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Smith-Corona Vantage typewriter

by | Jun 11, 2021 | Olivetti, Smith-Corona | 10 comments

The ribbon is found under a cover that swings up and forward.

The top part of the plastic shell is a bit tricky to get off.
The way the mechanism works is less than obvious.

A couple of months ago I bought this Lexikon 82 on eBay and was frustrated to discover that several characters just wouldn’t print. I have no idea what to do about that, except clean the mechanism (which did nothing). So this is now a parts machine. 
The Lexikon 82 is simpler than the Vantage in a few ways: the Vantage includes two plastic paper guides, a swinging cover for the ribbon (shown above), and a half-spacer.

When I was a kid, I got a book of Milton Glaser posters, and I was fascinated by his posters for this machine, which celebrate the sheer coolness of the interchangeable typing ball. 

And yes, I still think it’s cool!
Let’s take a look:
Too quick for you? OK, let’s slow it down:
You’ve got to admit it’s pretty neat.
PS: Love this ad for the Lexikon 82, featuring journalist and novelist Jimmy Breslin writing a letter to “Dear Norman [Mailer].” Thanks to The Philosophy Teacher for the tip on the video!

10 Comments

  1. McTaggart

    Richard, was the Olivetti 82 cartridges hard to find?

    Reply
  2. Bill M

    First thing I noticed was the Olivetti key tops (I had a Praxis 48). Nice looking typewriter. I see the balls in thrift shops at times. I've never seen one of the typewriters.

    Reply
  3. Ted

    My understanding is that Smith-Corona purchased the Glasgow plant from Olivetti and somehow also got the rights to the design to produce the Vantage at the end of the 70's. Part of the ol' typewriter manufacturer shuffle, when SCM was feeling left behind with no ball element machines in their lineup. (:

    Reply
  4. Richard P

    Yes. The best way to find one is to buy an Olivetti 82 and see if one is installed!

    Reply
  5. Richard P

    Ah, interesting, thanks. I haven't found many ads for the Vantage, but I did see one from 1980, which fits what you say.

    Reply
  6. Unknown

    I have one if these as well. Awaiting attention. I want to compare it to the Brother Correctoball

    Reply
  7. Anonymous

    Three years late to the party. I wish I found this article before I purchased my Lexikon 83DL – I was drawn to that late 70s shape. The ink is very light and I did something to the typeball when using one of the repeatable characters. https://typewriterdatabase.com/197x-olivetti-lexikon-83-dl.22362.typewriter – Best I can hope for is to find it a good home for someone who can make it work.

    Reply
  8. Richard P

    They seem to be fussy machines. Live and learn!

    Reply

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