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From the attic #9 (1956 advertising records and filmstrips)

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  • From the attic #9 (1956 advertising records and filmstrips)

    http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/e...g?t=1335592532

    Todd Ruels passion for original records and films from the defunct auto makers stimulated me to search in the attic for some that I knew I had. Indeed I found a lot more than I anticipated! I am currently making an inventory. One in particular I thought might be of interest is a two record 3 filmstrip set from 1956. The records are HUGE (like 16") and playable only on special players. The 2 filmstrips are entitled "Your Big New Studebakers - Passenger Cars and Station Wagons," and "Sports Car Flair - Hawk Series." Both are accompanied by a 35 mm filmstrips with over 100 frames. A 3rd set is about used car sales. Just wondering if anyone else has seen these or have them in their collection?
    Richard Quinn
    Editor emeritus: Antique Studebaker Review

  • #2




    Two close ups of the record and filmstrips.
    Richard Quinn
    Editor emeritus: Antique Studebaker Review

    Comment


    • #3
      Rare Toys in the Attic!

      Richard,

      Hi, Todd Ruel here.

      You have, indeed, found some rare stuff. I collect this kind of orphan car audio-visual material, and I can tell you for a fact that Studebaker sales training kits like this are ridiculously rare.

      I have many kits like this from Nash, Hudson, and Packard. I even have one or two from Kaiser-Frazer. But you simply NEVER see this stuff from Studebaker. In the 14 years I've been collecting, I've only seen Studebaker kits come up on eBay once or twice.

      To me, this is really ironic, because Studebaker spent a lot of money on marketing. Their radio commercials are in abundance compared to the other independents. (In fact, stay tuned for a vintage Studey radio commercial featuring the late Mike Wallace. That's coming to the Gone Autos web site very soon.)

      These sales training kits consisted of a filmstrip, a 16" radio transcription-sized record and (often) some printed material for taking quizzes after watching the presentation. Many times, these kits came bundled with a combination filmstrip viewer/record player.

      When buying this stuff on eBay, my experience has been that this vintage material often comes in the original cardboard shipping box. Often, it has never been opened! That tells me that, on the whole, this material was never valued very highly by the dealers. As an audio and video producer, I believe it's because the salesmen didn't want to sit through 20- or 30-minute presentations like this. I've often heard this material described as coming in the front door and and going directly out through the back door.

      Nevertheless, it's a treasure trove of information to Studebaker fans today. To me it's fascinating to see the company's priorities and values as viewed through the messages they communicated to salesmen.

      I like this stuff so much that I even produced a DVD featuring the two filmstrips that Nash/AMC produced for the Metropolitan. (Search for "The Met Set" DVD on Amazon.). I think there's a huge potential for great storytelling about Studebaker using these sales kits as a narrative device.

      Anyway, to wrap it up historically, the kits were produced for everyone from AMC to Chevy to Graham-Paige, etc., from about 1928 to about 1972. In the early 1970s, a film cartridge system called (I believe) LaVelle replaced the standard filmstrip/record kits. The material was recorded on a cartridge that you inserted into the LaVelle playback machine. The machine included a screen for watching the stuff on each cartridge.

      Of course Studebaker was long gone by the time LaVelle came along.

      I know the basic timelines for how long our favorite car companies produced sales training material like this. However, because Studebaker material is so rare, I've never been able to determine when they started and when they stopped doing it.

      Richard, please keep us updated on the timespan of the kits you pull out of the attic.

      Happy Hunting! ---Todd Ruel

      Comment


      • #4
        Labelle. Not "LaVelle"

        Minor update to my post above.

        The technology that replaced filmstrip/record kits was the Labelle cartridge system. Not "LaVelle."

        I have one here in the basement. The cartridge includes 8mm film on a loop and 1/4" magnetic tape. Both are synchronized to play together. I haven't yet had the guts to fire up this unit. I'm afraid the oxide on the tape will flake right off once it touches the play head.

        But 5 years ago, I bought a modern turntable that WILL play the 16" records as pictured by Richard above.

        WARNING: if you have one of the filmstrip/record players that I mentioned above, DO NOT play your 16" records on it. The needles are brutal to the vinyl. You might as well try to play them with an awl.

        That is awl. ---Todd Ruel

        Comment


        • #5
          Todd,

          For several years I did video production and media transfer services. You're right to be cautious about the tapes. I've had some tapes' surfaces literally go to dust as I was capturing them. Fortunately, if you're monitoring them as you go, you can usually stop the tape right away and minimize the damage. There are some options if the tape starts to crumble, but they put the tape at further risk, so I wouldn't try them if the tape holds firm. The only thing you could do is to set up transfer equipment and attempt the transfer, stopping right away if you see the tape disintegrating. Note that if the tape is falling apart after the playback head, you might as well keep going, as it's going to be impossible to go back anyway.
          '63 Lark Custom, 259 v8, auto, child seat

          "Your friendly neighborhood Studebaker evangelist"

          Comment


          • #6
            Crumbling tapes

            Jim,

            You are SO RIGHT about magnetic tape! I remember trying to transfer some '68 or '69 Chevy trucks spots on open reel tape. The oxide literally came shooting out of the reel-to-reel machine like grass clippings out of a lawn mower! Not cool!

            I have heard from my telecine contact that there is a way to bake magnetic tape at low temperatures in order to make the oxide binding agent more pliable and adhesive for a short time (like about a week). Haven't had the guts to try it, though.

            However, we don't have to worry about magnetic tape with Studebaker material. They quit the car biz just as open reel tape was starting to be used for commercial distribution. I have some 1965 Studey radio commercials (used in my podcast with Stu Chapman), and those are on 12" vinyl.

            ---Todd Ruel

            Comment


            • #7
              Research would definitely be in order before trying to bake a tape. Every house has a different method. I knew a guy in Minneapolis who basically used what amounted to a standard off-the-shelf food dehydrator. The guy I would send stuff to if I thought it needed baking had a custom built box he assembled with computer fans and a low temperature heating element. I never tried baking myself because there are too many risks (overbaking, warping the spindles, etc...) and I would rather put those risks on someone with more experience, but theoretically anyone could try it. If I were going to do it, I'd find an old box of tape online or at a garage sale or thrift store, and experiment first.

              Either way, you should find someone to do the transfers of that stuff. It's not getting any newer, and somebody needs to save it for the next generation!
              '63 Lark Custom, 259 v8, auto, child seat

              "Your friendly neighborhood Studebaker evangelist"

              Comment


              • #8
                Again, I agree.

                I'd like to learn how to bake tapes, because I'm interested in media preservation and restoration, but I know absolutely nothing about it right now.

                Related note: I wonder if Studebaker ever taped anything. Audio tape was cheap and the technology was widespread and accessible by the late 1950's. It's conceivable that Studebaker could have taped speeches or other big events. I wonder if there's anything like that in the Museum archives or among collectors.

                After all, I have that weird metal acetate of Lew Minkel's speech. It's not unreasonable to speculate that there might be more hidden gems.

                ----Todd Ruel

                Comment


                • #9
                  Riichard - It does not seem like an attic is a good place to store the filmstrips, unless you have climate control in your attic. If you do have climate control in your attic, that is good and it might be good to mention to others that temperature/humidity is important in film preservation.
                  Gary L.
                  Wappinger, NY

                  SDC member since 1968
                  Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    About 12?? or so years ago I attended a auction of a small town Ford cars and John Deere farm machinery dealer that was shutting down. The farm machinery side had shut down many years back but they were still selling new fords out of the tiny ancient building on the main street of the town in South Dakota.

                    In addition to lots of NOS ford and Deere parts from the 70s and back, there were about a dozen sets of these same sort of sales kits from the 30s and 40s or thereabouts for Ford cars and trucks. They included some posters and other literature I think. Lots of colorful literature touting the ford v8. I remember seeing the film strip cans. in the boxes.

                    The auction was well advertised enough despite the somewhat remote location that out of town buyers were there. I seem to recall they got something like $200-300 a set for these kits. That being a while back, I would expect the value had gone up.

                    The auctioneer prior to selling these lots, talked about how they'd checked one of them out on the projector ( I think the projector and the record player were 1 unit) that was also sold on the auction and how it (the player) quit with a puff of smoke. "It just needs a tube" was the excuse. Haha. Most likely failed capacitors. NEVER power up antique electronics that has been sitting for decades w/o having it gone through by a competent restorer/tech.

                    Jeff in ND

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      NEVER power up antique electronics that has been sitting for decades w/o having it gone through by a competent restorer/tech.

                      Amen to that!

                      Pulling the rectifier tube will allow you to warm up the rest of the system with relatively little danger. Then placing the rectifier tube in its socket and listening/sniffing/watching sometimes works. It's even better to bring up the filters on a variable DC power supply, but only an electronics technician would have one of those.
                      RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.


                      10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
                      4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
                      5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Studebaker Wheel View Post
                        http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/e...g?t=1335592532

                        Just wondering if anyone else has seen these or have them in their collection?
                        I do have a set of these in my collection somewhere. Not sure of the year just now, I will find them and take some pics. I think my set is 3 records and 4 filmstrips. I believe they have not been played and are still in their original box. I would like to get them transferred some day.
                        Dave...
                        Dave Pink
                        Victoria, Australia

                        1916 SF Roadster
                        1925 ER Tourer
                        1925 Panel Delivery
                        1953 Champion Sedan
                        1957 Golden Hawk
                        1971 Avanti II


                        Studebaker Car Club Of Australia Website
                        http://www.studebakercarclub.net

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I did take some pics but can't get them to upload. Anyway there are 3 discs, two are double sided and one is single sided. They are aimed at sales. Titles are "Recharging your Battery business" "Profits in appearance" "Tune-Up for April" "Front Ends to the front" and "Lubricating the way to more sales" The 4 filmstrips are the same titles. The package was put out by 'Wilding Picture Productions Inc - Chicargo Illinois' but there is no sign of when they might have been produced
                          Dave...
                          Dave Pink
                          Victoria, Australia

                          1916 SF Roadster
                          1925 ER Tourer
                          1925 Panel Delivery
                          1953 Champion Sedan
                          1957 Golden Hawk
                          1971 Avanti II


                          Studebaker Car Club Of Australia Website
                          http://www.studebakercarclub.net

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            The folks who produced these things

                            Dave,

                            There were a wide variety of marketing firms and production companies that produced the filmstrip/record sales training kits.

                            The most well-known company is Jam Handy. They produced everything for GM's brands. In fact, I believe Jam Handy pioneered the use of filmstrips and records for Chevrolet back in the late 1920s. At one time Jam Handy was the largest motion picture producer outside of the studios in Hollywood. (Hard to believe that Detroit was close to being the film capital of the world!)

                            The second most well-known company is Wilding Picture Productions out of Chicago. They produced materials for Ford, Hudson, Packard, and (as we all now know) Studebaker. They even produced some early industrial films for Nash. (I have the only known 16mm print of a 1940 Nash film produced by them.)

                            Ross Roy produced sales material for the Chrysler brands.

                            Florez produced materials for Nash and, later, American Motors.

                            And if you're a rare, rare, rare bird spotter, you'll find that Sarra, Inc., produced materials for Kaiser-Frazer.

                            There are even a few filmstrip/record combos from Graham-Paige from 1928 or 1929. (I forget who produced these. Might have been Jam Handy.)

                            In the 1930s, several independent producers who made this stuff for the independents. Lots of different companies produced kits for Packard and Hudson. Independent Arts is one such company.

                            So if you ever see this stuff at swap meets like Hershey, now you'll have a rough guide about what to look for. The best, most entertaining material is the stuff made for salesmen. (Skip the mechanical filmstrips. They're long and boring.) The strips for salesmen were often shot in color and meant to appeal to a slightly broader audience. They're often fun to watch.

                            ----Todd Ruel
                            Gone Autos
                            www.goneautos.com

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              It would be great if this could be put on YouTube sometime for us to view.

                              Comment

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