how does it work ?

Basically the typewriter are differentiated by their way of working.

This differention is to be made by the following topics:

1. the kind of the typeholder

2. the printing position of the typeholder at the platen

3. the choosing of the letter ( e.g. keyboard or index )

Frontstroke typelever with standard keyboard

The most known construction is that one invented by Franz Xaver Wagner called the Underwood. It uses that so-called front stroke system and the standard keyboard.
The front stroke system means that the type, which is soldered at the end of a typelever reaches the front of the platen:

By using this function- principle the immediate visibility of the written letter is possible.

Typewriter with front stroke typelever and standard keyboard,
Merz No.1

Downstroke typewriter with standard keyboard

To view the written words, the platen needs to be clapped upwards, because the printing position is downside the platen:

The upstroke principle is the second common way of printing, it was usual from the first invented typewriter until the first visible writing typewriter was invented.

Typewriter with downstroke typelever and standard keyboard,
Remington No.7

Downstroke typelever and double keyboard

At these typewriters the typelevers are assembled erectedly in front of the platen. By pressing down a key the typelever decents towards the platen:

By using this principle the ability of visible writing was only nearly reached, because the typelevers partially covered the sight to the already written words.

Typewriter with dowenstroke typelever and standard keyboard,
Bar- Lock No. 6

Downstroke Typewriter with typewheel and index

By pressing down the pointer at the letterscale the typewheel hits the platen from above:

At this typewriter the printing position is not covered by any ribbon. Because of this the full visibility of the written words is realized.
The inking is done by a paint roll, which rolls itself at the typewheel.

Downstroke Typewriter with letterwheel and index,

Frontstroke typewriter with type rod and double shifted three-rowed universal keyboard

By pressing a key the type rod moves vertically towards the platen:

The most important reason of this construction is the flat- built type of the writing machine.
To guarantee the visibility of the written letter the ribbon moves away from the platen a few millimeters after a letter is printed.

Frontstroke typewriter with type rod and universal keyboard,
Adler Nr. 7

Downstroke typewriter with typelever and universal keyboard

The way of the type from the ink pad to the platen can be compared with the way of a jumping grashopper:

Because of this unique construction this typewriter is a very good object of studies.

Downstroke typewriter with typelever and universal keyboard,
Williams No. 1

back to mainpage