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15-1-2022 18:58:16  #11

Re: Best ribbon supplier

I'll plug myself into here, I offer metal ribbon spools and 7/16ths ribbon for older machines.  I try and "personalize" the ribbon to the machine a little more.

Typewriter Service Tech (and avid nerd)

25-1-2022 19:56:36  #12

Re: Best ribbon supplier

When you ask many of the on-line sellers " how many yards of ribbon are on your 2" spools ? "...IF you get a reply...they usually say 10-14 yards.  I buy to get 18 yards on the spool.


10-3-2022 13:26:58  #13

Re: Best ribbon supplier

What’s the difference between nylon, cotton, and silk ribbons? And what’s the best way to store ribbons so they’ll last a long time?=15pxYears ago I bought ribbons at Office Depot, so what’s the best place to buy ribbons now? I have an Underwood and Royal from the 40's.


10-3-2022 15:00:58  #14

Re: Best ribbon supplier

Hi Squire

Seems like we haven't heard from you in a while, good to see you're still around. The simplest answer to your first question is:

Nylon ribbons are the cheapest and most resiliant, but don't hold as much ink as silk or cotton. Cotton ribbons hold the most ink as the ink actually soaks into the fibers of the ribbon. However, cotton ribbon will eventually break down with the repeated hammering of the type slugs and will plug up the letters with cotton pulp. Silk ribbons hold more ink than nylon but not as much as cotton. Silk is also a finer weave so gives a clearer impression than cotton or nylon. However, silk is the most expensive and usually only comes in black or black/red.

As you are in the USA, my recommendation is give Lanie Hurwitz a call (800) 250–7426 or visit his website. Lanie has all sorts of colors and loads his spools full. Hope this gives you something to work with,


We humans go through many computers in our lives, but in their lives, typewriters go through many of us.
In that way, they’re like violins, like ancestral swords. So I use mine with honor and treat them with respect.
I try to leave them in better condition than I met them. I am not their first user, nor will I be their last.
Frederic S. Durbin. (Typewriter mania and the modern writer)

10-3-2022 17:42:09  #15

Re: Best ribbon supplier

In 2020 and 2021, I paid the up-charge at Ribbons Unlimited for metal spools.  At the time, it was only $ 5 or so extra for the pair.

I managed to get metal spools for all of my machines that came to me with plastic spools.

I went to the web site today and noticed the up-charge for metal spools is now $ 18 for the pair.

I have also been scoring some really nice metal spools with some of the vintage ribbon tins I happen to catch on eBay and Etsy when the price is reasonable.

I even managed to snag a "Hermes" spool this way with an old tin.


10-3-2022 19:00:04  #16

Re: Best ribbon supplier

Sky has forgotten more about ribbon than I will ever know probably -- but I have placed one order with Lanie and been very happy. Then I tried to lowball it last week on Amazon...and got half-filled, weak ribbons with no grommets. So you get what you pay for and from now on I am going to try to support the people who are doing what I value!


11-3-2022 12:51:27  #17

Re: Best ribbon supplier

It has been a while since I posted, but with my new platens installed, I'm ready to get back into typing!
Thanks for the ribbon info; I'll probably stick with nylon, but I'm tempted to try the cotton and silk. I looked at Ribbons Unlimited and found a couple of ones I want to buy. 


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