute for trade.

Recommended SlideMeister member independent harmonica
technicians include Mike Easton ("Bloharp"), who is a Hohner brand
restoration specialist; George Miklas, an independent Hohner brand
restoration expert and Hohner endorsee.

These are independent, trustworthy professional harmonica restoration
experts with reliability and integrity, who will do high-quality work for you.
I have had work done by both of the listed experts, and highly recommend
both Mike Easton and George Miklas.

Happy Holidays

John Broecker
« Last Edit: December 28, 2016, 07:54:32 AM by John Broecker »
Bob Uecker, Catcher, Announcer, USA Baseball: "The best way to catch a knuckleball is to wait for it to stop rolling on the ground, then pick it up."

Offline munchu2012

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Re: Cannot Place this 10-hole Hohner
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2017, 05:38:37 PM »
Hello, Dannos Harp.

The world's first known mass-produced slide chromatic harmonica
was the Hohner #260 "Chromatic Harmonica", shown in an ad,
in the Musical Trade Review, a USA magazine, 1910 January issue.
It's USA patent #1671309 was given to David Newman in 1928.


Hi John

is this the add you are referring to:
http://mtr.arcade-museum.com/MTR-1910-50-5/44/

Offline John Broecker

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Re: Cannot Place this 10-hole Hohner
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2017, 07:54:56 PM »
Hello, Munchu2012.

Yes, your post shows the very ad of
The Chromatic Harmonica, that which
we are discussing.

Best Regards

John Broecker
« Last Edit: January 10, 2017, 07:57:02 PM by John Broecker »
Bob Uecker, Catcher, Announcer, USA Baseball: "The best way to catch a knuckleball is to wait for it to stop rolling on the ground, then pick it up."