While I was out of town at the holiday wintering grounds with my herd, Moe from my favorite junk shop called and left a message: could I please come to her shop and take a look at a typewriter?
When I got back into town, I dropped by Moe’s. She had sweet little baby blue Royal Quiet De Luxe that a lady wanted to buy for her daughter, but it was all “jammed”.
The carriage lock was engaged. I unlocked it and all was well.
I remember when this typewriter had come in – before Thanksgiving it was. The carriage lock was engaged then, and I unlocked it so that people could test typing on it. I guess someone locked it again.
The typewriter was very dirty and needed a new ribbon, so I asked Moe if I could bring it home and clean it up. Of course, yes.
The serial number is AB3175632 which would make this a 1956 Royal QDL.
I brought the typewriter home and looked it over. I washed the outside down with soapy water and used my new favorite dollar-store degreaser on tough grimy areas, LA’s Totally Awesome.
The key tops had a resistant gray and white film that took a lot of scrubbing with green ScotchBrite to remove. I was careful around the printed letters.
The machine had chunks of greasy lint hanging from its insides. I first blew out the machine with compressed air and then doused all the internal mechanics with mineral spirits and then blew wet, dirty chunks out with more compressed air. I don’t usually use mineral spirits, but I wanted to use something that wouldn’t evaporate quickly.
While I scrubbed the type, I noticed that the typeface was something a little different. I couldn’t wait to throw a new ribbon in and see what printed out.
What typeface is this? Herald Pica?
I fell in love a little with this Royal portable. The machine seemed just keen to please and was so pleasurable to type on.
After the clean up, I took the Royal QDL back to Moe’s. Moe’s shop was its usual jumble of fascinating objects perched in precarious positions. There was a new arrival, a golden Olympia Monica, hanging out on a couch in the shop.
The Monica was beautiful shade of yellow/gold. I took a closer look:
It worked great. German keyboard. The label says that was made in the United Kingdom:
Hmm. The serial number is 5693315. I will go back and take some more (less blurry) pictures and add it to the TWDB.
I poked around in the Olympia for bit, but then it was time to leave. It was with a reluctant heart that I left the baby blue QDL at Moe’s, but I was grateful for the experience of it. I had scrubbed the carry case and attached care and feeding instructions.
Goodbye, Baby Blue.
Time for a sing-along: