What is the Rental Department?
The Rental Department is a selection of vintage typewriters compiled from the personal collections of typewriter enthusiasts located in the GTA (greater Toronto area), and have been made available for rental use.
The rental models in our collection represent over eight decades of typewriter manufac¬turing, so there’s a machine to suit practically every need or occasion.
Who are the Rental Department’s customers?
Vintage typewriters are often required as props, and even though the Rental Department specializes in renting typewriters to film, television, and stage productions, and meeting the exacting demands of propmasters, set decorators, and buyers, anyone may rent a typewriter from us.
Whatever you might require a typewriter for, whether it’s for a wedding, a retail promotion, commercial displays, or even an anniversary celebration, the Rental Department is geared toward helping you add that unique touch of a vintage typewriter to any occasion.
How do you use the Rental Department?
Using the Rental Department is simple. You start by clicking on one of the decades in the above category list, perhaps one that best represents your typewriter need, and then you only need to browse through the list of available models. The list includes notes on each model with keywords that will help you to narrow down the available choices.
The other option is to ask for assistance by using the Contact Form and providing us with the details and goals of your event or the set that requires props. Based on the information that you provide we’ll be able to suggest a number of different typewriters that would be ideal for your needs.
Where is the Rental Department located, and what area does it service?
The Rental Department is located in South Etobicoke near the intersection of Highway 427 and the QEW for pre-arranged pick-ups and returns. However, delivery of the typewriter(s) to your location can also be arranged for a nominal charge.
The primary service area is within the GTA, but special arrangements for out of town rentals are a possibility also.
How are the rental typewriters sorted?
To simplify the process of finding a typewriter, the models available for rental have been divided into eight categories representing the decade in which each was manufactured. You will find a list within each decade category that has the typewriters sorted by the actual year it was manufactured; however, the list can be re-sorted by any of its columns, such as by model or manufacturer name to suit your needs.
Please note that by default the lists initially only show the first 30 models. Subsequent pages of the list can be viewed by clicking on the NEXT button at the bottom of each list, or you can change the number that can be viewed at one time from the drop down menu if you prefer to view longer lists.
For each typewriter you will find a sample photo of the actual model (click on the thumbnail to enlarge the image), a description of its aesthetic and mechanical condition, and a few notes describing the type of machine, the country it was manufactured in, and some comments on its uses. In many cases additional photos of the machine from alternate angles are available and can be requested by using the Contact Form.
The lists are presently still being compiled and as a result are not complete. Should a photo, or details of a specific model that you are considering be missing, please use the Contact Form to inquire about the model and we’ll forward the missing information directly to you.
I didn’t find a typewriter that I’m after, now what?
Our online inventory is a work in progress and new models are being constantly added to the decade categories, so it’s possible that the model you’re after just hasn’t been added yet. If you have a specific need and can’t find it listed, please use the Contact Form to ask about its availability. If we don’t have that particular model available we’ll do our best to source one through our network of typewriter collectors.
In most cases only one example of a particular model will be listed, so for situations where multiple identical models are required, we do have a limited selection of typewriters to fill those needs.
Services such as fabricating special machines or the customization of existing models to suit the special needs of a customer will be available soon.
I have no idea where to start!
Choosing the ideal typewriter can sometimes feel like an overwhelming task, especially if there are a number of considerations that need to be met, or conversely, if you aren’t really sure what you’re after. If you’re uncertain about your typewriter needs, or are just too short on time to look, we encourage you to send us a detailed description of your set requirements, or the goal of your special event, and we’ll take care of figuring out which models will work best, and send you a few suggestions from which to choose from.
Alternatively, if you’re having a hard time getting started, here are a few considerations that might help narrow down your choices:
Manufacture Year – This might be the most important factor when choosing a model, especially if historical accuracy is required. You might want to consider using a machine made during a specific year that holds a special significance to your event.
Size – Typewriters were made in two size categories. Heavy, large machines intended for office use were classified as standard typewriters. Lightweight, compact models used in the home, by students, and for travel, were called portables. Consider how and where you intend to use the typewriter; for example, a 40 pound standard might not be the best choice to put on a lightweight table with limited space for use as a wedding guestbook. Similarly, a tiny portable would be completely out of place in an office setting.
Age – Typewriters were expensive instruments in their day and were used for many years, and when well worn they were often refurbished and returned to use rather than discarded as is the norm today. Consequently, brand new models don’t always represent the most accurate choice; a model that was made ten years earlier than the year a scene takes place, and shows those years of service, is often a more historically correct choice.
Cost – The original cost of a model should factor into your decision making process too. Typewriters, much like other consumer goods, varied greatly in their cost based on the options they included. From bare-bones depression-era models to fully loaded luxury models, your choice should reflect the potential budget constraints of the person who would have been using it.
How much does it cost to rent a typewriter?
Although pricing starts as low as $30 for a 48 hour rental, rental costs can vary greatly based on the particular model being rented and the duration of the rental. For example, a very rare and highly valuable model will cost much more to rent than a far more common typewriter that can be easily replaced. Another factor influencing the rental price is the intended use for the typewriter, whether it will be used as a motionless prop, or actually be used to type with. Delivery, and/or set-up and instruction can be provided at an additional cost.
In some cases a security deposit will be required, which will be refunded in full upon the return of the typewriter in the same condition that it left in.
Rental fees for businesses and productions may be paid by cheque, cash, or electronic money transfer. Personal rentals can be paid either by cash or electronic money transfer.
Please use the Contact Form to inquire about the cost and availability of the particular model that you are interested in renting.
What are a renter’s responsibilities?
Typewriters, despite their rugged appearance and solid construction are delicate precision instruments and need to be treated accordingly. This means that they need to be handled carefully to avoid damaging them, and when used, only done so in a manner for which they were designed. In short, we expect our rental models to receive the same treatment as any other valuable antique.
Renters are responsible for the safe return of the typewriter in the same condition it was received, and for making sure that it is not abused while in their care. Typewriters are not toys, so if children will be using them, they should be supervised at all times.
Rented models that have been damaged in any way will be subject to repair and/or replacement costs.
Are rental models available for sale?
Although it is not the focus of the Rental Department, in some cases a typewriter may be made available for sale. If you are interested in purchasing a rental unit, please use the Contact Form and let us know which model you are interested in.