Friday, September 30, 2011


Only for a week, really. Off to Paris on a belated "summer vacation" to see what treasures await. Some cool pictures to be taken, if nothing else. In the meantime, I leave you with a typecast:

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Swiss Type-In Souvenir: Remington Junior (c. 1936)

I never thought I'd be drawn to these gleaming black metal typewriters, but here we are. Far cry from the candy-colored Annabellas and ABCs of yore, but very attractive in their own right.

Type-bar macro shows that some cleaning is order (maybe even overdue!), but it hasn't gotten bad enough to affect the quality of the text produced... yet.

Sticker from dealer in top of case, and a couple of pages from the user manual.

A careful eye will spot a few of the mechanical "shortcomings" I listed as peculiar to this Remington Junior: no right-hand margin stop and no right-hand carriage release lever.

I was quite happy that the handle of the case had survived intact all these years, a good indication that the typewriter had been quite well-preserved.

Gratuitous typewriter pr0n :-)

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Autumn brings...

 My answer to Florian's autumn-themed meme. 

Tour de Sauvabelin in Lausanne on a crisp fall day.
I am not looking forward to the foggy cloud that settles over Geneva most days in the fall and winter, leaving the city drab and grey for days on end. The only way to escape it is to take a hike up the nearest mountain, but that is not very practical most of the time...

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Hermes Hoard Held Hostage

Young girl cheerfully makes off with a stash of Hermes typewriters.... never to be seen again!
(Hermes poster courtesy

(Prototype of midsized Hermes portable from the '70s)

(Hermes 1000 prototype, which has seen better days. From the '70s - perhaps it was just as well this was never made!)

Now that Georg is making friends with the museum staff, I expect that he'll soon be inviting us over to see the collection...

If you would like to see more images from the Museum's Paillard collection, visit their Collection Database and enter "hermes schreibmaschine" in the keyword field. For more than just Paillard, try "schreibmaschine"... they have many other brands represented too! It's a fantastic assortment, and I hope it will be made open to the public as more people clamor to view it.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Typ-Fix, Rooy Racer, and other curiosities

Another look at the Racer? Mais bien sur... although I didn't have the satisfaction of bringing this home with me, I made sure to spend a few moments just admiring it. Will Davis mentions on his site that the semi-portable Rooy typewriters have striking designs which are underappreciated because they are not often seen... how true!

A look at the Typ-Fix - well-used to be sure, but still has some life left. The back of this is a light blue color.

Hanging out nearby were two Hermes 2000s and a wide-carriage Olympia SM-7. I am fast becoming the blogger caught without a good camera at inopportune moments... oh, dear.

Elite typeface, but charming in its way. I don't know if I like that the ribbon cover is the entire front of the machine, though.

The Facit 1620 from which we nabbed the typ-fix!

Finally, a handyman who had noted my disappointment at not getting last week's Typ-Fix and had been planning to fashion a homemade one contributes a review and comments on the backing sheet.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

A Faithful Account of the All-Swiss Type In (Sept 10)

Fitting that the first find was a Swiss classic: Hermes 3000 (unbelievably pristine condition, too).
This Triumph was beautiful too; however we all spent too much time cooing over the Hermes to pay much attention to it. While there were only a couple of typewriters at HIOB, I was rather impressed by the good condition of the ones we found.

Three generations of Hermes Media: glossy black from the '30s, mint green from the late '60s, and army green from the '40s. All in one store! It was a Hermes kind of day, indeed. 

The Hermes parade continued with a mid '50s green Baby (not pictured), this wide-carriage '70s 3000, 

...and yet another Media, this time from the early '50s. The store owner had an impressive collection indeed, but I couldn't help worrying that it was due to low turnover - how many of these machines had been lingering there for months?

In the "Not Hermes" category was an Olivetti Lettera 42 with a fun repeat spacer function...

and this Royal Quiet de Luxe (first time seeing one of these!) with a disgraceful skipping problem (tsk, tsk). 

More after the cut... yes, it was a very interesting day!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Senta 3-Bank Portable Typewriter (c. 1926): Frakturschrift

I have been reading much more about frakturschrift and blackletter fonts in general than about the Senta in particular; in fact, I can't say I would have gotten a Senta if it were not for this one's intriguing typeface! Nevertheless, I'm glad she's in such good shape, with intact rubber feet and no rust to speak of. Early Senta 3-bank portables came in a large molded wood case; fortunately this one arrived in a much more practical square suitcase.

There is also a German website devoted to nothing but blackletter: I read through this thread on their forum about the elusive search for fraktur typewriters, helpfully - if a bit clumsily - translated by Google.

I found out that the definitive book on blackletter was written by Judith Schalansky in 2008; the Amazon reviewers seem to like Fraktur Mon Amour too. Something to put on my wishlist, if just to leaf through - it is more about digital fraktur typefaces, though I'm sure she must mention typewriters at some point.

Speaking of digital fraktur, you can download a font made from a fraktur typewriter's typeface at this link:

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Report on the 2nd International Virtual Type-In

And here is a shot of the action, taken with a digital camera Clemens style:

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