This is the sound of an 18th century bird box by Jaquet Droz. The owner had never heard it sing until our restoration:

“Automata are mechanical objects endowed with life by ingenious means.”

‘Thank You’ to all who made AUTOMATACON 2018 such a success.

The House of Automata is a specialist automata company run by Michael and Maria Start.   Michael is an award winning trained Horologist and Maria is a skilled Sculptor and Painter.  We run a busy restoration workshop in Forres, Moray  and a showroom in Edinburgh, Scotland.801Ball boy maria

We have in depth knowledge based on 25 years experience restoring and conserving fine automata both antique and modern.  We also have good connections across the world to other specialists and academics with associated specialities.

Our clients are collectors, auction houses, the media and muBlack Forest Magicianseums.

BUYING/SELLING – Singing Birds and Automata

HIRE –  We hire Automata and Horology to the film industry.

TALKS – We present a range of lively and popular talks.

EXHIBITIONS – With a large stock and an important collection of automata we mount our own interactive exhibitions and loan automata to museums and galleries.

VISIT  Behind the scenes workshop tour in Forres, Morayshire.

HELP – We are passionate about our subject and are happy to give advice on any automata question, just send us an email with pictures if possible.

Videos of Automata see our YouTube channel 



Automata Evening - London - SOLD OUT

All tickets for this event are now Sold Out. The master of creative crazy contraptions Heath Robinson has a museum devoted to him and his work. It is located in Pinner on the outskirts of London (Pinner tube station) and Michael Start of The House of Automata is delighted to present a talk and demonstration on the 16th of August at 6.30pm. The event will include performances of rare antique automata and an insight into the weird & wonderful world of the objects and their owners, its going to be fab! The event is followed by an opportunity to enjoy the Crafts Councils excellent automata exhibition

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For Sale

Under construction, please email if you are looking for a specific piece, we may have it in stock.

We have a selection of automata for sale or hire. Take a look and if you would like more details please contact us.

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Of amazing pictures and fantastic projects. Take a look at some of our finest moments and biggest challenges.

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