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07-7-2013 08:56:35  #11

Re: Help with my Olympia Model 8

I am such an idiot! 

I think Beak got it right. The A-swich might be a RIBBON-REVERSER. 

Here's the ribbon-reverse switch on my 1920s Underwood:

You flip it back and forth to determine which spool the ribbon winds onto. 

I'm not sure if this is the case with your machine, but with my Underwood, the reverse-switch always acts on the opposite spool. 

So if the switch is on the right side, the left spool will wind up. If you flip the switch to the left, then the right spool winds up. 

"Not Yet Published" - My History Blog
"I just sit at a typewriter and curse a bit" - Sir Pelham Grenville "P.G." Wodehouse
"The biggest obstacle to professional writing is the necessity for changing a typewriter ribbon" - Robert Benchley

07-7-2013 10:51:25  #12

Re: Help with my Olympia Model 8

Appears that the horizontal lever is indeed ribbon-reverser. We are now down to one last mystical lever, which I believe I finally understand.

With this new information in mind I learned that rather than being connected to the keyboard, the spools are connected to the carriage. Therefore when the spools get stuck for any reason, the mechanism prevents the carriage from winding them by excessive force and rather lets the writer know that something's wrong. Considering how insanely heavy the carriage is, this seems like a logical precaution. (Or they just get stuck together and if that's a feature or fault can be debated.)

With such mechanism a release lever for it is in order. It's still curious why the same lever resets the ribbon-reverser to the right, but that doesn't seem like an important detail.

It also turned out that the spools weren't moving as freely as I thought (surprisingly...). That should be fixed now, and thanks to that, the original problem seems to be gone as well.

I think that's all, I should be able to operate the typewriter properly now. Thank you both very much! Not only did I learn a lot about my typewriter, I also learned a lot of new words, yay!

Last edited by tatte (07-7-2013 10:56:44)

     Thread Starter

07-7-2013 20:25:49  #13

Re: Help with my Olympia Model 8


Looks like a great machine; I think if I were to collect seriously, I would specialize in Olympias.  Why not post a sample of the typeface in the thread for that.


08-7-2013 06:13:20  #14

Re: Help with my Olympia Model 8

Unfortunately I don't have a scanner here so I had to use a camera. Even more unfortunate is the appearing similiarity of typefaces in my Olympia, Brothers, Roayl and Silver-Reed. Only the Swedish Facit would seem to have more personal typeface. I'll definately start paying more attention to typefaces from now on while buying typewriters.

My fear is that since Finland is fairly small country and we have a few special letters English doesn't use, the parts that press the letters into paper (little help here, what's the term?) might be generic in all typewriters imported to Finland. Swedish Facit would then have a chance to be unique since Sweden and Finland shares keyboard layout (despite the fact that our languages are not related), removing the need to modify models for Finnish market.

Time will tell.

     Thread Starter

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