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Thursday, 29 May 2014

Royal KMM Rebirth (Booty III) and a King-Sized Restoration Job

Of the 25 typewriters I received last Saturday, the one that looked most likely to be a complete "write-off" was this Royal KMM. It was downright ugly - the victim of an extremely slapdash repaint job, a travesty which had been compounded by someone spilling white paint all over the front left and most of the keys.
On the front was a sticker for Stott & Underwood, 254 George Street, Sydney, which, along with scratchings on the inside of the ribbon spools cover, indicated that, in the absence of a proper Royal agency, this machine had been "refurbished" by an uncaring company about 50 years ago, in 1964.
It may well have been "touched up" since then by a slap-happy chappy with a broad paint brush. Among the things over which a flat black paint had been carelessly slapped were the carriage lever (covering rather than treating the corrosion), the lovely brass badge on the front of the ribbon spools cover (including the Royal name) and the gauge on the paper plate. It looked awful.
Only one thing to do - take the whole thing completely apart, clean it all up, get rid of all the shoddy black paintwork, and start again. Of course, the typewriter has responded to the makeover in kind, springing back to life as if new.
The photo below of what this pockmarked machine looked like when it arrived here on Saturday doesn't do full justice to the yukky, unappealing mess it was in. To be honest, it just didn't look like a machine worth bothering with.  Just shows what a couple of days of "rebirthing" can do.
On the subject of restorations, how about the "shabby chick (sic, really sick) style" or "vintage type writer restoration" listed on Australian eBay tonight. The West Australian seller is called "lost treasure". At $19.95, it's more a case of "lost marbles":

6 comments:

Rob Bowker said...

You did good, Rob!

Mark Adams said...

The wide-carriage Monarch is interesting. What's the serial number?

Richard P said...

That Royal looks amazing! Well done.

Miguel Angel Chávez Silva said...

Good work on that Royal, Robert! It looks great now!

As for that Monarch, it looks like someone dug it from some long lost barn; it would be a great props for a zombie movie, but methinks it is far too gone to even bother lugging it around. It even has all the keyboard frame missing!

Now THAT is a machine not worth bothering with.

TonysVision said...

Well done and inspiring. The royal, that is!

Donald Lampert said...

Yeah, I don't mind tough restorations myself, but that
Monarch is no king. A state burial is in order!
Love the other Royal though it really shines now!
Good work, Robert