Steam-powered Record Player

Right before Abney Park released their latest album, The End of Days, I made a comment regarding the need for Abney Park and other Steampunk bands to put their music out on vinyl. My argument was that Steampunks as a whole were much more likely to own a functioning turn table than almost any group, and therefore, we need all this awesome music on records.

And then, this creation was brought to my attention:


This is a steam powered record player. For serious. It was created by Simon Jansen of Auckland, New Zealand. Here’s what he had to say about it, via Make Magazine’s Blog:

This is my steam powered record player built to play a Sex Pistols LP. Yes, it is true steampunk. The engine was made mainly from bits and pieces I had lying about in my junk box. The boiler was made from some copper water pipe and a bespoke platter and base was made using wood. I am using an Arduino to control everything buy using a coil to detect the passing of magnets in the edge of the platter. The Arduino works out the revs then feeds this information into a PID controller the output of which drives a servo controlling a throttle on the engine. The speed is regulated to 33 1/3 (well, more or less) and displayed on an analogue meter. The tone arm uses an old phono cartridge that connects to my phono pre-amp and into my stereo. The hardware is complete and works well but the software could use a little tweaking. It does however run!

All I can say is that this thing is freaking awesome.

2 comments on “Steam-powered Record Player

  1. Marc B says:

    Vinyl!? We put out our album on wax cylinder! (

    Our new EP ‘A Very Steampunk Christmas’ is out on 7″ now, which isn’t quite as exciting really. You can also download it from itunes, which is even less exciting. Have a free download:

Comments are closed.