194X Invicta MP1 #22584
Status: My Collection
Created: 10-13-2019 at 01:36AM
Last Edit: 02-05-2021 at 11:55AM
You might think this is disgusting...
This typewriter is definitely UGLY, but it's just as competent. Everything has fallen into place with this typewriter. Invictas are far from common in Spain. In fact, this is the very first Italian typewriter I get (with QZERTY layout and Italian function keys) and the very first Invicta I've ever seen available. Add to the mix it was advertised as in working condition and the price was very appealing (35 euros). There was no way it could fly away. Then it arrives at home and guess what, it's been recently serviced. Pretty much like the Erika 5 I got a couple of weeks ago (late september 2019), a competent amateur or mayba even a professional had gotten their hands into it. I put my money on the amateur, because the chosen method for cleaning has been dunking the machine into gasoline. This typewriter smells like an old garage which is about to catch fire, but it works perfectly fine.
Then there's the ugliness factor. This typewriter has the soul of one of the most elegant typewriters of all time, the Olivetti MP1 ICO, but a hideous outer shell. This has to do with the story of Invicta. This typewriter manufacturer from Torino had a standard model, largely based on the Underwood 5. The problem was not very far away, in Ivrea, where Olivetti had already become a giant and not too long after it would turn into a juggernaut and finally into a tarrasque which would devour many other smaller manufacturers. Extra points for whoever gets the tarrasque thing. Olivetti made a deal: they would let Invicta live if they manufactured second line typewriters, that is, a MP1 which looked extremely horrible. This way, if you wanted THE typewriter you'd have to buy an Olivetti, but if you were one of those subhuman beings who would agree to get anything they're offered... well, you could have an Invicta and everyone around would see your disgusting typewriter and think "yo, look at that. This dude has no sense of elegance, or maybe ain't got no money to buy a proper machine". This situation ended in the 50's, when Olivetti definitely acquired Invicta. You can find a better explained history of the Invicta in the links, thanks to the post by Robert Messenger in his blog.
So, this is a really nice find. Not frequent, good condition and very interesting. Now I only need to find a MP1 ICO...
--- UPDATE ---
I found an MP1 ICO and the serial number, too.
Hunter: Javier Vazquez del Olmo (Javi)
Status: Typewriter Hunter
The first typewriter I saw was my grandpaÂ´s Olivetti Linea 98 at the office. It was just a curio for me. Then I was given a Nakajima, which I didnÂ´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 only returned home in 2017, almost 20 years later, when he wanted a better typewriter.
A collection that started small grew into something bigger, a nuisace for my family and a great source of satisfaction for me.
RESEARCH NOTE: When researching the Invicta MP1 on a computer with lots of screen real estate, you may find that launching the Invicta Serial Number page and the Invicta MP1 By Model/Year/Serial page in new browser windows can give you interesting perspectives on changes throughout the model series.