The History of Personal Reel Mount production
The machine used to make the reels is the same one that
made them in 1952 and as far back as 10 years ago it was
reported to be wearing out.
For quite some time it's future has been in question but it kept going
and may have kept going at the plant if it had stayed in Oregon
Now that the Oregon plant that has been the reel
making facility for the last 50 years was shut down in August 2000 and
the normal reel production moved to Mexico, they made a decision
not to include it in the plant move. The
Personal Reel Machine was instead shipped to Fisher-Price HQ in NYC for
They saw a dramatic increase in blank reel production before the move
(because the word had gotten out) and are
re-evaluating the situation regarding production. It's future however is in limbo.
Many of the resellers made big orders of Personal
Reel Mounts during that last run, but it appears enthusiasts have been
purchasing large amounts to ensure they can continue their hobby even
if they are never produced again. This quickly depleted their stock.
The main resellers are:
Volante should start selling to the public soon. The site is up
and running again and you can email them with inquiries.
(6/01/06) 3D Stereo.com
began selling the
REELMaster 3D mounts.
These are a novel approach that some might want to try.
Good chip registration could be difficult and they take a bit more
(8/03/05) 3D Stereo.com
has announced new reel mounts are NOW in production.
More details here
(4/09/04) Staff member Pierre Bernard of the
Conan O'Brian show
goes on the air to demand that Fischer-Price fix the Personal Reel
Machine. See Clip here
Pierre Bernard is my hero
(2/11/03) In a surprise to everyone, a new personal
reel mount has emerged from another source and is
selling on ebay. Made by a company in California called
Volante. Currently (mid 2004) this link is dead and I have
information that they are still working on developing the reel mount to
make it better than this initial test version. It's hard to say if
this will see the light of day again or not.
said on July 11th 2002 that they have now have sample reel blanks but
they need to change the adhesive used to make them the same stiffness as
the originals. All other aspects of the samples look good.
3D Stereo.com announced on June 19th 2001 that they
would soon be producing View-Master Reel Blanks!
For all of those concerned about the
status of personal reels manufactured by Fisher Price, send me some
email and I will add you to the list. I hear from
good authority that something like a petition would be
fruitless, but you never know when we may need to come
together to save the format.
If your curious about what makes a personal reel
different than a normal production reel see:
Anatomy of a Personal Reel
If you are interested in creating View-Master reels
without a Personal Stereo camera, see: Making
custom View-Master Reels using a 35mm or Realist camera