I think this is a first for me: An awesome, fully-functional home-made turntable that actually runs on steam – built by a guy who doesn’t really care for steampunk.
When was the last time you saw something steampunk that actually ran on steam? I can’t even remember; it’s quite possible that I never have. Until now, that is, thanks to a guy who claims that steampunk isn’t really his “cup of tea” and was prompted to build this wood-and-brass beast in part out of the “annoyance” he felt when the Google Maps Brass Wristlet Navigator he built, which is a mighty cool piece of equipment in its own right, was mistakenly referred to by people as steampunk. And when I say built, I mean built – even the steam engine is entirely hand-made.
The builder, Simon Jansen of Auckland, New Zealand, originally constructed an “old fashioned gramophone-style pickup and horn” but it proved too heavy and actually destroyed his first test album, forcing him to resort to a standard tone arm and pickup. He paid plenty of attention to other details as well. “The visible wires are run through shoelace to give that fabric covered wiring look,” he wrote on his blog. “All the brass and copper was polished then left to tarnish again to give a nice patina of age and the wooden parts were deliberately varnished in a rather slap dash fashion to give the impression of age (well that’s my excuse).”
The final result is a beautiful, functional steam-driven turntable that I would just about kill for and that Jansen, true to his word, seems remarkably indifferent about. “Anyway, some pictures of the finished device,” he wrote. “I don’t have any plans for this thing. I basically made it up as I went along and experimented to see what would work and what wouldn’t.”
I have to say, sir, that I think this works.
Thanks to iamnotincompliance for the tip.