Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 310

Today's featured newest acquisition belongs to Glenn Garside (one of our honourary members), who purchased this very special fountain pen for a very special occasion. Intrigued? Read on!

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

 Pelikan Toledo M900.

2021 was the year of our Golden Wedding, a great excuse to treat myself to a ‘golden’ grail pen, especially when Cult Pens offered a discount I could not refuse, making it literally the best price in the world. I know that with certainty because my Scots-Yorkshire ancestry insisted that I do my pricing homework first. I note that their current selling price is considerably higher than on May 12, 2021, when I ordered my pen, so I am extremely glad I ordered it when I did!
I expected my pen to arrive in plenty time for our September 25th anniversary, but, because of industrial unrest and Covid-related supply issues at the Pelikan factory in Germany, it actually arrived the first week of January 2022! So much for my original optimism, but, as the saying goes, ‘better late than never!’
The decorative technique used on Pelikan Toledos originally travelled with the Arabs into Spain, and has been perfected over the centuries, especially in the famous Spanish town of Toledo. It involves engraving a pattern into a metal surface, after which a thin sheet of gold is placed over the pattern and embossed deep into the engraving with the help of a little hammer. To enhance the effect of the gold-filled pattern, the item is heated to approximately 800°C so that the metal surfaces oxidize while the gold shines and contrasts even more brightly.
In 1931 Pelikan adopted this technique for their Toledo pens (M900/910 & M700/710) with so much success that the design has remained virtually unchanged ever since. Every single pen is a unique, craftsman-made art-work. Engraving by hand, one of more than 300 individual steps to create each pen, is slow and limits production to a maximum of 200 pieces per month, even in the best of times.

Each pen is individually numbered on the barrel ring next to the filler knob, and presented in a lovely black, lacquered and silk-lined wooden gift box, together with the signed multi-lingual booklet about the pen.

The standard M800 bi-colour nib is 18ct/750 gold with rhodium accents and comes in the standard four sizes (XF, F, M & B); I chose the Broad option. Similarly, the trim & traditional Pelikan beak clip are the usual polished gold-plate, and the black cap, section & filler knob are made from the high-quality resin used in the other Souveräns.

The decorative barrel sleeve is made from one piece of Sterling Silver, with the motif covered by a layer of 24ct gold (vermeil.) One side of the barrel depicts a pelican with its head bowed, while the other side shows a pelican and its young.

  (To see super-sized images of photos: left-click on photo, then right-click & select "Open image in new tab" /"View image", then left-click on image in the newly-opened tab)

Being based on the M800, the M900 shares its dimensions and ink capacity; however, as you might expect, the Toledo is 9.3gm heavier, courtesy of the vermeil barrel.

That sounds a lot heavier than most pens, and is perhaps not to everyone’s taste, but I note that my Sheaffer Asia Series Bamboo Royal Selangor pen, which is made from Pewter, weighs 41.9gm and is a lovely pen to use, so I don’t anticipate any problem whatsoever.

The Dimensions:


Total Length

Barrel Length

Cap Length


Ink Capacity

38.6 gm

141 mm capped.

165 mm posted.

105 mm

67 mm

13.0 mm

1.35 ml


There are many others, but by and large, everyone uses the same basic text, no doubt supplied by Pelikan in their marketing material; surprisingly, the https://www.pelikan.com/ website doesn’t list any of the Souver
äns at all.

Brisbane, Australia.
Tuesday, 11 January 2022

Our thanks to Glenn for sharing this beautiful fountain pen with all of us! (and belated Golden Wedding Anniversary wishes to Glenn and his wife :)

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