Wednesday, January 7, 2015

More Typewriters - Including another Hermes 3000

On my desk, but I forgot to take down the white background I used for the close-ups. The can with the wires on it behing my mug is one of the capacitors we make.

Tthis machine looked new except for a few scratches on the back.

The usual missing platen knobs.

The right knob from a first generation works fine.

The only ink is from me using the typewriter.  This is what the slugs looked like when I opened the cover!

I did a quick typecast after I took the photos.  It is a very good typer for a square body H3k.  I like the action of the round ones better, but this one is not as mushy as my other square ones.

Plenty of room to store the typewriter.

Christmas present to myself.  Works fine and looks great. SN 863309, 1955?

Top view of my Oliver no. 5. SN341590, 1912?

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Hermes 3000 Director Elite and A Happy New Year

I'm awash in H3k machines.  The latest addition makes 7 in my collection surpassing my Skyriters!

This shows the one and only small blemish on the entire machine.  Can you find it?

Before cleaning.

After cleaning

It even came with both brushes

Taken before cleaning.  Dates the typewriter to 1964

This is where I work.  My new job came complete with my own lab.
 It's fun enjoying a job.  I do not think any are as rewarding as when I was a firefighter.  Lowe's was a fun place, and I had another job or two in retail I liked, but none come close to broadcasting or teaching.  Sears service department was nice too.  What I like about my present job; it is quite a bit like working at a radio station.  I've got some cool projects I'm working on including new products and machines as well as adding a few more engineers and technicians.  I have music in the lab too, and one day I plan on installing a nice stereo and a typewriter.  I need a typewriter.  Perhaps one of my Royal HHs.

Here's a link to a tour.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

In Memory of Those Who Lost Their Lives 73 Years Ago
USS Arizona from

We see too many photos of the mighty Arizona and Pearl Harbor during and after the attack.  I thought I'd look for one with her crew, but I was unable to find one close to 1941.

There were many more souls and ships lost onboard other ships and on shore that eventful Sunday morning.  The most were lost on the Arizona.

To Honor and Remember those who gave all so we can have the freedoms we have today.

To Honor all those who served in the past.

To Honor and thank those who serve today.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LF1 Gets a Grip

What do you do when your compact camera comes without a grop?  You get a grip!  This grip makes the camera much nicer to handle and much less slippery

This is the grip before installation.

Comparison of my medium format camera to the Lumix: 3 pounds vs a few ounces

Hermes 3000.1 taken with the LF1.  Did my Classic 12 or this one start my obsession with typewriters?
Inspired Eye article that is the best review of all the reviews about the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LF1.

I use my Bronica more than I do my 35mm cameras for most of my shooting.  I chose it because it was handier to grab than any of my 35mm cameras.  Unless I go to an air show or event where I may want a long telelphoto lens I generally grab the Bronica before the 35mm cameras.  I don't shoot any of them nearly as often as I did when I lived in Virginia. 

Sunday, November 16, 2014

A New Camera

One item that helped me choose, Leica lens.

My 3.2Mp camera is jsut not as sharp as the LF1

Advantage is the eye level view finder.  I will forego a better camera when it does not have a view finder.  Why manufactures are too cheap to put a view finder on all their cameras, especially the higer priced ones is asinine. Disadvantage is the dumb lay-put of the power switch and shutter release switch.  Same on the Leica-C. The back is not scratched; it is reflecting the muslin under the camera.

The control ring is nice and I've found I can reassign it to what I like or use as a stepped zoom to fixed focal lengths.  Some reviews state it cannot be reassigned.  Maybe the reviewers did not give it a try.

Unlike the Leica-C the LF1 has anchors for a neck strap on both sides.  Even though this is a tiny camera I like using a neck strap. 

The camera is not much larger than the Jackalope sticker.

Montana Luxe taken with the Lumix DMC-LF1 under the same lighting none of my other digital cameras seem to like.  The LF1 auto white balance is quite good and fast.
I've not shot more than a few dozen pictures with the camera yet.  Mostly boring flower macros. Macro focus is 3cm to infinity with zoom on the control ring.

What I like about the camera is the 12.1 Mp 1/1.7 sensor, processor, the control ring, view finder, fast response, 2 strap anchors, Leica lens, many of the functions, Nice lens range, ISO range, and small size.  I wanted a pocket camera for my trip, but the camera had to be a functional as near to pro camera as I could afford.  The most impressive thing about this camera is it is available for about $250.00  from several reputable suppliers in NYC.  I got mine with a spare battery, charger, and Class 10 64MB Sandisk SD card for just over $250 which was about what I expected budget-wise.

What I do not like is the power switch and shutter release switch locations, no grip, no hot shoe. 

A tilting LCD screen like Sony uses would be nice, but I do not miss my old Sony much.  The lack of a grip will be corrected as soon as my Fipbak G4 arrives.

How does this compare to an Olympus Stylus 1?  The Stylus has a nicer traditional design, hot shoe, centered view finder, selectable video speed modes, constant F:2.8 for all focal lengths, and similar 12.1Mp sensor.  A much nicer compact camera for Mrs. M and her bird watching.

Note on the Montana being nicer to use than my Baby.  I used the Hermes Baby quite often and even on a few trips due to its weight (less than a Skyriter).  It is not all that great of a typer though.  First off every sheet catches the ribbon covers as it is started, touch is mediocre at best.  It has a more solid sound than the Montana, but still a cheap sound.

The Montana feeds paper smoother, has a better touch and sounds about the same as the Baby.  I had not been using it since it needed a ribbon.  Now with a new ribbon it even has a nicer typeface than the Baby.

Both typewriters need their platen recovered and the Montana has some minor flat spots on the paper feed pressure rollers.  I did not weigh them, but they seem to feel about the same weight; both lighter and a bit smaller than a Skyriter.  Neither type as good as a Smith-Corona Skyriter.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Hammond Multiplex Shuttles Typing Samples

10 C.P.I.

10 C.P.I.

170, 10 C.P.I.

10 C.P.I.

This may also be 170, 10 C.P.I.

10 C.P.I.

10 C.P.I.


10 C.P.I.

10 C.P.I.

10 C.P.I.


Shuttle positioner

shuttle positioner showing all the dirt I need to remove.

Shuttle holder in loading position. It sits on the two pins shown on the positioner.

Top view

Shuttles loaded

Shuttles in position

Everything is in its home positon and ready to type.  Shuttle to be used is at the top of the photo and the one that can be moved into position by lifiting up on the knob and turning the whole assembly 180 degrees is in the bottom of the photo.
Testing the shuttles turned out to be quite a challenge.  Most do not have numbers on them to verify the typeface.  All are 10 c.p.i. even though the characters differ in size.  Several of the shuttles did not get tested as they do not freely slide around the holder.  By hand I cannot feel any sticking, but the mechanism will jam when they are used. Several others are duplicate typefaces.

This took most of the day.  I tried to get the shuttles that would not slide easily to slide.  This was taking too long so they are tagged and repairs may happen later.
In doing the work I forgot to scale each sample with a one inch line and mark the name and number of the shuttle if I could cross reference it to my previous post.

Now if I can only complete the final challenge; finding the date of manufacture.  It may be 1915, 1916, or maybe even 1918.  The serial number and cast machined aluminum frame and the Typewriter Database places it in 1915 as a Multiplex portable with a different case.  This one is portable and has the square case like the folding model (not the neat curved case as the older models). On line I have not found a Hammond Multiplex verses a Hammond Multiplex portable.  They all look the same size.  I've a tremendous amout of learning to do with the history of these machines if I choose to dig into it.

This is a fun typewriter to use once I mastered the unique touch.  Not a hard touch, a unique one.  Not very fast though.  If I were to compare the speed of this one to a modern one I would say it is about as fast as my SM3, SM7 & SM9 Olympia typewriters.  However the touch may be more like my Remington Noiseless Model 7.

Now to get a purple ribbon for it.  I may never use the black one I ordered.