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Posted: 4/26/2011 2:28:41 AM EDT
http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2011/04/last-typewriter-factory-in-the-world-shuts-its-doors/237838/

Last Typewriter Factory in the World Shuts Its Doors


Because I have a mother that loves to collect antiques –– and drag her
children with her to the nearest barn sale –– I've seen hundreds of
typewriters. (The Smith-Corona Galaxie DeLuxe, made famous among members
of my generation by Cameron Crowe's Almost Famous, will always
be a favorite.) It never occurred to me that I might not be able to find
one whenever the desire hit. Sure, there are thousands collecting dust
on thrift store shelves from here to Texarkana, but that will eventually
change. Now that Godrej and Boyce, the last company left in the world
still manufacturing the devices, has closed its doors, when typewriters
make their way to landfills, there won't be any new ones to replace
them.


.............................................


With only about 200 machines left –– and most of those in Arabic
languages –– Godrej and Boyce shut down its plant in Mumbai, India,
today. "Although typewriters became obsolete years ago in the west, they
were still common in India –– until recently," according to the Daily Mail,
which ran a special story this morning about the typewriters demise.
"Demand for the machines has sunk in the last ten years as consumers
switch to computers." Secretaries, rejoice.


.............................................


Godrej and Boyce has been around for about 60 years now, having opened
in a time when Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru celebrated the typewriter
as a "symbol of India's emerging independence and industrialisation."
For decades, the company was producing –– and selling –– tens of
thousands of units annually. It the early 1990s, the Daily Mail
points out, it was still able to sell 50,000 machines. In less than 20
years, though, that number dropped to fewer than 800. There's still a
market, albeit a (very) small one. And we're not enough to sustain an
industry.





End of an era, boys.






 
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 2:31:39 AM EDT


One of these days my mad Keypunch Operator skills will come back into vogue.

Learned them in Comp. Sci. class in college.


Link Posted: 4/26/2011 2:37:36 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/26/2011 2:38:48 AM EDT by sherrick13]
Great, more manufacturing jobs in India lost.





Pretty soon they are all going to be just computer programers or customer service reps.
How will the Indian economy survive?
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 2:54:18 AM EDT
Next thing you know they won't be making rotary telephones anymore.
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 2:55:16 AM EDT



Originally Posted By Top_Secret:


Next thing you know they won't be making rotary telephones anymore.


Or oil can spouts!







 
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 2:57:53 AM EDT
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 3:17:46 AM EDT



Originally Posted By Aimless:


My dad had his manual, nonelectric typewriter that he bought after wwII to use in college. I wish I still had it, must have gotten thrown out. Probably can't get ribbons for it anymore anyway.


Amazingly, you still can.



http://www.google.com/search?q=typewriter+ribbons&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a



And even dot matrix printer ribbons.  I still have several dot matrix printers around here, but I imagine the ribbons are all dried out.



http://www.google.com/search?q=typewriter+ribbons&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a#sclient=psy&hl=en&safe=off&client=firefox-a&hs=cAh&rls=org.mozilla:en-US%3Aofficial&biw=1024&bih=673&source=hp&q=dot+matrix+printer+ribbons&aq=f&aqi=g-c1&aql=&oq=&pbx=1&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.&fp=38378e84586d88e6
 
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 3:21:35 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Top_Secret:
Next thing you know they won't be making rotary telephones anymore.


Does any factory in the world still make slide rules?

LED calculators?

Vibrators for powering vacuum tube radios from 6 volts DC?

Dynamotors?

Selenium rectifiers?

Kerosene-powered refrigerators?

Link Posted: 4/26/2011 3:24:25 AM EDT
I guess investing my life savings in Consolidated Buggy Whips Incorporated last year was a bad move then?
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 3:25:48 AM EDT



Originally Posted By DV8:


I guess investing my life savings in Consolidated Buggy Whips Incorporated last year was a bad move then?


It's like green energy.  If you create the jobs, it creates the market.  

 
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 3:26:06 AM EDT
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 3:29:24 AM EDT



Originally Posted By Skibane:



Originally Posted By Top_Secret:

Next thing you know they won't be making rotary telephones anymore.




Does any factory in the world still make slide rules?



LED calculators?



Vibrators for powering vacuum tube radios from 6 volts DC?



Dynamotors?



Selenium rectifiers?



Kerosene-powered refrigerators?





http://www.thinkgeek.com/gadgets/tools/be12/?cpg=froogle



http://www.sliderules.info/trade/dealers.htm







 
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 3:40:33 AM EDT
I miss my ol' IBM Selectric
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 3:52:20 AM EDT
I just miss the sound of a typewriter for soothing background noise.

Link Posted: 4/26/2011 3:57:55 AM EDT



Originally Posted By AssaultRifler:


I miss my ol' IBM Selectric


I remember when a place I worked at in 1969 got a Dura electric typewriter console build around the IBM Selectric mechanics.  It had a paper tape punch and reader.  You could type up  form letters and save the paper tape loops in a drawer.  You could change the type balls.  Firing that thing up and standing back while it churned out work was awe inspiring.  It was excruciatingly high tech.







 
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 4:01:54 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Skibane:
Originally Posted By Top_Secret:
Next thing you know they won't be making rotary telephones anymore.


Does any factory in the world still make slide rules?



There is an app for that!!  I use it every now and then just to remember how!

http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/slide-rule/id288454455?mt=8

Link Posted: 4/26/2011 4:03:34 AM EDT
Originally Posted By AssaultRifler:
I miss my ol' IBM Selectric

I still have mine, and was glad of it when I had to file a small claims suit in VA a few years ago.  The county only had carbon copies of the filing forms, and demanded that all the information be typed into them.
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 4:07:52 AM EDT
What took them so long?
Link Posted: 4/26/2011 4:08:36 AM EDT
Smith-Corona!



I use it every once in while to print some odd sized piece of paper.




Like a check.



Link Posted: 4/27/2011 9:02:23 AM EDT
Don't Believe the Type! World's Last Typewriter Maker Alive and Well in NJ

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/04/26/worlds-typewriter-factory-shutting-doors/#ixzz1KkBscPU2
Link Posted: 4/27/2011 9:07:27 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/27/2011 9:08:49 AM EDT by NathanL]




Originally Posted By Skibane:



Originally Posted By Top_Secret:

Next thing you know they won't be making rotary telephones anymore.




Does any factory in the world still make slide rules?



LED calculators?



Vibrators for powering vacuum tube radios from 6 volts DC?



Dynamotors?



Selenium rectifiers?



Kerosene-powered refrigerators?







You can still buy slide rules brand new and kerosone and other alternative fueled refrigerators.



I see a slide rule in the field at least once a month on average.



I still use a typewriter to fill out the 1099 tax forms I send out every year. Still faster to pop the form in and start typing than install the new form software every year and print them out...takes 20 seconds a form.

Link Posted: 4/27/2011 9:12:55 AM EDT
I'm not convinced they still won't be made in small numbers in a niche market.  In the law office where I worked only a couple years ago, the typewriter still was used daily to fill out forms and FedEx labels, etc that hadn't been computerized yet.

Link Posted: 4/27/2011 9:17:35 AM EDT
Originally Posted By GiggleSmith:
Smith-Corona!

I use it every once in while to print some odd sized piece of paper.

Like a check.



my Smith Corona doesnt print on paper, it puts holes in them at 100 yards
Link Posted: 4/27/2011 9:21:39 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/27/2011 9:26:07 AM EDT by DriftPunch]
I have typed out 3 SBR Form 1s on this bad boy!

It's a Royal #10 circa 1928. This is not the final variation, because it still has a carriage shift instead of the more modern basket shift.  By the '10s-'20s manual typewriters had almost stopped evolving new useful user features.  Instead, engineers concentrated on size, effort, weight, price, simplification, etc... Kind of like guns, there isn't much new, just new materials and manufacturing methods.  You had to wait until electrics came about to see anything 'new'.

Many ones like this are hunted down and killed by 'folk artists' who take the round glass keys and discard the rest.

All I can say is that the girls in the typing pool must have given killer backrubs in that era...



I would love to have seen the reaction of the ATF examiner when he/she saw the font.

I should have it professionally cleaned and serviced before the guys that do that all die off...
Link Posted: 4/27/2011 9:28:13 AM EDT
I used dad's typewrite this past fall to fill out an application.  Damn thing was harder than hell to set up but once I did it wasn't a bad way to do things.  The result looked very professional.
Link Posted: 4/27/2011 9:37:08 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Skibane:
Originally Posted By Top_Secret:
Next thing you know they won't be making rotary telephones anymore.


Does any factory in the world still make slide rules?

LED calculators?

Vibrators for powering vacuum tube radios from 6 volts DC?

Dynamotors?

Selenium rectifiers?
Kerosene-powered refrigerators?




This I think is still made. They are popular for the little crystal radio kits you can buy. IIRC the resistance of the semiconductor junction is much lower than that of silicon.

Link Posted: 4/30/2011 8:52:18 PM EDT
Originally Posted By silascobb:
I'm not convinced they still won't be made in small numbers in a niche market.  In the law office where I worked only a couple years ago, the typewriter still was used daily to fill out forms and FedEx labels, etc that hadn't been computerized yet.



When there are no other typewritter options available, such offices will be forced to convert to something else.
Link Posted: 4/30/2011 8:57:02 PM EDT
Originally Posted By DriftPunch:
I have typed out 3 SBR Form 1s on this bad boy!

It's a Royal #10 circa 1928. This is not the final variation, because it still has a carriage shift instead of the more modern basket shift.  By the '10s-'20s manual typewriters had almost stopped evolving new useful user features.  Instead, engineers concentrated on size, effort, weight, price, simplification, etc... Kind of like guns, there isn't much new, just new materials and manufacturing methods.  You had to wait until electrics came about to see anything 'new'.

Many ones like this are hunted down and killed by 'folk artists' who take the round glass keys and discard the rest.

All I can say is that the girls in the typing pool must have given killer backrubs in that era...

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v477/DriftPunch/royal10_lowres.jpg

I would love to have seen the reaction of the ATF examiner when he/she saw the font.

I should have it professionally cleaned and serviced before the guys that do that all die off...


We have one similar to that in the closet. It still works well.
Link Posted: 4/30/2011 9:01:41 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/30/2011 9:17:39 PM EDT by Skibane]
Originally Posted By colklink:
Originally Posted By Skibane:
Selenium rectifiers?


This I think is still made. They are popular for the little crystal radio kits you can buy. IIRC the resistance of the semiconductor junction is much lower than that of silicon.


You're thinking of Germanium diodes.

BTW, according to Wikipedia, Selenium rectifiers are indeed still being manufactured for a few purposes. I did not know this when I originally posted.

Originally Posted By NathanL:
You can still buy slide rules brand new


Yes, but most of them are NOS, and were made by companies that no longer exist. A couple of exceptions: The Concise Company of Tokyo, and ThinkGeek.
Link Posted: 4/30/2011 9:02:47 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/30/2011 9:05:15 PM EDT by para_frame]
I have 5 manual typewriters, here is my 1951 Royal Quite DeLux. I love them, they are mechanical marvels.
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