Cambridge Typewriter Co., Inc.
Cambridge Typewriter is the place to go in Massachusetts and New England for any of your typewriting needs. They do everything from sales to repairs for new and old typewriters.
Between their experience and passion they are guaranteed to give you the best experience you can ask for!
The first typewriter patent was issued on January 7, 1714. We had to wait until 1956 for correction fluid to be invented.
Henry Mill was issued a patent for something typewriter-ish in 1714. It may have been more in his head than on his desk. Back then, no actual prototype was required to accompany a patent application. He envisioned, rather than built, a device "for the impressing or transcribing of letters singly or progressively one after another, whereby all writings whatsoever may be engrossed on paper or parchment so near and exact as not to be distinguished from print ... the impression being deeper and more lasting than any other writing, and not to be erased or counterfeited without manifest discovery."
Not to be erased, that is, until 1956 when secretary Bette Nesmith Graham (mother of Monkee Mike Nesmith) whipped up batches of correction fluid subsequently branded as Liquid Paper in her kitchen blender.
Our deepest gratitude to both inventors.
We are all about typewriters - Vintage and Modern-Repairs and Sales Owned and operated by Tom Furrier.
We offer typewriter repair services, selling of various unique typewriters , supplies, vintage typewriter ads, etc.
So sorry we have to cancel. We can’t type out in the rain and there’s no room in the shop. A handful of customers and friends are coming from out of state and I don’t want them driving down for nothing. We will try again in the spring. Thanks for understanding.
We’re happy to host our first Type-Out in three years on Oct. 7! Hope everyone can come. Bring the kids, your friends and your favorite typer.
Here’s something different but cool. It combines my love of music with the typewriter. My daughter found this new release from Record Store Day 2022 and gave it to me for Father’s Day. Janis Joplin was 19 years old and still in her folk/blues stage and two years away from joining Big Brother and the Holding Company. Jorma Kaukonen was 23 years old and a few years away from a notable music career playing with Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna. The two of them were rehearsing some songs they were going to play together at a benefit concert at a small local club. Jorma’s wife Margarite, was also in the kitchen typing a letter on her typewriter while Janis and Jorma practiced a handful of songs. First of all, this is a pleasure to hear Janis singing before she got famous. And secondly, it’s a hoot to hear the typewriter clacking away in the background. I had fun looking up the history of this collaboration and the myth behind the existence of this tape which had been lost for fifty years. Nobody knows what kind of typewriter was being used in the recording. &jormakaukonen
One of the great joys of repairing typewriters is taking a customer’s rust bucket and returning a fully functional, beautiful machine to them. And then seeing how excited they are! Some people can’t believe that this is the same typewriter they brought in. It never gets old!!
A few weeks ago a customer came into the shop and brought in this 3-D Stereoscopic viewer from 1913. It is coin operated with pennies to use the machine. Sharon said a bunch of pennies had jammed inside the machine and she couldn’t get at them so the machine wouldn’t work. People bring in all kinds of odd machines and things to see if I can fix them. Many times I can’t because I don’t know anything about it like old adding machines or Braille writers or old tube radios from the 40’s. This seemed doable so I said I’d spend a few minutes on it. Twenty minutes later I I pulled it apart and could pull a bunch of pennies out. I’m glad I was able to get it going again and Sharon was grateful. A week later she sent me a nice thank you note and a great coaster with a picture of an Underwood keyboard on it. Sharon is a photographer and has a studio in the SoWa art galleries of the South End in Boston. Check her out at 📸
I normally don’t collect these extra long carriage machines because I don’t have the room, but I couldn’t let these two go to waste. I know artists are looking for these to do typewriter art or to incorporate typewriter type into their mixed-media art projects. First is a 1936 Underwood No. 6 with a 20 inch carriage. This is a beast of a machine. Second is a 1948 Royal KMM with an 18 inch carriage. Both machines are in the rough right now. They need to be cleaned and repaired and will be like new again. I will recondition either one on request if anyone is interested. Please call the shop or DM me.
I just finished cleaning this customer repair today. It’s a Re*****on 10 Standard, serial # 16,629, meaning it was manufactured in 1908. That would mean it’s a first year model, making it extra cool. I still need to do a few repairs on it. The ribbon vi****or is missing and the spring inside the carriage return arm is broken. What I like best about this machine is the Re*****on decal on the backplate. Something about the “Your Typewriter Repairmen” tag line just knocks me out. Never seen this decal before and wanted to share it.
We got a wonderful surprise in the mail today! FedEx dropped off a big box that was obviously a typewriter. Couldn’t figure out who from Santa Monica, California was sending me a repair. I curiously opened up the box to find an Olympia SM-4 from Tom Hanks himself! The typewriter is in the rough and needs to be reconditioned but he signed the top cover and included a signed letter explaining why he was sending me this machine. A golf bag towel with the PlayTone logo was also included. I’m very happy Tom included us in his plan to whittle down his typewriter inventory. I’ll have fun restoring this beauty back to its former glory and figure out what I’m going to do with it. What a wonderful surprise. Thank you Tom Hanks!!!
I just acquired this 1958 Olympia SM-3 portable. I love it when they come with a lot of cool stuff. I always pass everything along to the next owner as well as any story or history of the machine. This machine had the original instruction manual with the salesman’s business card stapled to it, the factory test sheet, a post card of the SM-3 with stats on the backside, a hand written letter from the new owner to be, a pristine dust cover with the shop info on it and finally, a key chain/good luck charm with dealer name and info on one side and a cute, folksy saying on the other side. This machine sold to the first person I showed it to.
Here’s a real beauty you don’t see very often. This is a 1951 Smith Corona Silent . Obviously gold plated completely and even has a turbo platen on it. It’s a customer repair and has been sitting in a basement for five years. It was starting to grow mildew on the keycaps. Mostly it didn’t work, the carriage would skip four or five spaces at a time when you hit any key or space bar. This machine came from a dealer in the New York City area about ten years ago. These gold plated or chromed machines are hard to photograph because they are so reflective.
I always get a kick out of the way people name their typewriters. It’s a nice way to help personalize your machine. I bought this 1958 Smith Corona Secretarial, serial -11 from a very nice lady . She said the typewriters name is Barry and he’s been her buddy since high school. Barry has been very well cared for and still has his original instruction book. At the end of many SCM instruction books they usually publish the latest lineup of their current products which I’ve included. For those of us who are used to typing strictly on portable machines, what a treat to type on a big standard. It’s so easy to press the keys. You only have to hit them half as hard as a portable machine. Also, the print quality is usually much better because of the larger diameter platen and more torque generated on each keystroke.
This is a 1928 L.C. Smith No.8. First thing you’ll notice is the strange keyboard layout. I have no idea what this is. Nobody I know has any idea what this keyboard is for. If anyone has any clue, please help us out. It’s a customer repair and he would like to have some info about it.
I just picked up this 1956 Royal HHP standard in this beautiful shiny blue. Royal calls this Horizon Blue smooth. I had no idea that Royal made the HH model in seven different colors. All I have ever seen is the dark brown with green key caps. It’s kind of cool that after 43 years of fixing these machines I’m still learning something new just about every day!
Here’s a beautiful 1937 Re*****on 5 with a teaching colored keyboard. I just love the color of this one. This is a customer repair that Matt just finished. It was pretty dirty and we had to replace the four front feed rollers on it. They were flat as a pancake probably from sitting in a closet for several decades.
Who wants to look at some Christmas-y machines?! The beautiful red 1934 Corona Special belongs to a regular customer who happened to pick it up today. It needed a good cleaning, new front feed roller and drawband. Next is a 1932 Continental Portable with an amazing color. This really looks like the original factory finish. The marbled shading effect is awesome. It has an authentic German keyboard. I’ve been sitting on this one for a year and sold it two days ago for a Christmas present. Happy holidays! ❤️💚🎄
I love machines with dealer stickers on them. They show us part of the history of these gorgeous typewriters that we love so much. These repair shops aren’t around anymore but our typewriters came from them and were lovingly cleaned and repaired there.
Support your local small businesses. This Saturday is Small Business Saturday and we will be open from 9am-1pm with a shop full of machines ready to find homes! The holiday rush is already in full swing, so don’t miss out on the good stuff!
We are closed Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving. Hope you all have a great turkey day!
Looks like someone steampunked this 1916 Underwood No. 3. They made a base out of old pipe and bolted the typewriter to it. Then added a light fixture behind the machine and an antique style light bulb, controlled by a on/off dimmer switch. It’s pretty cool and belongs to one of my favorite customers who has a rather large typewriter collection. It was in the shop for cleaning and repairs and a new platen. It’s always great to see interesting machines!
This Royal KMM came into the shop for a cleaning and repair a few weeks ago. It had belonged to John Ashbury (1927-2017), considered the most influential American poet of his time. He wrote many successful collections, including his masterpiece book, Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror (1975). This won the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and the National Book Critics Circle Award, a rare triple crown in the literary world. His KMM that he wrote with was gifted to Harvard University where it resides in one of their main libraries. They brought me the machine to recondition so it could be used at an event where people could type on his typewriter. I was very excited to work on this machine. While typing on this typewriter you can’t help but think about all the great things that were composed on it.
I just love this 1949 Royal Quiet de Luxe, the Henry Dreyfuss Edition. It is a caps only Italic typeface, very similar to the early Signet model. I’ve enjoyed typing on it and the Italic type looks great on the page. It is weird not having the two shift keys. I keep reaching for them. I could very easily add this to my collection but I have enough and can resist the temptation.
Taking a well deserved family vacation this upcoming week. The shop will be closed 8/29-9/6. Thank you and happy Labor Day!
This beautiful Royal KHM is a customer repair. It came in very dirty and sticky. But mainly the escapement mechanism was totally jammed up and the carriage was not spacing over at all. I usually suspect corrosion or rust. Wrong, it was a Sunoco Millennium Series Coin which was deeply jammed into the escapement. Took five minutes to remove it and the machine worked great. The owner of the machine said he thinks his son put the coin in the typewriter. You just never know what you’ll find in a typewriter.
So sad to hear of Mr. McCullough’s passing. We have lost one of the best ever. I will treasure his visits, our conversations and his friendship. He will be greatly missed. We send our sincere condolences to his family and loved ones.
Check out this beautiful Facit typewriter, the pride of Sweden. This is a 1967 TP2 portable, serial #556147. Look at the last picture to see what makes this one unique. They misspelled their name - FACTT. I can see how that could have slipped passed quality control, if indeed that is what happened. Facit typewriters are of good quality and easy to type on. I have many customers who really like them.
Here is a beautiful 1943 Imperial Good Companion portable. A customer from New Mexico mailed it to me a while ago to do extensive repairs on. Thankfully, I had the exact same model in my graveyard so I could replace a bunch of parts on it. I fussed with this for many months and it came out great. It is so smooth and light to type on now. I like the cork platen on it, it feels good to type on. I imagine they used cork at that time because the British needed rubber for war time production. The dealer sticker on the front puts this beauty in Hawaii at some point in the 50’s or 60’s. I always appreciate how the British like their fractions, seeing how there are four fraction keys on this model.
I don’t think I’ve ever come across a Sears Tower made by Underwood before. Most of the Tower typewriters I see are made by Smith Corona. This Tower Tabulator model was originally listed in the 1951 Sears & Roebuck Fall Catalog for $82.50. Many of you will recognize that this machine looks exactly like a Underwood Universal portable. They made this model for two years. Smith Corona made Tower machines for Sears for many years. Re*****on and Olivetti also made typewriters for Sears.
Is the shift mechanism on your typewriter all jammed up? Well, it’s probably a battleship wedged in the thingamajig!! We find all kinds of interesting things in machines that cause all kinds of problems.
I haven’t seen one of these in a long time. It’s a 1969 Royal Sw***er portable manual typewriter with a AM transistor radio built into the top carrying case lid. It was a promotional sales gimmick back in the late 60’s. I would imagine Royal sold a lot of these machines because of it.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day! The Royal P’s in crazy colors keep coming in. These two are customer repairs. This lovely shade of green just glows. I especially like the lavender or plum color. Not sure what to call this color. Hope everyone has a great day!!!
Last May I got a letter from Tom Hanks and just got around to framing it now. It’s hanging in my dining room but in a few months I’ll take it into work and put it up for my customers to see. Customers ask all the time if Tom Hanks has been in the shop, but now I can say, “No, but he did write me a letter.”
I just bought these four Royal “P” portables from a customer who was thinning out his collection. A few of these are stunning. All are from 1929 although one might be from 1930. My customer said Royal called the color of the first machine orchid. I don’t think I’ve ever seen it before. I had actually reconditioned all of these for my customer maybe seven or eight years ago. Glad to have them back and maybe go to some of my regular customers.
Today I was able to visit Portsmouth Typewriter which is in RiverRun Bookstore, which is in the middle of historic downtown Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The owner, Tom, also works for the bookstore. He said he’s been getting in more repairs during the pandemic and book sales have been up 30%. He also said he just does a few small repairs and a basic cleaning on the typewriters. I saw that there were some very nice typewriters for sale on the table up front, including a few Smith Corona 5T’s and a nice Olympia SM -5. It’s always nice to see other typewriter shops and especially meet other typewriter techs.
So thrilled my typewriters were used in the new George Clooney directed movie “The Tender Bar” which was released the other day on Amazon Prime. I sold the production company three Smith Corona machines used by the young boy and later by the older boy in college. I also rented a bunch of Selectrics for the New York Times newsroom. I rent or sell typewriters to a handful of movie shoots every year. It’s always fun to see how they look on film and how they are used in the movie.
I don’t see very many of these beauties. This is a 1936 Corona Special portable flat top typewriter. I bought it from a person in NYC and had it shipped to me. It miraculously survived shipping being just wrapped in paper and no padding at all. It was very rusty and badly corroded. I can’t believe how beautiful it turned out. Aside from a super cleaning, I had to replace the escapement mechanism which was damaged in shipment and put in new feed rollers. It types so smoothly now with great print quality. Sorry to say it’s already sold. They are hard to find but they are out there!
This beautiful Olympia SM-3 is a customer repair that came in a few weeks ago. My customer said he’d been searching for years for a really good one and paid dearly for it on eBay. It’s stunning, with lots of real gold trim everywhere. The gold as well as the machine itself is in excellent condition. The typewriter looks like it was barely used but needed a thorough cleaning and tuneup. It really brightened up everything and makes it pop. The SM-3 is my favorite Olympia model and I’m very happy with the one I have but I think I’d swap it out for this gold trim model in a heartbeat.
This 1957 Penncrest Electric Concord is really a rebranded Smith Corona 5TE. I believe this is the first rebranded 5TE I can remember seeing. The 5TE was Smith Corona’s first portable electric machine in the mid-late 50’s. They have become very collectible over the last few years. They are a solid, fun to type on machine although a bit on the rattlely. But the beautiful mid century design and color scheme put it over the top. This one here is a customer repair. writing # vintage
Thought I'd show off a few of the portables on the sales rack this week. Matt and I are working hard to recondition enough machines for Christmas presents. For the rest of the month, we are only repairing and reconditioning typewriters for Christmas. The first machine pictured is a late 40's Smith Corona Sterling, one of my favorites. Next is a late 60's Olivetti Lettera 33. I think it's one of the most stylish Lettera's. Then it's a Olivetti-Underwood 450 with a rare tuxedo style finish. Last is a Olympia Traveller de Luxe. Probably one of the more popular travel machines.
The Christmas rush is ON! I have lots of typewriters looking for a new homes- come and get ‘em before they’re gone! We also have some classic vintage ads for sale.
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