The Convenient Typer

by Max, published

The Convenient Typer by Max Feb 3, 2012

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This is an apparatus designed to allow three people to conveniently type out a specific phrase: it is as it is

Each person must time their actions specifically, and operate their portion of the device with care.

This device was made to be a performance at a local art-event. Its operation is (of course) far from convenient, but it does type out the most true thing I have ever known.


I am sorry, but I did not take enough pictures, and in general, I am not sure if I could communicate how this device was built. I have included for you every part that I 3-d printed, as well as the .blend file, which contains a scale model of the typewriter, and all of the printed components in their functional positions. I do believe you would be able to reverse engineer the device by examining the .blend file. However, if their is interest, then I will do my best to draft a step by step set of build instructions.

Some notes: The 3D parts with a letter in their title (S-gear.stl for example) correspond to the letter on the typewriter with which that part interacts. The exceptions are the parts with "L" or "R" in the title...those correspond with "Left" or "Right".

Also note: "I-gear" and similar parts have two teeth side by side, but I ended up reducing that (with a saw) to one.

To type out the word three people (or an individual with long arms) must use the two word handles, and the space bar presser with specific timing. The correct timing is as follows: Type 2 letters with the right handle, space bar, type one letter with the right handle, one letter with the left, space bar, type two letters with the left handle, space bar, and repeat.

These openscad scripts were used: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:3575
http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:5505 I have attached to this thing my (slightly) modified versions of the above scripts.

sidenote: after re-reading these instructions...I don't see how any most of it will make sense to anybody.....sorry.

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Wow, I had not seen those before. Remember is a very intense and visually effective artwork.

Now you need to automate it. Make a great printer!

Yes, Looks like most of what is needed is here already, though instead of all the "fingers" I'd vote for a single "hunt and peck" system.

It'd would further the awesome if it output system messages. Like (clackaclackaclackacka...........) "System will reboot in 30 secs" :)

A "hunt and peck" system would be alot of fun to make, and it could probably be adapted for multiple uses. Right now I'm imagining a piano that could be "played" with a similar system.

Yes! In my mind there exists a printer/typewriter hybrid that will print out documents...in the most elaborate and inefficient way possible.