≡ Menu

The Montana Luxe

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Montana Luxe Typewriter

Note: The history of the Montana line of typewriters is posted here.

The Montana Luxe, intoduced in 1950, was a licensed copy of the Hermes Baby. It was produced by Montana SpA of Torino, Italy, and sold in European and American markets.1 It was offered with either QWERTY and QWERTZ keyboards.

Montana produced several versions of this machine. Later models, like the re-branded Packard (featured in my collection here), had plastic bodies, and were sold in discount department stores. Early Montanas, however, were better built. Writes Robert Messenger at Oz.Typewriter, the Montana “really yells out for a good workout… it simply zips along at a great old rate.”2

Montana Luxe

I lately acquired this Montana Luxe, ser. no. 22408, on eBay. The word “Luxe” is not displayed on the paper table, as on other specimens of this machine, but it is doubtless a Luxe. The platen measures 25mm, as described at TypewriterDatabase.com.3 The platen on a later model, sometimes called the 102, measures 32mm.

My Luxe is a near-perfect copy of the Hermes Baby/Rocket, with a glossy, dark green finish. The label on the top of the machine reads “Montana, Florence – Italia.”

Photos:

Hermes Baby Rocket and Montana Luxe

The Hermes Rocket (left) and the Montana Luxe (right).

Packard and the Luxe

The Packard, manufactured sometime in the mid-1960s, and the Luxe, manufactured around 1950.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

The Montana Luxe with glossy, dark green finish.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

“Montana, Florence, Italia”

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Made in Italy.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Near-perfect copy of Hermes Baby/Rocket.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

A very fine typer.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Metal case like Hermes Baby/Rocket.

European Montana

This Montana, offered on eBay, features a QWERTZ keyboard, and matte finish.

$_57

This later-style Montana was lately offered on eBay (Australia). Looks like the Montana Packard, but more stylish.

As seen at TypewriterDatabase.com.

© 2013 – 2014, Mark Adams. All rights reserved.

  1. European Typewriters / Italy / Montana at Machines of Loving Grace. []
  2. Montana Luxe portable typewriter: Such a beautiful Baby, Robert Messenger, Oz.Typewriter. []
  3. The Montana at TypewriterDatabase.com. []
{ 8 comments… add one }
  • Nick December 13, 2013, 7:18 am

    I’ve always loved the looks of the early Montana. The nameplate is superb! I never knew that the Packard descended from this…I guess in the back of my mind I always thought of it as Antares-based.

  • Steve K December 13, 2013, 7:29 am

    I like the look of the flatter black keys. I wonder are they better to type on than (say) the green Hermes keys.

  • T. Munk December 13, 2013, 2:46 pm

    Hmmn, so Montanas have the ribbon vibrator swinging up from the left like normal Hermes. I’ve always wondered why my Empire Aristocrat was built with a “mirrored” ribbon vibrator mechanism. It swings up from the right.

  • Mark Adams December 13, 2013, 4:32 pm

    That’s an interesting observation, Munk. It does appear that Montana essentially stuck with the original design, until they started adding plastic.

    Steve, the keys on the Montana are more comfortable, though I haven’t done any real typing on it, as I haven’t changed the ribbon yet.

  • Colleen Wilkins May 5, 2014, 5:21 pm

    I purchased what looks like this typewriter (in above photo on this page) with the Montana Florence-Italia logo the body is a greyish color and it is a metal body , it has the cover with the black carrying handle. It has made in Italy on the back panel. Would this be a typewriter a collector would look for? Is this a common find? Thank you.

    • Mark Adams May 5, 2014, 5:28 pm

      Before the age of the Internet, they were hard to come by — less so today. However, I do note that they tend to garner higher prices than the average machine. That said, I’ve acquired one or two at around $50.

  • Colleen Wilkins May 6, 2014, 3:37 am

    Thank you Mark, also I have a Smith-Corona Super Speed very very heavy typewriter…what would your opinion be on that. I’m a paper artist and I pick up things from thrift stores, garage sales, estate sales and such to find interesting items to alter with paper, paint, epoxy and such….
    Thank you again for talking with me Colleen

  • shordzi September 24, 2014, 8:49 pm

    Just discovered your blog. Excellent! And very good pictures of the fabulous Hermes Baby family.

Leave a Comment