CANON For Feminists… NOT!

Well, here we go down a rabbit hole I never thought I would enter; large business machines/typewriters.  Due to a foolish glance through area craigslist-ings, I stumbled upon a business machine at a very fair price.  The seller was about an hours drive away, and the weather was perfect for a Sunday drive.

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Here we have the CANON AP-810 III.  Looks just as sexy as it sounds, right?

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I had a couple of days to research this animal before meeting up with the seller.  To my surprise, there seems to be very little information about Canon business machines on the interwebs.  That is to say, Canon typewriters from the 80s.

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Lots of printers.  Lots of copiers.  Why so little on the AP series?  These were built (I assume) to compete with the IBM Selectrics.

Like all great things from the dawn of the computer age, this thing is over-engineered, with more features than you can shake a stick at.  And all clearly explained in the manuals (assuming you’re one of the engineers who designed the thing).

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Be sure to read the copy.  Then take a shower.  Gah!

I can just hear the girlish giggling as the boss-man presented this new machine for his dainty workforce to figure out.  I know he wasn’t going to train them on it.  He had an important three martini meeting to get to!

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This beast was presented to the business world in 1984 by my estimation.  Gloria Steinem first published Ms. Magazine in 1972.  Twelve years later?  Um… uh…

Uh-oh.

~TH~

 

Just Because

Consider this a bookmark post.  I’m aware that I have a few noble subscribers, and ya know, I just don’t want you to think you’re being neglected.  Frankly, I’ve been spending the past two months communicating with people via snail mail (onion skin paper, carbon copies for my files, fancy stamps from the past).

I did recently post on the Facebook page Antique Typewriter Classifieds that I would be going to see a collection of 38 machines for sale.  Well, I went to see the collection, then left with disappointment in my wake.

Aside from a very nice Hammond and a nice Bing – everything else was in fairly poor condition.  NOTE: I did not test the Bing or the Hammond – they appeared to be in good condition cosmetically.  There were three upstrike machines and 3 Olivers. Very few portables, all in poor condition.

I will post some photos from the visit soon.  I didn’t even bother talking money with the owner because there were no machines I wanted.  The machines are located in northern Virginia, and I doubt the owner is willing to pack and ship.  If, after this glowing review, you’d like to see the machines for yourself, let me know and I’ll happily act as an intermediary.

If I were a betting man, I’d guess this guy is going to be hanging on to most of those machines for quite a while.  Photos coming soon.  ~TH~

Fontana

Making Book

I didn’t realize there was a typeface called Fontana; I just thought it was a paperback imprint of Collins’.

However here it is, and HarperCollins historical website celebrating their 200th anniversary tells us about it in these terms :

“In 1936, Collins became the first major publishing house to create its own font. The publisher hired printer and typographer Dr. Hans Mardersteig to prepare a report on the business in which he included suggestions on design. As a result, Collins had him design a typeface that would create a unique visual identity for the company.

Building on the classic fonts of eighteenth-century Glasgow publishers Robert and Andrew Foulis, Mardersteig developed Collins’s iconic typeface: Fontana. It was used by Collins for three decades before the company released rights to the font.

After Collins developed the Fontana font, more company-specific fonts followed, including Lexicon, Fedra, Nexus (designed by Martin Majoor), Fresco, and Sansa…

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Smith Corona SL480-Eureka!

My recent acquisition of a 1992 Smith-Corona SL480, and a EUREKA moment. I pulled the ribbon cart out and closed the lid- noticed that the critter would still type. Hmmm… If my ribbon cart runs out while I’m in the field (with electricity), I can simply load two sheets with a carbon in the middle. True, it then becomes an invisible, but hey! I can still type! Carry those carbons folks! ~TH~