Update: Platen Recovering by JJ Short

I had an email in my box today from Peter Short with an update regarding their tooling up for providing typewriter platen recovering services:

Wanted to give you an update on our progress with typewriter platen recovery.  We have spoken to many folks across the country who have been very kind in sharing their advice and experience with the various platens that are out there.  We have received a handful of platens from various makes and models to analyze and have actually sent samples using out material out to 3 different users to touch and use and get back to us with their opinion on how our material works and how our job quality looks using Ames as the standard bearer for the past 100 years or so.
We hope to get some feedback this week and then we can get a better grasp on how we can setup a pricing structure based on a customers needs.  As with anything the more we can bundle similar sizes namely the OD and ID of the platen tubes required at one time the better price we can offer, but it also appears that there is some uniformity across makes and models so I think we may be able to cater to the individual user, as well.
Currently we have sent samples out for an Oliver machine, a 14″ Underwood double wall, a Remington # 5 Portable double wall and a tube of material to a company that services IBM Selectrics and other more recent models.  We have asked the customers to try them out to check performance and to get back to us with comments, suggestions, needed improvements, etc.  We have another harder compound available to us to try as well but I will not have that in stock until early July.
We will keep you and your group abreast on the progress of this endeavor and again we appreciate the support and patience as we try to “start from scratch” in learning the nuances of the typewriter platen world.
Peter J. Short
J.J. Short Associates, Inc.

All of our parts, components and tooling are proudly made by American workers in the USA!

UPDATE:: Bob Diltz, from West Coast Platen also left a comment on my original post which discusses the problems with finding a proper rubber source for typewriter platens. He says they have the grinder, the specification manuals and people who know how to recover a platen, but they lack the needed rubber stock. It sounds like JJ Short is working on their rubber formulation, so if they succeed perhaps this source can be utilized by West Coast Platen as well. Mr. Diltz also mentions that WCP still has an assortment of already-recovered platens in stock, although he states that the selection is getting a bit thin.

Updated: June 14, 2012 — 9:13 am


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  1. I’m glad things are progressing on the recovered platen source. Thank you for the post.

  2. Good news — it is encouraging to know that a company is eager to fill this void.

    I just got a new platen for an Underwood no. 5, recovered by Marc Pellacoeur in France. He did an outstanding job. Details are on my restoration page.

  3. Owned a Royal typewriter dealership for 20 years. sold some IBM’s and became a dealer for Swintec. Used to recondition platen on a wood lathe and emery cloth did a lot of school machines. Just kind of fooling around now with some older portables. 1940’s thru 1980’s. would be nice to have a recovering service like Ames to complete the reconditioning let me know when you are ready to take platens in.

    1. JJ Short started recovering platens & feed rollers in 2012 (the date of this post), and is going strong and now has 9 years of experience doing it. Here’s the information:

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