Friday, May 29, 2015

Carefully check the case

When doing the first cleaning of a newly arrived case, two small parts turned out to be wedged under a lifted corner of the leatherette of the bottom of the case.

A small (~5mm long) screw-rod and a small spring.

Lucky to have spotted these and glad didn't turn over the case to tap out all the debris and dust. There may be little parts of the machine amongst the debris.

After playing around a bit with the newly arrived typewriter, noticed that the left margin control didn't lock like the right margin. There the location of the found parts, the spring goes over two rods and presses the margin stop release up again into a slot in the margin bar.

Confirmed the importance of carefully checking all nooks and crannies of a case :)

Friday, May 22, 2015

When you need a ruler

For those times when you don't have a ruler and do have a typewriter handy...

(From the Popular Mechanics, December '35 issue)

(It could happen.)

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Classical album

A while back I managed to get a couple of classical albums. These are proper, hardcover albums with gold lettering and tied with a ribbon. (Now that is worlds away in experience from the average plastic CD case.) 

Containing 4 or 6 large 12" shellac records, they also weigh some. These are from the Columbia Masterworks series of classical works and date from 1927 and '28.

They're overall in good condition and still sound quite good when played on the contemporary HMV. Listening to a classical work this way is a much more active experience than it is with more recent music formats. After every 5 minutes or so, the record needs to be changed, a new needle placed and the gramophone rewound. For every record side there is a small description in the accompanying booklet, as well as some more historical context for the work.

The later album has the notes printed on every sleeve page and the records are at 78 rpm. The older set is still at the Columbia standard speed of 80 rpm.

Classical albums, tied with a ribbon :)

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Felt-pad with anti-slip

From a thick sheet of synthetic felt, had glued two layers together to make a typewriter pad. The pad did do something for the amount of reverberation of the table, but the felt also was very smooth. This meant that with every character typed, the machine made a shuffle to the left. As if trying to sneak off-stage to the left, hoping you'd not notice.

Typewriters have rubber feet to keep them firmly in place, would be worth a try to give the felt a rubber coating as well. With a spray-can of plasti-dip that was very easy to do and give it a try.

Not wanting to spray the whole of the pad bottom and to keep the edges clean, taped off the edges and taped a mask in the centre. A typewriter's feet will be around the edges of the pad always - where the anti-slip is needed.

Placing it vertical, gave it a few layers of plasti-dip. Vertical is better for a spray-can of course, but was also worried that the very runny rubber paint would just soak through otherwise. Result is definitely not like an even layer of paint, but it is a full layer and does cling well to the 'felt'.

Removing the masking, a black rubber coating now around the black felt pad.

With the anti-slip coating under the weight of the machine, it sits on rubber again. The pad should now have coating for the position of any portable machine. (Haven't yet heard of a typewriter with feet in middle centre. Though there may be... :)

Net result is a typewriter pad that does reduce the noise of the table a little bit and also stays very firmly in place. This pad would also help machines with hardened feet that have lost their grip, to keep them in place.

No sliding the machine around the table anymore, the only way now to move it is to just pick it up :)

Sunday, May 3, 2015


In a small stack of records came this Columbia advertising sleeve:

Printed in England in 1939 as promotion material for the 1940 summer olympics that had just been moved from the originally planned Tokyo to Helsinki. It shows the new Helsinki olympic stadium built in the modernistic style. All olympic games were then cancelled in 1939 as war started to break out.

Somehow this one ended up in Holland, like all records in the stack probably sold in Harlem perhaps with a Columbia record. When I got it, it contained a Parlophon record with 'Christmas' sung by the AVRO children's choir that was led by Jacob Hamel - until May '40.