A mini type-in

by | Jul 18, 2015 | California Typewriter, Smith-Corona, Type-in | 22 comments

Herb Permillion and Gigi Clark:

Herb checks out the Music Writer:

Ken had just the right ribbon spools:

Gigi’s pink ABC and baby blue Cole-Steel:

Her 6-pitch Magnatype teaching Remington 5:
Ray Chavez checks out Gigi’s Torpedo 18, her favorite for writing. (Ray was the photographer for the story; Angela Hill was the reporter. Here is the story.)

Some of the treasures at the shop:

Ken and Carmen recently had a table at a “fix-it fair.” The typewriters they brought, including an early Royal 10, were a major attraction for visitors—especially kids—and other repair people, including the many who were offering to fix iPhones. This manifesto is perfect!

Detail of an unusual Quiet-Riter at the shop. The “Cr$” stands for Brazilian cruzeiros. (According to Wikipedia the symbol was used 1970-1986, but the typewriter dates from the ’50s. Was it updated?)

Carmen Permillion, Herb Permillion, and Ken Alexander:


  1. Words are Winged

    Sounds like a good time was had by all! And I can't imagine what someone would need such a large font for, with that Remington 5

  2. Anonymous

    6 cpi is a hufe font, and that is a strange Quiet-Riter. I could spend hours in that place, just like I do Vern's. There needs to be a type-in in St. Louis so I can finally go to one of these things!

  3. Bill M

    Great that you got to stop in and there was a type-in as well as some good publicity.
    Sorry I could not make this week end. I hope to stop in next week end if I can. (Mrs. & daughter may have other plans).
    Congratulations on getting the Clipper.

  4. Anonymous

    Great place to shop and a great post too!

  5. Ton S.

    An heirloom typewriter. Awesome.
    Nice to see the Permillions again.

  6. Anonymous

    How great is that to receive a typewriter from the own mother or father? And how great does it have to be for the parents to know that the child fully recognizes the values of something that was build in such a high quality that it would last so many years and still be fully functional?
    Very nice story. Thank you for sharing it.

  7. DonN

    Very curious as to how the music-typer works!

  8. Richard P

    Ted Munk has a great story on it in the latest ETCetera, although his main focus is the medium-sized, Smith-Corona version of the Musicwriter.

  9. Anonymous

    I was very sorry to miss the type-in last Friday – hopefully I'll be in town for the next Bay Area type-in. I would have loved to check out that Musicwriter – not to mention all the other goodies in the Permillions' shop. There's an Olympia Musicwriter on eBay right now that looks very interesting.

  10. Rudra

    Hello Richard,

    Sorry missed meeting you and attending the Bay Area type in. Anyway, loved the "Repair Manifesto". The more we give control of the things that we use in our daily lives to others, the more we get "enslaved" that it restricts our freedom to learn, to experiment and ultimately, to "own". The typewriter from 1937 works as good as the day it was bought and all it needs is simple maintenance and upkeep, which any proud typewriter owner can do, without having to reply on "service centers", which are again out there to rip you off as much as possible.

    "A specter is haunting the digital world, the specter of analog instrumentation….."

  11. Richard P

    I largely agree, but note that mechanical instruments do sometimes need expert attention from someone who has lots of experience and the necessary parts, tools, and products. The California Typewriter folks participated in the "fix-it fair" because they see a synergy between the user's knowledge of the machine (which can keep it running well in most circumstances) and the expert's knowledge (which sometimes is indispensable).

    As your great line about the specter suggests, digital devices make us far more dependent on others than mechanical devices do. We depend on huge corporations for hardware, software, and repairs if necessary; we sign away our legal rights; we give away our information. It's a huge problem. My book discusses how typewriters are one way to enhance our self-reliance.

  12. Rudra


    How soon should we expect to see (and order) your book (The Typewriter Insurgency)?

    Thank you!

  13. Richard P

    The book, now called The Typewriter Revolution, is scheduled to be released on November 12. It can be pre-ordered right now. See typewriterrevolution.com for links. Thanks!

  14. Rudra

    Thanks for the link Richard. I have placed my order via Amazon and now cannot wait for the book to arrive in November.

  15. rn

    I have a 6 cpi Rem 3. Bought it on eBay from someone in Spokane. The Remington sticker inside the case says the original purchaser was a Spokane elementary/middle school. I assume it was used for making dittos & handouts for kids learning how to read and write. I wish I had it when I was in college: a 10 page paper is really quite manageable in Magnatype.

  16. rn

    Your wikipedia reference on the cruzeiro seems wrong. Here's what I found: "The cruzeiro (Portuguese pronunciation: [k?u?zej?u]) was the currency of Brazil from 1942 to 1986 (two distinct currencies) and again between 1990 and 1993." See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brazilian_cruzeiro. So a 50s typewriter with a Cr$ key would have been useful for three decades or so.

  17. rn

    BTW, the Banco Central do Brasil uses the symbol Cr$ to refer to the original cruzeiro that circulated from 1942 to 1967. See: http://www.bcb.gov.br/?MUSEU

  18. Richard P

    The Wikipedia article (which of course isn't gospel truth) says: "The first cruzeiro circulated between 1942 and 1967 and had the symbol Cr or ? … The ? sign was the only monetary symbol created specifically for Brazilian currencies … Due to economic crisis and severe inflation, a second cruzeiro was issued in 1967 and circulated until 1986. Initially (until 1970) it had the symbol NCr and was named cruzeiro novo (Portuguese for "new cruzeiro"). The name then reverted to cruzeiro and the symbol changed to Cr$ (1970–1986)."

  19. rn

    Maybe we can get a flame war going between wikipedia & banco central do brasil

  20. Richard P

    Thanks. I think the non-Wikipedia sources you've found must be correct, which means that the Cr$ on the Quiet-Riter is original.


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