Diane (Howarth) Anderson donated this copy of the S.T.A.R.*Provo Star Trek newsletter The Communicator to the site. You can either read it here or download the pdf copy below.
The typewriter this and other issues of The Communicator were typed on was portable, a good thing for a college student (which we were at the time) to type up essays for class, but perhaps not the best machine for creating beautiful magazines. However, it is what we had.
Typewriter ribbons were long fabric ribbons that rolled from one metal spool to another at the top of the typewriter, and the typewriter keys struck the inked surface to type the letters on the paper beneath it. After the ribbon had been used several (or many) times, the ink got used up, and the typed letters became lighter and lighter. Ideally, one then replaced the ribbon. Starving college students used that one ribbon as long as possible, sometimes re-inking it (with stamp pad ink) to make it last longer. Some ribbons were only discarded when the fabric started actually fraying so they could no longer be used. (How would I know these things?) Think of this when you’re frustrated that your ink cartridge (for inkjet printers) or toner cartridge (for laser printers) is running out.
This issue of The Communicator must have been typed with a new (or newly re-inked) ribbon, as it has much darker type than some of the other issues.
Another problem newsletter editors run into is when the copy shop doesn’t print their magazine well. There’s some nasty fade-out on page 6 of this issue that has nothing to do with the state of the typewriter ribbon! I enhanced the text as well as I could in my scan manipulation software, but there is some that is completely lost.
PDF of the issue: The Communicator, Vol 2 No 3, July 1974