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  1. Another instance of typewriters bringing (odd) people together!

    I like the word “micro-jankiness” and I see just what you mean.

  2. Don’t let them get your lucky charms, lad! Keep Mothra close. So glad to read that there are people out there with an active interest in keeping these great beasts alive and functional. I was especially impressed by the woman in the mini-documentary who traveled from Utah to Arkansas in January(!) to retrieve a Composer.

    1. We’ve sort of been following that story off-hand for awhile, the machine she drove so far to get was this one, and the “Clark” guy she got it from is our fellow Typospherian ProfessorC. (:

      It’s a small universe when it comes to these machines. :D

      1. That was a great guest post by ProfessorC – it sparked my interest in Selectrics. Though it’s unlikely that I’ll ever come across a Composer, I may bring home a garden-variety Selectric (if I can make enough room in the garage).

  3. It’s a shame more of the IBM Composers didn’t survive. They were considered business tools and most were promptly discarded when newer technology came along. It also didn’t help that they required lots of technical knowledge to use and maintain.

    I’m really not sure why IBM didn’t produce a proportional-spacing normal Selectric for the masses. They had produced proportional spacing machines since almost the beginning, but somehow the Selectric was only available in fixed-spacing models. Maybe it would have detracted from the ruggedness and dependability that the Selectric is known for.

    1. IBM did produce mass-market proportional spacing Selectrics, but they were those odd half-selectric/half wheelwriter machines from the 90’s. The electronic Model 85 takes both regular 96-char SIII typeballs, and special 96-char proportional spacing balls with the round yellow dot. Of course, they are absolute trash, but they did build ’em.

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