Sunday, October 25, 2020

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 95

 From Andy's "Year of the Rat" PenBBS pen to René's Sheaffer "Dolphin" fountain pens!

(all photos courtesy of  René ~ please click in images to enlarge)

 Rene:"Sometimes included as part of the Sheaffer Imperial pens of the late 1950s - 60s, the so-called "dolphin" (not the official name) pens are pens of a rather odd design that does gain inspiration from the Imperial and PFM lines. They initially came out in 1962, after the Imperial line was released and lasted until 1964. "

"There were three models (see photo below) in the line, numbered after the base selling price point of the particular model (like most of the other "numbered" vintage Sheaffer models): The '500' cartridge model (plastic body, steel cap, steel nib) sold at $5.00, the '800' cartridge model was sold at $7.95, and the '1000' model sold as $10.00.  

Note that I omitted that $10 was the price of the cartridge 1000 model. This was because, while the 500 and 800 models also had Touchdown versions (which sold at $1 higher than the cartridge versions), the top of the line 1000 model oddly did not."

(Photo above, top to bottom: the '1000' model, the '800' model, and the '500' model)

"Some time ago I obtained a (cartridge) Sheaffer 500 from VPCer Jerred, but recently came across an '800' and a '1000' and couldn't resist completing the series. The difference between the two is that the '800' has a plastic cap with a metal cap ring, while the ' 1000' has a gold-filled cap." 


"Unlike the '500', the dolphin nibs of the '800' and '1000' are 14-karat gold. The "diamond" inlay in the plastic isn't actually part of (or connected to) the nib, but a decoration meant to look like the Imperial/PFM nibs. The '800' I got is a (functional) Touchdown model, while the '1000', of course, is the correct cartridge model. The bodies of the 800 and 1000 are otherwise identical and would be interchangeable."


 (the eponymous dolphin's head profile of the pen's nib section)

Love the shape of that nib-section unit! Many thanks to René for another great contribution to our virtual "show & tell" :)

Friday, October 23, 2020

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 94

 Brand-new VPC member Andy was kind enough to send in a nice write-up and photos of two very cool PenBBS fountain pens (both belonging to him) with an intriguing filling mechanism...

In his own words:
"A bit about the company Penbbs....

Penbbs is a Chinese online fountain pen community similar to the Fountain Pen Network. They talk about fountain pens and inks and have also produced their own inks and pens since 2005. They use high quality components and acrylic resins to produce very well made pens of unique designs."

 (all photos courtesy of Andy ~ please click on images to enlarge)


"This particular Penbbs Model 492 is a special edition celebrating The Year Of The Rat.
It is a magnetic piston filler demonstrator with a matching ink bottle. I chose this particular pen because it was a recent purchase and I was born in this significant year as well."


"Here it is compared with the standard line-up magnetic piston-fill Model 487.
The 487 is finished in a Cordierite color scheme.
The filling mechanism is a simple neodymium magnetic on the piston and also one in the cap finial."
"Here is a diagram of the filling system and instructions of how to operate it.
I find the mechanism to be very fun but also finicky at first. The silicone combined with the rubber gasket piston needs a bit of breaking-in and with prolonged use, it becomes easier to move."

"The nibs are steel and these ones are in fine with their signature semi-upturned tip.
I find their upturned tips to be an extremely smooth experience without being too wet."

 "The cap band, clip, barrel finial and nib are finished in rose gold and the extra details such as the lantern on the clip and the mouse on the nib make it quite special."

 "Another look at the cap details.
I do like the standard model 487 with its stamped insignia. It gives it a high end look and tactile feel."
Andy---welcome to our pen club and thanks so much for contributing to our online "show & tell"!

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 93

Today's featured newest acquisitions are some beautiful inks belonging to VPCer Grace. The inks were made by two companies---one in Japan and the other in the Philippines... 

(all photos courtesy of Grace ~ please click on images to enlarge)

 Sailor 'Ink Studio' swatches (for an exhaustive explanation of the ink numbers, check out this review)


Inks by Vinta

Grace writes: "Vinta is a local ink maker here in the Philippines, est 2018. Here’s the site if you need more info: . There’s a bunch of collections there and I got mine all over the place 😂 I like the sheen on these ones."


 PenBBS 469 - double ended, eyedropper-filler

"The PenBBS 469 usually comes with the ends in the same color. Natasha and I thought it would be cool to switch ends 😂 The smaller one is the glass dip pen I used for the swatches."

Many thanks to Grace for the great photos of her lovely inks and lovely pens!

Monday, October 19, 2020

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 92

From one lovely blue fountain pen to another -- Stuart's new Graf von Faber-Castell "Guilloche" in "Gulf Blue", purchased at the Vancouver Pen Shop during their October sale!

From Graf von Faber-Castell's official website

"The Guilloche writing instruments made of precious resin are distinguished by a special process. Each one is engraved individually using a method otherwise reserved for jewellery or silver accessories. The barrel is then hand-lacquered and repeatedly polished.The result is a unique and most interesting surface texture. No two writing implements are identical: each is an individual example of the craftsman’s art.

The coloured barrels of these writing instruments are made of precious resin with a special Guilloche pattern engraved on them. Manual polishing and lacquering processes then provide the special optical effect. All the metal parts are given a high-quality rhodium plating." 

 (photo courtesy of Stuart ~ please click on image to enlarge) 


 Stuart: "I picked up the Graf von Faber-Castell Guilloche in Gulf Blue yesterday, and I’m thrilled with it!  It has a Broad point and is so smooth."

"The Guilloche feels better in hand than the all-metal rhodium one does - the resin section adds a bit of girth and texture that makes it easier to hold.  It’s still on the slim side but that much easier to grasp.  Posted or unposted it works for me, very comfortable, a little tail-heavy but not much.  And the nib is dreamy!"

The Vancouver Pen Shop's annual sale runs all month (Oct 1-31) and almost everything in the store is discounted (October sale details here)! The store is open Monday through Saturday (closed Sundays & holidays) from 11:00am - 4:00pm to the public, and from 4:00-5:00pm for private shopping (please call the store at (604) 681-1612 to book your 30 minute slot---4:00 to 4:30pm or 4:30-5:00pm...more info in this Facebook post )

Many thanks to Stuart for sharing his new purchase with us!

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 91

And now, a lovely Pelikan fountain pen that's been in production since 2003--honourary VPC member Glenn G's blue-striped Pelikan M805 !

(all photos courtesy of Glenn ~ please click on images to enlarge)

Glenn: "I already had two M800s in the pretty blue stripe pattern, but for some reason the M805s seem to be a bit more expensive, which led me to wait until one came along that was a better bargain.

This example was sold by a FPN member in London, which at least meant that the postal service was a lot more reliable, especially since he used tracked airmail."



"The only thing that makes this pen in any way special is that the original owner had paid Niche Pens to modify its standard M nib into an M stub, which I’m looking forward to trying out."


"I have a couple of M800s with factory IB nibs (one in the blue stripe), so it will be interesting to compare."

Wow, that stub nib looks like it'll be fun to use ! Congratulations on a great new acquisition, Glenn, and many thanks for sharing it with our club!

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 90

Today's featured newest pen-related acquisition is another clever repurposing idea courtesy of new VPC member Kevin...

Kevin: "Having been encouraged by my tidying up of 5ml sample tubes into a shotgun shell box, I began feeling more and more uneasy about my chaotic and growing collection of 10ml Herbin bottles. Surely there was something similar I could find to keep them all tidy and well-ordered.

 A completely un-related trip to the fridge for liquid refreshment of the brewed variety brought me to eye-level contact with a roll of 35mm black and white film patiently waiting for its day in the limelight. Or any light for that matter" 

(photos courtesy of Kevin ~ please click on images to enlarge)

"As is so often the case in these idle moments when one’s mind has been primed to think creatively and then presented with a random stimulus, I was taken by the fact that a roll of 35mm film is almost exactly the same dimensions as a 10ml bottle of J. Herbin ink."


 "A few minutes later and AliExpress was offering me a plethora of options for storing film. Admittedly, the one I chose is at the lower end of the spectrum and quite literally comes with an elastic band as its securing method. But then… it only cost $6.50 including shipping."

Many thanks to Kevin for sharing his new ink storage idea with us!

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 89

Back to vintage pens we go now with two vintage Sheaffer fountain pens recently acquired by René...

René: "In 1949 Sheaffer introduced the Touchdown filling system and quickly applied it to their line and replaced the older filling systems with it. They did, however, keep the old models' names and general proportions. By 1950 they redesigned the pens and introduced the more commonly found Thin Model (TM) Touchdown pens, while still keeping the classic names."

 (all photos courtesy of Rene ~ please click on images to enlarge)


Sheaffer "Fat Model" Valiant 

"This particular pen is one of what is now known as the "fat model" pens of that short period of Touchdown pens before the Thin Models were introduced. "


"One of the signatures of this period, other than the larger girth, is that many of the nibs still carried serial numbers, meant for warranty purposes (though some very early TM pens apparently have them too). This one is the Valiant, which is a white dot model with the cylindrical, two tone (gold nib with partial platinum mask) "Triumph" nib."


"When it came to me, the Touchdown mechanism was still intact and functional, though the sac was twisted (I untwisted it) and the piston is still rather stiff. The odd thing about this pen is that the cap appears to be a Statesman cap, rather than the Valiant one, which should have a wider cap band with two engraved rings. Discussing it with VPCer Christopher, we decided that likely it was a factory mismatch from leftover parts, perhaps from a slightly later period just after the switchover to the TM models - not a rare occurrence in pen history."


"Here's the "Fat model" Valiant with another pen I also just acquired, a lovely burgundy TM Statesman (also a Touchdown filler, but unrestored), for thickness comparison"

What a handsome duo! Congratulations to René on acquiring these classic vintage fountain pens, and our thanks to him for sharing his new finds with us :) If you'd like to read more about these Sheaffer models, René recommends this article on - "Sheaffer Early Touchdown Pens 1949-1950".