Opinion: We say goodbye to ElevatorAdjuster @ Youtube

As an engineer, it’s a bit embarrassing to admit that I do have some unconventional choices when it comes to entertainment. One of the things I love to watch are educational videos and tours of elevators, because they involve electrical control gear, microprocessor and relay logic, and mechanics. I don’t know exactly why I got onto this, but I do know that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed watching the videos by Mr. John Fellin.

Those who are new to the area of elevator filmography probably won’t recognize the name, but he was the elevator mechanic/technician behind the ElevatorAdjuster Youtube channel, and ElevAider.com, which provided unique information on the service and maintenance of elevators from his daily job. No other elevator service technician has come anywhere close to this, or even bothered to release such information.

Through his videos, I was able to see many aspects of machinery which I wouldn’t otherwise be able to see, be it Motion Control Engineering elevator controllers, thin-client serial debug monitors, dedicated dispatcher/iCue/iView systems, relay logic controller troubleshooting, DC generator sets, brushes and commutator maintenance, brake adjustments, slipping traction, heat management and modernization processes.

Very little of this is existent in any other Youtube channel, except perhaps a little on relay logic and selectors over at MrMattandMrChay.

He was also very much capable of telling it like it is – he made his thoughts clear on the dangers of being an elevator technician, being exposed to various sorts of fumes and carbon dust, involved in dangerous or awkward positions in the machine-room, shaftways and car-tops, dealing with electricity, angry clients, dirty working conditions amongst others. He mentioned that he would be on the road to retirement, as many of his fellow technicians weren’t lucky enough to see retirement, or didn’t survive long enough to enjoy it.

Recently, just this week, I found his channel devoid of videos and his website to be down. Just today, it came back up again, with a simple message:

My Dear Local 3 IBEW Elevator Division Brothers and loyal subscribers.

I am approaching retirement. In order to meet restrictions outlined by the Pension Trust Fund else possibly putting at risk amenities that come packaged with my future pension I acted promptly and removed my elevator related sites. You have noticed by now that my ElevAider.com educational website and almost 700 how to fix elevators tutorials on my Youtube/Elevator Adjuster.com site have been removed. I am so sorry that I could not supply advanced notice. With almost 1 million hits in 5 years I drew the interest of many.
I hope that all my nearly 2000 fellow subscribers have gained great knowledge in this short amount of time we have been together and continue to work safely. Wishing you all the best, May God Bless and and always keep you safe.

In closing may I humbly add:
I hope you found this little lesson useful.
Thankyou and have a nice day.
John Fellin

At this time, all of the content is no longer available and no contact is available. It is a big shame to see that, due to some legal restriction, the world has lost a unique, leading resource.

In closing, I would like to present this open letter, in the hope that one day, he might see it:

Dear Mr. John Fellin,

While I was not a subscriber to your ElevatorAdjuster Youtube channel, I was a regular visitor and thoroughly enjoyed the videos you put together.

The effort you must have gone to, to produce around 700 videos detailing the service and maintenance of elevators was very unique and insightful. Your delivery was excellent and engaging, and your catch phrase “I hope you found this lession useful. Thank you, and have a nice day!” still resonates in my head.

As an engineer who is not in the area of elevator maintenance, it was fascinating to watch, and to have the opportunity to see things which I would have never had the ability to gain access to. The breadth of your experience in troubleshooting has taught me a lot about how elevators are made to be reliable and safe, and how to troubleshoot machinery of different vintages, be it relay-logic or solid state control, from mechanics to electronics.

It must have been a difficult but necessary decision for you to have to close your channel and remove the content from your website. It is no understatement to say that the world has lost access to a large chunk of elevator knowledge and experience the day you closed your channel. To me, it feels like I have lost a friend.

I do hope that one-day, someone will pick-up and continue with the concept.

In all, I congratulate you on your retirement and hope that you are able to enjoy every day of it.

From a fan of your channel,

Gough.

About lui_gough

I’m a bit of a nut for electronics, computing, photography, radio, satellite and other technical hobbies. Click for more about me!

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13 Responses to Opinion: We say goodbye to ElevatorAdjuster @ Youtube

  1. dpg says:

    This post made me quite sad for the loss. I was not aware of these videos, but I would likely have been a fan. What a shame to see a body of work vanish from existence.

  2. cheapie says:

    That’s sad… I was subscribed to him and loved the videos. At least I have most of them (up until around this last summer, plus a few random later ones) saved here.

  3. Alexandre says:

    Something is now missing…. 🙁 🙁 Lots of good work done and wrecked in seconds… Poor John ! Thoughts for you.

  4. UTube_viewer says:

    Thank you for the lessons and have a nice time on your pension 🙂
    Really enjoyed watching those elevator repair videos, a true, experienced professonial mechanic at work. Sad to see all those videos gone but as they say, all good things come to an end.

  5. Matt says:

    Wow thanks for the mention, but on a sad note it is sad to see someone who has committed much of his time to creating these videos remove his youtube account. My channel has 416 videos from 2008 onwards. John had over 700 during a much shorter period – that’s some achievement.
    This is not the first time that I’ve seen someone in the lift trade remove an account from youtube. The problem is, employers do not wish to see their sites and fix it methods on youtube for every member of the public to see. If I were in the trade, then I guess I too would be unable to maintain such a site due to the content.
    To be honest, it doesn’t come as a surprise but it is a real shame.
    Good luck John and I hope some day you are able to resurrect your account (somehow).
    Matt (mrmattandmrchay)

    • lui_gough says:

      Dear Matt,

      Definitely an honour to have a comment from you :). I definitely enjoy your videos, which are always well-edited, and I think there’s a lot of historical value as well. I did especially enjoy your series in finding and documenting the Broadmoor escape sirens – looking forward to seeing those last few.

      Thanks for taking the time to comment.

      From a rather (quiet) fan of yours,
      Gough.

  6. NEAElevator says:

    I too am an elevator videographer and also a loyal subscriber to Mr. Fellin’s videos. I had actually added a question to his last video. After a couple of days, I had not received a reply which was not like him. I then realized that the video had disappeared along with his channel. I then went to his site and read his letter. I also hope that Mr. Fellin finds this page to see that his videos reached out and fascinated many. The fascination of mine of the older relay technology was displayed beautifully on his channel. (Yes, yes, MrMattandMrChay has some very awesome videos as well 😉 ) While I have several thoughts of why he shut down his channel, I just hope that he was not “forced” into retirement because of this extra hobby of his. I hope Mr. Fellin will see this one day. When he does, I want him to know that he was our Einstein of elevator science and knowledge. I thank him for the wonderful videos that kept us entertained from start to finish. He taught so many that could not see beyond the cab and buttons of an elevator how the parts come together to make such a safe machine. John Fellin is a true scholar and a gentleman.

    Thank you Gaugh for opening this page to allow for all of those that followed Mr. Fellin’s video to express our thoughts.

    • lui_gough says:

      No problems! I sure hope he sees this too :).

      I think he was very passionate about elevators, but he had published several opinion pieces about the realities of being an elevator mechanic. I think he was very much of the idea that retirement is something we should all enjoy, but is one that elevator technicians rarely experience because of the occupational hazards they experience on a regular basis. As a result, I think he was probably not so much “forced” to retire, but had finally taken that step he needed to retire. I know he had mentioned it a few times in his videos that he was well on the path towards retirement.

      Thanks to Archive.org, his piece was archived: http://web.archive.org/web/20150301224704/http://www.elevaider.com/uploads/9/5/2/3/952300/by_john_fellin.pdf

      – Gough

  7. Bill says:

    Like the other posters here, I really will miss the videos! I am not an elevator repair person, but have always loved to see videos of the inside workings of elevators and the controls.
    I am very startled and saddened to see that he took his site and videos down! I was searching for quite a while looking for some good “entertainement”, and when his site couldn’t be found, I went searching and found this information.
    Really glad that he is retiring, but VERY sad to see the videos are gone. I hope that they re-surface somewhere else.

    Thank You John for your hard work and your ability to share your work with great videos.

    (sniff, sniff).

  8. Len Benavidez says:

    Mr. John Fellin,

    Until now I hadn’t made an attempt to contact you and regret that I hadn’t taken the time sooner to say thank you for all you had given – your time, knowledge, a good laugh, etc. I was a subscriber as well, who tapped in now and again as time permitted. I really enjoyed all that you had put together as a resource for guys like to me to further educate myself. One day I found myself in need of the practical assistance you had so freely and unselfishly provided. I was saddened to that we lost such a wealth of knowledge. I wish I would have taken the time to glean more from you when I had the opportunity.

    Along with a thank you I wish you well. Hope your enjoying the retirement with those that you love.
    Hope to get a chance to speak with you someday.

    Len

  9. Pingback: Site Update: Celebrating 1 million+ views (25 Jan 13 – 3 Sep 15) | Gough's Tech Zone

  10. Clive Mitchell says:

    John’s videos were an outstanding glimpse into the history of elevators due to the range of gear he worked with. They were also a valuable resource for actual elevator mechanics. It’s shocking that he had to take them down due to “union” involvement.

    • lui_gough says:

      Nice to see a comment from you bigclivedotcom! As a note, I do watch your videos regularly – love your stories about your experiences as an apprentice and freelancing for Hussman Refrigeration. Keep up the good work!

      – Gough

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