At Colombo Collection we provide reconditioned and restored typewriters and custom pieces. Most sellers do not do this or have the training to do! We specialize in custom restored and reconditioned pieces. To make sure that you are paying the correct price for a machine, you’ll need to understand the difference between Serviced, Reconditioned and Restored.
This makes up the largest group of typewriter resellers you’ll find and the sellers you’ll want to be the most cautious with. While you can get a really great deal you can easily pay too much. Most unserviced typewriter sellers acquire these at garage sales, thrift or estate and dust them off and charge the same price that a serviced, refurbished, reconditioned or restored typewriter would go for. You can spot unserviced typewriters easily from the following. May still have old ribbon or just says ribbon replaced. Haven’t been tested or tested and "seems to be working" No proper cleaning so will say dusted which isn't cleaning or even worse oiled, typewriters NEVER need oil. If they need oil something is wrong. The keys are sticky, they usually sell "as is"
The next most common group is serviced typewriters. You will see many that say they are serviced for hundreds of dollars. These machines are typically NOT PROFESSIONALLY serviced. You will see the following type of information and if you do avoid these purchases as well. They will state there is a new ribbon and basic cleaning. Basic cleaning is probably blowing them with air and most who don't know what they are doing they will use qtips, alcohol, oiling..all common things you see posted on the internet for how to clean a typewriter but they are absolutely wrong. You never use those products. A properly serviced typewriter would be professionally cleaned, any rust removal, all repairs, alignment and full testing.
Now your getting into the sweet spot, we recondition and restore typewriters and here is our process. So how do we do it?
First, we disassemble the typewriter including the body and the platen from the carriage.
Then the typewriter is put into an ultra-sonic cleaning tank to degrease the machine removing gunk, grime, oil, dirt you get the picture! Then the typewriter goes through a drying process.
Next all the pieces are reviewed for any damage or corrosion and are treated or replaced. Any repairs needed are made at this time. Keys and hammers are straightened, and their alignments corrected. Then all the metals are chemically cleaned and polished.
All rubber components are replaced. The platen’s is refurbished or replaced completely (restoration) and the same for the feed rollers.
The plastics are treated, repaired if needed including rubbing compounds to remove any scratches and resurface then polished.
The exterior if left original is cleaned, treated, buffed and polished.
If it’s a restored painted piece the body is cleaned, sanded, degreased, primed, painted with new paint then dried and polished.
Then the typewriter is tested again its tested throughout the process then once that is complete the machine is reassembled. Then the typewriter goes through a lengthy Final Quality Assurance testing that is over 30 minutes of continuous typing then we double check alignment and all other functions on the typewriter and any final adjustments are made.
FULLY RESTORED TYPEWRITERS (Museum Quality)
Fully Restored typewriters stand out as the best you can get more rare and more expensive. Gutted and rebuilt REPLACEMENT parts. New Platen, Sleek lines, perfect paint, shining keys, and impeccable type.
Expect to pay thousands of dollars for these beauties. They are literally a new machine.