Thursday, 20 October 2016

Groma Kolibri


18 comments:

  1. It was certainly worth £41 for the typewriter and the stories. Enjoy!

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    1. I suppose strictly speaking it was £41 plus a tank of petrol!

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  2. What a lovely written piece. I was right there with you on your typewriter odyssey. And what a beautiful typewriter you rescued. Some machines earn their keep just by being there to stare at!

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    1. Thanks David. If only I'd stop and proof read. So many missing words and typos.

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  3. A beauty and seen the prices asked for the Kolibri these days online, a total bargain!

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    1. Well, the photos originally posted weren't very good. It was one of those ebay listings where you have to make a short leap of faith that the typewriter would be OK 'in the flesh'.

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    1. Me too Joshua. I'd been hoping for a steely silver one in a leather travel case but these fancy colours are growing on me.

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  5. You're so right. It's not just the typewriter, but the people and history behind the typewriter. Still, on its own that's a very NICE typewriter. :)

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    1. It is. And it is nice to share pictures and the story too.

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  6. Congratulations on the fine typewriter. It is always nice to know the history and personal connections of a typewriter. To me the Kolibri is in a class of its own. One day I hope to add on to my collection.

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    1. Well, there can't be too many left on my imaginary list. But who knows? The list can always be updated.

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  7. Just like my one, except you paid considerably less for yours, and mine has that dreaded scratch across the left side of the ribbon cover where the return lever scratched it. When it was owned by somebody else.
    I can't say I've used my one much, but it's certainly a nice enough machine to use. And so damn slim!
    I'd love to get the platen recovered at some point, just to soften up the typing action a little.
    Congrats on a classic machine, Rob.

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    1. There's a hint of a scratch on mine. I forgot to mention that the carriage has no lock! I think I still prefer my Lettera 32 to type on but this one's a close second in the ultra portable field.

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  8. Excellent acquisition! A day like that plus a QWERTY Kolibri is certainly worth 41 arbitrarily valued bits of paper. (:

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    1. Ah, bits of paper worth £1. That takes me back. We've been £1 coins only since 1984. As it was, I paid by PayPal...

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  9. The typewriters are nice, but the stories are the best part. Almost every one of the typewriters I've purchased from individuals has a story the owner WANTED me to know. The Harris Visible from a 1920s Arizona Ranch. The Oliver #3 that was in the family for 80+ years. The 1940s Royal QDL used by a local 90 year old author that she carried with her on a 2 year trip around the world 70 years ago (I spent a delightful 2 hours on her front porch in the fading afternoon sun listening to the stories and being quietly vetted to make sure I would be a suitable owner for the typewriter.) There are others. The typewriters were a part of people's families and people's lives, and for me the stories have become part of each machine.

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    1. THAT'S the Oliver 3 I want. I agree about the stories. They remind me typewriter parallels of of Annie Proulx's Accordion Crimes. I do try to pick up personally if I can - which explains why it can take so long to get a typewriter you want which is in reasonable traveling distance - but I have quite a few which were shipped from sellers using ebay and the only clues are in faded carbons and the occasional half-typed letter left in the case. Others can be from people who do house clearances (estate sales) where the link with the machine and its former owners is cut short. But still there are clues. An Optima Elite with red hairs stuck to the oil inside. The wear marks by the space bar, the smell of old tobacco (it isn't nicotine - it is the tar!) or even the clumsy accretions of TippEx all over the platen and the card guides! They are all part of the story the machine tells for itself.

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