18,386 Matching Annotations
  1. Last 7 days
    1. A really nice example of a model from the birth of Remington's Quiet-Riter line. The bulbous styling bears some resemblance to Henry Dreyfuss' Mercury steam locomotive engine from 1938, but the typewriter itself includes modern conveniences such as segment shift and tab set and clear at the keyboard.
    1. Now I just need to persuade my organisation that reverse digitisation (analogy – the art of making everything analogue) should be part of our green agenda!
    2. However, the two additions I’ve made to the collection (what is the collective noun? A carriage of typewriters, perhaps?), have both been a bit special in their own way and both have taught me something new.
    1. Typewriter Backing Sheets by [[Joe Van Cleave]]

      Backing sheets for typewriters on Meade standard typing paper.

      • Construction paper - Joe's favorite
      • 4 mil thick polyethylene film
      • Thin typing paper
      • 20lb resume paper
      • 1/64" synthetic rubber sheet
      • 168gsm Evolon (polyester and nylon) paper
    1. To be more specific on solvents for beginners, potentially try mineral spirits (white spirit in UK), paint thinner, naphtha (lighter fluid), kerosene, varnish remover, PB B'laster, or carburetor or brake cleaner. Be careful as many of these are flammable and some can remove paint or decals; use all of them in a well ventilated area. You may see some recommend household variations of alcohol, but these do contain water and generally aren't very effective solvents for the types of oil/grease/dust you'll probably want to remove; professional typewriter repair shops would not use alcohol on a machine. And for those in the back, no one but a psychopath would use WD-40 on a machine's internals.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xjumGF9NFE8 is a pretty solid cleaning primer. Searching YouTube will uncover some potential additional advice in addition to what you can find at https://site.xavier.edu/polt/typewriters/tw-restoration.html

      Good luck. That's a lovely machine!

    1. Don't feel bad. Your not the only one. This misconception has been going on for years simply because no typewriter repairman has stood up and said " Now wait a minute! " The collectors have done all the talking and publishing while the typewriter man isn't heard. Consequently, it's the big typewriter collectors that are heard. They never talk about how many times they had to reclean a machine. They often have several and may only use 1 or 2. Also there isn't that many of us real typewriter repairman left to do the talking.

      Due to the nature of online communication, it may often be the case that typewriter collectors and their colloquial advice may drown out the more experienced and professional typewriter repair people.

    2. Most typewriter shops did not use alcohol as it was ineffective and contained water. Industrial alcohols contained keytones and acetones that will melt plastic and remove paint.

      Solvents for typewriters used in repair shops: - White mineral spirits with a squeeze bottle. (Sometimes also called Varsol, Stoddard's Formula, and possibly Inhibisol) - Naphtha (aka lighter fluid; used in Zippo lighters, and frequently seen in Europe). PB B'laster is essentially pressurized naphtha in a can. - Auto carb and brake cleaners, usually pressurized in a can. These usually have acetone in them and will melt plastic. Will remove WD-40 if accidentally used on a typewriter.

      For cleaning typeslugs, one can use naphtha or mineral spirits with a brass bristle brush.

      For platen cleaning try mineral spirits or fedron.

      Only oil the carriage rails for the bearings or trucks.

      (This is all colloquial advice, albeit with experience, so check specific facts about what certain products contain.)

    3. You will notice that manual was printed in 1920. Gas was the only cleaner available then. In just one more year in 1921 Stoddards Formula was invented (Varsol) for the dry cleaning business. Everything changed then and Varsol was the cleaner of choice.

      should find a better reference

    1. I’m certainly happy they decided to trust us to service this delightful QDL. According to the serial number RA-2961306 this machine is from the year 1954.

      The anniversary gold plated Royal QDLs included gold plated type points, levers, and even set screws on the platens.

    2. I’ve seen plenty Royal Dreyfuss Quiet DeLuxe typewriters that are the gold metal plated anniversary edition.

      Example of a typewriter repairman calling a 1954 model a Royal Dreyfuss Quiet De Luxe.

      While they did have some of the general design elements of Henry Dreyfuss' 1948 redesign, would one really still call them a Dreyfuss?

    1. Everyone mentioned most of the usual tricks, but one.

      To get your sticky typewriter keys working again, while you're flushing out the segment with your solvent of choice (lacquer thinner, paint thinner, mineral spirits, alcohol, etc.), actually move the typebars using the keys or by other means. This will help to get them moving and allow the solvent and subsequently compressed air to help flush the oil, dust, hair, etc. out of your machine. You've already got a mechanical cleaning device of sorts (the typebar itself) inside the segment, so move it while you're flushing it out!

      It may take a few repeated treatments/attempts to get it all clear for all the keys, but it's far easier than taking everything apart.

      reply to u/nogaesallowed at https://www.reddit.com/r/typewriters/comments/1cp75ln/how_do_you_clean_a_1mm_gap/

      People were recommending all sorts of ideas and solvents here, including folded card stock, tooth brushes, floss, toothpicks, interdental brushes, wood cuticle sticks, Swiss Army knife tweezers, microbrushes, and even an ultrasonic cleaner.

    1. Holacracy Meaning, Origins, How It Works by [[ Marshall Hargrave]] for Investopedia

    2. Arthur Koestler, author of the 1967 Book “The Ghost in the Machine,” coined the term holarchy as the organizational connections between holons (from the Greek word for "whole"), which describes units that act independently but would not exist without the organization they operate within.
    3. Holacracy is a system of corporate governance whereby members of a team or business form distinct, autonomous, yet symbiotic, teams to accomplish tasks and company goals. The concept of a corporate hierarchy is discarded in favor of a fluid organizational structure where employees have the ability to make key decisions within their own area of authority.
    1. Baco Ribbons makes ribbons in many sizes, colors, and materials. Contact Charlene Oesch, Baco Ribbon & Supply Co., 1521 Carman Road, Ballwin, MO 63021, 314-835-9300, fax 636-394-5475, e-mail bacoribbon@sbcglobal.net.
    1. Joe Van Cleave has used an index card with his typewriter to hold up the back of his typewriter paper on machines (the Ten Forty, for example) which lack a metal support on the back of the paper table.

    2. The Remington Ten Forty typewriter is a half-space machine. This means that when one presses a key, for example the spacebar, the carriage advances a half space and then advances the other half space when released.

  2. May 2024
    1. David Lynch In Conversation<br /> by [[QAGOMA]]

    2. When you catch and idea, you see it in your mind's eye, and you feel it, and you can hear it. And then you write that idea down on a piece of paper, and you write it down in such a way that when you read it, the idea comes back in full.<br /> —David Lynch 3:05

    1. Nabokov’s working notecards for “Lolita.”

      Nabokov used index cards for his research and writing. In one index card for research on Lolita, he creates a "weight-heigh-age table for girls of school age" to be able to specify Lolita's measurements. He also researched the Colt catalog of 1940 to get gun specifications to make those small points realistic in his writing.

      syndication link

    1. The earliest known version of Sternberger’s creation of the cheeseburger was recently discovered by food historian Andrew Smith, author of Hamburger: A Global History. It is in an article in The Pasadena Post, a now defunct newspaper. Published July 23, 1931, it sheds light on Sternberger’s early life and innovative ideas.
    2. A plaque commemorating cheeseburger's invention in Pasadena in the sidewalk outside the LA Financial Credit Union at 1520 W. Colorado Boulevard.
    3. “Menus and other historical artifacts support the Rite Spot as being the originator of the hamburger with cheese. Sternberger did not call it a cheeseburger, which is what the others who claim to be originators use.”
    4. The first item on the menu, it was called the “Aristocratic Hamburger” and billed as “the original hamburger with cheese.”

      the Aristocratic Hamburger!

    1. Congratulations on that beautiful machine!

      Don't listen to the nay-sayers who likely have very different priorities and esthetics. If this is your machine, and you love it, then "own it".

      It does look like a standard (as opposed to portable) typewriter. (Standards are often better and more robust typers due to their size and design.) Likely a Model 1 or Model 2, but I don't have specific knowledge beyond a cursory glance at the typewriter database. You can start by looking at examples of machine types and bodies at https://typewriterdatabase.com/smithcorona.86.typewriter-serial-number-database.

      From there, the Model 1 says "Electric Serial Numbers Concurrent with Standard", so scroll down the page and see if you can identify a year based on a serial number you should be able to find underneath the hood. You can try https://typewriterdatabase.com/Smith+Corona.Standard.86.bmys, but I don't see any later models there, so perhaps no one has documented one before and you could be the first.

      Then start with Richard Polt's site https://site.xavier.edu/polt/typewriters/ where you may likely find a manual and if you're lucky a repair manual. Surely there will be a few manuals for similar 50s standard S-C manual typewriters which should at least get you started. His site has a wealth of other information to give you pointers. His book The Typewriter Revolution (2015) has good intro chapters on cleaning, basic repair, and restoration. YouTube may have some useful videos as well. The typewriter database will have some later model S-C electric machines which you might try searching for on YouTube as well and it's highly likely that the design changes weren't so drastic that those may help you significantly.

      For basic cleaning, try https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xjumGF9NFE8 which has some solid advice. Obviously take care with respect to getting the electrical portion of your machine wet.

      I've not done any electric machines before, but if I recall, I seem to have read/heard (maybe from Tom Hanks who I know has a 50s electric Smith-Corona) that the early electrics only went as far as doing power for the keys, so it should be reasonably repairable if it doesn't work out of the box.

      I'm sure you'll love it. With any luck, you'll also get some serious enjoyment and sense of accomplishment out of cleaning it up. If nothing else, it'll give you a wealth of experience in making the attempt and you can apply that to other machines if you continue collecting and typing. Some of my first machines weren't immediate "successes" until after I'd been able to tinker with others and was able to come back to them with a more experienced hand.

      Have fun with it!

      reply to https://www.reddit.com/r/typewriters/comments/1cuzy04/please_can_someone_identify_this/

    1. Blank tabbed 4x6 cards (self.Zettelkasten)submitted 1 day ago by SpacePatricianTrust me when I say this query is Zettelkasten-related. I've adopted the Voroscope method of organizing as per the Encyclopedia Propaedia, but it involves creating a lot of tab cards. I could make things go faster if I had white, blank, unruled tabbed index cards that I could set up a printer template for, but there don't seem to be any on the market in bulk. Any ideas of where I could find them off the beaten path?

      I've looked and looked for such a template and printer method to no avail myself. Your best bet here is probably either Avery Multi-use labels (maybe 5418 or 5428 depending on your card tabs) which have templates you can print a sheet at a time, or buying a labeler like the Brother P-touch which has a variety of different colored labels available. A third method is to line up multiple tabbed cards in your typewriter and do 3-4 at a time.

      Tabbed cards are significantly more expensive than standard index cards, so if you're all in on this, I'd recommend contacting one of the manufacturers directly and buying in bulk to drive the price down. Alibaba can also be your friend here for a bulk order too. Last year I got a bulk order of 15,000 4x6" index cards for well under $0.005 per card, while the current going rate on Amazon or most office supply stores is $0.02 - $0.03/card.

      Let me know if you find someone manufacturing inexpensive tabbed dividers in 1/5, 1/6, 1/7, or even 1/8 cut tabs. I'd love to buy a couple thousand of these in bulk as well.

      Knowing the extra work involved in this method, I HIGHLY recommend you try it out by hand for a bit to see if it's something you'll do for more than a few months before going all-in. I've read some of Joseph Voros' work, which I understood to be theoretical only. Did he ever fully implement it himself? Before you try, you might want to read up on others' earlier work like that of Paul Otlet, Mortimer J. Adler, et al. Many here will lionize Luhmann's method, but recall that S. D. Goitein managed to take a 1/3 of the notes that Luhmann did while creating a published output a 1/3 larger than Luhmann all while using a method similar to that of Adler and company which is also very close to the method recommended by almost all academics from Jacques Barzun to Umberto Eco.

      Definitely think about what you're hoping to accomplish before going straight down the rabbit hole too far.

      If you do go all-in, then buying a big storage box upfront can save you a lot of time and expense, try https://boffosocko.com/2022/12/26/the-ultimate-guide-to-zettelkasten-index-card-storage/ for some ideas. My daily driver now is a 60,000+ card index from Steelcase that I picked up on the used market for $125.

      LIFE. “The 102 Great Ideas: Scholars Complete a Monumental Catalog.” January 26, 1948.

      Eco, Umberto. How to Write a Thesis. Translated by Caterina Mongiat Farina and Geoff Farina. 1977. Reprint, Cambridge, MA, USA: MIT Press, 2015.

      Barzun, Jacques, and Henry F. Graff. The Modern Researcher. 6th ed. Belmont, CA: Thomson/Wadsworth, 2004.

      Reply to u/SpacePatrician at https://www.reddit.com/r/Zettelkasten/comments/1ctsu78/blank_tabbed_4x6_cards/

    1. Keynote: A conversation with Christina Warren about blogging and social media • Find her on Mastodon and Bluesky

      Watched this live on YouTube. Not sure if they'll archive it there or not.


    1. You can cross check the data in the typewriter database for most of the big US and European brands to see the slow merging and dying out of the typewriter through the late 60s and early 70s onward. See, for example, Royal: https://typewriterdatabase.com/royal.72.typewriter-serial-number-database which has buyouts and mergers listed at the top. The database also has a huge volume of references for how it was compiled which will give you additional history.

      The early 70s saw a lot of plastic entering the space where more durable steel used to be. Most major US firms were shifting to electric after IBM in roughly 1961. Post war manufacture of machines picked up significantly in Italy, Spain, Holland, and even Wales which displaced some of the manufacturing in the US, where solid machines of the prior generation still worked and only needed servicing rather than outright replacement. (Planned obsolescence wasn't as much of a thing during the 30s and 40s, and in fact, [maintenance was heavily highlighted during the war](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ocdxgkxKAKo) when most US manufacturers ceased production of most models.) Eventually Japan displaced the business followed by India (which ceased in 2009) and China. Wrexham, Wales ceased manufacture of electronic Brother typewriters in 2012.

      Ever decreasing costs of materials and manufacturing, improved manufacturing technology, increased competition in the space, combined with containerized shipping, competition from computers, etc. all contributed to the cheapening of the typewriter and hastened the death of manufacturing (though not the use) of manual typewriters.

      Richard Polt's The Typewriter Revolution (2015) has a "microhistory" of typewriters in chapter 2 with references to some addition histories if you're interested.

      Your question about Olympia manufacture dates (and more) can be found via: https://typewriterdatabase.com/olympia.61.typewriter-serial-number-database

      x over it has a good two part series about the evolution of Olympias at:



    1. Toaster-Typewriter – An investigation of humor in design by [[CreativeApplications.Net]]

      A cross between a typewriter and a toaster that writes by toasting bread.

      The toaster-typewriter is the work of [Ritika Kedia], and it forms part of her thesis in product design at the Parsons School of Design, New York. It’s written up very much from an artistic rather than a tech perspective, but it’s no less ingenious for that in the way it uses letters formed from hot wire on a clay substrate, mounted on the end of the typewriter arms in front of a toaster.<br /> —This Typewriter Types Toast by Jenny List

    1. Bruder, Jessica. “Click, Clack, Ding! Sigh ...” The New York Times, March 30, 2011, sec. Fashion. https://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/31/fashion/31Typewriter.html.

    2. “I’m actually not surprised,” Mr. Caro said, when told of the typewriter renaissance. The tangible pleasures of typewriters are something he’s known about for decades. “One reason I type is it simply makes me feel closer to my words,” Mr. Caro said. “It’s like being a cabinetmaker. It’s like laying down the planks. This is the way it’s supposed to feel.”
    3. What do literary stalwarts of the original typewriter era make of all this? “We old typists, it makes us feel young again to think there’s a new generation catching on,” said Gay Talese, 79. He still uses a typewriter, albeit electric, as does his friend, Robert A. Caro, 75, the Pulitzer-winning biographer of Robert Moses and President Lyndon B. Johnson. They discussed Mr. Caro’s Smith Corona while watching the Super Bowl.
    4. Tom Furrier, who owns the Cambridge Typewriter Company in Massachusetts, has sold several typewriters to Mr. Cidoni and said that high school and college students have become a staple of his business.
    5. “Like a jam session for people who like typewriters,” said Michael McGettigan, 56, a local bike shop owner who came up with the idea. “You had unions do sit-ins and hippies do be-ins, so I thought, ‘We’ll do a type-in.’ ”
    1. These were sometimes used to assist in the learning of touch typing. Clients would have their local repair person install these little black paper circles to cover the letters so they wouldn't be tempted to stare at the keyboard. Fairly rare, I've not seen them used on any of the 500+ machines I've serviced in the past 7 or so years. There were also dedicated blank caps designed to go over the keytops that were used, those are much more common than the blackout paper method.
    2. Even with keyring pliers and the skill to use them, the blackout paper method is a lengthy one.

      Keyring pliers are used to remove the metal rings off of both circular and tombstone glass typewriter keys so that the legends can be replaced or even covered over with black paper circles for teaching or learning typing. They take some practice and skill to use, but speed up the replacement of legends significantly.

    1. When you catch and idea, you see it in your mind's eye, and you feel it, and you can hear it. And then you write that idea down on a piece of paper, and you write it down in such a way that when you read it, the idea comes back in full.

      David Lynch Interview supposedly... source? (asking mrtnj at https://discord.com/channels/992400632390615070/992400632776507447)

      Interesting with respect to orality almost more than literacy.

    1. “Ideas are like fish. If you want to catch little fish, you can stay in the shallow water. But if you want to catch the big fish, you’ve got to go deeper. Down deep, the fish are more powerful and more pure. They’re huge and abstract. And they’re very beautiful.”

      —David Lynch

      This is from his book: see: https://hypothes.is/a/Swp61GITEe6dmD-RxxFY4w

    1. I was in a vintage shop about 30 minutes from downtown Los Angeles earlier in the week and the proprietor had a mostly functioning 1950 Smith-Corona Sterling for sale for a roughly equivalent US $150. (One key was disconnected, but fixable, and some keys were sticky, the ribbon was disintegrating, it was incredibly dirty, with a case in very poor condition.) The Sterling was similar to the Silent, but without some of the extra bells and whistles. She wouldn't accept an offer of $40 for it, which I thought was a reach for the dreadful condition it was in. Her reasoning was that she was sure that someone (read: a sucker) would pay the $150 for it. At a yard sale it might be worth $5. Cleaned up a bit maybe $30. In online platforms they're going for a bit more, but you're also saving yourself some level of "shoe leather" in the work of searching for the exact model you want.

      I've been specifically watching this model and a few related ones for a few months, and machines of indeterminate condition (though in my experience they're usually reasonably functionable or easily fixable), like this go for about $50 on ShopGoodWill.com (as auction items). There are usually about 4-5 per week which come up as this was a popular model in the 50s. You can probably find similar prices on eBay, though sellers there usually have a little more information about the working condition. They're definitely common enough that you could easily wait for the exact color options and typeface (pica or elite) that you're looking for, and could also probably purchase two for the price he's asking (including shipping.) I've been watching for a similar mid-50s Smith-Corona Clipper with similar colors and elite type for a while and just bought one online last week for $35. Patience definitely pays off.

      I would only go as high as $150 on that machine if I knew it was well functioning and had a brand new platen in the last several years. You can tell him that most of the expensive machines in the range he's asking for are all fully functioning, have been well maintained and/or recently serviced, and often have new platens, rubber rollers, and feet replaced. He'll know that this isn't the case with his and may come down in price. They're likely pricing it based on other listings they see and not pricing it based on actual sales. If it's their only machine, wait things out until they see that there aren't any takers. If it's a vintage shop, simply move on.

      The Smith-Corona Silents from this time period are really spectacular and solid machines, so good luck in your search for the perfect one.

    1. Walter Wellesley “Red” Smith used a version of this quote by 1949. In April of that year the influential and widely syndicated newspaper columnist Walter Winchell wrote. Boldface has been added to excerpts:[1]1949 April 06, Naugatuck Daily News, Walter Winchell In New York, Page 4, Column 5, Naugatuck, Connecticut. (NewspaperArchive) Red Smith was asked if turning out a daily column wasn’t quite a chore. …”Why, no,” dead-panned Red. “You simply sit down at the typewriter, open your veins, and bleed.”

      via 1949 April 06, Naugatuck Daily News, Walter Winchell In New York, Page 4, Column 5, Naugatuck, Connecticut. (NewspaperArchive)


    1. New 1964 Sears Cutlass Model advertised in February 1965. The faceplate of existing examples exactly matches other machines only offered between 1964-65 (Citation, Constellation), so it is presumed to be exactly contemporary. Manufactured by Smith-Corona and similar to Smith-Corona "New 5-Series", with custom shell.
    1. Most Smith-Coronas in the 40s and 50s have similar ribbon set ups. Hopefully this photo and description will help:

      (Alt Text) Smith-Corona typewriter ribbon thread sample. A view into the type basket with the hood of the typewriter raised showing the ribbon coming out of a spool on the left, through a black ribbon guide (which actuates the autoswitch when the eyelet at the end of a spool gets stuck between it and the spool) next to the spool cup, and then into the two metal guides of the ribbon vibrator on either side of the the typing point. A silver pen's tip is pointing to the ribbon guide next to the spool cup at about the point where an eyelet clipped onto the middle of the end of a length of a ribbon would trip the ribbon auto switch.

      If your ribbon auto-switch isn't working one can usually switch the direction manually with the ribbon reverse lever usually found on the front left side of most machines.

      To speed up changing the ribbon on many machines, it can often help to switch the color selector to the red setting and then simultaneously press the G and H keys gently so that they're stuck together almost at the typing point which will raise the ribbon vibrator and make accessing the slots for threading the ribbon easier. Once the ribbon is installed, release the G and H typebars and select the correct color setting for the portion of the ribbon you want to use.

    1. The term "Type-Out" was coined by Tom at Cambridge Typewriter in MA to refer to the practice of having a Type-In outside in the sunshine. The first such Type-Out was held in front of Cambridge Typewriter on Oct 22, 2011.
    1. Want to run a typewriter shop? by [[Richard Polt]]

    2. If you've been dreaming of plunging into this profession, consider the success of Paul Lundy, who took over Bremerton Office Machine Company from nonagenarian Bob Montgomery; or Antony Valoppi, creator of Portland's Type Space, which combines a traditional typewriter shop with a cultural center; or Trevor Brumfield, a young man in his late twenties who has quickly built Dayton's TB Writers Plus into a busy enterprise.
    1. Saturday, May 11, 2024BICYCLE TOUR OF PASADENA AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY: THE 710 STUBJoin Allen Edson, President of the NAACP Pasadena branch, as he leads a bike tour highlighting the 210 freeway, the 710 stub, and the community displaced by the construction.

      The 710 freeway displaced a large number of people between 1965 and 1974 in West Pasadena.

    1. https://www.ebay.com/itm/296414315589

      Shaw Walker steel cabinet with brass pulls offered for $800 at auction ($1,200 buy it now) o/a 2024-05-03

      Modular in 4 sections with 2 sets of drawers (each 6x3 for a total of 36 drawers) and a top and a bottom.

      Cost per drawer: $22.22

      This is a rarer modular set up.

    1. where do I start?

      reply to u/rocklover7 at https://www.reddit.com/r/typewriters/comments/1cnljgm/where_do_i_start/

      The best thing you could do is to take a moment at the library or bookshop and pick up a copy of Polt, Richard. The Typewriter Revolution: A Typist’s Companion for the 21st Century. 1st ed. Woodstock, VT: Countryman Press, 2015.

      He looks at typewriters from a writers' writer perspective which I'm sure you'll appreciate. He's got experience with a wide variety of machines as well as a large collection himself. He goes over all of the common/popular (and solid machines) in a variety of sizes and formats to help you figure out which one you might like to start out with. He also covers some of the common problems and repairs that regularly pop up. The book is really a "best of" list of typewriter material from the past 15+ years of this reddit forum and material from the "typosphere" of which he's been not only an active member, but literal ring-leader. The vast majority of the questions which appear on a weekly basis here are discussed and addressed in his book, along with some emphasis on writerly concerns and practice which most beginners here wouldn't be asking. Even reading 3 or 4 of the 8 chapters which are rife with images will give you a solid crash course for exactly the sorts of typewriter (and writing) advice you're searching for.

      Definitely DO NOT pick up a new machine off of Amazon. They're even worse than some of the late 70s/early 80s machines. Instead, for beginners (and for the value) I'd recommend looking at Remingtons (Quiet-Riter), Royals (Quiet De Luxe), or Smith-Coronas (Clipper, Silent, Super) from roughly 1948-1958 which is generally the peak of U.S. typewriter manufacturing as well as for features. These were all built like tanks and are usually still in very good condition, even when they're in bad condition. I've provided links to some of these models in the typewriter database, so you have an idea visually of what to look out for.

      If desperate, and you live in an area where machines are priced starting over $50 or you're more price sensitive (making eBay, Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist less appealing), you can find some of these every day listed at shopgoodwill.com starting at $10. Even with heaving bidding on auctions, these usually don't go over $35 (except for some of the Smith-Coronas). I've even seen them (sadly) not move at all for $10. This would give you an incredibly solid and inexpensive machine to tinker on, and will most likely work for you out of the box (as long as it's got a ribbon.) You'll end up with a solid machine to start off on while you search for your dream machine. It'll also give you some experience cleaning up and maintaining one. Of the seven machines I've gotten this way and paid an average of about $30-35 each (all in with shipping, tax, etc.) All but one were all immediately usable and only needed moderate cleaning that one could do at home with a cloth, dish soap, a toothbrush and maybe some canned air. Two of the seven were in near mint condition and didn't need any work at all. Tag/garage sales are also inexpensive options that usually allow you test out a machine, but it requires some shoe leather and lots of patience. If you've got a favorite author you love and trust, you might try searching out their machines: https://site.xavier.edu/polt/typewriters/typers.html

      If there are any type-ins in your local area, try to go so you can not only meet others, but it might give you a chance to see and try out the machines of others to see what might suit you best.

      Happiness and best wishes on your search!

    1. it is not mold; it is plasticizers coming out of the plastic. I remove it with various means: alcohol, polishing with a very fine polish, Goo Gone™, naptha, and such.

      The white gunky substances seen on the plastic keys of old, unmaintained typewriters generally isn't mold, but plasticizers coming out of the plastic. These can usually be cleaned off using simple household cleaning products or if necessary heavier cleaners (Goo Gone, alcohol, naptha, etc. - test these on hidden parts first to ensure they don't react with or destroy the plastic or remove the paint of the key letters) followed up by light waxes or polishes and buffing.