I was reading Tim Hendricks’s blog this morning and came across an absolutely fascinating entry. As is not surprising for someone who designs tattoo equipment, Tim also collects antique tattoo equipment, and bought up this gem of unknown providence. He’s not sure how old it is, but it’s very old, and has a number of interesting design features. Of course you can see that it has an armature on it that acts as a stand that slides across the skin and both controls depth and supports the machine — important with a unit this heavy! But you might also notice the strange bulb that hangs off the front. At first I thought it was some sort of ink resevoir, but it’s actually a light — a feature I’m surprised has never been built into a modern machine! The whole thing came in a nice wooden case with integrated tattoo supply.
I liked the comment Tim Hendricks had to make on the machine as well. He wrote, “A shit-ton of tattooers these days are like, ‘I really love these new rotary machines’… NEW? [This] shows that we’re still just improving upon old inventions by brilliant minds like Thomas Edison and Samuel O’Reilly. So now when someone talks about the ‘new rotary design’, you can say, ‘Man, that shit been played out since the 1920′s holmes!’.” So true!