I thought I should post a couple of overdue things before I start on Singapore.
Ages ago I posted about a mystery machine that I couldn’t reveal – it was intended as a birthday present for a dear friend but she chose another machine. This baby ended up to another lady I know who I believe loves it to bits. And her two kids.
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Early October, or somewhat. 9:46PM
This Consul Comet came from the other side of the world ages ago and I only got on to fixing it now.
Unfortunately, this was one of the few machines that fell into the unforgiving hands of the wanna-be Olympic postmen. The back plate was smushed in, colliding with the carriage wheel thus hindering the carriage movement. The space bar has a huge chunk missing from the frontal view and looks very much like a child with it’s front teeth missing.
Cute, but slightly heartbreaking.
The beautiful leatherette case was the first thing I got down to cleaning. It was pretty obvious it needed a thorough scrubbing – it was something like three shades darker/dirtier then it should have been.
The handle on the other hand, was absolutely shocking.
I had scrubbed it so hard and so furiously that all the stitching broke, and at that time I didn’t really care (it was almost like I was in a clean-clean-clean-trance) and I ripped out grimy top leatherette layer and continued scrubbing… until it was nice and creamy looking, like it should be.
Then I spent a little bit of time de-rusting the metal handle bits…
Sometimes it’s the little details that makes a typer look beautiful again!
And finally after a whole night of scrubbing the case, I was done.
That is one beautiful case.
I packed up the typer and didn’t look at fixing the actual machine for a long while.
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Finally I got the need to open it up and have a peek. It had the following pre-existing issues:
1. a dodgey home-fix with the line spacer lever
2. carriage was not moving well
3. margin setters not sliding/seemed stuck
4. margin release was loose
5. and all sorts of small things that I can’t quite remember now.
It was very interesting looking into this machine. I really liked its simplicity: clean linkage lines, no crazy contraptions, and simple movements. The non conventional platen fixture got me a little bit too excited too. I’d never seen anything like that.
First thing I did was to fix that gnarly looking DIY fix. I’m not too sure if you could see it from the picture above, but see if you can see the brass wire in the line spacing mechanism… nasty thing. The skin-bones-L32 I have finally put itself to some good use and I managed to find a nice spring that fit into the mechanism. It’s a terrible picture but if you look where the lever screw is – right under that is a small spring that I used. Worked like a charm.
I used a spray bottle to spray all the gunk out and let it dry for a few hours… then proceeded to cleaning it out (I also undid the keys, it was an experience) hammering sheet metal and then putting it back altogether.
Then I spent a whole night with a needle, a pair of pliers and stupidness to sew the leatherette back onto the handle. I stabbed myself so many times so badly, it was NOT funny. At one time the needle had stuck itself about 5mm into the side of my finger. Urgh.
Note to self: never do that again.
It was then (here) I wrote that.
I did have to open it up again to fix the spcaebar stiffness (it was just the base being silly and concave, and a little bit of self adhesive felt did the job perfectly) and now… it looks like this:
Absolutely clean and beautiful!
I must say, I’m already missing this machine.
It was a real job to fix this machine, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. Hopefully another Consul will come my way :)