Lustraphone Dynamic Microphone Model C-51 (circa 1956) An interesting piece of aviation history!

Shortly after making this impulse buy on ebay I received an interesting email from the previous owner…….
‘So glad you’re pleased with the mic, it sounds as though it’s found a good home. Anyway, as to its history, if you look on the back somewhere you’ll see a number: 10CA something or other. The CA stands for ‘Civil Aviation’ and it goes back to the heady days of the Ministry of Aviation, which went on to become the Ministry of Transport & Civil Aviation/Board of Trade Civil Aviation Dept/Dept of Trade & Industry Civil Aviation Dept/Civil AviationAuthority/National Air Traffic Services and now, today, finally known simply as NATS (headquarters now in Swanwick near Southampton).
This particular item harks back to about 1956 and was one of the desk mics used by the Communication Officers to broadcast air traffic information worldwide from the the huge HF transmitters at Birdlip in Gloucestershire. The aerial arrays were enormous and stretched across acres of land from Birdlip to Winstone. The place closed down in about 1978 and now the whole vast area has gone back to growing oil seed rape and linseed. Nobody would ever know. So it really has had interesting past, look after it.’
                                                                                                                                                             By complete coincidence I live about 2miles from the old transmitter site!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nice badge, but unfortunately the sound quality is similar to the paintwork! Still its a nice piece of local history.

This Lustraphone Catalogue dates from around 1952/3.

Lustraphone Catalogue

Post Script.

Have just received the following message from Colin McKeeman

Interested in the comments re Birdlip/Winstone and I have just published the history of this station from 1940, if anyone is interested – see website below.
Regards,
Colin
http://banterops-aerohflog.blogspot.ie/

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14 responses to “Lustraphone Dynamic Microphone Model C-51 (circa 1956) An interesting piece of aviation history!

  1. I have come across a Lustraphone BM-3 High Impedance Crystal Mic new in box with an inspection tag that amongst other things says Date 3-4-36 on it. In many respects it looks the same as this, except new and (obviously) says High Impedance on the decal.

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  2. i have recently been given a lustraphone high impendance, any information about this item would be most appreciated, regards paul

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    • Hi Paul,
      Unfortunately there appears to be very little information around about these Lustraphone mics. Indeed, there is very little information to be found about Lustraphone as a company. As far as I can tell they were made from the 1930s til the late 50s- early 60s. Used mostly for communications, PA and tape recording. This model I think came as a standard issue with several models of domestic tape recorder. I am not even confident that I have the model number for mine correct. I have seen similar models listed as C-51.
      In fact in the last few minutes I have discovered a Lustraphone catalogue!!!!! I’ll put a link on the post now. Wow thats spooky! It appears from this that the model on my post is a C-51 and not as I was previously informed. I will therefore edit the post accordingly..
      All the Best
      Martin

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  3. Hi!! I have one of these in near perfect condition,with the 3-pin lead and box…I’ve never heard the sound quality as I don’t have the facility to test it…Its pretty cool to look at tho! Glad to have a bit more info on it as research threw little up for me…I will consult the catalogue.i tried to sell it on eBay but lack of info made it hard.great site here so kudos!!!!

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  4. Another interesting post, Martin.
    I have seen a few of these, and it seems that the microphone coils are low impedance (about 30 ohms), and the other models have a transformer inside to match the impedance.
    In other words, you can convert a high impedance mic to low, simply by removing the tranny. That could be handy!
    Stewart, Xaudia

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  5. I have a v old Lustraphone mic still in its original box .
    Where can I get it valued please ?

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  6. Interested in the comments re Birdlip/Winstone and I have just published the history of this station from 1940, if anyone is interested – see website below.
    Regards,
    Colin
    http://banterops-aerohflog.blogspot.ie/

    Like

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