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Radio Facsimile Receiver - Fultograph, circa1930 Object Reg. No: ST 029278

Fultograph radio facsimile receiver with control unit. Manufactured by Wireless Pictures (1928) Ltd. Imported by Television and Radio Laboratories (later Radiovision) for their radio picture broadcasts through Melbourne radio stations 3UZ and 3DB and Sydney station 2UE between 1929 and 1932.

The transmitted picture was reconstructed at the receiving end on special paper treated with potassium iodide.

The device was powered by a clockwork motor (with a winding handle), similar to that used in a gramophone.
Rectangular wooden case. Metal baseplate with black crackle finish carries mechanism at one end. Mechanism fitted with metal cover with black crackle finish. Horizontal shaft extending from mechanism carries metal drum with clamp for holding sensitised paper in place. Two rails parallel to drum shaft carry stylus which moves over drum surface.
Discipline: Technology
Dimensions: 255 mm (Height), 198 mm (Width), 352 mm (Length)

More information

Tagged with: facsimile telegraphy, fascimile machines, fultographs, television radio laboratories
Themes this item is part of: Telegraphy Collection, Information & Communication Collection, Radio comes of age in Australia - broadcasting begins, 1922 - 1930
Primary Classification: COMMUNICATIONS
Secondary Classification: Telegraphy
Tertiary Classification: receivers
Inscriptions: None other than marks and numbers &0 through to 100) on a dial
Manufacturer: Wireless Pictures (1928) Ltd, England, Great Britain, circa 1930
References: Fultograph Receiver. Accessed 22 January 2013.
  1. [Book], Philip Geeves, The dawn of Australia's radio broadcasting, Federal Publishing, 1993


Charles Slater Posted on 17 Jan 2010 5:42 PM
Regarding Fultograph Radio Facsimile Receiver - Reg. No: ST 029278

As I actually acquired one of these fascinating (to me anyway :-) instruments about 20-years ago, I was pleased to further my knowledge of it by reading the text on your web page:

Those circa 1930 Fultograph transmissions in from Melbourne and Sydney explains how my example turned up in Australia.

I am further led to wondering if Museum Victoria might have any contemporaneous examples of Fultograph ‘print outs’ or, failing this, details of the type of material that may have been transmitted.

Perhaps some 1929/30 issues of Listener-In or Wireless Weekly might make mention of the nature of image transmitted. (I have a stack of such magazines myself somewhere, must try and round them up).

I assume that these transmissions would, like the early Baird television experiments, have taken place late at night, after regular programming had finished. From a report I read somewhere in an English radio magazine of the time, political cartoons due to be issued in a newspaper the following day, were candidates for Fultograph subject matter.

Incidentally, I do have a photocopied owner’s instruction manual for the Fultograph. The catch is that it is written in German, which unfortunately, I can’t read.

Thanks for reading this far,
I love the Museum Victoria web site,

Charles (Bowral NSW).
Discovery Centre Posted on 18 Jan 2010 2:21 PM
Museum Victoria Comment
Hi Charles, thanks for your enquiry. We've referred this to one of our History & Technology staff for their advice. We’ll get back to you soon with some more information.
Discovery Centre Posted on 06 Feb 2010 1:14 PM
Museum Victoria Comment
Hi Charles, according to the History and Technology Curators, we only have one image of a Radio Facsimile Receiver, if you would like further information, or a copy of the image, please contact us via

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