Saturday, October 30, 2021

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 278

Here's another great vintage find recently acquired by Stuart! It's an attractive desk set that was part of Sheaffer's "Dry-Proof" desk set line, designed to prevent the set's desk pen from drying out when not in use:

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

Stuart: "Here’s the new baby that was delivered last night! A Sheaffer desk-set, in its original box. This one’s in the 1938 Sheaffer catalog as set F133 GBAZE, and sold for $5.00."( link to 1938 Sheaffer catalog--see page 12).


"The box lid is very frail, with glue holding the top panel on at only one side, and some creasing, but the box bottom is still good for storing the set."

"The base is Pedrara onyx, from Mexico, with a brown plastic disc mounted on top, and a matching brown holder and pen. The #3 pen’s sac is kaput, so I’ve swapped a brown White Dot pen from another set in for the time being. 

The name J. J. Janousek is imprinted on the barrel of the set’s pen, and that name appears on the label on the bottom. Mr. Janousek worked for the Hartford Insurance Co., in the Exchange Building, presumably in Middletown, Ohio, where the set comes from. I like the handwritten date - December 27, 1939! With the pen being personalized, I wonder if the label refers to a work order for the job?"

"I like how Sheaffer packed the desk-pen, with the taper removed and the nib protected by a sturdy cardboard sleeve, a great idea! Even at the lower end of their range of desk-sets, Sheaffer provided handsome packaging.

I’m very pleased with this set! The one in the 1941 catalog has a black pen, holder, and disc, so not quite the same. I like the brown colour scheme - very handsome. Sheaffer used black or brown for its desk-pens and matching parts, I guess because they’re the most formal, dignified colours. I’m impressed with how the disc and holder on mine have retained their polished shine over 82 years - Sheaffer quality!" 

Congrats to Stuart on another wonderful addition to his vintage desk set collection!

For more information on the designs (yes, there were more than one) behind Sheaffer's "Dry-Proof" desk sets, check out Roger Wooten's (archived) article: "The Dry Socket Base"

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