How to Re-ink a Typewriter Ribbon.





Introduction: How to Re-ink a Typewriter Ribbon.

Love your old typing technology but hate the cost and waste of upkeep on ribbons? Well time to add new life to the old ones!

Step 1: What You Will Need.

To do this you will need:

  • fountain pen India ink. (mine was simple black and non waterproof I have not not tried others)
  • a paint brush.
  • Exhausted ribbon.

Step 2: Next

Wind the spools evenly, so it is give or take an even amount of tape between the two. You are going to be painting them so this will help with even absorbing and faster dry time. I made that mistake the first time around and got a half renewed ribbon.

Now paint on the India ink slowly and let it soak into the layers of the ribbon. You do not want to just dunk it in ink. You will know when you are done when both spools are damp and a bite more weighty. If you make them drip fear not, this just means a longer dry time.

Now wait for it to dry and.....

Step 3: Done!

Put your ribbon back in that glorious machine and type away!



    • Paper Contest 2018

      Paper Contest 2018
    • Science of Cooking

      Science of Cooking
    • Pro Tips Challenge

      Pro Tips Challenge

    We have a be nice policy.
    Please be positive and constructive.




    Hi, I just wanted to clarify:

    You said to use "fountain pen India ink," do you mean fountain pen ink OR India ink? Also, I was wondering if you know if this works for vintage typewriters (early 1900s or so)?

    Anyway, great job and thanks!

    Thanks for the comment as I am happy to help.To be very specific I used.

    Fountain pen India ,
    Non waterproof ink'

    So if you can not go with that brand i could go with a black non waterproof fountain pen ink. The type writer ribbon I used was off at old Remington machine from about the early 1920's and another from the 50's. So I hope that helps.

    Thank you again!

    That helps a lot, thanks! :)

    My grandmother would be proud! Greqat work!

    I used to have mine from high school and early college. I got rid of it when it got hard to find replacement ribbons. Wish I still had it now.

    A typewriter? This is so last century technology☺

    My wife used hers for years, it was a portable she got in high school, back in the day it was as much a status thing as I pads etc. are today.

    Good tip on reusing the ribbon too!