JOHN LEWIS'S MECHANICAL ANTIQUE REPAIR
My love for repairing mechanical antiques started in 1970 when I acquired my first antique typewriters and phonograph. Since my background was in office machine repair, these old mechanical wonders seemed fairly simple to work on. For many years, my wife, Darlene, and I would scour the shops, estate sales, and flea markets, looking for more hidden treasures. Since I was able to repair my own machines, I was able to pay less for the broken machines, and before long I had a sizeable collection.
In 1977 I started Business Systems and Machines, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Since the first year of the business, I have always had a collection of old office machines and phonographs on display in the store's showroom. As the business grew, so did the news of our antiques repair service and our showroom full of interesting mechanical antiques.
Many of the office machines that I was trained on, like the IBM selectric typewriter and the Victor mechanical calculator, both of which had hundreds of internal parts, gave me the confidence and mechanical skills to service many types of old antique machines.
Some of the machines that we work on are; music boxes, phonographs, typewriters, adding machines, check writers, cash registers and clocks. Our work ranges from the very basic adjustments to complete restoration, which can include re plating, re painting, new decals, pin striping, key tops, manufacturing new parts, and parts search. We have an extensive inventory of machine parts, and a list of fellow craftsmen who are always willing to share their parts and knowledge.
My son, John junior, who has worked in our business since 1984, has taken a great interest in Phonograph repair, becoming very talented in every aspect of the repair and restoration of them. It is a pleasure to work with and beside him in the same shop.
The first music box I acquired came as a trade with three phonographs. The music box did not work and it had several problems. I was amazed to see that it actually had fewer moving parts than a phonograph. Ah! I thought that this was going to be an easy repair. Boy, was I in for a surprise. Although the music box looked simple in design and had few parts, I was to learn that it was the most difficult machine to repair, that I had ever, or would ever work on. I started investigating the repair of my music box and found out what dampners, tooth tips, worm screw, cylinder pins, and tough mainsprings are all about. Over the years I slowly learned the craft of tooth replacement, tipping, dampening, and polishing cylinders with thousands of tiny pins sticking out of them.
All of this new knowledge did not come easy, but from thousands of hours practicing the craft.
Today, our shop has many different types of mechanical antiques in it, and our showroom has become a small museum of mechanical wonders. The main thrust of the display is of office machines, with about 100 antique typewriters. We also display many old adding machines, cash registers, and a wide verity of phonographs.
Our store and museum is open to the public, at no charge, Monday-Friday, 8am to 5pm, and on Saturdays from noon until 5pm.
All of the machines that are sent to our shop receive a free estimate of repair, and you only need to pay for the shipping.
One of the services that we offer is consignment sales and we will be more than happy to assist you in finding a buyer for your antique, either before or after it's repair.
Please give us a call, or stop by our shop any time. We'll be so pleased to assist you.
Business phone: (505) 884-0600
Business Fax: (505) 884-0929
EMail : firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com