Nakajima All

The following dates of first manufacture are based on advertising and other documentary evidence. In some cases, model numbers encountered in ribbon listings remain unverified.

Office (Professional) Typewriters

  • 1988 AE 800, 830, 850?
  • 1990 AE 710, 740
  • 1990 AE 610, 640, 650

Compact (Semi-professional) Typewriters

  • 1982 AS 300 AS 290? 310?
  • 1984 AE 350, 355, 385
  • 1985 AE 330, 340/440, 345/450, 375/455
  • 1986 AE 395/475, 380?
  • 1988 AE 360/460, AE 365/485
  • 1989 AE 500?, 530
  • 1992 AE 560, 580

Portable (Personal) Typewriters

  • 1986 AX 170, AX 220, 240, 255, 270
  • 1987 AX 60, 65
  • 1987 AX 70, 80, 90, 100
  • 1990 AX 61, 66
  • 1991 AX 150, 160

Serial number analysis:

The first digit of the serial number is taken to be a Year code. The second digit is taken to be a month code with numerical values 1-9. Characters at this position appear to be limited to  X, Y, Z. These most likely represent the last three months of the year: X=10, Y=11, Z=12.

Compacts

A (partial) sighting of an AS 300 serial number #3Y3204?? (below) suggests November 1983:

That’s consistent with advertising from Canada in October 1983 (below).

(“Nakajima” failed to get a mention in early advertising. The typewriter above was advertised simply as the new “All” AS300.)

A further sighting #5Y317933 suggests the AS 300 was still being manufactured two years later – which is likely to be the last year of manufacture for that model. Other first generation AE 300 series models and derivatives have serial numbers which fall into the expected date range:

  • Nakajima AE 300 (basically the same model as the AS 300) #33079405
  • Remstar 201 (an AE 300 series model (first gen) not sure which) #4Y315535
Olympia/Smith Corona etc. compact e.t.s made in Japan

Derivatives of Nakajima’s first generation of AE 300 series typewriters include the AEG Olympia Electronic Compact, Electronic Compact 2, Smith Corona EC-1100/1300 and others. (TA Triumph Adler’s Gabriele 8008/L is claimed to be “Made in Germany” – let’s be generous and say it was “assembled” in Germany).

The years suggested by the serial numbers below are within the expected range 1982-1984 and this ties in with advertising during that period:

  • TA Triumph Adler Gabriele 8008 (My Collection) #22030456 1982
  • Smith-Corona EC 1100 (My collection) #3Y315644 1983
  • Smith-Corona EC 1300 #46313740 1984
  • Olympia Compact 2 #44319803 (sighted on the box) 1984
Olympia Compact Ad USA-July1983
AE 300/400 Series

Sometime starting around 1985 up until 1988, Nakajima released a “second generation” of AE 300 series models with a more streamlined shape. These were paired with brand new AE 400 series models, An example of this is the Remstar 1800 (possibly based on an AE 375) with a serial number #58307047. 1985 matches with dating evidence from other sources, see the list below:

Another example is the Remstar 213 with a serial number #7Z31289. 1987 seems right although I’m not sure which Nakajima AE model the Remstar 213 is based on.

The Kardex Organisationssysteme GmbH sourced Remstar branded electronic typewriters from Nakajima between 1984 and 1988. Info-Markt listings for Remstar Kardex generally put these typewriters in the data range that their serial numbers suggest:

  • Remstar All 350/355 dated October 1984 in Info-Markt 86-87 (first gen)
  • Remstar All 375/455 dated December 1985 in Info-Markt 86-87
  • Remstar All 395/475 dated March 1986 Info-Markt 86-87
  • Remstar AE 360/460 dated March 1988 Info-Markt 89-90

Portables

Serial numbers for Nakajima-made portables fall into the expected date ranges. An examination of these has allowed me to re-think the date ranges I gave to the various groupings in a Typing by Numbers post published earlier this year (2022). Basically, they were not that far out:

Initially, these date ranges were given as:

  • AX 170-270 Series
    1986-1988 Models: AX 170, 210, 220, 240, 255, 270
  • AX 60/65 Series
    1987-1989 AX 60, 65
  • AX 70-90 Series
    1988-1989 Models: AX 70, 80, 90, 100
  • AX 61/66 Series
    1990- Models: AX 61, 66, WPT 61, 65, 66
  • AX 150/160 Series
    1992- Models: AX 150, 160, WPT 150, 160
AX 70-90 Series

Serial numbers for the “AX 70-90 Series” suggest 1987 was the likely first year of manufacture not 1988:

  • International X12 (UK)  #72308818 1987
  • Sense AX-100 (Swedish) #7X311022 1987
  • Walther TW 80 (AX-80) #9Y309956 1989
  • Remstar 181 #9Y310394 1989

Other evidence for e.t.s of the AX 70-90 series:

  • Remstar AX 80 dated March 1988 in Info-Markt 89-90
  • An Olympia-XL501 (AX-80) is date coded on its rear badge “8812”

Royal Signets 40, 70, 100, 200 belong in this group and are dated late 1987 thru 1988 and into 1989 in various USA advertising. These Signets actually have a date code on the rear badge: 

  • Datecode: 8708 (August 1987) sighted on a Royal Signet 100
  • Datecode: 8902 (February 1992) sighted on a Royal Signet 25 
AX 60/65 Series

A Swintec serial number for a portable e.t. that belongs in this group suggests 1992 was the likely last year of manufacture for models of this type, not 1989:

  • Nakajima AX-65 #03324861
  • Casio CW-600 (AX-65) #0Y313564
  • Swintec 2400DM (AX-60) has a date code on the rear badge: 9211 (November 1992)
AX 170-270 Series

The evidence is strong for 1986 as the first year of manufacture (1988 was likely the last year):

  • AX-240 #62336019
  • AX-240 #64325887
  • Hermes Top-tronic (AX-240 or similar) #65335270
  • AX-170 #67322474

Other evidence for e.t.s of the AX 170-240 series:

  • Remstar AX 210, 220 dated October 1986 in Info-Markt 89-90
  • Remstar AX 270 dated March 1988 in Info-Markt 89-90

Several “Royal” electronic portables belong in this group. 1986 is again suggested in serial numbering:

  • Royal Beta 8000 #64325118
  • Royal Alpha 600P #61334732
  • Royal Alpha 600P #67330237
AX 150/160 Series

One serial number below suggests 1991 was the first year of manufacture rather than 1992. Only two serial numbers sighted so far in this group, however, we can be confident these are products of the 1990s and most likely continued to be manufactured into the 21st century:

  • AX-160 #18300820 Sighted On the Box
  • AX-160 #6Y300809 Sighted On the Box

1991 and 1996 are not unexpected.

AX 61/66 Series

No serial number information or advertising. It’s very likely these are products of the 1990s, however 1989 is not out of the question.

Sears

Sears models (mostly derivative of the AX 170-270 series and the AX-70-90 series) all seem to have been given their own serial numbers, which do not appear to be date coded. I’d expect them mostly to fall into a date range between 1986 and 1988:

  • #00347511 Sears The Electronic I
  • #01340287 Sears The Electronic I
  • #02081066 Sears The Electronic Scholar
  • #00837553 Sears Electronic Graduate
  • #01179688 Sears Electronic Graduate

(p.s. In the USA, the “Nakajima” name only reared its head after the company began manufacturing electronic typewriters there from 1989 onwards – it’s a “new name” as of September 1991 …!

Nakajima advertising May 1994, USA