Toyo Keisokuki Provides Venue for International Exchange
idetsugu Yamaki, President of Toyo Keisokuki Co., Ltd., established Gauge in July 2016 with the vision to create a space where people can leisurely talk about the history and future of measurement instruments over a drink or two. Gauge is a chic bar in Akihabara, Tokyo in Japan, operated by Toyo Keisokuki Co., Ltd., and now, has been contributing to international exchanges among professionals. It is located at the Keisokuki Land Building in Akihabara.
This bar, which can hold around 20 people features historical electric test and measuring instruments displayed on the wall. These instruments, which were manufactured between 1930 and 1970, have significantly contributed to Japan's postwar reconstruction and development. Among them include valuable products in the history of measurement instruments, such as a standard scale for weighing grains, which was used daily in China in the 1800s, and an analog meter with a skeleton structure, which was manufactured by Westone Laboratories, Inc. at the beginning of the 1900s, and thereafter became a representative model of measuring instruments around the world.
Since its opening, Gauge has been visited by various groups of people. Recently, it has been attracting foreign tourists. On some days, foreigners account for more than 50 percent of visitors.
English-speaking Ayako Yamaki, Gauge's Floor Manager, can communicate well with foreign customers. She can clearly explain the historical background of products on display, thus making a favorable impression among guests.
More recently, Yamaki has received a gift from a customer in the form of an AVO meter (DC/AC voltage current meter) made in Czechoslovakia more than 50 to 60 years ago. Libor Novacek, who is involved in electricity-related work in Czech Republic, brought the AVO meter. Last year, when Novacek, visited Japan for sightseeing, he saw many vintage products at the bar. He promised to visit there again one year later. He was originally an electrical engineer and a collector of old measurement instruments. He wanted to contribute a measuring instrument, which represents the industrial level of Czech Republic from his collection, to the exhibits at the bar and brought it with him when he visited Japan the second time.
In the runup to the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games next year, the number of foreigners visiting Japan is expected to significantly increase, and international exchanges at Gauge could be positively impacted, too.