Alpina DT33

AlpinaDT33a

AlpinaDT33c

A beast. The return lever is among the beefiest I’ve seen. The DT33, which has a decimal tabulator, exudes brute strength:  Norbert Schwarz, an authority on Alpinas,  points out that they are “small office machines.” Even my beloved Olympia SM3 feels like a toy compared to this DT33. The platen is rock hard, which was a bit off-putting at first, but two backup sheets improved the type.  I’ve noticed that my German portables of this time period have unusually hard platens.

An acquaintance remarked that it looks like a Buick, which, judging by his tone, wasn’t a AlpinaDT33bcompliment. I find it a beautiful machine, and think it has a distinct flair. I like its rounded features and turret-like cover. The keys are spacious, though not outsized, and it’s easy to settle into a good clip.

Will Davis (willdavis.org) notes an important feature: “One notable feature of Alpina machines is that, while they employ carriage shift, only the platen actually moves when the shift keys are depressed.  This makes shifting rather easy considering the size and weight of these machines —- these are among the very biggest and heaviest portables in the post-1958 enlarged overall size.”

It’s a portable that feels like an upright.

 

 

 

 

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One thought on “Alpina DT33

  1. Very fine typewriters. I had the rocky platen on mine replaced by JJ Short. Mine doesn’t have the decimal tabulator; the system on your model, where you push the lowest row of keys forward to tabulate, is unique.

    Liked by 1 person

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