Photographs and Interviews unveils an astonishing American subculture, and the homespun inventors and users who propel it. Meet a laid-off tech industry exec who transforms a thrift store pasta maker into a high-powered sexual appliance and a new career; an apocalyptic visionary who builds a sex machine prototype for female survivors of a future without men; and an Idaho cowboy who intends to use his device as a form of Christian-based marriage counseling.
Sex Machines celebrates the spirit of American ingenuity and bold approaches to an ever-changing sexual landscape. Sartan is really a guy named Paul, and he happily agreed to spend time with me as long as we were done by the time his kids were home from school. We hung out in his garage and his kitchen, surrounded by former domestic appliances he has converted into sex machines.
Paul and his wife Jenny are open about their own use of machines. The popular image of the adult industry, or anything sexual in general, has dark rooms and black curtains and kinda grungy nasty people behind it—people not in touch with the emotional factor.
We are average neighbors. We mow our lawn, we feed our kids healthy food, we go to school meetings. I guess we are the perverts of the world. We could be next to you in the supermarket. I went to school for an MBA in strategic management with a minor in human resources. I moved up very quickly in my job and ended up at the director level. I had always figured that sex was the one thing that really was recession-proof.
When I got laid off in early , it was my time to put this idea to the test. Making sex machines for my wife and me had been a hobby. Then I turned the hobby into my real job. I think it is a very common fantasy, this machine fucking fantasy thing. It really comes down to the desire to have something that can out-perform a man. There are also people who have a very personal reason to have a machine. Like the closeted homosexual guy. For a couple, it opens up a lot of possibilities sexually.
Then we have people who are away from their wives. This guy was a driller on a platform, leaving his wife behind three months at a time. It can allow him to participate in sex with her, participate in her enjoyment, and enjoy that himself. People share these things with me. So, if you wanted to make cookies, you can detach the mixer from the machine, hook it to its original base and bowl—clean it off, of course—and you can get to work in the kitchen.
We did have a kinky cookie bake with our local BDSM group last year during the holidays. We do every year, in fact. Before launching their own homemade pornographic pay site on the Southern Charms portal, Deb and Bill were supporting the family on their disability and retirement paychecks. For years Bill posted erotic shots of Deb to various online listservs, but decided to try his hand at running a pay site this year. They post three photo shoots of Deb a week, all shot on location in their three-bedroom house.
When the Net came along I got into posting them. It felt good knowing that other guys found my wife attractive. A few months back we looked at our bills and felt we should try to make some money with this. I got hit by MS and ended up in this wheelchair. Then Deb had to have her hip replaced. A friend we met on the Net offered to make us a machine. We used it and we liked it. Deb and I have always been sexually open and ambitious, and we explore all options together.
The same old thing gets boring, and our physical situation has something to do with it. This machine fit in with our life perfectly. We felt there was a need for something erotic on the Net that involved the machines and involved a woman like Deb, a real woman.
We wanted to get machine sex porn into the hands of the average Joe, with a woman they could relate to. Our site has 35 members! We are the only ones using the machines on the site, so that may give us an edge…or it could be Deb.
We send thank you notes out to everyone who joins. We like to remind them that we are real people and they are too. Deb Doing this lets us keep our house and have a few little luxuries. This was about acceptance of myself. When someone would say I was beautiful, I always denied it. And that was when Bill was doing it for free.
I have a good feeling about this. It was two women talking about their fear of disease, and not having time to be involved with a relationship. They were discussing the idea of finding a replacement toy instead of trying to meet men. I started on the basic parts of the flywheel and linkage the next day. I had a crude, working machine in a few days, and happened to see exactly what I was building on HBO one night. I got a couple of ideas and perfected it in about two weeks. I was looking for someone to try it out and came across the machine site.
I joined and emailed a couple of people from the message board. I built a couple with the idea in mind to help women with sexual problems. One machine went to a woman in California, and I received an email from her that she was completely satisfied with it. One went to Deb and Bill. That machine was built with the idea in mind to help someone with a disability. The last machine I made was made for a retarded girl at the request of a family member. I never heard from them again after I shipped the machine.
For the most part, everyone I built a machine for had choices to make during the entire process. The end result was a machine with their own personal preferences color, stroke length and speed. One was even finished to match other furniture in the house. All the machines were donated free of charge and all I asked in return was input about the function of each machine.
I build custom flatbed trailers and enjoy the interaction with people, building what they want, and the same was true about the machines. He acquired the sprawling property at a time when he was exiting a marriage and looking for some purpose to his life.
Here I am, this divorced Christian guy, not promiscuous at all, and here I am with a sex machine. It was an idea I came up with in the last year or two of the marriage, as a lastditch attempt to save whatever we had…our sex life, if nothing else. She actually pushed me for a divorce before I could finish it and give it to her. How does this all relate to the machine? Well, I just think it would be a good door to open for people who are looking for help.
The people who would be interested in these sorts of things sometimes also are the same people who are searching for answers. And I think that at those intersection points I could help out. So, I want to sell it to a couple.
I was a virgin when I got married. I think sex outside marriage is, quite simply, destructive. But if a married couple wants something I can build, to add spice or enjoyment to their own relationship, I am all there, and am open to building more. I will require anyone ordering a machine from me to provide proof of marriage and a signed statement of intent to use only within that marriage—kind of like a gun dealer that requires proof of age and proof of passage of a firearm safety test before selling someone a firearm.
We met three years ago. He hated the grease, the dirt—all the things boys like, Ruiin really hated. I was working at Hot Topic in the mall and he came in as a shopper. Hot Topic is a big chain store in malls that essentially tells you how to be Gothic. He came in and I dressed him up in vinyl dresses. Then we started hanging out. I was using Solace as my last name. Ruiin For me, the Holy Fuck is just something to have that I made.
I just really enjoy the path to get there. The machine was like that for me: I really enjoyed making it, working out the details and the design, finding ways to do it affordably, thinking it through.
But using it was not really anything special. A lot of people gross me out. Halloween is coming up. I was thinking of putting a ghost on the end and setting it up in front of the house for the trick-or-treaters.