A week of cleaning and tinkering. This one stank to high heaven, as the Letteras often do. I scrubbed the case inside and out. Its case linings had come loose so this made cleaning easier and also revealed the flimsy nature of these soft cases: the linings are merely cardboard and cloth. I used stain remover made into a paste and applied with a toothbrush in small sections, allowing each cleaned part to dry off in the sun. I was worried the cardboard would disintegrate! I fixed the linings back into place with strong wood glue. Irene’s name sticker also gave me worries but actually it just peeled off easily, and the remaining gummy parts cleaned off with washing up liquid. The felt inside the base of the machine was treated to anti-bac foot spray, which neutralises the deep aroma coming from inside the typewriter.
On the Remington De Luxe 5:
The variable line space button shaft inside the left hand platen knob looks like this:
See that little thing down there next to the main shaft? That’s what I’m calling the mini-shaft. It allows the button to be pushed and turned and held in place, letting you keep the platen in free-rolling mode. This is a replacement left side platen knob I harvested from another Remington De Luxe 5 I bought this week. Replacing the knob could not have been easier. (You just unscrew the knob, holding the right hand knob firmly in your other hand. )My Remington De Luxe 5 is now back to being a fully functioning artist’s typewriter.
The original platen knob shaft was, on inspection, slightly bent out of shape, and also and strangely enough, missing the little mini-shaft.
When I put the orignial, now defective, platen knob onto the parts machine, I was able to reproduce the problem I had found on my original machine, after its sojourn in Bexhill.
I know one should not type anything in anger, but I’m still pretty annoyed about this whole ruddy thing.
The Truth about Knobs is out there. Don’t let them mess with your mind.
P.S (Knob, here, is invoking the British slang. It’s just occurred to me that my non-British readers may be misled over my funny title, which isn’t as hilarious if you’re not British or are not aware that a Knob in the UK is a rude word for a stupid man. )
Hmm. The wiring was correct but the whole area underneath was drenched in oil, so I dabbed up as much as I could with cotton buds and slips of newsprint, and added a new drop to the spindle nut, feeling that this was not the answer. And it was not. The dial still returned too slowly. From zero it should return while you say “one, one thousand and one” and stop on the last “one”.
P.S! this is the only phone we will be fixing on type the clouds, for this year at least. Back to typewriters now. I have a new Lettera 22 to smarten up …
A little while ago an eagle-eyed fellow typospherian Bill M very generously offered me a replacement paper finger for my 1909 Underwood 5. I was so excited to receive the parcel and get the screw drivers out this weekend. The procedure for replacing the finger is quite straight forward when you know how and have prior warning about the teeny spring and rod in the finger which have to be held carefully in place. I was grateful for the instructions Bill sent along with the part, otherwise I might have spent a while messing about with fiddly bits!
It’s the little things that make all the difference. The typosphere is a wonderful thing! I’m always grateful to be a part of it.
I haven’t had my Remington Portable on the desk for ages. One of its old issues was letter piling so I typed a page of random words to see what was what. Only a couple of instances of piling. Usually the more I use this machine the less it piles letters
I’m always keen to increase my vocabulary. I remember the first time I heard the word “realtor” and I thought huh?! I must have been about 20. Before that I assumed the Brits and Americans were speaking basically the same language with merely a large expanse of water between us. Then I learned what “rubber” meant and that it’s not for correcting mistakes on your life drawing. Oh no. And how could anyone say “fanny” in public without blushing?! Well probably me. But I blush for others.
If we read these books we (my kids and I) usually ended up having a talk about sexism and racism at some point and how different the stories might be today. I would not have chosen the books myself but if you give children free choice at the bookshop I think it’s worth exploring historical texts, and learning to say “Aunt Fanny” and “Dick” without cracking up mid-sentence is a life skill it’s never too late to learn.
Or, how to take the shell off your brother without dismantling the machine.
Remove the two screws under either side of the carriage on the plastic frame. You will need a flat head screwdriver. Prise the plastic shell up from the plastic base. It will resist with as much force as a teenager confronted with a hot shower and soap. Be firm but understand its point of view. Engage shift. Slide carriage all the way to the right. Lift the shell up and over the carriage.
I once saw a YouTube video of a guy struggling to get the shell off a Lettera 32. He ended up removing the carriage lock or something. I don’t know, it was too painful to watch all the way through. The same basic procedure here can be followed for a Lettera 22 or 32. ( And it was my previous experience in Letteras that meant I wasn’t fazed by this hunk of plastic )
I would have preferred to polish the bell off the machine but I don’t have a long enough screwdriver to go in all the way from the opposite side of the typewriter. Brasso and wet & dry paper. Carefully, slowly turning the bell. The metal is pitted from the rust but so far it’s looking a lot nicer.