Sunday, May 23, 2021

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 200

Since April 2020, I've been posting our members' newest acquisitions on this blog every other day like clockwork, and I can't believe we're already up to post #200! Wow, that was fast...

And speaking of's Trevor's newest pen-related acquisition...

 Obsession, Passion, or Dysfunction?
By Trevor Johnson

"Anyone who has known me for a while learns that when I’m into something, I’m REALLY into it. Whether it’s toys, or shoes, or guitars, or cars, or pens, I tend to find a corner of it and latch on. For example, I have a love of Japanese made Ibanez guitars from the late 1980s. At one time I had 25 of them, mostly from 1986. Lately, that latched interest has been Italy. A couple of years ago, and especially since the pandemic has provided more “free” time, I have taken to Italian wine, like Ruffino Moscato d’Asti, and Roscato Rosso Dolce. I’ve been working on perfecting my pasta and sauces, I’m considering learning to speak Italian and of course, as I have since I was a boy, I love Italian cars, especially Ferrari. Being of modest means like most of us, my ownership of Ferrari has been limited to models and licensed products, so I have Ferrari Puma shoes, Bburago die cast models, Lego Speed Champion Ferrari sets and the latest add…a Sheaffer Intensity Ferrari Fountain Pen:

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

"I had seen some Ferrari branded pens on Facebook Marketplace and considered them but found that they just weren’t interesting enough. Researching them online, I found that they were an off brand, poorly made/reviewed and pricey. So I moved on and kind of forgot about the idea for a time. Fast forward to April 2021. With the expectation of a pretty nice income tax return and bills caught up, I decided to treat myself to a new fountain pen. Something nice. Something elegant. Something that would look great in my collection along with my Parker Urban in Vibrant Magenta .

I wandered around Amazon as I typically do, looking at Parker, Cross, Waterman, and other fine brands when my mind drifted to those Ferrari pens. “There must be better ones!” I thought. So I looked and sure as rain in Vancouver, Sheaffer Ferrari pens. Gorgeous! Red, Yellow, Black, Chrome! So many to choose from! But then the sticker shock… $150 to $300ish… I was brought quickly back to Earth. As I’m scrolling, I spot a lone White model. $38? Really? Listing shows one left… In the cart… I almost start second guessing it. I don’t even know why. You’d think it was a no brainer. Part of that journey was also to find a nice black ink. So I left it in the cart and started looking at ink. A few minutes later I found a nice black from Diamine and put it in the cart too. That’s when I remembered “Only one of that pen left! Better snag it!” Did the check out and the 1 left became “We will let you know when we have a delivery date.” What?! That’s dirty pool… Thinking I can cancel if I can find it elsewhere, I soon realize that it was half the price of regular, and some of them even get up to $130. I decide to be patient.

During what seemed like an eternity between ordering and receiving, I took the knowledge of Enzo Ferrari used purple ink in his Montblanc fountain pen when signing deals, very well documented surrounding the Ford/Ferrari merger that was being discussed in the 1960s, and figured maybe I could find some of the same one he used… no… searches of blogs, fountain pen enthusiast and Ferrari enthusiast forums only found speculation. The only thing that I could really find was that it was a French made Violet that was brought in once per year by a small pen shop near the Ferrari factory. They would acquire a litre of it to gift to Mr. Ferrari. The shop is still there, but the staff don’t have a record of what it was. I figured, as tribute to the man who made the cars that captured my heart, I would at least use a French Violet ink, so I bought a bottle of Herbin Violette Pensée. I was ready!

Finally on May 12, 2021, I hear what sounds like a dirty gym bag being hurled at my door and 2 solid knocks. I open the door and find 3 Amazon pouches on my doorstep. Ooh! It’s like Christmas! I grab the parcels and rush back inside. I opened the pouches… First I find a Parker Jotter in Royal Blue I snagged for Shanin. Every time my Jotter folder is open she comments on the Royal Blue being her favourite. Now she has her own. (I’ll get her into this obse.. er.. hobby eventually). Second Pouch is a pack of Silk handkerchiefs. Very nice. Allergy season is upon us, can’t be too prepared! The third pouch… a beautiful Red Box with the Prancing Horse Emblem:

"Inside the cardboard is a vinyl covered gift box in the same red with the same emblem. Wow. I’ve seen fine jewelry that doesn’t come in a box this nice. I open the hinged box and am greeted with the dazzling white lacquer and chrome trim of this Sheaffer. The clip adorned with the same Ferrari crest. The chrome trim around the base of the lid proudly states Scuderia Ferrari. With trembling fingers I lift the pen from its bed of velvet. It's heavy. 40 grams according to my kitchen scale. The cap is 17 of those."

"The feel in the hand is superb. It’s balanced, so the weight doesn’t bother. I filled the included converter with the Herbin ink (It also came with 2 ink cartridges, blue and black Sheaffer Skrip) and gave it a try. The medium nib is smooth and not too wet. When posted, the pen becomes back heavy, so I won’t be using it that way."

"I must say I am impressed with the modern Sheaffer pens I’ve been getting lately. As a long time NoNonsense user and someone who leans towards “They don’t make them like they used to” in some ways, I have been pleasantly surprised. I will definitely be keeping my eyes open for more Ferrari Sheaffers. Another win for the collection!" 

Congrats on a great deal, Trevor! Many thanks for sharing this handsome acquisition (and the story of how you acquired it) with all of us :)

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