So, even though I am pretty po-broke right now, I still keep an eye on craigslist for interesting junk that might float through town. Wouldn't you know it, there was a Chilton Talentmaker on the Kitsap musical instruments list. The Talentmaker is a patent infringer on the Optigan and Orchestron, but is said to be more reliable than the Optigan. Thats not saying much- mine is functioning because of electrical tape in two places, and it needs a new rubber drive belt.
Now, it's really difficult to judge how rare something like this is. So far as I can tell, it extremely rare- enough that it's difficult to discern its value. But I'm pretty sure that it's worth more than the $40 I paid for it. It was owned by a schizo hoarder who died and left no family to claim anything of hers. The people who sold it to me
had just kind of moved in to her mess and were digging through it all.
So I've been a giddy, bouncy ball of energy all day. It came with TONS of discs and song books- not tested it yet, but I think it even has an OUTPUT!'
The instrument is a huge inspiration-especially with the discs in upside down so that the accompaniment plays backward.
So I don't know if I exactly got one of those once-in-a-lifetime deals moneywise- but it is far and away the rarest thing I will probably ever own...