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John "Mike" Lounge Astronaut Autopen Guide...
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John "Mike" Lounge Astronaut Autopen Guide

John "Mike" Lounge Astronaut Autopen from an STS-35 litho

John "Mike" Lounge Astronaut Autopen kindly submitted by Bob McLeod

How to Identify Astronaut Autopens

  1. Autopen machines often vibrate when they are in use creating a very distinctive "shaky" signature. Click here to see Examples of shaky signatures that these machines often produce.

  2. Autopens come to an abrupt halt at the end of a letter and frequently leave a noticeable spot of ink at the ends of letters and words. Lines in the Autopen are of the same thickness.

  3. Autopens do not always create identical signatures, if the item being signed is moved accidentally (or deliberately) small differences will be noticeable in the final signature. Small variations from known Autopen patterns does not mean the signature is authentic, if - when you ignore the variation - other parts of the signature match the Autopen pattern exactly, then what you are looking at is an Autopen. One thing that must also be kept in mind is that the use of pens with thicker or narrower nibs will make them appear very different - until you examine them closely and compare them to known Autopen patterns.

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