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MMD > Archives > April 2016 > 2016.04.14 > 04Prev  Next

List of Play-Rite 88-note Recut Rolls
By Matthew Caulfield

In the 160411 MMD Matt Schultz asked for catalogs of Play-Rite's
88-note rolls.  I don't know of any, but there must have been some
issued, because Play-Rite produced so very many 88-note rolls at one
time in the past.

Play-Rite had two manufacturing sites in Turlock, California.  The
one still in operation today is its specialty roll business, located
in a little shop on the property of Play-Rite owner John Malone at
1536 N. Palm Street.  There John's mother, Jeanne Malone, did contract
work making orchestrion, band organ, and other special-scale and
special-hole-spacing rolls, until her death in August 2005.  The
operation still continues today under John Malone.

Catalogs of much of Play-Rite's specialty roll production were
produced by Play-Rite and by the late Ray Siou, of Oakland, California,
who retailed Play-Rite's band organ and APP rolls and some of its
orchestrion rolls that were not contract work.

All Play-Rite's 88-note roll production took place at its factory at
401 S. Broadway in Turlock.  That was a large operation with several
employees and was the second largest maker of 88-note rolls in the
U.S., until a disastrous fire on February 2, 1997, wiped out its
inventory and its means of production, including the irreplaceable
stencil machine that printed the words on player piano word-rolls.  The
intention was to rebuild.  In this connection, some posting to the MMD
(I can't put my finger on it now) said that Bill Flynt was leading an
effort to compile a list of the rolls the factory had produced.

The fire that wiped out Play-Rite's 88-note production was caused by
a plastic injection molding machine.  But later, on the second weekend
of October 1997, a second fire mysteriously started at the Play-Rite
cleanup site.  That ended Play-Rite's 88-note roll venture.

If no MMD reader comes up with the catalogs Matt Schultz wants, a query
to Bill Flynt or directly to John Malone may help.

Matthew Caulfield
Irondequoit, New York

(Message sent Thu 14 Apr 2016, 14:31:39 GMT, from time zone GMT-0400.)

Key Words in Subject:  88-note, List, Play-Rite, Recut, Rolls

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