Thursday, 21 November 2013

My Desktop Underwoods. (As of Nov 21st 2013)

A article about my favourite brand typewriter.

Underwood is my most favourable typewriter brand that i can think of. The fact that typewriter classic Underwoods have been build so brilliantly, is for me enough to announce Underwood my favourite. Beside that, i have become to own quite a few of them as well. My first ever purchased typewriter was a Underwood. So maybe that's the reason. I don't know. However, i do know that writing on these magnificent machines is a true joy and pleasent experience, especially because of the glass keys.

Here you see a group of some of my Underwood Typewriters. Not all of them as some of them are in either cases, or put away.

From Left to Right to centre...

- 1926 Underwood 5
- 1911 Underwood 5
- 1924 Underwood 3
- 1961 Underwood Typemaster
- 1947 Underwood 6(?)
- 1909 Underwood 5

Underwoods are wonderfull machine. The fact that it is just all metal makes it feel really sturdy and unbreakable. All the Underwood's i received were in a state to be recovered. The '11 No.5 was jammed solid when i got it, the carriage hanging off the side margin. However, tampering with it, brought it back into action. Bent striker bars were also a issue, although not too bad, and that's fixed too now, with just the 8 sagging slightly being a indication of a problem that has ever existed.

The No.3 was also a bit jammed when i got it but the way these machines are build, they just wake up from a very long sleep and are ready to continue to work their way into fame, which is where they are now, as my No.3 has been photographed for both the Newspaper article from i think Sept. 1st 2012, and then it was photographed for a photo-exhibition in the cities art gallery, which was about collecting on which i signed up on.

That tells you something definitly. However, finding a Underwood is not that difficult. By the mid 30's when the No.5 was discontinued, millions were produced, and therefor, still around. However, finding them in the condition that i have is definitly a challenge, especially if you have no experience cleaning a typewriter. I have though...and that has brought out incredible beauty.

A dutch 1946 Underwood Universal Portable. It was battered and not working when i received it, however, with lots of patience and some knowledge based on cleaning typewriters, it is in magnificent shape right now, working wonderfully.

Glass keys is also a great help in typing. However, Underwood wasn't the only typewriter manufacturer at that time that attempted that. Royal and Remington were also a brand that enjoyed following that tactic. However, Remington used fillings for the keys instead of glass keys.

The feeling is already different, and i am really fond of the feeling of glass keys. I advise anybody interested in buying a typewriter, to keep at least on eye out for a machine that has that.

I have a lot of Underwoods with glass keys, or without, and in both cases, they are wonderfull machines to use.

Above are some pictures of some different Underwoods i own. Here is what the pictures show.

Picture #1: 

*1924 Underwood No.3
*1925 Underwood No.3
*1922 Underwood No.3

Picture #2:

*1947 Underwood No.6(?)

Picture #3:

*36/37(?) Underwood Champion

Picture #4:

*1926 Underwood No.5
*1911 Underwood No.5
*1909 Underwood No.5

Picture #5:

*Underwood Typewriter Paperweight

Picture #6:

*1961 Underwood Type-Master

Picture #7:

*Keys of a '11 No.5

Picture #8:

*Carriage Ruler of a '24 No.3


  1. Well welcome... I have a number of Underwood's. It was what my father owned and the first typewriter I ever typed on. In my mind they set the standard and typing does not feel right unless I can return to a Underwood every now and then.

    1. I absolutely agree. Underwood's have something special, that not one other brand has managed to copy. Even Royal hasn't. The satisfying feeling you get after finishing a page on a Underwood, also seems to be more intense for me for some reason, don't ask me why. :)

  2. Underwoods are indeed fine machines, both the big ones and the portables.

    1. Yes, indeed. Throughout the first half the 20th century, the machines that were build by Underwood back then, are magnificent.