We lived in a disposable world—until the economy tanked. Suddenly it seemed smarter than ever to repair instead of replace. Herein, craftsmen and techies who can reupholster that Empire settee, remake your Maytag, rev up an old turntable, save your sole and more.
by Maria Hess
(page 4 of 11)
Computers, Laser Printers
The last thing you need is some geek telling you how technologically challenged you are. The techies at Second Source Computer Center (2201 Silverside Road, Wilmington, 475-7018) don’t care if you’re a Mac or a PC. Second Source is “the only shop that unconditionally guarantees all software repairs,” says owner Ken Jaskulski. The shop also repairs laser printers. The specialty at Bob Johnson’s Computer Stuff (32 Artisan Drive, Smyrna, 877-202-7788) is repairing Panasonic Toughbook laptops, the choice of police, paramedics and firefighters. Johnson hires technicians who’ve earned CompTIA A+ and Network+ certifications. Any and all Microsoft certifications count, too. So what can these guys do that customer service people 12 time zones away can’t? “A customer gets to speak to a live person within two minutes, unlike a larger call center, where a person may wait an hour or more on hold,” says Jaskulski. Other noteworthy techies include: Computer Renaissance 4345 Kirkwood Hwy., Wilmington, 683-9323; Diamond Computer 4608 S. Dupont Hwy., Dover, 674-4064; Geek Squad 4807 Concord Pike, Wilmington, 477-0305; Help4urpc Computer Services & Repair 6953 Hickman Road, Greenwood, 349-5176; Kehtron Computers 2900 Concord Pike, Wilmington, 658-8970; Magnum Electronics 913 Horsepond Road, Dover, 734-9250; Motto Computer 3317 Old Capitol Trail, Wilmington, 633-6783; PC Guy 10373 Woodyard Road, Greenwood, 219-1609; Pixstar 1515 Savannah Road, Lewes, 644-8650; Secure Data Computer Solutions 301 E. Camden Wyoming Ave., Camden, 698-9130
Dolls, Teddy Bears, Stuffed Animals
Karen Pugh of Loved To Pieces Doll Hospital (105 Culver Drive, Laurel, 875-4851) restores mostly pre-1960 dolls, including Madame Alexander, vintage Ginny, antique German and Shirley Temple dolls. She works on pieces of any age, with the exception of Barbies and battery-operated or mechanical dolls, and she’ll repair teddy bears, too. The self-taught Pugh was mentored by other doll doctors, but learned mostly by studying training manuals, books and videos. A member of Doll Doctor’s Association and the Doll Artisan Guild, Pugh boasts 30 years of experience, and mends 500 dolls a year.
Everything and the Kitchen Sink
Fairfax Hardware (2201 Concord Pike, Wilmington, 656-2139) is a paragon of superior customer service. The folks there will fix almost anything for loyal locals, but the biggest repair items are screens, whether aluminum, copper, fabric mesh or Fiberglas. Staffers will fix most other stuff, such as lamps and anything that needs to be drilled or capped, such as pipes and small plumbing items like leaky faucets. “We can even cut lumber on doors,” says co-owner Art Pleasanton. (Customers will either pull the doors off their hinges or buy them new, then take them to the shop.) The real perk: Pleasanton—and a part-time staff of the most respectful teenagers you’ve ever met—will help solve your problem before selling anything. Find equally superior workmanship at Felton Hardware (121 W. Main St., Felton, 284-4536) and Fenwick Trustworthy Hardware (RR 3, Fenwick Island, 539-3915).