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07-4-2018 16:19:45  #11


Re: Platen re-covering in USA

SamTheWriter83 wrote:

How do you know if you need your platen re-covered?

It depends. Most vintage typewriters could benefit from platen recovery, as it improves the print quality and paper feed, but whether it needs to be done depends on how hard or worn the platen is, a person's tolerance for the quirks of a hard platen, and how much one want's to invest in the restoring the typewriter. If the platen is cracked or slipping on its core, it definitely needs to be recovered. If--other factors not withstanding--the platen is causing feed issues, the type (other than just the periods) is blowing holes through the paper, or the print quality is abysmal, then it likely needs a new platen; but these issues will vary in degrees, and there are certain things, like typing with extra backing sheets or treating with rubber rejuvenator, that can help mitigate some of these problems. It will also vary from machine to machine. Some typewriters can type okay with a rock hard platen, others do not. Back in the day, they made them in different hardness for specific uses.

Most vintage machines have platens that are much harder than ideal, but most people are happy typing on them anyway. Recovery is expensive, the amount of improvement gained is different from machine to machine, and the difficulty of removing the platen will vary depending on the typewriter and a person's familiarity with repair; so one should not only evaluate the platen, but also weigh the costs, as well as the risk/rewards.

 

 

07-4-2018 16:23:43  #12


Re: Platen re-covering in USA

SoucekFan wrote:

SamTheWriter83 wrote:

How do you know if you need your platen re-covered?

It depends. Most vintage typewriters could benefit from platen recovery, as it improves the print quality and paper feed, but whether it needs to be done depends on how hard or worn the platen is, a person's tolerance for the quirks of a hard platen, and how much one want's to invest in the restoring the typewriter. If the platen is cracked or slipping on its core, it definitely needs to be recovered. If--other factors not withstanding--the platen is causing feed issues, the type (other than just the periods) is blowing holes through the paper, or the print quality is abysmal, then it likely needs a new platen; but these issues will vary in degrees, and there are certain things, like typing with extra backing sheets or treating with rubber rejuvenator, that can help mitigate some of these problems. It will also vary from machine to machine. Some typewriters can type okay with a rock hard platen, others do not. Back in the day, they made them in different hardness for specific uses.

Most vintage machines have platens that are much harder than ideal, but most people are happy typing on them anyway. Recovery is expensive, the amount of improvement gained is different from machine to machine, and the difficulty of removing the platen will vary depending on the typewriter and a person's familiarity with repair; so one should not only evaluate the platen, but also weigh the costs, as well as the risk/rewards.

 

 
Thank you for the explanation, sounds like a low benefit thing to do, unless as you mentioned the platen is severly damaged.

 

07-4-2018 19:28:30  #13


Re: Platen re-covering in USA

SamTheWriter83 wrote:

Thank you for the explanation, sounds like a low benefit thing to do, unless as you mentioned the platen is severly damaged.

It can be beneficial; it just may not be a necessity. Sometimes it is more of a want than a need. It depends on the person and the machine. If one prizes print quality, and has the money to spare, it can definitely be worth it.

 

07-4-2018 21:10:27  #14


Re: Platen re-covering in USA

SoucekFan wrote:

SamTheWriter83 wrote:

Thank you for the explanation, sounds like a low benefit thing to do, unless as you mentioned the platen is severly damaged.

It can be beneficial; it just may not be a necessity. Sometimes it is more of a want than a need. It depends on the person and the machine. If one prizes print quality, and has the money to spare, it can definitely be worth it.

 
The platen on my Smith Corona Galaxie Twelve is fairly hard, but it prints just fine with the existing platen and a new ribbon.

 

07-4-2018 22:01:53  #15


Re: Platen re-covering in USA

If you are satisfied with the type quality, there are no feed issues, and the noise doesn't bother you, you are probably okay on a Galaxie.

 

30-9-2020 08:25:40  #16


Re: Platen re-covering in USA

SamTheWriter83 wrote:

How do you know if you need your platen re-covered?

If the rubber on the platen is hard as a rock with no give to it then re-rubberizing is an option, or else use two sheets of paper when you type.

I had my KMM platen re-rubbered. They had me email pics of the platen first before giving me a price quote.
. Cost was $85 including shipping. They had it back to me in about a month. Now the platen grips the paper reality well and no more strike throughs perforating the paper.


Olivetti Lettera 32, Olympia SM3, Hermes 3000, Remington-Rand Model 17, Royal Futura 800, Royal KHM, Royal KMM, Royal Model O, Royal Quiet De Luxe
 

30-9-2020 13:05:42  #17


Re: Platen re-covering in USA

Hi Hermes and Others

Here's how I look at it. If you have a 1962 Ford Thunderbird in fine running condition, do you put a set of new tires on it or not?

If you only want to tootle around town and enter the occasional show-n-shine, the old weather hardened bias ply tires will suite your purpose. If however you wanted to get out and do some serious mountain highway driving, those old tires are going to let you down, compromise your safety and spoil the pleasure of the drive.

Put a new set of performance radials on that car and you'll have a completely different ride. The tires will grip the road, the car will hug the corners and you'll enjoy putting that classic car through its paces.

I had the platen of my 1936 Imperial Good Companion re-covered by J.J. Short and the difference is amazing. The type bars now make a dull thud as opposed to a sharp clack when they strike the paper. The quality of print has vastly improved and the paper always feeds squarely. The cost was $75.00 including shipping to my pick-up point in the US.

Therefore, as the other posters have said, it depends on you and the machine. How much you intend to use the machine, what condition the platen is already in and how much do you want to invest in your machine. Continued typing on a rock hard platen can also eventually flatten the letters on the type slugs. Once this happens, the quality of print can never be regained except by replacing the type slugs which today is next to impossible. All the best,

Sky

 

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