PE: I find your posts fascinating and inspiring in equal measure. Please keep them coming.
My experience with reviving lapsed technology is that the problems lie not with gummed up machinery or badly-written manuals, but in the lack of a chain of practical experience. The key person is not the whizz-bang inventor or the head of the lab, but the grizzled technician who knows which lever to coax with a lump hammer and which to let well alone, which roller needs re-seating on alternate Tuesdays and which grease to use on the irreplacable gasket to keep it supple. In my mind's eye you are that technician. Hats off.