How to Change the Ribbon on a Smith Corona Typewriter

By Nick Davis

Updated September 26, 2017

A manufacturer of typewriters since 1886, Smith Corona also produces personal digital assistance (PDA) devices and word processors. The company’s current line of typewriters are electronic and include a ribbon cassette and correction tape. The devices also accept regular copier paper and include a memory feature for storing lines of text before outputting them to paper. Like other consumable components, the ribbon doesn’t last forever and eventually needs replacing. Smith Corona-brand typewriter ribbons are available at office supply, retail superstores and online outlets.

Turn off your Smith Corona typewriter, if it is on, by flipping the “On/Off” switch on the right side of the typewriter to the “Off” position.

Lift the typewriter’s protective cover, located over the paper feed roller, and tilt it toward you.

Locate the ribbon cartridge located on its movable carriage. Grasp the cartridge on both sides and lift the cartridge straight up and out. Dispose of the old ribbon cartridge in a trash bag or can.

Remove the new ribbon cartridge from its package and turn the cartridge upside down. Turn the gear wheel on the bottom of the cartridge in the direction indicated on the component to wind the ribbon inside of the cartridge.

Turn the cartridge over so its label is facing up. Place the cartridge into the carriage with the exposed ribbon facing the typewriter’s paper roller. Guide the exposed ribbon between the printwheel and typing guide assembly in front of the paper roller.

Press down on the cartridge until you hear it snap in place. Close the typewriter’s protective cover and turn on the device.


Wear latex gloves to remove the old ribbon cartridge if you notice the cartridge is grimy or contains ink residue.