16 Dec 2014

Big Brothers

1965 Montgomery-Ward Signature 510 E5746834










1978 Kmart 300 Deluxe 12 C6989659










Sent from my new Montgomery-Ward Signature 510 and Kmart 300 Deluxe 12

11 comments:

  1. Congratulations on getting 2 brothers. I've had the Signature 510 on my wish list ever since reading about it a few years ago. The 510 looks almost like my Accord 10 rebraded Ward's escort 550.

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    1. They are odd typewriters, and worth trying out.

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  2. Although typewriters born after the mid- to early-60's don't elicit my love (my loss, of course) I did enjoy reading these reviews. Especially your comparison of the body design of Signature 510 to a refrigerator, and the K-Mart 300 to a video game console. I also like your descriptions of typewriter touch. Much like comparative descriptions of wines, difficult to put into words, but you do a good job with something so important. In considering which of my machines to fire up for my latest epistle, it is not so much the body style, manufacturer's history, or the clever design of some subsystem that triggers the choice, as it is the subconscious memory of the feel of the typing action.

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    1. With how hard it is to put typewriter touch into words, I should create a bank of sliding scales to gauge each individual attribute… it would look like an equalizer. But those sorts of ratings are probably harder to place than just to find some words to describe it. So, maybe not.

      The typing action is always the most important. Then the carriage feel. Then everything else.

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  3. I have to admit that even though I love the styling and features of my 511D, I don't seem to type on it much, even after getting most of the shipping damage fixed. Just can't seem to fall in love with the action despite finding no particular flaws in it.

    After finding a JP-5, I agree that the actions on these later medium-portable Brothers are a distinct improvement over the earlier JP-3. Just imagine how much we'd like them if they were metal-shelled? :D

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    1. I feel the same way about all the older Brothers. I have to wonder if it has something to do with being fresh, new designs by a company inexperienced in designing them, coupled with the fact they were created to be assembled by machines instead of people. I'd choose a hand-assembled Robotron over a Brother any day because I find the bond between man and machine is hard to create with a Japanese typewriter, even if they have no particular flaws.

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  4. Gee, the Signature 510 looks familiar. Used to have one myself. I do prefer the styling of the 510, although I never warmed up to it as a typer - the color was the selling point. As for the JP-5, it looks cheap and plasticy to me. Having lived through the era, I didn't like most of the design and stylings of the 70's or 80's. I was a carpenter in that era, and many of the houses and apartments built in that era were cheap, and poorly designed. After just a few years, I had to go and fix them - they were crap!!
    I do though always appreciate your observations, and ........ enjoy the 510!

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  5. I agree with your observations about the JP-3. I've tried a few and have been disappointed in the resistance or sluggishness, the heaviness, of the action. They do work better when perfectly clean, but there are limitations in the design. Good to know that the JP-7 is an improvement.

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  6. It's true the later Brother portables type better, whereas the older portables look better, at least that's my experience with a 1974 Brother Deluxe 700T and a 1969 Brother De Luxe.

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  7. Hi, I've seen some of these machines on ebay, so are you selling some of them? if yes, i'm interested in this Brother Signature? Thank you.

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    1. No, I'm not selling either of these.

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