Homepage 'de Luikerwaal' Magic Lanterns, manufactured by
W. Watson & Sons
part 2. 
Once upon a time there was a magic lantern on Ebay...

It was an English mahogany lantern with many attractive brass parts. The manufacturer was W. Watson & Sons. The asking price was low and that was not surprising, because the condition of the lantern was downright pitiful, as no doubt you can see in the enclosed photos. Still, after receiving the lantern, it turned out that the state it was in was even more pitiful than expected. Lots of dirt, rust, scratches, damage, peeling paint, inexpertly added parts such as a strange switch on the sidewall, etc. And most importantly ....... it turned out that the lantern had once been on fire, leaving large parts of the wood completely burned and charred!

It was not all just misery. On the positive side, no parts were missing. The condenser was present and not cracked or otherwise damaged. A simple chimney stood on the roof and inside the lantern was an electric lamp with a reflector. The projection lens was also present, but it would be replaced by another lens that better suited the allure of this magic lantern.

(much damage and chipped paint.)

(much burnt-out and charred wood.)

The question that the webmaster (because he was the one who had made this dubious purchase), struggled with, was: 'Is there even a chance to make something beautiful out of this? Can this magic lantern be saved? "

The answer to this pressing question the webmaster already knew. If there was one person that could perform this miracle, it was his friend who had faced hotter fires, the exceptionally knowledgeable restorer, Charles Barten. After much discussion and even more doubts, it was decided to organize a multi-day session in which they would work together to create a miracle .......

The restoration of a magic lantern in a very deplorable state.
In the foreground the dismantled Watson, in the background on the right, the Magician - Charles Barten and on the left the sorcerer's apprentice, webmaster Henc. Even more in the background is the apparent chaos in Charles's workspace from which he always manages to pick the right tools or the appropriate screw.

Let us now do some work in due respect and silence:
After three days of hard work ......
Isn't it a Beauty......?
With many thanks to Charles Barten, without whom this story would not have had a happy ending.

Question from the webmaster to the webmaster:
What did you like the most about this project?

In the first place, of course, the collaboration with Charles, which was always very harmonious. I have learned many tricks from him that I will most definitely be able to apply later. The most enjoyable part of our work was the swinging door at the back. Everything else was made by others which was either patched or repaired by us. The back door was not present, hence we had to figure out for ourselves how this would have looked like and how we could make one to resemble it. In the end, the door was made with huge success. At the recycling shop I bought a black dress from which a rectangular piece of fabric was cut. A handy seamstress turned it into a neat curtain.

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Last update: 23-05-2021.
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