Barrett Manor

Julie Barrett is a freelance writer and photographer based in Plano, TX.

Monday Mumblings does not have a screw loose

Fresh (almost) daily from Julie Barrett

I know I'm in trouble when disassembly instructions start by saying something along the lines of: "remove all the screws, just remember where they go. We'll detail all the parts as you put the beast back together. Trust us on this."

The "beast" in question is the 1911 Underwood Standard No. 3 typewriter. Paul replaced the cord that connects the mainspring to the carriage, but the carriage refused to advance when a key or the space bar was pressed.That turned out to be an easy fix. I just had to put the bar with the centering scale back in place on the front. The bar holds part of the carriage assembly in place.

It typed!

Then I decided that before I replaced the ribbon I'd do some more cleaning and de-gunking. Ran out and bought a truckload of WD-40 and a can of aluminum polish and rust remover. I must say the machine looks a lot better. I put it back together, loaded the ribbon, and discovered that it types pretty well. The only problem is that the carriage doesn't shift correctly for capital letters. They're all positioned above the lower-case letters. So, it was off to find help on the interwebs. After much searching I actually found a manual for rebuilding and repair of Underwood Standard typewriters.

I finally found where I need to adjust, but in order to do that, I have to remove the carriage, something which isn't immediately obvious. I think I finally found the pair of screws to remove to start the process, but they were rusted in solid. So I sprayed on another coat of WD-40 every time I walked by the machine this morning, and finally, the screws seem to show some movement. They've not loose, yet. (Hence the title of the blog entry.)

Once I get the carriage out, I'm going to take a look and see how difficult it will be to pull the rest of the machine apart. The carriage seems to be the most complex piece of equipment, so if I can pull that apart and put it back together, surely I can pull the rest apart. (I know: Don't call you Shirley.) I have the kitchen table available this week, and with a Friday morning deadline for getting this thing back together, I might just take a shot.

The kitchen table is open for other uses because Paul has left us - on business. He's off on a training course, with a return date of Friday. Hence the deadline, so I can have the kitchen table clean again. Where will I eat? We ate in front of the telly last night, and may do so for a couple more nights. Lunches are at the desk, as per usual. (It's sad that I can't go a few steps down the hall to eat at the table like a proper person.) Anyway, so now I have the space to pull this thing apart and a deadline for getting it all back together. Think I can do it? We'll see.

Time to go give the screws another twist and then another shot of WD-40. Maybe I'll at least get the carriage apart before the day is over.

Tags: Life

Filed under: Life            
10/18/2010 1:03:02 PM
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