Sunday, June 10, 2012

a red Selectric

2012 06 10 - typecast


  1. I've scraped out all the old foam on my Selectric. Its easy to to and I haven't noticed any issue with the foam gone. Maybe a little louder...

    As for the golfballs, you can use the broken one. Take a look at my blogpost here:

    Just get those plastic tops off and you can use the clip and it works fine. Just not as convenient.

  2. The Selectrics are my favorite electric and perhaps the only one(s) I would add to my collection if I had room. I had a Selectric-II in great shape and was dumb enough to get rid of it soon after I bought my first PC :(
    The Selectric machines are really nice when you have all the different type elements. The elements seem rather readily available for cheap on Ebay.

    1. I wonder if the "olde english" is available for the Selectric II... it's a very nice typeface!

  3. Andrea,

    Selectrics do tolerate long periods of non-use well. Lubricant becomes gummy over time and causes all kinds of symptoms. Before trying to make any repairs, I would suggest cleaning and lubricating the machine.

    From watching the video, I'd say you have two problems. One, the carriage is not returning fully to the left margin. Two, the platen is not advancing when on the single-space setting.

    The carriage return problem is common. It is usually caused by a stretched or missing tension limiter extension spring. Without enough tension, the torque limiter will slip and prevent the carriage from returning to the left margin.

    The index mechanism spaces the paper vertically. Most likely, the index pawl is not engaging the platen ratchet properly, causing it to space erratically or not at all. Before making any adjustments, clean and lubricate the mechanism.

    There are methods of repairing type elements. It depends on what is broken.

    I think joining a group such as:

    would be helpful to you. There are repair manuals and experts there that can answer any question about Selectrics.