Ever use a mechanical typewriter?

When I was teen, I had one of these Olivetti Lettera 22’s:

I used it for some essays in school, but I have to say that word processing and a laser printer sure made the process of creating documents a lot less labourious.

There are days when I wonder how anyone who uses just a mobile phone touch keyboard can ever relate to the tactility and mechanical abruptness of a real typewriter.

In high school I took a typing class, figuring it would be useful for a computer programmer. (Turns out, for me, it never was, I had already gotten too adept with two finger typing, and programmers use a lot of punctuation and it moves around a lot between different flavours of keyboards, and it’s too labourious to touch type, IMHO.) Anyway, in the typing class we used IBM Selectric typewriters which were electric and had this nifty ball shaped head, which was exchangeable so you could have different fonts.

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Yep, I’ve used a mechanical typewriter - it was my brother’s though. At school, we had typing lessons on electric daisy wheel typewriters.

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I did when I was a kid. I didn’t know anyone with an electric one until probably at least junior high.

I believe the manual one we had in the family was a Smith Corona.

Manuals have always been super difficult for me to use because of pinky fingers that never fully grew… Even Selectrics were a major pain. :expressionless:

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At one time I wanted a daisy wheel printer (looking at you Coleco Adam https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coleco_Adam .) They sounded pretty unique when they were printing.

Aw! But, to be honest, I never found my pinky fingers were very adept either. It’s a very unnatural feeling to me to be reaching that way for punctuation with the right one.

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Certainly! I love my Hermes 3000. Writing on it somewhat fast feels like it makes the house shake due to the pretty heavy force punching needed.

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Funny you should bring up Mechanical typewriters. In 1953 I flunked the only course in high school for typing on these things. Turns out I have the dumbest fingers ever.
I applied to the US Army for admittance to their Office repair program, but was rejected. I sold a lot of them in my Post Military service. May they RIP.

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I used to use my mum’s secretary’s IBM Selectric, while I would wait for her to finish work.

When I went to college, Typing was a required class in Business Studies. My Pitman test put me at 65wpm on an old manual Imperial.

It was very helpful for the future, going into IT. I learnt exactly what tabs were for and how to use them. It always amazes me how few secretaries, who have been through secretarial school, know what a tab is, let alone how to use them properly.

When we switched from DisplayWrite IV to WordPerfect 5.1, with proportional fonts, the number of times I got called out, because information no longer lined up - they were still using spaces, not tabs! :roll_eyes:

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If you think about it, tabs are just proportional spaces :wink:

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My grandmother’s typewriter - I typed up a complete card index for my school’s library on this back in the 1960s. I’ve always been a two-finger typist but never felt held back by that, partly because after having terrible cursive handwriting as a child I taught myself to write in an italic hand from a book, somewhere around age 13. These days I can write legibly fast enough to take verbatim meeting notes if required, and all my keyboard work is the sort where accuracy and context is more important than speed - far more effort goes into researching and planning than typing.

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Aboard the T/S Texas Clipper, working on a term paper. I don’t know what is harder to believe, that I was ever so young or that I once typed with two fingers.

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Yes. We had a very old, non electric one I used as a kid. As a teen, I started going up to my mother’s office, where there was an electric one. It had a correction option.

On the old one at home, if I made a mistake, I had to use a pencil eraser. And, then I had to try and line up the word again to continue.

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Still have my pencil-style typist’s eraser from my days working for the government. :joy:

And somewhere I still have the alternative, disc-shaped eraser for really serious mess-ups where you needed to take out a whole word or more… :roll_eyes:

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Wow PHolder I remember my Colecovision Adam it was a great daisy wheel printer for its time and a pretty nifty word processor. Boy you bring back good teenage memories.

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Yes I got to type my name on the visitor log using Zane Gary’s typewriter at his cabin back in the 60’s before it burnt down in a forest fire. I think it was Remington.

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I did in school, learned how to type on one…

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Wish it still worked

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I believe this is the model my parents had - that I used as a kid:

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Not a typewriter but it’s still cool

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Use this everyday

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A Wales Model 10! Otherwise known as a comptometer. I remember seeing row after row of comptometers, both hand-crank and electrical, in the office where my father worked.

They were fast calculating machines operated through a touch-typing interface and were reckoned to be much faster than electronic calculators for bulk addition. Here’s how they operated:

http://www.vintagecalculators.com/html/operating_a_comptometer.html

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