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Victor 0

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The Victor 0 was introduced in August 1908 as a basic "entry-level" phonograph. Selling for $17.50 (which equates to $600.00 in today's money), it featured a very basic single-spring motor, an 8" turntable, a small painted flower horn, and a tapered tonearm. The cabinet was a simple pine or ash box with a dark red stain, giving the appearance of mahogany. Most examples used a low-cost soundbox (designated as "Victor No. 15") with a metal shroud, which was shared only with early models of the Victrola IV; this was likely done to protect the mica element from damage when children operated the machine.  The "0" was discontinued in 1920.
Given that "low-end" phonographs such as the Victor 0 and Victor Jr.  were usually considered to be toys when new, and were not very durable; most were trashed when they became obsolete or worn-out; as a result, not many have survived and collector interest for this model remains relatively high today.
At least 60,000 copies of the Victor 0 were produced, and probably quite a few more.  Serial numbers were reset back to 501 in in early 1909, making accurate dating of these models very difficult. This reset implies that there were two 'Victor O' machines manufactured with the same serial number. Readers can get some idea of production dates from the information provided below. Based on surviving examples, it appears that approximately 25,000 were made prior to the 1909 serial number reset. This information conflicts with factory data; however it is probable that some of the original production logs were lost or are incomplete. Many of the late-production versions were shipped to Central or South America, as they were considered obsolete in the USA.

The following guidelines provide some idea of the manufacture date of this model, however this information is not certain:
 - The earliest Victor II models are stamped "Type Vic 0" and have no suffix letter after the serial number. These were likely made in 1908.
-  The next sequential group in production were also stamped "Type Vic 0", but the serial numbers were reset back to "1". The serial numbers in this group are usually followed by a suffix letter as noted below, which will provide a rough guide to determining a production date.
-  Starting in 1911. these models were denoted as "Style V-0". They will also have a suffix letter after the serial number as denoted in the chart below.
-  Post 1916 models may simply be denoted as "V-0". These will also have a suffix letter after the serial number per the chart below:

Suffix Letter Probable date of production
A 1909-1910
B 1910-1911
C 1911-1912
D 1912-1915
E 1915-1916
F or G After 1915

The current survival database shows the earliest existent Victor 0 to be S/N 501 and the latest to be S/N 43019. (Be aware that serial numbers were reset during the production run)

Do you own a Victor 0? Please take a moment and enter some basic information about your machine into the collector's database by clicking here. No personal information is required.

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