1942 IBM Electromatic Model 02 Formswriter #0222 69172
Status: My Collection
Hunter: Kyle Oelofse (SaladKing)
Created: 10-11-2018 at 09:03AM
Last Edit: 10-11-2020 at 07:26PM
If my research is correct then this is an Electromatic Model 02 Formswriter. This is determined by a parts list and diagram in a 1953 Customer Engineering manual for later Model A and B typewriters that shows a Model A Formswriter with the same unusual carriage. That manual is currently being digitized.
Additionally, the serial number begins with "0222", which the serial number list indicates is the factory code and model code, however there is no combination of either in those lists that can result in "0222". Based on one other machine like this I've seen with the same weird carriage and a serial that began with "0223", and coupled with the info in the manual, I suspect the "02" marks this machine as a Model 02 Formswriter, and the "22" is either some lost factory code, something of another lost meaning, or doesn't mean anything useful to begin with.
The power roller on this machine is functionally granite and no longer drives the typebars properly - if it was still rubbery, this typewriter would be operational, though very loud. The motors in this have usually had their fair share of rumble from wear and will arc constantly as their 80-year old anti-arc capacitors are well and truly dead by now.
The Model 02 Formswriter has a special paper feed that found on the back of the carriage, presumably for keeping large reams of paper entering the machine from jamming. The platen can also be raised up and down using a system of levers inside the carriage, I assume to make it easier to straighten the paper ream or allow the ream to be speedily rewound through the typewriter instead of tearing the paper off. The Engineering manual additionally shows a gigantic wireframe contraption that would normally be bolted onto the back of a Formwsriter to handle the writing of forms. My example is unfortunately missing this contraption. I have yet to see a Formswriter in the wild that has its attachment. Hopefully someday I'll find one.
SAFETY NOTE: For those inclined to dig around inside an Electromatic's backside, bear in mind that there is a very large resistor in the back of the machine that produces a lot of heat during operation. Electromatics being from the 1930's and 1940's, this resistor is insulated with asbestos. Avoid disturbing it without protection for yourself and your surroundings.
More photos to come after cleaning and further repairs.
UPDATE 20200425: Updated description.
UPDATE 20201005: Improved cover photo.
UPDATE 20201011: Added recent findings to description and updated model info.
Hunter: Kyle Oelofse (SaladKing)
Status: Typewriter Hunter
I inherited two Royal KMMs as a kid. Over a decade later I started actively collecting and repairing in 2015 shortly after discovering the existence of "weird" typewriters like the Blickensderfer and Hammond, and finding a destroyed Super Sterling to experiment on.
RESEARCH NOTE: When researching the IBM Electromatic Model 02 Formswriter on a computer with lots of screen real estate, you may find that launching the IBM Serial Number page and the IBM Electromatic Model 02 Formswriter By Model/Year/Serial page in new browser windows can give you interesting perspectives on changes throughout the model series.