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Guess the Mystery Machine

Started by Dave Hughes, August 22, 2017, 03:53:00 PM

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Dave Hughes

Can you guess what this mystery machine is?

I think I've got a pretty good idea what it is, photographed in Argentina:



As usual idle speculation and educated guesses welcome!
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Mechanic

It appears to be a device for printing or stamping the character that the vertical rod is pointing at. I see a reel probably for a ribbon. If it is a typewriter it would be a slow process. The fact that it is from Argentina, could lead one to believe it is a device to identify cattle.
George Finn (Mechanic)
Gold Coast
Queensland
AUSTRALIA

Dave Hughes

You've got me thinking now George, I thoughtI knew what it was, but now I'm not so sure!

Anyway, here's a picture from a different angle.

Any guesses welcome!



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Mechanic

Could this be the machine invented by Charles T More which was demonstrated to James Clephane that was designed to type on a paper ribbon using lithographic ink. Then transferred to stone. as described on page 51 in Frank Romano's  book The History Of The Linotype Company?
George Finn (Mechanic)
Gold Coast
Queensland
AUSTRALIA

Dave Hughes

Well, this is embarrassing!

I found this picture on Ruben Brizuela's Flickr photo feed, and assumed that it was some kind of early incarnation of a golfball-style typewriter. Having seen some of the replies I'm now doubting this.

Ruben, you may remember, supplied the excellent video of his Linotype Model 1 running. His native language is Spanish, and communication takes place with the help of Google translate.

I am currently taking a short holiday and making this post from the poolside. I shall send Ruben an email in Google Spanish on my return to try and solve the mystery.

In the meantime, we'll just have to keep guessing!
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Dave Hughes

Ruben has now got back to me on this.

The item is a Mignon mechanical index typewriter for personal use Model 4 (circa 1924).

The method of typing is described as follows in "Mechanik und kurze Geschichte der Schreibmaschine" by Karl Czerny: "With the left hand one grasps the handle of the indicator needle (m), which can easily be turned in every direction, and brings the tip of the needle, at the index (a), to the letter which is to be written. The type cylinder (g) is thereby turned and possibly pushed forward, until the letter reaches the point of impression. When the printing key (c) is depressed, the type cylinder descends, and by striking through the ribbon, prints the letter." The key (b) served as the space key.



Anyone who wants to find out more should take a look here:
http://site.xavier.edu/polt/typewriters/mignon.html

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