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1919 Royal 5

Serial #40 1881-5

The Rust Cathedral, and somehow it refuses to give up working.

A good reason to be happy, this Royal 5.

Much has been said about the "failure" of the Flatbed, but with a century on its shoulders it´s a great typewriter which deserves a lot of respect. I´m amazed by its quirky design, and how unreasonably durable it is.

This specimen is a great tribute to that sturdiness. I got it at a really low price because it´s been neglected for decades and that´s taken its toll: Missing left ribbon spool, lots of rust and a possible refurbishment. I suspect that because of the shoddypaintjob at the front and an issue with the serial numbers.

Serial... numbers? As in more than one? Yep, I´ve found two of them, or at least they look like it. And to make it even more obscure, they put the typewriter somewhere around 1919, which I think it´s pretty late for a Royal 5. One of the serials is on a little plate under the carriage, and I discovered the other one when I removed the left basket cover. I find it strange putting the serial under a piece that has to be unscrewed, but there it is, well hidden under a rock.

Fortunately, after a good cleaning and a new ribbon this tank is ready to type again. It´s soooo pleasant to use!

Owned By: Javier Vazquez del Olmo

Username: Javi
Status: Typewriter Hunter
Points: 4569
Galleries: 200
Collection: 181
Sightings: 19

The first typewriter I saw was my grandpa´s Olivetti Linea 98 at the office. It was just a curio for me. Then I was given a Nakajima, which I didn´t use and my grandfather took it from me because it was easier to handle than the bulky Linea 98.

Now I own that typewriter, and I started a little collection in Valladolid, Spain. The Nakajima, which is "my" typewriter is the only one which is NOT in my collection. How ironic...

Things then got... complex. I moved from Valladolid to my village, and suddenly found myself with a lot of room available at home, so the small collection is turning into something bigger, a nuisace for my family and a great source of satisfaction for me.

1919 Royal 5 Type Sample


1919 Royal 5 Photo Gallery

The weird second serial: 401074. What secrets does it keep?

Left type basket cover removed. Ongoing works at the basement.

Right rear cover removed, and there it is the "main" serial number: 40 1881-5

Original ribbon spool. It would be great having both of them.

Stairway to typewriter heaven!

No-nonsense tabulator system. Put a piece of iron there and off you go!

The Rust Cathedral, and somehow it refuses to give up working.

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