Dating your 1227 Anglepoise.


28 thoughts on “Dating your 1227 Anglepoise.

  1. Really interesting! A good reference point. I collect these lamps and have several different ‘V’ sections not mentioned in your blog. If you are interested I can email pictures and I’d appreciate your advice as to their approximate age.
    Look forward to hearing from you.

    • I agree whole heartedly!

      The period adverts are really helpful, I’v used them along with information from Anglepoise and various other sites. basically I’v tried to bring all the information i can find together in one place.

      I do feel really sorry for the people who are getting mis-sold items, thats largely why I set up this site to help people buying and selling for that matter.

    • I have an anglepoise which I have recently restored. It has the plastic hinge and spacers but there is no spacer between the lower arms at the middle hinge. There are no holes for the spacer to go.

      Very strange. Does anybody have any ideas why?

  2. Excellent site. I date my lamps using contemporary adverts. What I find disappointing is the number of sellers of the 1960s model describing them as 1930/40s on eBay. Poor people paying way over the top thinking they’re getting something from the 30s. Incidentally there was a fake 3 step chromed on the auction site very recently. The seller listed it as even rarer than a 3 step with a 3 piece “tuning fork”. Caveat emptor.

    • I agree whole heartedly!

      The period adverts are really helpful, I’v used them along with information from Anglepoise and various other sites. basically I’v tried to bring all the information i can find together in one place.

      I do feel really sorry for the people who are getting mis-sold items, thats largely why I set up this site to help people buying and selling for that matter. I did see that chromed three step myself, it took me a while to find out that these were most likely fakes when I was finding out about these lamps. Its a shame that people do this, but a different base increases the how much they can sell it for unethical as it may be.

  3. Very interesting site! I have been looking out for an old Anglepoise and haven’t found anything nearly as useful before and was relying on Google images. A while ago I was a lucky winner on ebay of a scruffy but original looking specimen. As I was checking the pictures of my purchase for the nth time I found your mention of your site here: for which I’m grateful.

    It looks as if I have a 1938 2-step version which is pretty much what I wanted – the WW2 look.

    Many thanks for providing all the information here. Trouble is, I may go out and buy another now!

    • Thank you! Going out and getting more is always the danger! Ebay can be the expensive way none of my lamps have come from there I currently have two fifties ones and one the same as yours. One came from the local dump, one was hidden covered in dust in an old workshop and the other from a flea market, so there’s still bargains to be had!

  4. After my first buy (above) I was interested enough to do a bit more digging around. It’s my belief that Herbert Terry, like most British firms was swept up in the re-armament fervour from 1936 onwards and the development of their lamps was very much influenced by this requirement.

    Adverts in ‘Flight’ show that their lamps were used in RAF planes before 1939, e.g. the Short Sunderland flying boat of 1937. For this purpose, the steel 1227 would have been unsuitable, especially fro a navigator, and Terry’s replaced all the steel parts with brass and aluminium, lighter and non-magnetic (my purchase has brass arms!). These early Air Ministry lamps had an arm fork that looked just like the steel one, but was cast in one piece aluminium with dummy bolt heads. They must have used a steel version for the pattern.

    Civil adverts in ‘Punch’ of November 1937 show the 3 step lamp but in December 1937 they already show the 2 step. No doubt stocks of both styles were available in 1938 and possibly later but manufacture was being switched to the 2 step. Few domestic lamps were made during hostilities (“their supply to the public is restricted for the ‘duration’..) but adverts of late 1944 show that Herbert Terry was again targetting the domestic market and particularly servicemen anticipating demobilisation (..”On sale with Victory”).

  5. Correction to the above: the aluminium copy of the first steel arm forks isn’t cast in one piece as I thought, it made up of 3 pieces just like the steel version. I was taken in by the generous coating of paint. 😦

    • My lamps are packed away at present, when I get a chance i’l measure and let you know. The design of the springs did vary slightly over time.
      I remember seeing an interview with an older member of the Terry family who when asked “what makes Anglepoise lamps better than the copies of it” responded “it’s all in the springs” or something to that effect! Its true though no other Anglepoise-type lamps I’ve used have ever stayed in position!

    • 1. un-extended length, from outside of loops: 58mm
      2. diameter of wire 1.25mm (8 diameters per cm)
      3. Diameter of coil. 16mm

      The springs are non-ferrous and all 3 the same.

  6. Notice an important change to the design of the modern (post 2009 lamps). Originally it seems they shipped with a switch in the shade, as per the traditional design. The product marketing photos shows a switch in the shade, the PDF on the website describes the switch being in the shade, the cardboard box shows a switch in the shade…

    …but the one I just bought last week has a nice compact, elegant shade top with NO switch. The switch is built into the cord. At the base.

    Now I’m one of those people who wants to reach up and turn on the lamp and be ready to go. No fumbling for switches. This is a disastrous ergonomic change, it seems to me.

    • I see your point thanks for letting me know. I to prefer the the switch at the shade, but as i have mostly older lamps i’v never been happy with the bulb holder switches that can be fitted when the originals degrade (as they invariably do with regular use) so I end up using in-line switches a lot of the time.

  7. Hi,
    I’ve just received my ebay win, of a Herbert Terry 1227 – your brilliant blog leads me to believe it’s circa 1952 – early 1960’s. I’m really pleased with my purchase but it needs a bit of TLC – I wondered if you could help me by answering the following questions?

    •What’s the best thing I can use to clean the paintwork (I read that sugar-soap or baking powder work well)?
    •what’s the best way to remove the rust from the springs (I was going to remove them and soak them in WD40)?
    •What’s the best way to clean the other chrome work (I was considering taking the whole thing to pieces and using Brasso)?
    •What is the purpose of the thumb-screw on the large cross bar which joins the twin lengths of the lower part of the arm?
    •Is it normal for the shade and bulb-holder get intensely hot?



    • Well I’m no restorer but in my experience you’r spot on for the most part. I would say that brasso isn’t ideal for the chrome/aluminium though, I’ve found Autosol to be very good (of at a push Astonish oven cleaner though its a bit harsh). Coke can also be good for removing rust. The Thumb screw allows you to adjust the tension in the arm (It’s more effective on the earlier models). This allows you to firm up the mechanism so that the lamp doesn’t move after being put into position. However be aware not to over tighten it – the aluminium arms are soft and easily damaged. In terms of the switch getting hot you might have to higher wattage bulb in the lamp. They weren’t designed for high wattage bulbs which produce more heat. In the case of the original switches the high temperatures can degrade the Bakelite and they can fall apart.

      Hope that helps

  8. “The first two step 1938- the mid to late 1940′s (sorry i don’t have an end date for this, email me if you do!).”

    I’ve a couple of adverts, one of 1948 (Tatler, month unknown) and the other, Aug 3rd 1949. The 1948 ad shows the early 2-step and the 1949 ad shows the later version.

    Hope this is of interest.

  9. Hi there, I recently aquired my first AP and have no idea where to begin in getting a date.
    Would anyone be able to give me some tips? Thanks,

  10. Hi, I wondered if you had any images to show the top of the original springs of a 1227. I have two lamps but the springs on them are different and want to have the original looking springs on both if possible.

  11. Nice website. I’ve been collecting and restoring 1227’s for years. I also have a unique (so I’ve been told) Brass one (armature) with 1938 shade, and prototype yoke. Anyone else have a brass one?

  12. Hi Larry,
    My name is Duncan Hodges and ive collecting Herbert Terry products for years. Huge collection of over 40 lamps, catalogues, clips, mirrors, toast racks etc etc and a mission like you to solve the ‘mis-year naming scandle on sales sites’.
    Great site and you have been meticulous in your description.
    I wonder if you know what Year the Tulip unrolled Model no. 1227 came in? Im stuck on this one.
    By the way I am putting together more info on all the variants to the 1227 and the 1209 and all Model no.s from their factory catalogues. Quite a mind bender so far.

    • These examples have been partly restored. The mk 2 two step was stripped because its condition was terrible but does show the brass arms which were used in the war years for a number of reasons.
      I think from info gained from adds that I have the proper dates now for all the 4 variants up to 1969.
      Herbert Terry & Sons Anglepoise Model No. 1227 – Made in Redditch C. 1935 and (Temporarily) discontinued in 1969
      ALL 4 designs – many colour variants
      ALL had bakelite Crabtree bulb holders.
      1935 – 38: Mk1, 3 step, Side perforated shade (shallow), 3 part ‘tuning fork’
      1937 – 48: Mk2, 2 step Side perforated shade (deeper), 1 piece ‘tuning fork’
      1949-62: Mk3, 2 step Eight Vent rolled edge Shade, closed Springs
      1963-69: Mk4, 2 step Eight Vent ‘Tulip’ Shade, closed ‘Adjustable’ springs

      Do you agree with these dates?

      • Hi Duncan,
        Wow thats some great research and thank you for your kind words before.
        You’re dates look good, I had thought the MK2 to have been introduced in 1938 but I could well be wrong!

  13. In a sense I think both dates are right because the first Terrys advert I can find with the two step was dated 8 December 1937 in Punch although on 17 December, Autocar showed the three step!

    I would like to know if any one has discovered a ‘Patents Pending’ example, i.e. before “South African Patent No 90/35, UK Patents Pending”. Recently on spec, I bought an example over-painted black except for base and shade. It had no lettering showing anywhere but the seller thought ‘it could be an Anglepoise’. I carefully stripped the paint which covered a chrome finish and found on the upper arm it said ” THE ANGLEPOISE PATS. PENDING”. There was nothing under the paint on the fork. Thanks to the paint it was in nice condition and the woven felt on the bottom looks almost new. The shade shows no signs of any paint and was unventilated – no pin holes. It has other ‘immaturities’ that suggest it was a pre-production or beta test lamp.

    Do any others exist?

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