Still more little-known typewriters (S)

by | Sep 3, 2018 | obscure | 8 comments

If you look closely at this rare Sampo from Sweden, you’ll see that it’s even rarer: it has a Cyrillic type cylinder.

My only evidence for the existence of the Samtico Typewriter is this illustration from a mass mailing in Italian prepared by Timing, Burgess & Co. of London, manufacturers of the Samtico. It looks like it may have been a printing device rather than a typewriter: that is, you would pick up one of the alphabetically arranged types by a little handle and press it into place on the paper. But I’m just guessing. I ran across this document online in 2003, and have never heard of the Samtico again.

In this month’s HBw-Aktuell, Lutz Rolf shows off his Saxonia. It may be a name variant of the astoundingly named Usapax-Visityp, the predecessor to the Glashütte.

This index typewriter is a clever Selbstbau, German for a “homemade” device.

This is a Senator, serial number #236. Looks ordinary, but check out how you can raise the carriage.

This prototype by Fred Sholes is in the Milwaukee Public Museum collection.

As is this creation by Louis Sholes.

This machine is also in my files as a Louis Sholes construction.

The Shortwriter is an appealing stenotype.

I could do a whole post about the Italian SIM machines. They are pretty well known, but they come in a million name variants; here are just a few of the more exotic.

(So if anyone asks you whether there was ever a Woodstock portable, the answer is yes.)

This ad for the formerly unheard-of Slocum typewriter was unearthed by Mike Brown several years ago and published in his book on the Williams typewriter. Even in this blurry photocopy, it looks very appealing.

The Soblik was a pneumatic typewriter. I very much want one!

But I want a Sphinx even more.

If I can’t get the typewriter above, I’ll settle for this cryptographic Sphinx based on a Helios.

The Star is the last gasp of the Simplex.

The Sténodactyle Lafaurie was a complex and intriguing stenotype, to judge from this poster.

This Sténophile is another French stenotype.

This Stickney was in the Onondaga collection.

Like the Usapax-Visityp, the Stolzenberg-Fortuna is another German machine with an impressive dual moniker.


  1. Ted

    Finally, your Unicorn Sphinx! :D

  2. Bill M

    Another collection of great typewriters.

  3. Mark

    If I could have one of the machines pictured in this post I think it'd be the Edelweiss. What a pleasant name for a machine!

  4. Mark

    Oh, you can't ruin the song for me, I never cared for it! I'm not a Sound of Music fan at all, just a student of the German language who loves the word and the stories behind it :) That is certainly a creepy rendition you posted!

  5. John Cooper

    That song was creepy before creepy was cool. :)

  6. RobertG

    Was 'researching' (i.e. browsing) the SIM Synela, brought me here – nice to see they used more names with the same closed-lidded housing style, also on the Balilla.
    The SIM-variants are probably mostly store-brands; no sane company would dilute with so many brands for so many target-audiences, would they :)


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