Tuesday, June 4, 2024

New typeshuttles for the Hammond typewriter - iterations

The current state of the (slow, intermittent) effort to be able to use the Hammond Multiplex with new typeshuttles; two new, improvised shuttles on the machine:

Last year, when ordering 3D printed parts for a reproduction Hammond spool, also ordered some first test prints for a typeshuttle. These were printed from a fairly simple 3D model, with straight 'slugs'.

This was mostly meant as a test for the dimensions. The Hammond typeshuttle has an awkward design without obvious angles or dimensions (at least, not obvious to me). Despite this first-version typeshuttle strip being very basic, it showed promise and with an improvised flange it actually provided (somewhat) legible typing!

This first attempt was printed on a resin-printer with high resolution. Very crisp, no visible layering or artefacts at all! The first-version shown below on the Multiplex; it's also obvious that the strip is too thick.

As it did indeed look promising, an improved 3D model was created with tapered 'slugs'.

To make the iterations in design a bit faster, this was simply printed on an FDM printer. With a filament printer in PLA, the printed part does clearly show layers. However, with a layer-height of 0.08 mm and great horizontal precision this is not too much of an issue. With FDM, the parts are easily printed and good enough to validate the design.

An example FDM printed reproduction typeshuttle shown below on the right, next to an original on the left.

Again, reproduction with improvised flange on the right, original on the left.

The thin flange with the take-up for the vane to actuate the typeshuttle is a tricky part - that especially will require more thinking and probably several iterations to get right. Even this FDM-printed typeshuttle does actually type (somewhat):

Even though the print-quality is terrible still, this Hammond Multiplex typed a bit in 'script'. The bad print quality is probably also caused by a badly-inked ribbon; another thing to try to remedy on this machine.

More tweaking to do - and to get a better ribbon (more ink). A slow and intermittent project, but fun to do and still shows promise. Exploring this also gave more insight in the actual workings of a Hammond typewriter and how some of the first shuttle-design aspects 'echo through' in the anvil & shuttle - fascinating machine :)


  1. You're not the only one who's trying to make this work: https://www.instagram.com/p/C5oBvuOLhzy/?img_index=1

    1. Ooh how cool! I hadn't seen BlickElements yet - we should share tips and some dimensioning info!)
      Did see SelectrixRescue's amazing efforts - very sophisticated models too.

      This is probably an idea whose time has come :-)