PENS FROM FURTHER AFIELD
Whilst my main interest is Curzon Summit I regularly find other pens that are of particular interest, either because they are scarce, or perhaps they have an unusual filling mechanism, etc. This section of the website will provide an occasional visit to this part of my collection. Whilst most will not be listed for sale, I am open to offers.
APRIL 2014 - Another little pen
I have previously mentioned some of the little pens I have purchased, but still more drop through the letterbox, courtesy of ebay. This one, with its single blurred picture, really did go under the radar on the UK flavour of the market:
This Peter Pan pen, from the American Saltz Bros company, came with an interesting story. The original owner came from "a priviledged background, one that saw her shipped off to the safety of relatives in New York during WW1". When hostilities ceased, and school allowed, she set sail on the return journey home to England (early 1920) and as a departing gift her hosts gave her this pen. Cherished, but rarely used, it has stood the test of time extremely well.
A quality, well made item, it sports the tiniest of 14ct nibs. At little over 3", I enjoyed pairing it up with my 'daily writer' a beat up Parker 51:
MARCH 2014 - The Attraction of Flexi-nibs
Being the regular user of a broad chisel nibbed Parker 51 I often look at the prices commanded by flexi-nibbed pens and say a pray that a solid nail like nib meets may requirements. I made my mind up years ago that skill with a rapier like nib is not in my armoury, and therefore I normally do little more than draw some 'figure of eights' of varying width.
Recently, this Mabie Todd dip pen came into my possession:
The pen itself actually carries no markings other than the number "5" on the ferrule, but the box and the nib are clearly marked Mabie Todd. The nib is a size 5, which presumable corresponds to the ferrule marking;
In testing it out I was surprised at the degree of flex on offer from the application of very little pressure:
I suspect that those who use such instruments will already be very aware of the performance of these early Mabie Todd nibs, but for me it was a pleasant surprise.
JANUARY 2014 - A TRIBUTE TO JOHNNY CASH?
I still sing along and have a chuckle when I hear that old Johnny Cash number "One Piece at a time" detailing the building of a car using items removed from the General Motors factory in a lunch box over many years. I was reminded of it when I purchased a bundle of cheap pens that contained the following items:
At first glance they would all appear to be Summits, and without doubt they originate from the Liverpool factory. However a closer look will show that the pocket clips on the first two pens (based on Cubs?) have been obliterated:
The next one up is clearly based upon a S.160, but the clip and the nib are all wrong:
And a similar comment can be made for what on at first glance appears to be a S185:
Even on a cheap Chinese made reproduction Montblanc it would be harder to detect the discrepancies than it is for these pens! Not one carries a barrel marking, and all have cheap stainless steel nibs.
To my mind this is further evidence that when production ceased at Summit, the buyer of the factory simply put whatever stock reminded together in a haphazard fashion and sold bargain basement pens that contained parts from models manufactured years apart.
DECEMBER 2013 - ORMISTON & GLASS
Ormiston & Glass are a relatively unknown English manufacturer whose roots are to be found in Victorian London. Fountain Pen and Stylo production seems to have started at the turn of the century, but were curtailed by the outbreak of WW1.
The company also appear to have made a range of better quality dip pens, that included "The Secretary" (shown here http://goodwriterspens.com/2012/05/17/ormiston-glass-the-secretary/ )
and "The Scribe" shown below:
A well made product, the nib / holder fits securely into the handle.
AUGUST 2013 - A SCOTTISH PEN
De La Rue started life as very much an English pen company, indeed the barrel stamp made clear mention of the company's London roots (in Bunhill Row).In the late 1920's pen production moved to Scotland, where upon it seems that all DLR pens became "Made in Great Britain". What was it with pen manufacturers that they thought a Scottish link bad for business!
So I was surprised to pick up this example earlier in the month:
"The Southern Scot" sporting the DLR clip, a DLR nib, and a distinctly DLR section. The barrel stamp is in three parts:
"THE SOUTHERN SCOT"
"MADE IN SCOTLAND"
"For W. GRIEVE & SONS"
I can find two companies by the name of W Grieve & sons, one a 19th Century fishing / seal catching outfit from Scotland, and the other an early 20th Century concern from Hexham (that is just across the boarder in England I think!). Maybe selling memorabilia to the tartan army heading down the Great North Road!