Repair cafe set to expand

Skilled repairer Ivan Barclay fixes the wiring of a battery-powered talking Bingo Bear, which...
Skilled repairer Ivan Barclay fixes the wiring of a battery-powered talking Bingo Bear, which Julie Elson (right) now plans to pass on to a grandchild. PHOTO: SUPPLIED
The Eco Centre’s monthly Repair Cafe — situated next door to the Crow’s Nest reuse shop — is growing in popularity.

Organiser Rhys Taylor said it was attracting both skilled repair volunteers and users alike.

Next month the range of skills provided is set to expand to include bicycles, and there are at least two volunteers set to do sewing adjustments and repairs.

At this month’s cafe volunteer Ivan Barclay fixed the wiring of a battery-powered talking Bingo Bear, bought in 1986, which owner Julie Elson hoped to pass on to a grandchild, Mr Taylor said.

Volunteer Kevin Wildey had re-secured a broken leg on an upholstered piano stool, a jersey had been darned and work on the seat of a pedal cart had progressed.

These were not the only things saved from the landfill. A torn dress had recently been mended, along with a favourite kitchen apron and a macrame skirt, while a new school uniform skirt had been taken in at the waist to fit a first year secondary school pupil, Mr Taylor said.

"We had an engineer looking at a wall clock, and got that going again by making a new part; and our handyman carpenter, who is a stalwart of the Timaru Men’s Shed, fixed a child’s chair.

"We have looked at a food mixer and a laptop computer, painted Christmas decorations made on a 3-D printer and helped children to make recycled greeting cards."

While they had had their success stories, not everything could be saved, he said.

Volunteers had not been able to fix a TV/DVD player or a water blaster.

"We don’t claim to fix everything but the volunteers are keen have a try, and we offer a cuppa and a snack whilst you wait and watch."

The event runs on the second Sunday of the month from 10am to 12.30pm.

Mr Taylor said there was no need to book "as yet", but inquiries could be made to him on 021462-260.