Friday, April 08, 2011



notagain said...

I'm sorry to hear that. I have some in various stages of disrepair that I haven't taken in.
I'd like to see it if it was put back together though.
Can't wait to read the rest of the story.

Ted said...


very sad for you and your little typewriter. May you suddenly find a nice Lettera waiting for you at a thrift store for $5. You certainly deserve it (:

Strikethru said...

Super bummer news! And you took it all the way down there! Hope you brought more than one machine, I will have to go back and read your post again.

I like the sad little cloud :-)

Duffy Moon said...

All I can say is you're definitely overdue for some Miraculous Typewriterly Awesomeness after the foul luck you've been having.

Mike Speegle said...

Weak sauce. As a tech for some years, it's always a bummer to tell a client that their thingamajig has shuffled permanently off of the mortal coil. Hopefully it will find new life as parts for another machine. Typewriter organ donors!

I agree about the pens. Typewriters are so great, but sometimes the immediacy of a pen fits the bill.

Anonymous said...

So sad that your machine was DOA May there be thrift shop miracles in your future.

Good call on the fountain pens. Maybe even better are dip pens. I have been playing with some this week and having a lot of fun. Even my to-do lists look cool with a good italic nob and some Parker Quink to dip it in.


Ted said...

If you're really in the mood for a Lettera on the cheap, I would recommend the metal-bodied version of the Lettera 35 if you can't find a cheap L32 or L33. I just picked one up this weekend and I'm liking it quite a lot - it compares favorably to the L32.

There's currently one on Ebay pretty cheap (you can ignore the "for parts or repair" because the symptoms described by the seller prolly just mean the carriage is locked).

Mr Typewriter is selling the same machine *brand new* (well, NOS), for $179 plus shipping.

Little Flower Petals said...

@Mike - yeah...some days writing with a typewriter feels like you're trying to perform some sort of complex operation via a robot's awkward, and something is lost in translation. Or, alternatively, it's sort of the same way I am with my musical instruments: some days I attempt to play guitar and find myself all thumbs, but am *on* when it comes to the mandolin, and vice versa.

@Jeff - I still need to get me some dip pens one of these days. They keep finding their way into my cart on pen related shopping sites, but I haven't ever pulled the trigger. I'm bewildered by the array of choices. Any tips on selecting something simple to use and cheap to start with?

@Ted - I actually owned one of those it pretty much for the cost of shipping on an eBay auction no one else bid on. I found the plastic return lever and lack of a real case off-putting, though...I was always afraid I'd accidentally break it. And it had somewhat uneven type (wouldn't OCR) and felt considerably less substantial than the older Letteras I've had the chance to use. I ended up selling it for pretty much what I paid to a guy at the Snohomish write-in. With my current luck, letting it go was probably a mistake. Still, I think I'm covered. Just don't want to say anything until I'm sure. I've had a bad habit of talking too much lately.

Lettera 32s are still out of reach. They've achieved mythical status in my world, and I doubt I'll ever own one. At this point, I've only ever found three typewriters at thrift stores, and two were the late SCM sorts. I've never found an Olivetti in the wild, ever.

Even if one *does* show up around here, I'm guessing someone will beat me to it. < /Eeyore >

Anonymous said...


Try a Speedball C-4 nib in an inexpensive plastic holder maybe from Dick Blick or a local craft store like Michaels. It gives my usual handwriting an italic, semi-calligraphy look. I use my regular fountain pen ink and printer paper. Works well.

Check out Pendemonium for more information or give them a call. Very nice people and they really know their business.

Using these dip pens can be an art and a ton of (inexpensive) fun.


Little Flower Petals said...

Thanks, Jeff--that's a help!

Adwoa said...

I am so very sorry to hear about the end of this adventure. Well, it was a risk and these things happen. I, for my part, have just broken the carriage return lever on a perfectly amazing Lettera 22 and it seems a repair will be complicated and costly, and involve locating a donor machine (as if this one wasn't hard enough to find!). So, yeah, mistakes are part of the territory.

I'm sure a much deserved surprise is just around the corner...

Little Flower Petals said...

Hm...I wonder if the lever from my busted 33 would fit your 22? If so, you'd be welcome to it! I don't know if the shipping costs would make it all cost-prohibitive, though. But it might be something!

Adwoa said...

Probably not, so we don't even have to worry about trying to figure out shipping costs! I say this because there is a very dusty Lettera 32 currently sitting in our local Salvation Army (you wouldn't want it, trust me, it has no case and an Italian QZERTY keyboard) and while we initially thought of bringing it home to do just such an operation, we discovered after comparing our own Lettera 22 and 32 that our 22 is so early that it was made before Olivetti switched out certain rivets for easier to remove screws. It really looks as though we might have to find a same-age 22 and lift out the entire carriage. Not pretty.