I'm not actually going to typecast this time. A bit silly since this is my first typewriter-related post in Tbilisi. XD The typewriters shown here were seen in the Dry Bridge Market which is held every weekend in and around a park in downtown Tbilisi. It's pretty much like a flea market and I think the quality and assortment of items is more interesting in general than American flea markets, even the ones aimed at antiques and vintage items. I saw five typewriters on the two weekends I attended.
The first typewriter here is a Москва (Moskva or Moscow) with Georgian language keyboard. I am estimating this dates to the 1950s, and is the model that immediately precedes Richard Polt's Moskva seen here
. Unfortunately, it was in very non-working condition. I looked over it and found that typing wouldn't advance the carriage (even when applying pressure to the carriage by hand). That, coupled with its poor overall condition and language which I have no intention of ever learning, meant that I had to pass this over, no matter how interesting it may be.
One thing about the market here in Tbilisi is that you can get things much cheaper than the seller's asking price. He was asking 125 Lari for this, and the same for another typewriter which you will see below. This is equivalent of $74, £46, or 55€. More on this later.
Another machine I saw was quite a surprise to me. It's a Mignon with a Georgian keyboard-pointer-thing. I didn't ask how much the seller wanted, but I can imagine it was over 300 Lari. Prices at the market can sometimes seem very reasonable, but can be unreasonable, too. It has a cyrillic typing element, though, not Georgian, making it pretty impractical! (The alphabet has changed somewhat so even if it did have the original element, it wouldn't be useful for typing in modern Georgian.) It seems to be in decent cosmetic condition, and at least partly working. I couldn't test it out though as the seller insistently said "не трогать".
The language of the market seems to be predominantly Russian. Georgian and English are also spoken, but more foreigners attend than locals, it seems. Perhaps they have no desire for old Soviet relics. They are one of the only countries in the world that adores George W Bush...and has a main street named in his honor.
This was the other machine the seller of the Georgian-keyboard Moskva had. It's a later version of this typewriter, and of a different internal design. It looks similar to, but has some differences distinguishing it from, the later Moskva on Mr Polt's blog post
. The seller asked 125 Lari for it, and I countered with 60 Lari. I left with it in hand, having paid 70 Lari, or, $42. This machine, unlike the older model, is in fully working condition and has a Russian keyboard so I can use it! Obviously it is very dirty and will be needing a thorough cleaning, lubrication, and I will have to adjust some typebar springs. I'll be taking more about this typewriter after I get back to the United States.
I also saw two other typewriters. Both were late Olympia SFs in the boxy style with Russian keyboards. One seller was asking 100 Lari for a nice one, but I didn't attempt to bargain as I'd already found the one typewriter I wanted. It's not quite as perfect, or as old, as I'd hoped the typewriter I would find here would be, but it's mine and it's quite a nice machine.