Sunday, April 28, 2013

Corona Typewriter Bargain Alert! 50% Off!

Someone had better snag this gem off ebay in a hurry! It won't last long at 50% off. As in it is now $75 plus shipping. But it works!

Sure, it may need a little elbow grease.

Or a sandblaster.

Someone in the Typosphere needs to save this machine! The keys will be irresistible to the key choppers with wedding season right around the corner.

Or not.
Last chance, peoples! Look for it on ebay as item number 190820286562. This diamond in the rough can be yours for a mere Benjamin. Did I mention that it works? Here is all the proof you need:
One tough hombre.

Okay, I have to confess that I'm having a little blog writer's block. I have a draft post with photos I like and the narrative just isn't coming together. <sigh>  At least I can count on never having a sarcasm block.

Friday, April 19, 2013

How green is the Olivetti Lexikon 80?

Just how green is our Olivetti Lexikon 80? Let's ask the experts!

Most Green Experts Agree: "So pretty!"

 A few weeks ago I received a functional Lexikon 80 purchased through ebay. The fact that it worked is a testament to sound engineering and design. It was covered in the all-too-familiar sludge patina of old nicotine, dried lube and fine dust. Over the years, the dull, gray body shell had been cleaned aggressively. The color was none too attractive to begin with and was only made worse for wear by embedded dirt and fine scratches.

The machine as shown on ebay. You'll have to imagine the sticky nicotine and oil film. The end of the carriage draw band came undone during shipping.
Why did I buy this ugly machine? I've been watching Lexikon 80s for close to a year and have only seen five listed on ebay. Of the two others confirmed as functional, one was pickup only and another had an extra wide carriage. One entertaining listing showed a Lexikon with a two+ foot or so carriage covered in rust with no hood. I saw one come and go on etsy priced at several hundred dollars. This beast was $49 plus shipping.

 Obviously, this machine needed a makeover. I looked at the rattle-can paint available at several local auto supply stores and was unimpressed. Ultimately, I picked a color available at a local hardware store. It is vaguely reminiscent of an Olivetti color. We think it looks nice enough to live indoors. As for the shade of green, we asked the experts to weigh in on our redecorated machine.

Little Godzilla approves of the keyboard feel. "Light and snappy!", he says.

Shogun Godzilla and the Attacking Martian find this shade to be appealing.
Getting color balance right can be tricky when shooting green objects. One of the images I posted on Google+ was trippy acid green. In some light it looks darker. If I were less lazy I would break out camera manuals and figure out how to balance against a gray card. Maybe someday.

The infamous Google+ introduction. I took this with an early iPhone in my garage under fluorescent lighting. The extreme does make an impression.

We could compare the Lexikon with another green typewriter. How about Keylime, our Duotone Royal?

I just spent a week running off an iPad and iPhone. Forgive the typos, etc.

Other Lexikon 80 posts from the Typosphere:

And two Graphika machines:

Monday, April 1, 2013

Woodstock "Rare No. 4 Model in Untouched Form"

This appeared on ebay a day too early for April Fool's Day. It is still pretty funny! Behold an "untouched" machine!
Stunning! See it on ebay! Item number
Here is a part of the description:

You are bidding on a Woodstock Number 4 Antique typewriter. This piece has been sitting covered , indoors for over 70 years. If you're looking at this then you know what it is - THE REAL DEAL.

We have lightly cleaned it but will allow the winner to polish , clean, buff , oil and make any adjustments.

Everything seems to work just fine and we dont see any missing parts at all. It is a true antique that has been untouched or fooled with. 

 Thank goodness this machine hasn't been touched or fooled with! Happy April Fool's Day, everyone!