Correction in Bialaddin reference gallery please

Discussion in 'Forum Feedback & Problems' started by M.Meijer, Jan 24, 2020.

  1. M.Meijer

    M.Meijer Subscriber

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    By going through many contributions here on this forum, as well as the internet at large, I realise many collectors, owners even, mix titles with Willis & Bates lamps. Mind, that company led the way in confusing things, but with the aid of the internet 'we' should be able to pare facts down to an approximate that enjoys wide consensus.

    It does not help, with many sellers on Ebay for instance, to call these lamps with both titles in one breath.
    A lot of 'Bialaddin Vapalux' lamps are offered, while few of them are: if so, they are a bitza, a cobbled together lamp.

    To get things more clear, the list of Bialaddin lamps in the Reference Gallery should start with the 300X model instead of the model 300, which never existed.
    Right after the war the Vapalux 300X emerged, X being interpreted as an export model. That title was carried over to the very first lamp that emerged under the Bialaddin banner, hence the Bialaddin 300X in late 1946.

    As such, a Vapalux 300X never was produced during the war years; it seems that title appeared in 1946 along with the new multi-holed ventilator, a departure of the vertically slitted model so typically of the wartime lamps. Up to that point W&B had produced only two models: the Vapalux E41 and Vapalux 300, both with the first model, wide tank, with parallel sides.

    Especially with W&B, that appearantly used parts to complete any lamp rather than to restrict themselves to clearly defined models (and thus would end up with obsolete stock) their models seem chaotic.
    Furthermore, as W&B left no documentation of any significance on how new models came about, their story is that of developments that seem to flow into each other, and also timewise.
    This mostly applies to the mid 40's when some new models emerged for only a short time, and brands changed as well.

    Another factor that ads to the confusion is that many people seem to publish 'facts' based on their own reality, without checking with a wider reference. While a Bialaddin lamp obviously is not a Petromax, any found Bialaddin or Vapalux lamp could be a bitza, and firm conclusions as to which details belong to such and such model at such and such year should be made with some caution.

    This is what I like about W&B lamps: they often represent a puzzle that will take some study to resolve, IF that is possible anyway.
    To me, a lamp that might have left the Pellon Works as a factory product, is a lamp that in identical guise shows up on several occasions in several different locations.
    With that in mind 'we' seem to have consensus on the Vapalux 300 with the newer, 'closed' collared lamp yet with a glass that has a hole in it, the latter a reference to the earlier collar with slits.
    Too many of those have turned up that cannot be explained as happenstance only. Mind, I am not advocating this should be seen as a new sub-model, but it should be regarded as a typical factory blend, not a private concoction.

    Because of the internet we now can compare what we - worldwide - have found. And by collecting these findings here, makes for the special value of this site, that very likely is the most authoritative source of fact in the field of pressure lamps today. But we should be critical to what we contribute.
    In that sense, I agree with the notion that any lamp being published in the Gallery, should have several clear pictures, highlighting the details that so often are the essence of such a model and help to make the distinction between models. Just one vague piccy with just a title does not do much in informing us.

    Then again, I often do enjoy the variation of how items are presented, together with some of the history and comments by others, that not seldom contribute with information on their own.
    For me the Reference Gallery is a most important part of this site to help me understand what I have collected, so thank you all!

    Mike
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2020
  2. Sellig33

    Sellig33 France Subscriber

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  3. David Shouksmith

    David Shouksmith United Kingdom Founder Member

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    Willis & Bates produced copious records and these are still extant, although in S. Korea now with the rest of the company.

    Now I think (note, think!) it's the case that at least one copy of it all was taken before it went to Asia. Please don't ask me where that copy is (if it even exists) because I simply don't know. I can categorically state that I don't have it - now that is a FACT!!

    The situation with Vapalux and Bialaddin lanterns having a variety of parts from both brands was not only down to the factory. The Army contributed massively by servicing these lanterns in batches of maybe 50 at a time. They dismantled them all, serviced and replaced parts and then rebuilt them up again with no thought to what bits from what manufacturer should be together. That's the beauty of having interchangeable parts. Thus military 'bitzas' are probably the most commonly encountered 'BiaVap' lantern. Original lanterns as they left the factory are probably in the big minority...
     
  4. Carlsson

    Carlsson Sweden Admin/Founder Member

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  5. Mackburner

    Mackburner United Kingdom Founder Member Subscriber

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    Vapalux 300 certainly did exist. W&B issued instructions for it. ::Neil::

    !!Vap-300 Instr card.jpg
     
  6. M.Meijer

    M.Meijer Subscriber

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    Well there you go Neil: a clear illustration how even owners and collectors can mix things up.
    Without any doubt an unintended and honest mistake, but confusing for those that seek information. This can happen to all of us, hence the caution to be critical of what we contribute.

    Regards, Mike
     
  7. george

    george United States Subscriber

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    @spiritburner note

    Mike, did I miss something? Are you saying the instructions are not correct or have been misconstrued in some way?
    I'm very sorry if I have taken this out of context.
    Please clarify for an old man!
    Thanks!
     
  8. spiritburner

    spiritburner Admin

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    I'm confused. I took it that @M.Meijer is saying the Bialaddin 300 does not exist, not the Vapalux 300? @Mackburner

     
  9. george

    george United States Subscriber

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    Thank God someone has their head on straight, obviously, I don't! VAPALUX, BIALADDIN, got it now! My head seems to reside in a "deep, dark" place! Just no hope....:cry:
    Thanks to you all for putting up with this senseless rambling...:-&
     
  10. Mackburner

    Mackburner United Kingdom Founder Member Subscriber

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    Hmmm 50 odd years I've been doing this and someone comes along and proves me wrong. Well spotted. Doesn't do much for my ego but as ever it's the truth we seek and I don't mind being proved wrong at all. Been calling these Bialaddin 300 for a long time and never bothered to check it. It's right enough though because I can't find any reference to a Bialaddin 300 anywhere. The first Bialaddin lanterns sold were Vapalux 300 lanterns but with the new multihole hood and actually Vapalux model 300X but marked as Bialaddin 300X. So they were sort of 300s but marked as 300X and we need to add the X in the reference gallery.

    This is good useful input. Made me go look for the evidence and check the PLC where I found another mistake because I had models 305 listed as 305X and they never had an X. So thanks for this it is another small advance in our quest for truth and I am very grateful. ::Neil::
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2020
  11. LatMag49

    LatMag49 Germany Subscriber

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    Looking through the reference gallery you can find two posts showing
    pics of a Bialaddin 300.
    One is from our member dowdy2 in the Bialaddin 300 section with a
    Bialaddin MODEL 300 marked hood,
    the other is from member Cesar in the Bialaddin 305 section, but actually
    showing a collar marked Bialaddin MODEL 300.
    Both don't have an X.
    So they seem to have existed, judged by the photos?!

    Matthias
     
  12. M.Meijer

    M.Meijer Subscriber

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    Matthias, I have seen those pictures.

    But I do think that lamp in Korea needs a further clean before we can think of a Bialaddin 300 with certainty. Enlarged there seems to be a vague imprint. The lamp from Chile shows indeed the lack an X .But does that make for a separate model W&B could have marketed? If so, what would set it apart? There is no documentation of such a model known so far. It could also be an omission of that X. Faults in markings are known with lamps and stoves.
    I once had a Radius 12 single stove that by its model number should be a dual burner: you can find it in the Stove Gallery.

    And if we accept all the models mentioned in Ian Ashtons book within the timeframe given, it would be odd to introduce a Bialaddin 300 after the Vapalux 300 X, only to overwhelm it with thousands and thousands model 300X.
    If so, the korean lamp could be such a lamp, as the data are in the brass top. The chilean lamp is from some time later, as the data are stamped into the collar. That does not look like a separate model range, encompassing masses of model 300X's produced in between.

    Both of these pictures and text illustrate what I have been mentioning: contributions are not seldom made from one's own reality that not automaticly can be accepted as fact. It does not help in establishing any clear standard, or in this case, a solid reference gallery.
    The lamp in Chile illustrates that to a tee: see a 6 in the second 0 and voil√°, here is a possible rare 306 model.
    Mind, the model 300 in Korea could have no X behind it, but I do not find that picture conclusive.
    And that is what I would like to see when folk bring in the information: it should be above different interpretation.

    Personally I like to see different models come to light instead of yet another known model in the gallery. But other than some - what I call - factory blends the different models W&B made are pretty well known. But as Ian Ashton so fittingly mentioned in his book, there is no definitive story about Willis & Bates, and some new facts might turn up anytime.

    Meanwhile the list on Bialaddin lamps mentions a 300 model that is an unknown model so far; instead it does not mention the ubiquitous model 300X . This does not help to come to a conclusive reference either.

    Mike
     
  13. spiritburner

    spiritburner Admin

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    Bialaddin Reference gallery - 300 now corrected to 300X
     
  14. M.Meijer

    M.Meijer Subscriber

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    Thank you, Ross.
     

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