The One That Got (given) Away

My brother-in-law bought a Akai reel-to-reel tape player from a garage sale, in the box, for $75. He bought it thinking it was cool, which it sure as hell was, but in the end, he didn’t have the patience for it. I encouraged him to give it to me for Christmas one year, which he did. It was SWEET.

Not only had I always wanted reel-to-reel, I had one, and now I had 2. Someone pinch me.

The Akai was mint and had auto reverse and was awe-some. It even had an 8-track player in the side of it. No lie. I even went out and bought a 8-track tape for a buck from the resale shop in Madison. It was Rory Gallagher… I can’t recall the title, but the tape played and that was all I wanted to test.

I don’t recall the model of the Akai, but it looked like the GX-285D from the ad below (lower left).

However, it had the 8-Track player built in, so it may have been an 1800 model. Who knows. As with my other reel-to-reel, before the resurgence of my interest in them, it was stored in the basement. Somehow, as time went by, one of the spindles was broken off completely. It was unusable. This was a long time ago, and since I still had my garbage rescued Sony, I determined I had not the time, money, or willpower to investigate having it fixed. I assumed that parts for an old model like this would be ungetable. I placed it lovingly in our plastic garbage barrell, sighed, and dragged it to the curb.

I have no doubt that knowing what I know now I probably could have fixed it far easier than I thought. Ah well.

I like to think that maybe the garbage man was like, “Whoa, dude. Check it out!” and it was rescued and is now bathing his living room in VU monitor light after having been repaired.

Enjoy it dude.

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