To Type, Shoot Straight, and Speak the Truth...

A man of the cloth and the steel he wields

Shooting Studio, The Typosphere Strikes again, and other thoughts for the new year.

2013-12-20-1

The Press Room affords space and a handy white-topped table to set up my backdrop and create a makeshify photo shooting studio. The lighting leaves something to be desired, but perhaps some reflector umbrellas will show up at a thrift store soon.

The Press Room affords space and a handy white-topped table to set up my backdrop and create a makeshify photo shooting studio. The lighting leaves something to be desired, but perhaps some reflector umbrellas will show up at a thrift store soon.

DSC00077

The pics I've taken the past couple of days are horrid, shot with a little point-n-shoot I keep at the Press Room. This time I brought the Canon so I could take pics of the correct color of these machines. Much better - pics updated at typewriterdatabase.com

The pics I’ve taken the past couple of days are horrid, shot with a little point-n-shoot I keep at the Press Room. This time I brought the Canon so I could take pics of the correct color of these machines. Much better – pics updated at typewriterdatabase.com

 

2013-12-20-2

With the Studio 44's new lid on it's way, I turned my attention to the final detail work on the Green Hornet. Installed fresh soundproofing and re-installed the little hardware bits.

With the Studio 44’s new lid on it’s way, I turned my attention to the final detail work on the Green Hornet. Installed fresh soundproofing and re-installed the little hardware bits.

IMG_5332 IMG_5336 2013-12-20-3

For the new year, I am planning on adding a few data fields to the Typewriter Database:

1) Price Paid (USD)

2) Year Purchased

This data will be compiled, but not shown on the individual typewriter galleries. Instead, once there is a sufficient number of data points in there, I am pondering running generalized reports that would include the average price paid for a given make/model and a high and low range. I think this preserves the privacy of those who don’t particularly want to announce the price they paid for all their machines, but still want to contribute to the information pool. Those who do want to announce (us thrifters especially), can just add the info to the machine’s description like we do now.

Additionally, I’m planning on adding a checkbox to each machine gallery where the owner can flag a particular machine in their collection as a “Parts Machine”. This would feed a page where members looking for parts can search among machines flagged as such. The details of facilitating contact between the part-seeker and the part-haver are not firm, but I’m considering a Craigslist-like single-blind system where you could send an email via the site, and the recipient could choose to either reply (and reveal their email address to the requestor) or discard the request without revealing their email address to the requestor. Only Typewriter Hunter members would be able to send requests, so I’m not real fearful of SPAM, but I expect some people are leery of handing out their email addresses to anyone who asks, so I’d like to provide them the option of not responding directly.

This feature is a response to the growing phenomenon of parts sharing among the Typosphere. Facilitating those exchanges seems like a good idea to me. (:

In other news, Nick Beland had handily blown past my score in the Typewriter Database finally, and Mark Petersen is hot on my heels. It was fun being King, but now it’s time for more diligent Hunters to enjoy the spotlight. :D

We’re at 922 Galleries as of this posting, and I have a data import file from Michael Höhne containing 80+ new entries from his personal Typewriter Database that I could import right now to reach the magic 1000, but that seems a little like cheating. Instead I may import part of the file and bring us up *closer* to 1000, but not all the way. I’d like the 1000th machine entered to be manually entered, with photos, which is currently not possible with the data importing format (photos can’t be extracted from FoxPro in any way that either I or Michael can figure out). After the new year, I can import the rest of his entries, and space them out a little, so there’s not another huge swath of photo-less entries. That’ll give Michael some time to upload photos for his entries if they just appear ins smaller batches.

Updated: December 20, 2013 — 1:34 pm

7 Comments

Add a Comment
  1. I like the price paid/date bought idea. I already have all that in a spreadsheet anyway!

    When I buy a typewriter online, I always factor the shipping cost into my total purchase. But that isn’t actually the price paid…how do you think we should do that?

    1. If we’re looking for “real cost”, my opinion would be that extraordinary additional costs like shipping or gas if you drove a hundred miles to pick up a machine, that add significantly to what it cost to obtain the machine, probably *should* be included in the “Price Paid”. It’s “opportunity cost” in effect, which is a trackable factor as much as desirability pricing, which drives auctions for machines like Gromas, Valentines and Vossen into the feeding frenzies they are. Just another subfactor of the real cost to obtain a particular machine.

  2. I think the current market price (and that has, I suppose, to include transport) is a great idea. I don’t have a spreadsheet but I can generally remember – don’t ask me how – what my typewriters cost. If nothing else, it would give an honest market appraisal price for anyone who thinks that an eBay asking price reflects true value, which it can’t. I suppose some of my freebies would skew the data but heck, that’s all part of the trade. I remember when 1000 galleries was a distant dream!

    1. Nah, freebies wouldn’t skew anything because having “0” in the Price Paid field would be equivalent to a price not being entered – if for no other reason than when adding the field to the database, I’ll have to give it a default value of “0” to populate the existing entries, thus “0” price entries just have to be ignored when compiling data.

      However, some thought might be put into the opportunity cost of getting a free typewriter. For instance, I was given a Swissa Junior by Adwoa, but to ship it from Geneva to Phoenix cost about $120 (Swiss currency was riding very high vs. the dollah at the time). I would then use $120 as the Price Paid, even though it was a free gift. However, factors unrelated to *obtaining* the machine should not be included, so the fact that I then dropped $90 on getting the platen recovered would not count towards “price Paid”. We’re not measuring the actual value of the machine, just the rough average cost of obtaining one.

  3. Nice work on the Hornet. I wonder is the pitch lever slipping. I’m no anything but a former user of the Selectric and I remember the ball seating and the little lever could cause trouble.

    Nice area for shooting. When the Mrs. is not about I use a similar arrangement in our laundry. Do you shoot film and scan it or are you using a Canon DSLR.

    That is really great of Robert. He is quite a nice fellow.

    1. No pitch lever – it’s just 12 pitch. Apparently they never made the little ones in dual-pitch.

      I shoot mostly digital, but I’ve been shooting a little film lately, since I have so many 35mm bodies lying around.

  4. You might include a field for retail price. Two considerations though: the retail price should be a range and should indicate year. I’m finding a lot of ads using Google’s newspaper search. Always interesting to know the original retail (or sale) price.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

To Type, Shoot Straight, and Speak the Truth... © 2015 Frontier Theme