Monday, April 8, 2013

Your Turntable's Not Dead

My parents recently visited Jack White's Third Man Records headquarters in Nashville and brought us back a beautiful leather 7" case, with the slogan "Your Turntable's Not Dead" inscribed on the inside.  It's definitely true in our house.

We're coming up on a year in this house, and there's still quite a bit of our stuff in boxes in the garage.  With that in mind, I decided yesterday to try to clean up some of that.  I found a lot of half-empty boxes where we'd poached things out of them as needed, without fully unpacking the boxes. But the real goal was to get the Jukebox out of the garage and into the house.



This beauty is a 1979 Rowe AMI "Fiesta" Jukebox Model R-83.  At one time in the old house it ran like a champ.  I found this on Craigslist for $150 from a woman who had it in a barn.  My parents were able to pick it up in their van and get it to the house, where we had to build a makeshift ramp to get it up the front steps.  Because it sat in a barn, it was full of cat-piss-smelling sand, and was pretty rough all around.  I was able to take most of the cosmetic pieces apart and clean it out so at least it didn't stink.

It has a carousel inside that holds 100 7" records (must be 45rpm and large center hole), and some pretty incredible mechanics that make it all work.  However, before we moved, it started acting up, with the turntable wavering in speed, so in moving it and letting it sit for a year, it has a few more problems.  The pickup arm will place the record, but won't pick it back up to put it back in the carousel, and most importantly the turntable is frozen - won't turn at all.  Have no fear though, our friend's dad used to work on these jukeboxes back in the day, and our brother-in-law works for Rowe AMI, and was able to get me a tech when we first got it, whose only advice was to never let it sit unused.  Whoops.

Anyway, I was able to get it into the house with little trouble, and it fits perfectly in the corner of the music room.  I changed out the artwork above it to match the 1970's feel, and hopefully can get it running in the next few weeks.  Ultimately, it makes the room look a ton better.  We'll add more artwork to the walls eventually, but for now it looks pretty great:








 

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