MY Top Ten Copy Machines of All Time


I entered the copier business in 1981, I don't have that much knowledge about most of the copiers prior to 1977.

Starting out  as a tech and was quickly offered a sales job when the owner of the dealership realized that I had some issues with putting copiers back together.

For the next ten weeks, I'll list all ten systems.

Minolta EP 300 (yes I know the pic in the header is a Minolta 310, can't find a pic for the EP 300)

Thinking back, the first copier that stole my heart was the Minolta EP300.  The Minolta EP 300 was the first copier that was launched when I started my copier sales career.  Customers would ask me the EP stood for and I'd give them a funny answer with "Eny Paper".  The EP actually stood for Electrostatic Process.

The EP 300 back in the early eighties was "state of the art technology", funny that when we refer to copiers now I can't remember the last time I pitched a copier as having "state of the art technology".  In the eighties, Minolta was a know as a fantastic brand for camera's, we also used that in our pitch as the Minolta EP-300 had the best lens in the business. Back then the paper that you put on the glass was illuminated with a light, bounced the image of off two mirrors and the image was then captured by the lens.  Hey, having the best lens in the business meant that you were going to have the best image quality. Back then it was all about image quality!!

I believe the copier retailed for about $2,500, had only one paper tray which stuck out on one side of the unit.  The top (platen glass) moving back and forth for each copy and the speed was a blazing 10 pages per minute (I think).  When you had to add toner, you would pour it into the toner hopper, and when you had to add paper, you would have to take the paper tray out of the copier!

There was another consumable that was required and that was fuser oil!  How many of us remember that?  We found many other uses for fuser oil, it was great for cleaning the covers, the power cord, awesome for getting a shine on black rubber (tires on the car) and if you just used a tiny bit, it would give your black shoes an unbelievable shine!

Other than making up 99 copies at a time, the Minolta 300 was much like it's predecessor the Minolta EP-310.  I'm thinking I remember the Minolta EP-300 best because it was the system that paved the way for all of the other copiers that I sold!

BTW, if anyone has an old Minolta EP-300 please scan one and email it to me!

-=Good Selling=-

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When I had my interview at AOE on Madison Ave I was totally perplexed at why the sales manager was so in love with the brand new Ricoh FT6645 and even said to him "It's just a copier".  The following month this 22 year old made $6K on a Ricoh FT6645 and I never said: "it's just a copier" again. 

First machine I knocked out was an “Olivetti Copia II” at a law firm at 120 Wall St in 1975 with a XRX 3100. I actually wrote the proposal vs an IBM “ Copier II”  since I never saw the machine and the managing partner said the machine name with such a heavy Brooklyn accent      I had never heard of the Olivetti “ Copia” 2 version.    Never saw another one after that.  Rental only available before xerox came up with XEEP .....

Gotta go back a REALLY long time in the industry, so many won't even know this:  the Kodak 100 & 150.  Really reliable machines that heavily created industry disruption with Xerox having dominant market share and IBM climbing fast in the mid-70's and then a new player, Kodak, opened the door for many other later players to enter. 

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