‘The Intertype’.

In 1912 the patents covering the basic mechanism of the Linotype expired and a group of investors and former Merganthaler Linotype employees formed the International Typesetting Machine Company (later changed to the Intertype Company).
The general principles of operation of the Linotype and Intertype are exactly the same—in fact, most of the matrices are interchangeable.
The founders of the new company felt that the marketplace was ripe for a competitor to Linotype, and felt that they could produce a machine with enough improvements to create that competition.
By most accounts they did; the Intertype is a simpler machine than the Linotype, and incorporated a number of improvements, while retaining the same functionality.
They also created the ability to easily expand the machine, something not true of the Linotype.
The Intertype was the backbone of the Old Guv’s Hot Metal production of (Hansard) Parliamentary Debates for the South Australian Government over many years.
The Intertype like the Linotype was a slug casting machine with a keyboard set up all of its own.
No qwerty keyboard here!
On a hot Adelaide day it could be quite unpleasant working the Intertypes with their hot metal pots all heating up the room. We had a battery of around 15 or so machines.
The Hansard night shift was a marathon event, with 12 hour shifts not uncommon.
Overall the Intertype and Linotype were very reliable and for a period of time revolutionised the trade of hot metal compostion.
Rod Parham

2 thoughts on “‘The Intertype’.

  1. Intertype was not a British knock off of a Linotype. British Linotype was a separate identity to the American Linotype company. British Intertype was from American Intertype which was established in the US in 1911 and initially reconditioned old Linotypes with some parts of its own design. When Linotype patents expired between 1905 to 1915 Intertype was then free to design and make its own machines free of legal battles with Linotype in the US. British Intertypes differed slightly from US models.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Wayne, You are absolutely right. I hope the amended article meets your approval. Personally, I preferred the Intertype to the Lino because of one thing, the magazine lock. Both were good machines and I miss them. Oh! and I loved the Ludlow, much more reliable and safer than the Nebitype.
      Regards, Rod Parham


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