A Lady in Peril Rescued: Royal Aristocrat

I was out and about today and stopped in at a few town thrift stores looking for brown plastic cases for Operation: SCM Datecode.  I  didn’t find any, but I did run across this lovely but very dirty Royal Aristocrat.

My collection is a little Smith-Corona / Corona heavy and I have been thinking I should branch out and see what all the fuss is about other typewriter brands: the Royals and the Underwoods etc.

This Royal was filthy. Not a problem – I like to clean things up.  The draw cord was broken.  I can fix that (probably).


Uh oh.


What is wrong with people?  You know, we are living in a SOCIETY.

I left the shop feeling irritated not just at the key-chopping but at the sheer half-assedness of the evil doing. It appears that the chopper took a few keys, got bored and quit. And they took the Shift Freedom keys.  So mean.

I thought about the typewriter all day. Its ultimate fate would probably be to have the remaining keys clipped off and the body dumped in a scrap heap.  NO. IT SHALL NOT BE. Not while I have $30 in my pocket!

I went back and took the Royal Aristocrat into protective custody.

1939 Royal Aristocrat
S/N B-889364


About those missing key tops:  a clever typospherian at Typewriter Talk salvaged a key-chopped typewriter with faux craft keys.  I swung by my Joann Fabrics and picked up similar items for $5.00:


I’ll clip off the loops on the faux keys, print out Royal Aristocrat style letters and attach the faux keys to the broken stems…somehow.

Last thing: did I mention that she is really dirty? I had problems finding the serial number because it was under a layer of filth.  Anyhow, while I was turning her over trying to find the serial number, a piece of metal fell out. Oh lordie – where does that go?  Fortunately, it wasn’t a typewriter part, but an old watch face that fell out.  What other secrets do you hold, Aristocrat?

Not a part of the typewriter.  Whew.

Not a part of the typewriter. Whew.

14 thoughts on “A Lady in Peril Rescued: Royal Aristocrat

  1. ooh, poor thing! D:
    But – you are the right person for the job, and that’ll be the oldest Aristocrat in the TWDB when you get ‘er put in. I can say as the happy owner of the now second-oldest one, that it’s a machine well worth saving. (:


  2. Nice save! Two of my KMMs that I rescued from a hoarder’s place are missing keys too, but they were buried and forgotten before the typewriter key fad started. Keychoppers may not be to blame in your case, but I have no idea what could have taken those keys off otherwise.


    • My Royal Aristocrat must have been attacked by the laziest key-choppers ever – no work ethic and lost interest before finishing the job. BTW – would love to see how your KMMs come along.


      • JustAnotherGuy says:

        Heh, so would I… but right now they are at the bottom of my to-do list, with six others in line D:


  3. mre12ax7 says:

    I see that you have found my solution for missing keys
    As for attaching them go buy some glowsticks with the plastic connectors
    the straighten out the keystems and glue the glowstick things on the backs of the keys and they just press on.
    Hope this helps

    Happy Typing


    • I am so glad that I came across your solution recently – the Tim Holtz faux key charms from Joann Fabrics are the perfect size for key top replacements. I am having success using moldable metal epoxy putty to attach the faux key tops to to the broken levers – only a few more to go.


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