Note: So I’m camping at Sanborn Skyline Park in Saratoga, California, working on my Nano novel. I can’t say for sure that I will meet the goal of 50,000 words by the end of November, but I’m sure enjoying the process. I began the novel, Beings Without Selves, on my recently acquired Olympia typewriter (pictured above), but right now I’m using smaller portables: my Royal Sprite and my Remington 666. Being that I’m consumed with this Nano project, my post on the Olympia machine is a bit abbreviated.
Here is a posting I began a two weeks ago —
At $12.99 at a local thrift store, I could not pass up this Olympia typewriter. It needed basic cleaning — some of the keys stuck — but otherwise it was in fair shape. Typewriters, when in supply, generally sell for $25 at this shop, so this one represented a real deal. Given its size — it’s a behemoth — I can see why it was offered at a discount. It’s hard to find space for a machine like this.
That it should turn out to be such a fine typer is the real reward. The text is crisp and the alignment is straight. The typing, though a bit ponderous, is strong. I feel like I’m sitting at the head of a great star cruiser when I type on it.
Cleaning proved quite easy. The top casing snaps in place, so one need only pull and it is removed. The carriage is held in place by two clamps, so that it too can be removed by simply lifting the component. Ingeniously, the mainspring (the element which draws the carriage) is built into the carriage assembly. Judging from advertisements I’ve seen for this typewriter, the carriage was designed to be interchangeable with others of varying length. (Is this really so?)
My machine is mostly whole, lacking only paper table extension. Mine came with the dust cover, which is nice, as I’m using this typewriter as a regular machine. I want to keep it in top form, i.e. protected from dust.
Aesthetically, I’d say this typewriter is a pleasing machine. Its sloping lines are graceful and modern; its design is quite ingenious. This is the sort of machine one might use in a newsroom, or at home to write a novel. For whatever reason, this typewriter inspires creativity.
One last note, does anyone know the model?
© 2013, Mark Adams. All rights reserved.