Based on the serial number, it was manufactured in 1948. There is a hand-painted inscription on the inside of the case that says “R.J. Hansen, Dhakran, Saud, Arabia.” The guy at the typewriter shop thinks Hansen was a journalist, but the minimal amount of searching I have done hasn’t turned up anything on him. I’ll keep digging.
This typewriter is a very minimalist machine, even compared to the Olivetti Lettera. It is not bad to type on, but it is a little louder than I am used to. I should note, however, that the two machines I am mostly used to are Quiet Deluxe and a Super-Silent, so nearly anything is going to sound louder.
The thing that really strikes me about the Rocket is its size. I knew they were small, but it is pretty amazing to actually see it in front of me. It wouldn’t be out of the question to drop this typewriter into a modestly-sized backpack and carry it around. The aluminum case snaps quite solidly over the top, so I wouldn’t be worries about it getting banged up.
Even with its diminutive profile, the keyboard does not feel cramped, but I guess I’ll see how it stands up over time.