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05-2-2018 20:07:58  #1


What makes a silent a silent?

There are silents, silent supers, etc.
What makes them so?  What did they do to the plates, mechanics etc to declare them so?
I know some have padding, but that doesn't seem like that is enough to call it a silent.
Thanks!

 

05-2-2018 20:50:40  #2


Re: What makes a silent a silent?

I'm fairly confident that they are only "relatively" silent, as in quiter than some other portables. A lot of it is in the sound dampening padding. Now, on the otherhand, the Remington/Underwood Noisess typewriters acually have a mechanism that slows down the type bar right at the point of contact and--while, again, not actually silent--they actually are considerably quieter that most typewriters.


There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed. -- Ernest Hemingway
 

05-2-2018 20:51:44  #3


Re: What makes a silent a silent?

So essentially it's just a catchy name based on hyperbole.


There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed. -- Ernest Hemingway
 

05-2-2018 21:22:06  #4


Re: What makes a silent a silent?

Or maybe hyperbole assigned a optimistic catchy name...

     Thread Starter
 

05-2-2018 21:45:14  #5


Re: What makes a silent a silent?

Well I have tried a Noiseless mod 1 typewriter (which I am afraid nobody is interested about) but **** is noiseless! It does have a mechanical noise of course, but the typeslug hitting the platen is not audible, for the reason that tricnomistal mentioned, the slug slows down just before hits the platen, which in this case is a friking steel plate! Is is more a printing press effect than a noisy typeslug hitting a sandwich of inked cloth-paper-rubber in high speed motion.

 

05-2-2018 22:23:28  #6


Re: What makes a silent a silent?

Lipster wrote:

There are silents, silent supers, etc.
What makes them so?  What did they do to the plates, mechanics etc to declare them so?
I know some have padding, but that doesn't seem like that is enough to call it a silent.
Thanks!

The ones marked "Silent" and Quiet", etc. generally had more padding inside. Those terms are marketing-speak---don't get worked up about them. Keep in mind, though, that these 60-year-old platens are considerably harder then when they were new and sometimes the padding has fallen out and consequently they're a lot louder than they used to be. 

So, no, the Silents and not silent and the Noiseless ones are not noiseless. The Noiseless ones *are* a bit quieter.

 

05-2-2018 22:30:50  #7


Re: What makes a silent a silent?

Lipster wrote:

There are silents, silent supers, etc.
What makes them so?  What did they do to the plates, mechanics etc to declare them so?
I know some have padding, but that doesn't seem like that is enough to call it a silent.
Thanks!

The mechanics of the Silent are essentially the same as the Sterling. There is a little more soundproofing in the Silent. In addition, the Silent was the top model, the Sterling the middle, and the Standard portable and Clipper were the budget models. The Silent has the most features, though the difference between a Silent and a Sterling is pretty small; a little extra soundproofing, the quick release platen, and sometimes both a paper bail and paper fingers on the Silent, as opposed to one or the other. They produced this model for a while, and different years and orders would have variations, so I am generalizing.

The Super models came later, and the key thing making it a Super is a keyset tabulator instead of a manual tabulator with tab stops.

 

08-2-2018 16:33:27  #8


Re: What makes a silent a silent?

Having worked on a Smith Corona Sterling, Silent, and Silent-Super from roughly the same time period: the Sterling had no padding inside. The Silent and Silent-Super both have padding. I have not typed on the Silent, but the Silent-Super is much quieter than the Sterling.

 

08-2-2018 18:03:42  #9


Re: What makes a silent a silent?

Seijun wrote:

Having worked on a Smith Corona Sterling, Silent, and Silent-Super from roughly the same time period: the Sterling had no padding inside.

Sterlings are usually padded, too.

 

08-2-2018 19:32:45  #10


Re: What makes a silent a silent?

Seijun wrote:

I have not typed on the Silent, but the Silent-Super is much quieter than the Sterling.

​I've measured all the sound levels for all of them and found the differences between 5-Series models to be negligible. You also have to measure and factor in the platen hardness of each machine if want to create a fair basis of comparison. In short, I would never describe a Silent-Super as being much quieter than a Sterling. 
 


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