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23-11-2019 03:29:45  #1

How should a new platen look and feel?

Hello all, yesterday I received my first recovered platens.
They feel harder then I expected and had a dark brown color.
I expected the platens to be a little softer, but have never seen a new original or a recovered platen, hence the question: how should new platen look and feel?




23-11-2019 04:42:49  #2

Re: How should a new platen look and feel?

I guess that the colour is down to the sort of rubber that your supplier uses.  Back in the day when platens were re-covered on a production line, the rubber was usually black.  It sometimes looked a little greyer since the rubber was freshly ground to size.  As a general rule of thumb (if you can excuse the pun !), you should be able to dig your thumbnail into the platen and feel some resilience.  Not too soft, not so hard that you thumnail glides off the surface.  Hope this helps


23-11-2019 05:33:39  #3

Re: How should a new platen look and feel?

Thank you typewriterman. I am able to make a little, shallow dent with my thumbnail. I have to apply some force to do it and the dent disappears fairly quick. The surface of the platen feels a little rough, not as smooth as is the case with very old platens. Does this sounds oke to you?

     Thread Starter

23-11-2019 12:43:38  #4

Re: How should a new platen look and feel?

Yes, that sounds correct.  The platen surface shouldn't be shiny.  The slight cat's tongue surface helps the typewriter to grip the paper.  It wears smooth after a while because paper is actually abrasive.  Who re-covered your platen ?  Was it AKB Longs ?


23-11-2019 14:01:18  #5

Re: How should a new platen look and feel?

Yes, it was AKB Longs.
I'm very happy they still do the work, and for a reasonable price too. Kudos to them.

     Thread Starter

23-11-2019 14:46:16  #6

Re: How should a new platen look and feel?

Hi Laurenz and Tom

I had a couple of platens recovered by JJ Short earlier this year. One for my 1936 Imperial Good Companion and one for a Remington Bantam. The biggest thing I noticed about the Good Companion with the new platen is the type bars no longer make a sharp clack, but rather a dull thud as they hit the platen.

On the Remington Bantam, what struck me the most was that the paper now feeds straight and true, no more drifting off to one side. As soon as I can afford it, I'd like to get the rock hard platen on recovered my 1960 Olympia SM-4 with the beautiful cursive type. All the best,



23-11-2019 15:17:57  #7

Re: How should a new platen look and feel?

Hi Sky,

Maybe AKB Longs in the Netherlands can recover your platens for a nice price?
They offered me 26 euro for a 25 cm SM 9 platen and 40 euro for a 33 cm SG 3 platen. VAT and shipping not included.

The English part of their website does not mention their platen recovery.
Best is to send a mail to (rollen means platen)

All the best,


     Thread Starter

27-11-2019 17:29:37  #8

Re: How should a new platen look and feel?

Hi Again Laurenz

The two platens I had done were both 9" (23cm) and cost $75.00 US dollars each, plus shipping there and back (about $20.00 US). Peter Short of JJ Short says that if you send more than one platen of the same diameter, the shop can effectively do a production run without having to set-up for every single platen, thus reducing the cost per each.

I would have to figure out the shipping of a package of platens to the Netherlands and back, plus possible import duty on the return of re-covered platens to determine the cost effectiveness of having platens done by AKB Longs. From what I understand, the Euro is presently about on par with the US dollar, so although the actual cost of the work maybe about one third, would shipping there and back make up the other two thirds? All the best,



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