Thursday, April 11, 2013

A Cornucopia of Typewriter Sightings (Spring 2013) Pt. 2

These cows - our neighbors in the village near Interlaken where we stayed - were very intrigued to see us emerge from our room and stared long and hard until after we had passed. I wasn't sure whether to feel flattened or threatened...  But I am sure you are just as - if not more - eager to see what the rest of the typewriter sightings were, so here we go!

Light blue Facit TP-1. This was hanging out on a little shelf not far from all the others in my previous post, and I could see someone had tried unsuccessfully to release the carriage (there is a hole in the paper from repeated attempts to type). I've never used a Facit, but I located the carriage release mechanism after a few seconds and freed it, thus - hopefully - making it easier to sell.

Another store produced only one typewriter, but it was this splendid Consul. Another machine being sighted in person for the first time!

I was pleasantly surprised by just how flat it was, but also by the full-metal construction of the body - I had not expected that! The feel of typing with this reminded me of the Antares Annabella, but not quite as good...

The letters printed poorly, although to be fair this may just have been a sub-par specimen. I think others have had good luck with Consuls. I am secretly glad it wasn't good enough to contemplate purchasing, though, as it would have made for a rather hefty souvenir!

In a department store in Bern, we spotted this tray of carelessly tossed together Lamy Safaris, and bemoaned the nonchalance of the sales staff. (They also seem to be pretty trusting, leaving these out in the open as if they were Bic pens.) Who would want to pay full retail price for a scratched-up fountain pen?

Olympia Traveller C series - reminds me of the one Richard just bought. I find the futuristic curvy case the most redeeming factor of this machine, although it also reminds me of Barbie typewriters.

Once open, it is a little less impressive but still very interesting - just check out that unusual ribbon cover! This model looks barely used, too, but seeing how poorly Richard's example typed, I didn't bother testing it out.

Surprise - an Olympia SM-9 with Senatorial typeface! Two years ago I would have tucked this triumphantly under my arm, as I spent a good long time looking for an SM-9 with no results. However, I have moved past wanting one and the action on this one was a little sticky. Probably nothing that couldn't be resolved with a bit of cleaning, but I wasn't taking my chances.

Techno has been popping up everywhere lately - it was also on this Olivetti Studio 45 in turquoise.

(Intermission: sewing machine sighting - Singer 416.)

I can't be absolutely certain, but I'm fairly sure I haven't seen one of these Everest Mod 90s in real life - oh wait, maybe I did see a couple in that Milan typewriter museum I visited a couple of days ago.

From the side - handsome, a good find, but a tad overpriced at CHF 80, if I remember correctly. Now, this must have come from the home of a discerning collector, because look what I found next to it:

Realized what it is yet? Want a better look? How about this picture from the side:

Lovely, isn't it? And it typed like a dream too - you could tell it had been well maintained and was beautifully lubricated. I think the shop clerks googled it, too, because they were asking CHF 200.

I'm not sure what market is out here for collectable typewriters like this one, and I am curious to see how quickly - or not - this Pittsburgh Visible Model 10 sells in the coming months. What is clear, though, is that it is a fantastic sighting that really brings home how awesome little old Geneva is when it comes to unusual typewriter finds.  Now if only that Sphinx would turn up... :)


  1. That Pittsburg Visible is wow!

  2. Your whole tour of sightings is "WOW" this time. I really can't believe your willpower in not snatching it all up! :D

  3. Another great "Sightings" post Adwoa! And I agree with you, that's no way to treat a Lamy.
    And I've been meaning to say that I like the new look of your blog. Very clean and clear.
    Oh, one more thing, I've got my late Mother's sewing machine. It's a circa 1958 Necchi SuperNova which, I am told, was considered a Ferrari among sewing machines back then. I will have to get some photos of it and post them up.

  4. Maybe the store wants the Lamy pens to just disappear.

    I would find it very hard not to take an SM9 home seeing I do not have one.

    Then Pittsbug is wonderful. I think I would have tried to bargain with them so it would become part of the collection. First one I've seen. Too bad it is not named Pittsburgh.

  5. Lots of fun!

    I think 200 is a good deal for a Pittsburg in nice condition. (Bill M, the city's name was spelled without an h for a few years. The typewriter was made near the city, in Kittanning.)

  6. Adwoa, did you happen to get a serial number off of that Pittsburg Visible? That'd make a nice addition to the typewriter database! (:

    1. Hi Ted, I've never been much of a serial number hunter so I didn't think to take down this one. I think it won't sell all that quickly so if it's still in the store the next time I pass by, I'll write down the number for you :)

  7. I agree with Richard. I would have snagged that Pittsburg faster than a Steeler's fan setting up a tailgate. Nice typewriter outing!

  8. Oh, these are seriously great finds. Nice haul! And like so many others, I would have grabbed everything and ran. Including the consul, as I would make it my mission to fix the mess of a thing.

  9. I can imagine frenzied transatlantic emails comissioning you to go right back to that Pittsburg and send it on home :-)

  10. It would seem that the antique market where you're at is considerably better than mine. Even with the aid (or hindrance) of ebay I am lucky to find anything other than Olympia SMs and Smith Coronas and insipid green key Quiet Deluxe Royals. Recently I've taken up buying just about every Olivetti I can find, but that is because my main writing machine is a Lettera 35l, backed up with its father and cousin the 32 and 31/Dora.
    Anyway, thanks for the lovely picture show. I love spying on the lives of typewriters from afar, as well as those sad Lamy pens.

  11. That Pittsburg is some machine! Never seen one like it ...

  12. My parents went to Interlaken in 2013... I wish I saw this post before just now and back then... I would have told them to bring a couple of these machines home for me. Great sightings!


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