Sunday, April 19, 2015

Underwood No. 4: Wedding Present/Project

The Royal Litton 470 isn't my only repair project, just the one that needs the most work. Before I came back to Missouri with my new bride, a friend surprised me with a belated wedding present.

One more state to add to my sticker collection!

This serial number means it's a 1926 machine, the oldest typer of the bunch!

As you can see, it's not in horrible shape. I've seen worse. Much much worse. The keys move freely. The backspace key advances the carriage. The ribbon spools and vibrator seem to work. Some rubber parts will have to be replaced and there's plenty of rust to remove (as always). Draw band snapped. Bell not always ringing.

You know, the usual stuff that goes wrong. Still, it's great that most of the labels survived, especially on the paper tray.

It'll be making a trip to Vern's shop sometime in the near future. I'll try to swing it on one of my off days so I can see how the team works. Maybe they'll even let me help. Best way to learn is under the supervision of someone who knows what the heck they're doing.

Sorry for the late post. Just got over a bout of seasonal allergies and a nasty virus.

Power to the pen.


  1. That Underwood looks like it'll clean up real nicely with a little work. Nice find, 4s are much less common than 5s. The drawband is an easy fix (but time consuming), the bell probably just needs a little cleaning around the striker's joints before it'll work consistently. You might not even need to send it in if you can replace the drawband.

    1. You may be right, but after my disastrous attempt at repairing the Skyriter, I want a professional helping me on this one. Besides, one of the feed rollers is missing along with most of the feet and the platen needs a good scrubbing. Is it true that fishing line can serve as a draw band?

  2. Ah, the International Typewriter Exchange. I have one of their decals on my Corona 3. And they are still in business! (I think; their website is down at the moment, though.)

    Try a flat shoelace as a drawband for a big machine like this.