Pictures, Video & Text courtesy of Carsten Fischer


Click on pictures to view changer in operation.
 If the video does not play full length, right-mouse click "Save target as", save file on your computer, and start movie file there.


The Lincoln Series 50 Turn-Over Pneumatic Record Changer

Produced by the Lincoln Engineering Co. in St. Louis, Missouri.

These famous turn-over changers, including the LP-only Series 60 Fisher-Lincoln changer, were produced from 1949 to 1965.

In the mid-50s the Lincoln changer was often used as a replacement for a Capehart turn-over changer, and Lincoln produced a special model, the 51 and 51M changer to fit into a Capehart cabinet. This provided the Capehart owner with a quick (but expensive) possibility to upgrade the Capehart to 33 rpm and 45 rpm microgroove record capability.

Changers for commercial use (double capacity vacuum reservoir) were offered as well.

This unique machine had a couple of appealing features: 3 speed design for 78, 45 and 33 rpm records. Ability to play both sides of the record. A true intermix changer - any size record will be played correctly. The large size of the magazine allows to play a large number of records - 20 or more - on both sides without interruption. That equals up to 3 hrs playing time for 12" 78 rpm, or a staggering 16 hrs for LPs !

This is accomplished by the use of a vacuum pump which powers all movements of the turntable, transfer arm and tone arm. It also holds the record on a suction cup in upside-down position for the B-side playing. The changer is able to play LPs for up to 30 minutes with no loss of vacuum suction. The vacuum pump only operates during the change cycle to refill a reservoir.

Some vital statistics:

- operating vacuum 15 inches mercury
- 7 vacuum pistons
- 2 suction cups
- 3 electric motors
- 1 vacuum pump
- a cam manifold with 7 cams and 7 independent valves, 2 of which also double as electric switches.
- 2 big idler wheels
- speed selection: 78, 45, 33 rpm and a neutral gear
- 1 gravity powered check valve.
- 1 pneumatically actuated pneumatic - electric relay
- 2 pneumatic electric switches

While a sound design, most surviving Series 50 changers are now non-operational, because the rubber in the suction cups and bellows has hardened and cracked.


Maker Lincoln Engineering Co
Model Series 50 Changer
Year 1952
Owner Carsten Fischer
Repaired/Serviced by Carsten Fischer
Idler Wheel Resurfaced Ed Crockett


The Fisher-Lincoln Series 60 Turn-Over Pneumatic Record Changer

While the Series 50 changer was a reliable workhorse, the need for constant vacuum suction during the play of the record could lead to dropped records if the label had some scratches or a sticker.

In 1961 Fisher proudly presented the updated Series 60 Fisher-Lincoln Turn-Over Turntable.

This changer, while keeping the basic idea of a vacuum-powered mechanism, had the following design changes:
- 33 rpm / 45 rpm with automatic size intermix and speed change (
a 7" record automatically changes the speed to 45 rpm)
- The turntable also works as a transfer arm: The whole turntable moves to the left to pick up a record, locks into playing position, moves to the right for depositing the record.
- The turntable does not need suction during the play of the record: The record is held by a rubber "boot
" in the spindle hole during play. Therefore, dropped records due to air leaks are avoided.

However, as great as this machine looked, it was a disaster for all involved.
As a collector, whose father acquired a Series 60 new, told me:

This changer never worked correctly. Fisher sent one repair man after another, with no improvement.
The embarrassment was such that Fisher would hide the Series 60 changer and not promote it at audio shows.

The reason for the lack of reliability lies here:

Underside of the Series 60:

"Rack" Assembly    Pistons:       lock linkage   turntable motor
                          for turntable turn over      starting capacitor
Vacuum Pump      for turntable arm

While every record changer ever built uses some kind of a central cam to coordinate movements, the Series 60 was a radical departure from this concept:

Instead of a cam-regulated mechanism, the 60 is a step-by-step design: After each movement (for example the record pick-up) some moving part hits a pneumatic switch, which then will trigger the next movement.
The mechanism is coordinated by the "rack assembly" in the upper left quadrant of the picture, where the impulse by the pneumatic switch causes a rubber bellow to collapse, which in turn pulls one of many slats inside the rack assembly, which then triggers another valve for the next step.

It is as complicated as it sounds, and does not work.


Maker Fisher-Lincoln
Model Series 60 Changer
Year 1961
Owner Robert Baumbach
  not operational


The Fisher-Lincoln Series 70 Turn-Over Pneumatic Record Changer

After the utter disaster of the Series 60 changer, Lincoln removed the malfunctioning rack assembly and inserted a traditional motor-driven cam assembly that powered the valves for the mechanism.

This was offered as a "fix" to disappointed Series 60 customers, but few must have taken Lincoln up on this offer.
I have only ever seen one Series 70 machine.
In all other respects of the mechanism and the upper works, the Series 70 is identical to the Series 60 changer.

The Series 60 failure caused a quick end for the whole line of Lincoln pneumatic changers, which quickly disappeared from the market, as well as from commercial and private use.

I am always interested to hear about other machines.

If you want to get in touch with me, or are interested in a quality reproduction of the 1952 Lincoln Series 50 Changer Service manual (141 pages, 21 diagrams, 3 fold out double sided diagrams) or a 1961 Fisher-Lincoln Series 60 manual, please send me an e-mail at:

You can reach me at:

 sgimips1"at" (replace "at" with @)

Again my great thanks to Chuck Azzalina for his great help in creating these pages.
Pleases check out his
other web pages with even more fascinating early audio and TV tube electronics. One level above this page, you can find more fascinating changers with video clips.

  My thanks also to Robert Baumbach who provided many pictures and access to the Series 60 changer.



Another video of the Lincoln Series 50 above on Robert Baumbach's great site of Old Record Changers at: