Our Memories are Made of This
Nostalgia lovers and antique collectors all share a fascination with the jukebox. The earliest models, from the ”golden age” of jukeboxes in the 1930’s and 40’s, were beautifully crafted sound machines that ”bubbled,” radiating light and color.
Jukebox production slackened during the war years with the scarcity of materials, but later resumed. A particularly good year was 1946, when the Wurlitzer company, in just two months, sold 56,000 machines of its 1015 model, now known as the most popular jukebox ever made.
Vintage boxes, fully restored with replated chrome, refinished veneers, rebuilt amplifiers and new cartridges for the tone arms, may cost from $5,000 to $25,000, depending on their rarity!
Tips – How to Collect Vintage Jukeboxes
Many vintage jukeboxes made between the 1930s and 1980s of them are still in excellent working condition. Others are in need of major restoration.
- Determine if you are going to collect vintage jukeboxes by brand, year or style.
- Decide if you want to collect vintage jukeboxes that are in pristine condition, or if you will be needing jukebox restoration services.
- Purchase a vintage jukebox collectors guide, It will help you to determine the price range and value of jukeboxes in various conditions.
- Check the yellow pages in your area for vendors that specialize in “Amusement Devices.” These vendors, called operators, often have vintage jukeboxes for sale. Also, check for amusement companies that often sell old jukeboxes.
- Join a vintage jukebox collectors online group, such as phonoland.com.
- Attend auctions that specialize in jukeboxes or have a jukebox listed on their auction program.
- Research jukebox restoration companies to make sure that if your jukebox needs to be restored, it will be done by someone who specializes in your specific make of jukebox.