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!

A thorough write-up on my new Remington Junior will follow later, of course, but as I mention it so much I thought it was only fair to give you all a peek.

Not a looker, but quite a typer!

Mini-typecast right from the aisles of the Salvation Army!

Swissa Piccola! I was too busy making my decision on the Remington Junior to look for this one, but Florian found it all by himself and staked his claim. Very nicely done.

A brief stop at Markt Halle revealed this Continental Standard and a Royal portable; both seemed to work well.

After the type-in at the Art Cafe, showing off Florian's and my newly-found treasures.

The photographer earns his keep by turning out a decent picture of Georg and me (I nicked this from Georg's blog, actually :))

Florian's account and Georg's account of the type-in.


  1. What an exciting post, Adwoa. Thanks for sharing the Swiss Type-in with us. Nice to see a pic of you too!

    I'm drawn to the Swiss Piccola for some reason. Makes me wonder about its performance. That RQDL looks exactly like mine.

  2. Wow, you did great coverage of the Type-In! It was great and we should do this again, maybe in another town next time.
    @I drem lo-tech: You may read my "The Collection"-Entry about the SWISSA piccola on September 23. It satisfys me so far. :)

  3. looks like fun! wish I coulda been there!

  4. I did a thrift store searching yesterday and found nothing that wasn't electric, having gone through... at least 6 stores! But thankfully I had yard sale luck and craigslist typewriters to pick up.

    Those were amazing finds. If I found that many nice typers in one day, I would have had problems. I am not wealthy.

  5. @maschinengeschrieben, good, will wait for the post.

  6. What a great day. Your Remington Junior looks very nice.

    It is a revelation that Herr Maschinengeschrieben is 14! He runs a very mature blog.

  7. Infectious enthusiasm and some great finds! Thanks for sharing.

  8. Wow! That Remington Jr is fantastic! It looks quite like my Little Jake, and I know how you've been wanting one lately. That's fantastic that you picked him up! I'm looking forward to your post on your new find (:

    Boy, even the ones you left behind were nice. I would totally have bit on the 30's Hermes Media. It's also too bad you couldn't give the Quiet-Riter a home, they're quite fun, if somewhat matronly machines. The ones you guys *did* take home were definitely the best of the bunch though.

    Off-Topic: do you happen to know if anyone has a Serial Number list for Swissa? I think TW-DB has Patria, but nothing after Patria became Swissa. I'm mighty curious to see if we can fill that gap.

  9. great photos, great day by the sound of it! A typefest amidst the protest. Like renegade retro journalists, writing six stories at once...

  10. @I dream lo-tech: The Swissa Piccola works very nicely, I must admit, I enjoyed writing with it when I tried it out. I'm sure maschinengeschrieben will give us his full commentary soon.

    @maschinengeschrieben: Yes, this was fun! We shall try to think of some other places to visit, but I've been to other towns and I am afraid Bern is holding the record right now.

    @Philosophothinker: This was just a really lucky day; I haven't had one like it ever! Nevertheless, it is still easy to leave behind (most) Hermeses; as most of you do with '60s Smith Coronas in the US!

    @Richard: Imagine our surprise when we met him! We didn't know either, there is no way you could tell from his blog. But he is a very grown up 14 and it was fun to traipse around Bern with him :-)

    @Ted: Now that you mention it, the Junior does look like Little Jake! Only without the fancy pop-up type bars and the even fancier Art Gothic typeface... *sigh*. Still, close enough.

    As for Swissa serial numbers, maybe you could see with Georg? He is always collecting those and will know more than I do.

  11. Adwoa, such an AMAZING post!

    You managed to pack so much information and wonderful pictures into a single blog entry; enough for three or four separate posts. I really enjoyed browsing through it.

    The Remington Quiet-Riter, by the way, was my very first typewriter experience. My mother bought it for my oldest brother for his schoolwork. My mother taught me how to type on this kind of machine at age 10. Thanks for bringing back such wonderful memories!

  12. Great post! And I'm amazed at how prevalent typewriters are in thrift stores in your part of the world, adwoa.
    Shame you couldn't get the Quiet-Riter, but the '36 Remington that you did get is a beauty!

  13. A quick question about that Rem Jr. (I know, I know: you're going to do a solo post about it, but I wanted to know now): Are the accent keys cantilevered, or do you have to backspace to use them? I've got a '23 Remington No. 1 portable that's nifty because the typebars for the accents are cantilevered one space to the left. So, no backspacing required. Most later typewriters I've seen have dropped this feature. Your Jr's 13 years younger, and I'm wondering if Remington had already dropped the cantilever concept. Many thanks. Rob


Thanks for your comment! Please note that comments are moderated; so this will be posted as soon as I have read it :)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...