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A Unique Interview on How to Repair Music Boxes and Other Mechanical Collectibles
Ballerina music boxes, curved music boxes, jewelry music boxes, cylinder music boxes, and vintage music boxes are delicate and beautiful. As many music box and vintage collectors know, in order to preserve, sometimes repair and restoration is required. For this particular job, it is important to choose a company that is well-known and professional in this field. With a little research, these companies can often be found no matter what country you are in. One such company and expert is Mr. Jim Weir.
Jim does all kinds of vintage music boxes and restorations. Its duties include nesting, extraction and maintenance, unloading, cylinder maintenance, and organ bridge work. Jim also offers all types of music boxes for music boxes and cylinders.
I recently had the opportunity to interview Jim about his music box repair and restoration business, which, by the way, is run from Scotland. Let’s find out more about Jim; its expectations, and a first-hand look at what it’s like to run a music box repair and restoration business.
Jim began by saying this about himself:
“What can I tell you about myself? Well, I’m 56 years old and I’ve been working in music boxes for 30 years. My wife and I live in Scotland with our two daughters; one is at school and the other is at university. Depending on the amount of work, my wife and daughters all help in making the cylinders; I think it’s a family business?
1. Can you describe your online and offline business operations, services and/or products in detail?
“I have used the Internet to find materials to work with, including the machine I use to grind and finish the cylinders of the music box. Besides, my business is offline. A lot comes to me from people who already know me, although I recently started advertising in MBSI Journal. I don’t like to buy and sell music boxes; I have a good workshop but not a shop or a counter. they can go in before buying a music box, and where the customer is looking for a certain type of box that I have sometimes been able to find, but other than that my main business is a repair job, everything from the whole. I have a very good team of pinners (people who put new pins in the cylinders to finish) and after advertising in the MBSI Journal, I have started to recruit a new person for work from customers in the USA and my full-time job of guard.”
2. What made you decide to start a business specializing in vintage music box repair and restoration? What was your inspiration or motivation?
“I was trained as a watch repairer. One day a customer brought in a 15.1/2″ Polyphon and asked me to “fix it”. That’s when it started.”
3. What are your biggest challenges over the years? How did you defeat them? “
To change your question, I’m trying to figure out how to solve them. My biggest problem, or ‘obstacle’ if you will, is being alone. Some of the jobs I’ve done have been tough; treating it as if it were some personal problem was probably not a wise thing to do. I’m self-taught, and I’m not a good teacher, or a very good student at that. “
4. What specific types of internet or internet marketing tools are you using successfully?
“I don’t know how good it will be; it’s early days but I’ve just started advertising in the MBSI Journal. I’ve done a few jobs that way. I don’t advertise anywhere else, and I don’t use any online marketing tools.”
5. Have you ever seen yourself doing what you are doing now? Has it become a wish? What did you want to be when you grew up?
“No I didn’t. When I was at school, I wanted to be a train driver. The jukebox job has become a passion though; trying to get the best sound out of the jukebox is part of what drives me.”
JIm will continue to give us an inside look at fixing the music box and restoring the world in part 2 of this series.
I would like to thank Jim for taking the time to share his business information with us and for allowing us to receive guidance on music box repair and restoration. Jim Weir can be reached at [email protected] or by phone/fax at 01144-1575-572647.
Copyright 2006 Monique Hawkins
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