Friday, January 26, 2024

A new frontier in fake typewriters

My eye was just caught by this item on eBay. 

It's a contemporary agglomeration based on an old clock and an Ideal-keyboard Hammond typewriter, like this one from Geoff Flash's collection.

The intricacy and oddity of the "typewriter" clock almost make me suspect that its design was generated by AI, but I think it's more likely that it was created by some Chinese designer who was looking for ways to appeal to the insatiable Western hunger for antiquity.

Tacky? Yes. Illogical? Yes. Nevertheless, kinda cool as yet another sign of the durable appeal of typewriters. Would you agree?

PS: If you want the object, go for it.

Thursday, January 4, 2024

First typewriter safari of 2024

Today I visited a couple of local antique malls and spotted the following typewriters.

I've seen photos of the Tomy's Tutor Typer before, but don't think I've actually tried one before today. Note how what looks like a keyboard actually consists of only three blocks of linked keys; each block controls one typebar. Also note that Tomy anticipated today's colloquial use of the term "typer."

IBM Correcting Selectric II, $350. The classic big beige slab of the 1970s. Is it worth $350? Maybe, to some people, if it's working—a question I did not attempt to answer.

Royal HH, $55. A fair price for the most popular American standard of the mid-1950s. I do wish that its most popular color weren't brown. In case you don't know, that odd device on the right side of the keyboard is a palm-operated tabulator. No other Royal model has it.

Wide-carriage Royal KMG, $125. This seller did some research, identified the model, and even dated the typewriter to 1949.

Remington Quiet-Riter, $95. This green paint is not the most common, and the typewriter is very clean. The return lever has gotten disconnected from the line-advance mechanism, but otherwise it's in good shape.

Olympia SF, $75. This seller is concerned about our behavior, and is also ready with an answer to the most common question about typewriters.

This Royal KMM has been reduced to $60, but its carriage is jammed.

This Remington Automatic electric is only $30. I believe it's a relabeled Brother.

What are your thoughts on this selection? 
Would you have taken any of these machines home?