The Baby-Blue Olympia SM7

This typewriter has been on my radar for quite some time. It is one of those machines whose price valuation greatly differs based on body color. I finally was able to find a blue machine at a decent price. Some typewriters I shall never own: a red or blue Royal QDL, for example–which is fine, because I’m not very good at typing on QDLs. I was able to score an Olivetti Valentine for $60 a year ago.

Now comes the work. The body is in excellent shape, but the guts are coated in ectoplasm. The right knob also needs a little glue. Beyond those issues, I think this machine will make for a great typer. As I understand it, the SM7 does not get the same accolades as the SM9 (which is an amazing machine), but I think these differences often come down to the condition of the specific machine. Olympia was pretty consistent with quality control over the years. I guess I’ll find out once I get this cleaned up. Note how the glue for the padding coated the slugs. Yuck.

6 Comments Add yours

  1. hoehne says:

    So that’s where that brown gunk on SM7s comes from. Thanks.
    People praise the SM8 and SM9 because they are segment-shift designs whereas the SM7 is the heavier-feeling carriage shift. They all work well. Nice score. Congrants.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mcfeats says:

      Oh. I see that now. Basket shift vs. carriage shift. Yes, the SM9 is easier, although the SG1’s basket shift is easy, too. The bigger body, I guess.

      Like

      1. hoehne says:

        Not the bigger body, though. The type basket, of the SM9 and the SG1 are about the same size, so would be about equally heavy (or easy) to raise. The carriage of the SG1, however, is much larger and heavier. I don’t see how the bigger body would factor in.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Bill M says:

    I think all but 1 SM7 that has come across my workbench had been coated in what seemed like hard WD40. A bath in aviation parts cleaner generally cleaned them up nicely, but none seemed to be very good typers, even those I used at type-ins that were like new. The SM3, SM4, S<8, SM9 all have the SM7 beat, but the SM7 is just one of those special machines that is fun to own and use. The carriage shift/basket shift is more bunk than substance as all the Olympia carriage shift machines can be adjusted to be just as light on the shift as a basket shift typewriter unless it happens to be a wide carriage carriage shift.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mcfeats says:

      I thought it was WD40, but it was the glue from the noise padding which had fallen out. Same color and consistency. Maybe that was a common problem on SM7s, some specific glue they tried out during the model’s years?

      Like

      1. billmaclane says:

        I only remember running across one where the padding fell off, and I reattached it. WD-40 is extremely difficult to remove once it hardens.

        Liked by 1 person

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