This section is from the book "The Boy Mechanic Vol. 2 1000 Things for Boys to Do", by Popular Mechanics Co.. Also available from Amazon: The Boy Mechanic, Vol2: 1000 Things for Boys to Do.
An effective mute, for use on any disk talking machine, can be made by clamping an ordinary wood clothespin on the head of the setscrew that holds the needle. Thus the tone will be softened a great deal more than by the use Of A wood needle. The record of a stringed instrument, such as a violin, will be almost exactly reproduced. It will also eliminate almost all the scratching sound caused by a steel needle. - Contributed by C. M. Reeves, Los Angeles, Cal.