Court Reporting Service - Todd Olivas & Associates
Court Reporting Home Page Schedule Court Reporting Service Court Reporting Services Court Reporting Company Contact Us

Where do old steno machines go to die?

Posted on 11/17/2009

My old steno machine, the one I used throughout my latter years in school as well as passed the CSR exam on -- THAT ONE -- is now a relic in my closet.  It weighs about 150 lbs.  The batteries are no longer available, I'm told.  I hate to get rid of it (in a way), but I hate lugging around junk forever even more.

Any thoughts as to what I should do with my old Xscribe StenoRAM III+ ?

  • Donate it to science?
  • Donate it to a steno museum?
  • Donate it to my landfill?
  • Gut it and turn it into a flower pot?

Help me out, Everyone!


Comment by Nancy
I say save it. Up in the attic or garage somewhere. Someday you can pass it on to your kids as an all the things I`m keeping for you and your brothers. :-) Seriously, don`t you wish we had kept your first computer...that Commodore 64?


Comment by Carla Richardson
That`s funny; I have the same machine. I, too, am undecided as to what to do with it. I`ll probably do as Nancy suggested. I`ll check back periodically to see if anyone posts any other ideas. Thanks, Carla

Comment by Todd
Thanks for chiming in, Carla.

Comment by katy
That`s a hella good machine. The old Stenorams are real workhorses. I`m still using Stenoram Ultras. Fail safe, battery lasts for years, doesn`t fall over when you cross your legs, etc.
Most reliable steno machine ever made in my opinion.

Comment by Lisa Quaglieri
I am looking for a machine to brush up on my skills with. Haven`t worked in the field in 13 years, and I sold my Stentura way back when. I could use a manual machine or a cheap computerized one. I may get my speed up enough to take some secretarial dictation. I`m not looking to spend more than $30.00. Does that help at all?

Comment by Todd Olivas
Mine doesn`t work, so I can`t really sell it to you. Sorry!

Comment by Aletheia James
That flowerpot idea of yours is really cute, actually. Then again, I have odd ideas about interior decorating . . . that`s the kind of nutty thing I would consider doing, except that in actuality I prefer a classic/sophisticated look in my home and a gutted steno machine as a flowerpot simply wouldn`t go!

Hmmmmm, if you have a big desk in your office or home office, it might be neat to keep it on a shelf there as a conversation piece . . . your own personal steno museum. I bet you could think of some other neat stuff to put with it to make a nifty little display.

Comment by Lisa Quaglieri
If anyone has one for sale or knows anyone, please send me an e-mail @ Thx

Comment by Allan Dyer
You can send it to/donate it to OTEC in Seattle, and we will pay the UPS ground shipping to get it here. We work on steno machines.

We can put batteries in that. We also overhaul these machines.

Lisa Quaglieri, are you looking for a Stenoram 3 or Ultra? I can help you out with that. We can also fix yours if you have one already.


OTEC in Seattle
Supporting court reporter hardware and software since 1991

Comment by Lisa Quaglieri
I am really looking for a manual machine. I haven`t worked in the field in 13 years, and I still do the outlines in my head all the time. I really want to see if I can still write and read the outlines. Not looking for a heavy investment -- something very conservative. I really just want to see if it`s worth getting back into for me.
Thanks. If you know of any manual machines for sale, please let me know.

Comment by Mary Cochran
I got my RPR in 1981. Hadn`t worked in reporting for 20 years. Feb 2009 got a Stenoram II. I`m doing 225 (not clean enough).

Cheap investment. Got on Digital Cat. (See the 1981) It was worth every penny.

Comment by Carla
i have 3 old machines. trying to get rid of them. anyone interested email me

Comment by Nancy
I`d like to see it in a clear plastic box, on display in the main office underneath the framed photo (enlarged) of the very first office space. It`s always good to see where we started and how far we`ve come. I don`t suppose you`ve got the first dollar you earned as a court reporter do you?

Comment by Jenny Rice
Yes maybe just save it. Maybe It will be useful in the future. But if you really don`t want to keep it just go the first option.

Comment by laura
the national court reporting association will buy used machines, even if they don`t work. and they sell them (even manuals from the 70`s) on their site.

I have 3 antique ones, but i`m not letting go of them for their offer of only $85. The memories are more dear than that paltry sum.

Comment by Mrs. Kette
You might like to keep it to show kids. I am sure they have never seen one and have no idea what it is or does. If not, try eBay!


Comment by modee
Hi... I have a Stentura 400 SRT Electric machine that I purchased about 6 years ago but never really used. I jsut stumbled across: I just got off the phone with a rep and they`re going to purchase it for $400. Not bad! They say it will probably cost about $15 for me to ship it via UPS and then they will mail me a check. Easier than I thought! I know I paid many times the amt they are buying it from me, but I can`t be lugging it around for another year. I didn`t want to deal with the hassle of selling it on eBay (where I doubt I would have received more than $400). I hope that helps!

Comment by Bill Pieske
I started reporting in 1968 when I was still 18 years old (took machine shorthand in high school, believe it or not). Was one of the reporters in the Blue Ribbon Inquest into the Chicago Police/Black Panthers shootout in the late `60s, reported the special Grand Jury proceedings of the Chicago riots during the Democratic National Convention (remember?: The Whole World Is Watching!!). I have a 1920s vintage steno machine I`m trying to determine where it needs to go as I`ll be retiring soon (I hope). Any suggestions? Thanks

Comment by Carol
Dominick Tursi has started the Gallery of Shorthand, Central Islip, New York. I am a charter member. He is an amazing lecturer on the history of court reporting -- very energized and captivating -- and has many machines on display. Perhaps you would consider donating it or at least contacting him to see if he has that model. Visit his site at and find out all about the Stenographer that stood by Lincoln`s Deathbed and so much more!

Comment by natalie gant
I have a student writer Stentura Protege for sell. With all accessories and 1/2 carton of paper. Will sell for 700.00. Great condition!!! email me at

Comment by Evan
If anyone has an old machine they willing to sell cheep please contact me. I`m looking to take classes but cant afford a new machine or used at retail prices.

Comment by Sherrelle Johnson
I have a manual reporter steno machine with case, tripod, ink, and papertray. I am asking for $75obo. I also have court reporting books for sale for really cheap. Email me at

Comment by Netta
I have a manual steno machine and would like to find Steno Mark cartridges for it. They are the red ink rollers that fit in the lid of the manual used for making hot spots on the paper. Anyone have any?

Comment by Connie
I have a Stenoram II, the old workhorse of the industry. I haven`t reported since 1999 and have moved all over the country with this thing. It needs to be tuned up, maybe a new battery, but it works. Deluxe stand, soft-sided case, charger, cable. If anyone is interested, shoot me an email and put shorthand in the subject

Comment by Kim
I have an OLD (green) manual Stenograph with tripod and LOTS (15+) of books just collecting dust. Anyone interested? Make an offer by email to if interested.

Comment by Tiffany Sykes
Like new Stentura 400 SRT ** Bought for $875 selling for $700 , Price is negotiable !

Machine is 3 months old , Includes ....

-soft-sided carrying case
-easy lock tripod
-paper tray
-ribbon cartridge
-Allen wrench
-AC adapter
-real time cable kit
-stentura maintenance kit
-users guide
Feel free to email or Text me (909) 543-2209 if you have any questions! :)

Comment by Sue
Three old computer steno machines for free, StenoRam II and something else which I can`t find the name on, it is computerized though. I used one of the Ram II`s about 4 years ago, but think it stopped working. I don`t know about the other two. Glad to give them away but shipping charges on whoever wants them. All have hard cases, tripods, paper trays. Contact me if interested. I live in South Jersey.

Comment by Margaret
Speaking of older machines for sale...I have two, both manual. One 1970s vintage with hard shell case and tripod, also in case. The other one is pre-World War II vintage in an old suitcase-type case.

If anyone has any interest, please e-mail me at for more details.


Comment by Ginger
Probably Turn it to a flower pot! LOL

Comment by Mel Power
They make great trotline weights.

Comment by Estella
This is an easy question:

Sell it on Ebay as `collectible` `Vintage` or RARE!!.

Comment by Stan
Just take it to a citizen`s collection site where they take old TV`s, computers, and other electronic stuff or toss it in the blue bin.

Comment by nbauman
My neighbor is a charming retired court stenographer, and today she showed me her old Stenograph Steno-Lectric machine, which was made around 1970.

The paper feed doesn`t work and I was trying to figure out how to fix it. It may well be that all it requires is routine cleaning.

Surprisingly I couldn`t find anything on the Internet about how to fix stenotype machines, or even the user`s guide (although I did find this fascinating site).

I could start taking it it apart, but I wonder whether there`s some simple thing to check.

If I can fix it, at least we`ll have a working doorstop.

Comment by Jean Fairlie
I have a vintage Stenograph machine..Says Standard Model on it and it has been in a case for the last at least 40 years. I would like to sell works, too! Please advise the value if anyone knows. It was given to me and it is probably 60 years old or older.

Comment by Roy Morris Anderson
I have an old Stenograph machine. It has Stenotrype on top of the lid that removes so that you can get to the ribbon. It has a double spool ribbon, much like the old typewriters had. Inside the lid portion is written The Stenotype OO, Michigan Ave, At 41st St, Chicago, Illinois. On the front of the machine there is a name, J. M. Sager. I guess he was the owner of the machine. Can you tell me when it was manufactured? Is it of any value?

Leave a Comment

Your Name (Required)

Your Email (Required but will not be posted)

Please enter the following letters into the box:

This is to help fight against spam.
The letters are NOT case sensitive.


Court Reporting Agency | Schedule A Court Reporter | Contact Us | Court Reporting Conference Suite Locator
Court Reporting Services | Company | Court Reporting Articles | Press Releases | Site Map 1 | Site Map 2 | Site Map 3 | Site Map 4 | Site Map 5 | Site Map 6
Court Reporting Blog | Riverside Court Reporting | Process Service
2014 Todd Olivas & Associates. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy