...is there an alternate modern source for paper rolls for this vintage (and historic) printer. For instance, can you use regular fax paper?
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You can try using fax paper rolls, but check the inside diameter of the core. I seem to recall that the printer had little plugs that fit the core and allowed the roll to rotate freely. Modern fax rolls seem to be 30m long, which may not fit in the paper cavity. The original rolls were 80' (24m) long. You may have to unspool the first part of the roll to get the paper to fit.
Thanks for the suggestions. It seems replacement paper is not too difficult to obtain.
My second question is how difficult is it to find the SilenType printer interface card?
I have not seen any sold on ebay etc. Will a regular Serial interface (or Super Serial Interface) work?
My basic issue is if its any use getting a SilenType without the card?
Is the card very very difficult to find? - rendering the printer unusable?
If the silentype is in really good condition, i.e. no yellowing, no scratches, etc. and you *really* want it, then grab it. You need the silentype card. It's labeled as a SYNCH card, IIRC, to make the printer work, but they do show up every once in awhile. You might also post to comp.sys.apple2.marketplace asking for one. They aren't *RARE!* The hardest parts to find are the little black stoppers that fit in the ends of the cardboard paper roll center and rest in matching cut-outs in the printer.