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Re: arsclist 78 cleaning machines.
Karl Miller <lyaa071@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> said to the ARSC list...
> We have two of the old twin turntable Monks machines. I adapted one for
> use with 16 inch discs. I have been using them for almost 20 years or so.
> Over time the tubing has required replacement and/or cleaning. I have not
> had to replace any parts other than tubing and the belt that moves the
> arm over the record. Minor adjustments were needed every now and then.
> When it comes time to add more fluid and clean out the other jar, I am
> always amazed at the stuff it has lifted from the records.
Hello Karl and others on the list...
The Monks machines are definitely workhorses. They are built like a tank
and are easy to maintain, as you have found, and it doesn't take a Ph.D. to
do it, just a liberal application of common sense and observation. These
things will run 24 hours a day if need be.
> As for the cost...I have never understood why it costs so much. The
> concept is simple enough and I find it difficult to believe that the parts
> are very expensive. I can only assume that there is not enough demand to
> mass produce the machine.
The machines are assembled one-at-a-time, certainly not on a production
line since, as you surmise, the demand is simply not there to warrant
making, say 1,000 machines at a time. Machines have to be made for various
power supplies and line frequencies since they are sold all over the world,
and the various electrical parts have to be inventoried to be able to do
The motors, gearing and pumps are "long lead time" special orders to their
manufacturers and have been the subject of many delivery problems over time.
Special assemblies like the suction arm can't be bought off the shelf... they
have to be made by an engineering company to the needed specification. Some
of these items are expensive to make in relatively small quantities, much of
the cost being in set-ups.
Example: I investigated the cost of making special size brushes to exactly
suit 10" and 16" discs for those people who wanted to specifically clean
those sizes alone (standard supplied brushes are optimized for 12" discs).
I found so many problems with potential suppliers to make small quantities
(1,000 pieces at a time) that the idea was abandoned after trying a bunch of
different ideas to avoid a $10,000 dollar mold cost for EACH special size!
If the demand was there, Monks could support it, but it is not, and it would
not make good business sense for him to do so.
Yes, the Monks machines are expensive, but they work well and are very long
lasting. How many other things have you bought that you can still use after
20 years, further, that you can still get parts for?
Do the math... a Monks machine will last, but another machine you may need
to replace 5 or 10 times in the same period as they wear out.
Karl clearly got exemplary service from his 20 year old Monks machine.
... Graham Newton
Audio Restoration by Graham Newton, http://www.audio-restoration.com
World class professional services applied to phonograph and tape
recordings for consumers and re-releases, featuring CEDAR processes.