Chamomile E.T.

Chamomile or camomile is the common name for several daisy-like plants of the family Asteraceae; an aromatic European plant of the daisy family.

In Russia, it was also the name given to a series of portable daisy wheel electronic typewriters.

The production association Schetmash (Счетмаш) OAO was founded in 1948 and is located in Kursk, Russia.

Anther transliteration is Schyotmash. It seems “mash” equates to machine. Pishmash (Пишмаш) is a short form of “pishushchaya mashina” (пишущая машина), the Russian translation of “typewriter”.

Once one of the largest computer manufacturers in the Soviet Union, the mainstay of the company’s business was the production of accounting machines and then electronic cash registers.

In the early 1990s, “Chamomile” or Рома́шка (Romashka) electronic typewriters were offered in a variety of (Cream, Light Grey, Dark Grey, Blue, and Black) colours.

Model numbers seem to correspond to various PCB/microprocessor updates and run from PELP 305-01 to PELP 305-08.

Features include triple pitch printing, a maximum print speed of 12 cps, and an electronic memory of at least one page (3800 bytes). Some models can be connected to a PC via an external parallel / serial interface box.

An odd feature, something more in keeping with a Schetmash cash register, is a narrow LCD screen to the left of the keyboard.

Storage for two daisy wheels is provided on the underside of the lid:

The wheels seem disproportionately big.

A “bat-eared” ribbon cassette is designed to accommodate what is a very elongated solenoid hammer.

These quirky E.T.s are easy to find online (in Russia and other former Soviet-bloc countries) but impossible to find anywhere else.

Schyotmash Romashka Pishmash!