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11-9-2018 14:21:33  #1

Mechanical Olympia Monica [sm4/sm5] 1962 Function Issue

Warm welcome, thank you for stopping by! Recently i have purchased an Olympia Monica typewriter via web. Once i but tested it, i have found an issue with how the ink is applyed on paper. 2/3 of the paper palely cathes ink.

-- the carriage at it's right jumps up and down when i apply pressue to it. 

- When i removed the carriage i noteced these 2 plates not beeing mounted on anything [ ]

- Under the carriage, there are 2 springs which go into action if i press caps, i noticed one of the springs,the right one, to be missing. I am but unsure how big of an issue this missing spring is, the carriage lifts normally.

In overall, the carriage doesnt feel to be fixed. I can easily unmount it. I dont know if this is merely due to the typewriter beeing a low budget model, or an actual issue.

Thank you for the time,  ideas are much appreciated.


11-9-2018 22:09:44  #2

Re: Mechanical Olympia Monica [sm4/sm5] 1962 Function Issue

Hi Bazooka

You are right, this machine does have problems. The two plates you have pictured are the carriage rail ball retainer brackets. First off, you will need to measure the diameter of one of the 3 remaining balls and obtain a 4th ball of the exact same diameter. Being a German built machine, this will most likely be in millimeters. Insert the ball into the empty hole, then post back to the forum and hopefully, we'll be able to help you get the carriage back into its track and working properly again. All the best,



12-9-2018 14:39:15  #3

Re: Mechanical Olympia Monica [sm4/sm5] 1962 Function Issue


I ve managed to find the 4th ball on the lower floors of the machine. I now have 4, all fit perfectly.

So the plates connect to the carriage, which then connects with the whole machine? If you d be aware of any data on the web, in how to put the pieces together; the link would be much welcome. If not, i can prepare some detailed images or a video showcasing the parts. ..

Thank you for taking the time for guidance Sky


     Thread Starter

12-9-2018 22:10:01  #4

Re: Mechanical Olympia Monica [sm4/sm5] 1962 Function Issue

Hi Again Bazooka

Let's start with the theory of how this system works. With the carriage removed, take a close look at the two rails on the bottom of the carriage. Viewed end on, the rails look a bit like 2 V's facing away from each other. Now look at the rails on the machine and they look like V's facing the other way. When the carriage is in the machine, the 2 sets of V's form 2 squares when viewed end on. The balls snugly in the brackets sit in the squares and hold the carriage firmly.

Now look at the rails on both the carriage and the machine from the front and you'll see a row of small evenly spaced holes along all 4 rails. The star wheels in the middle of each ball retainer mesh into these holes like a rack and pinion, this is so the 4 balls are always held in the right position and don't fall out under normal use. The trick is to get the ball retainers timed correctly to both the machine and the carriage. Assuming the carriage stops are removed and the draw cord is disconnected, a second pair of hands with nimble fingers is a real help.

Now onto the practical. I find that reinstalling the carriage with this style of retainer to be easier with the machine on its side. Hold the retainers, one each side so the star wheel is sitting on the very end of the carriage rails. Now hold the carriage vertically over the rails in the machine and lower it to where the star wheels re just touching the rails in the machine. Have the second pair of hands to hold the lower ball bearings in the rails of the typewriter. Now gently lower the carriage allowing the star wheels to mesh into both sets of rails. You'll still need to hold the balls in the rails until both sets of rails meet and lock the balls between the rails

As the lower end of the carriage gets to the half way point, the escapement rack will contact the escapement mechanism. I will help to hold the carriage release lever in so the carriage an be lowered all the way to center position. Now you'll need to reconnect the draw cord and reinstall the carriage end locks to prevent the carriage from sliding out too far and dropping the balls again.

I hope this points you in the right direction and you are able to get your Monica back in service again. Keep in touch and let us know how you manage. All the best,



14-9-2018 06:02:19  #5

Re: Mechanical Olympia Monica [sm4/sm5] 1962 Function Issue

Hello Sky,

Phase 1: I ve managed to reinstall the retainers. The carriage is now more fluent and obedient. The carriage at its right still slightly jumps up and down if i apply pressure, but much less.

Phase 2: Current type results:
I have placed a fresh ribbon and installed it correctly. However, for some reason the keys dont respond to well. As i write this, im preparing some cleaning equipment as i have yet to thoroughly clean the keys.

Tips/ideas are more then welcome.

Thank you!


     Thread Starter

14-9-2018 13:29:36  #6

Re: Mechanical Olympia Monica [sm4/sm5] 1962 Function Issue

Hi Once Again

Now you have the carriage reinstalled, it's evident by your picture that there are some serious alignment issues which will require some adjustments and fine tuning. Looking at my Olympia SM4, there are some adjustments to move the rails on the typewriter to remove the slack between the machine and the carriage. Once that play or backlash has been removed, the upper and lower shift stops may require adjusting. The ring and cylinder adjustment might also need to be addressed to correct the type slug contact pressure on the platen. I have never made these adjustments on an Olympia of any model, so I will refer you to Tom (thetypewriterman) from Luton in England. I'd sooner admit that I don't know than give incorrect advice. All the best,



14-9-2018 13:58:45  #7

Re: Mechanical Olympia Monica [sm4/sm5] 1962 Function Issue

Thank you for everything Sky,

All the best!


     Thread Starter

16-9-2018 12:10:55  #8

Re: Mechanical Olympia Monica [sm4/sm5] 1962 Function Issue

Fixed! , some of the data for the fix can be found here.

Quorry about the different knots for different alignments on the olympia monica 1962/ sm4 / sm5. Issues in questions anwsered:
- distance between rails in the case of an unstable carriage
- upper, lower case alignment
- space bar key configuration

: On the inner rail of the machine, you will find 4 screws to unbind. These come in pairs, their location is found at 1/3 and 2/3 of the carriage. For access, the carriage does not have to be removed. I also found that tightening the distance between the rails prior, helps mounting the carriage with the retainers to the machine.

Upper lower cases: Can only be accessed by removing the body of the machine at it side. For this, the full body has to be removed. Once done you will find an upper and lower bolt located under the metal piece containing the ribbon. The bolts are the edges of a pole which is bent  at an angle of about 45 degrees, The lower one is for the lower case spacing, and upper one for the upper case spacing.

Space bar: Once the machine was reasembled, the space key was not functioning properly anymore. In order to fix this, we have to look beneath the machine. There, we will find a 2 bolts showing outside of a cylinder shaped piece. By gently releasing those, the cylinder s position can be readjusted, the key is to narrow the contact gap between the space key on hit, and the L shaped piece on the far other end of the machine which creates contact and allows the trigger. Note: Once the space was fixed, my M key lost function, the ideal position has to be found. A nother option, which i considered, but didnt implement would simply be to carve a piece from a solid material and attach it to the L shape to narrow the gap.

Maybe this helps anyone,

Take care, BJ


     Thread Starter

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