It’s been awhile since I checked my Spam folder in WordPress, so I was surprised to see 3 comments on my article on Ames going out of business that had ended up in my spam list, but were legit replies (probably because they were new posters who put links in the post).
“Peter Short says:
We have been contacted by some people since Ames’ shutterred and we are more than willing to take on the prospect of recoating platen rollers. Our comapny is a small family business in business since 1977. We specialize in customer rubber products many of which are the stripping and recoating of various types of rubber rollers. We were never able to compete with Ames’ pricing which seemed unbelievably low but not knowing their volume it was difficult to say. In the past we had only been approached about one and two platens at a time which with setups can get expensive–I can see geting to the $ 95 noted above. However, this sort of market seems to fit our niche and we are more then willing to work with folks needing service to balance getting a good quality product here in America at a price the works for both parties. Visit our website at http://www.jjshort.com and send us what your needs are and we will do our best to help!”
The long and short (ha, made a pun!) of it is that as soon as Ames closed up, J.J. Short company seems to be very interested in picking up the slack. They state that $95 is about right for one-off platen recovering but they imply that if the business gets more volume, they could most likely see doing it cheaper.
I’ll be forwarding this info to Bill Wahl and Tom up at Cambridge Typewriter, and perhaps as volume consumers they can get a better price locked down. I know that I’ll be needing the platen on my ’29 Corona 4 recovered soon, so maybe I’ll get a chance to see the quality of JJ Short’s services shortly.
Of all the roller refurbishing companies I’ve tried to contact, JJ Short is the one that actually mentions typewriter platens and feed rollers on their site. Prospects are good. (:
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Tom has already sent them a couple of platens as a test. I’m very glad that they are interested in doing this and hope it will be profitable for them, and helpful for all the typewriter shops out there, not to mention individuals.
I bought a spare Hermes 3000 for the platen, but I may just send them the one I was going to replace since I like my junk machine as a usable typewriter. I also have a Royal and an Underwood in need, but I cannot pay $95 a piece so I am awaiting a quote from them.
Ted- Thank you for letting me know about the new platen update. Acting on a tip I got last week from Richard Polt, I called up Peter Short and we had a lengthy talk about the state of the platen recovering business (or lack of). He seemed interested in trying it out. In his words he said, ” We’re in the business of recovering rubber rollers, it makes sense that we should recover typewriter platens too.” He expressed concern about trying to make the price affordable and I do think there will be some growing pains to the process. I sent him some Royal 10″ portable platens to test out on his equipment and I’ll check them out on a typewriter when I get them back soon. I’ll report the results on the typosphere and my blog and people can spread the hopefully good news from there. Thanks for letting people know about J.J. Short Associates, Inc. By the way, keep up the great work on your awesome blog!!
For joy! We’re saved! … maybe.