Thursday, June 30, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 394

In honour of Canada Day tomorrow, I thought I'd post some photos of my fountain pens with some vintage Canadian postcards. I bought the pens from Charals via their webstore last summer:

(please click on images to enlarge)
Above: Lamy 'Safari ' white fountain pen "I Love Vancouver" special edition sold by Charals

Above: 'Lamy' Safari in yellow, a colour that's part of their regular (non-Limited Edition / Special Edition) production line. Before 2010, the yellow 'Safari' pens came with black clips and black nibs.

Above: Lamy 'Vista' fountain pen, which is essentially a clear demonstrator Lamy 'Safari'

Have a great Canada Day long weekend, everyone!

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 393

Here's a beautiful new ink recently acquired by Stuart from the Vancouver Pen Shop...

(photo courtesy of Stuart  ~ please click on image to enlarge)
Stuart writes: "At Van Pen today, I picked up a bottle of one of the three new Iroshizuku colours from Pilot - sui-gyoku, or emerald green. I love it, in a crowded field of green inks it stands out, a beautiful shade that shades very well. I think it will be popular."

The pen in the photo is Stuart's beautiful Graf von Faber-Castell 'Intuition' fountain pen :) Our thanks to Stuart for sharing this gorgeous new ink with us!

Sunday, June 26, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 392

Today's featured new acquisition is a German-made school pen made by Pelikan. I'd recently reviewed several different economy-model Pelikans that wrote very well, so when this one popped up on my radar, I ordered it from a German seller on eBay.

Meet my new Pelikan 'Happy' (model P24) fountain pen:

(please click on images to enlarge)

The pen arrived in its original hanging card packaging, along with a 6-pack of Pelikan Royal Blue ink cartridges. Total price I paid was 15.90 Euros (8.90 for the pen + 7.00 shipping from Germany), which is about $21 CAD.

There were actually two older Pelikan models with the same name--the original Pelikan 'Happy' model that came out in 1973 and was made from 1973-1977, then a Happy' model that was produced from 2006 to 2013, and finally this model which came out in 2016 (and as far as I know, is still in production). All three versions are cartridge/converter models, and this latest one can hold two standard short international ink cartridges (or one long cartridge) in its barrel.

The current Pelikan 'Happy' comes in four designs ---red with rings, blue with rings (which both came out in 2014), red with stripes and blue with stripes (which came out in 2015). I love the colour red and the design of the striped one reminded me a bit of the falling digital code (aka "Matrix digital rain") in the Matrix films, so that's why I chose it.

Its unusual cap design reminds me of the Pelikan 'Colani' models, whose caps were designed to look like a pelican's head viewed in profile. The hole in the cap (presumably meant for a carrying cord) reminded me a bit of the one on the Faber-Castell 'Scribolino' (the older version with the peapod-shaped cap). The Pelikan one is slanted, though, and gives the cap a subtle elegance, despite it being a pen designed for the younger set. The clip does a nice job of attaching onto paper and clothing, and although it's made of plastic, it's securely anchored to the cap.

The pen's barrel is made of a much thicker plastic than the clip, and feels very durable.
The bottom of the pen's barrel is flat and has two small holes (presumably for child safety reasons), so the pen is not suitable for conversion to an eyedropper-filler.

Now, for some measurements I did! The pen's capped length is 5.2 inches (13.2 cm)...

...while its uncapped length (nib tip to barrel end) is 4.7 inches (11.9 cm)...

...and its posted length is 6.3 inches (16 cm). Being an all-plastic fountain pen, it's very light, weighing about 11.7 grams with no cartridge/converter inside. The diameter of its molded triangular grip section goes from 1.15 cm at its widest to 0.95 cm at the nib end of the pen. The grip section (like the pen's cap) has a lightly-textured surface and is very comfortable to hold. The pen posts very securely and, because it's so light and well-balanced, I prefer to use it this way.

The nib is made of stainless steel and is unmarked. Until I opened the packaging, I didn't realize that the nib had no tipping material:

This wasn't an oversight on Pelikan's part--the nib is a so-called "butterfly nib", created by folding the nib's tines inwards. I've seen these nibs on cheaper vintage fountain pens, but also on some modern fountain pens (e.g. the Schneider 'Voice' & 'Easy models'). I was a bit worried about its smoothness, but my pen's untipped steel nib writes very smoothly and lays down a line somewhere between a Fine and a Medium.

The feed looks like the one on many economy model Pelikans, so if this nib gets worn down (because it lacks the iridium tipping), I'll swap it out for a different Pelikan nib. Right now, I'm very happy with the way it writes.

All in all, the Pelikan 'Happy' is a sturdy, fun little pen that might just put a smile on your face :)

(photos & review by Maja)

Friday, June 24, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 391

Here's a very inexpensive fountain pen I recently acquired -- a Jinhao '65'.  I saw this model during a visit to Nikaido when the shop's co-owner Joe showed me the one he bought from Aliexpress.  As soon as I got home, I ordered one for myself for the low, low price of $4.34 CAD, including shipping (link)...

(please click on images to enlarge)
There was only one colour option for the pen--matte black-- but I thought it suited the pen's simple design and I liked the way it looked in the photos, so I didn't mind. The pen arrived, safe and sound, in a no-frills, narrow cardboard box with the words "Business Gift Pen" and "Made in China" on it.

It's a long, slender, cylindrical fountain pen measuring 13.4 cm long capped, 16.1 cm posted and 11.9 cm uncapped (my measurements).

The weight of the pen is about 13.7 grams empty, with the cap accounting for about 6.6 grams of that.  The pen posts easily and securely, and I prefer using it that way as it's nicely balanced and not overly long when posted.

The pen's cap, barrel and clip are made of a matte black metal, but the ribbed section is made of black plastic. The monotone steel nib is very Lamy-like (more on that below) ...

... and has the Jinhao chariot logo, company name and "F" (for Fine) on it.

Although the nib's width is marked as Fine (and was described as being 0.5mm in width by the seller), to me, it writes more like an Extra-Fine. It is a smooth writer, though, and I have no complaints about it. It doesn't have any flex to it, but I didn't expect any. There was an Extra-Fine (0.38mm) nib width option for the pen, but I wanted the wider of the two nibs.

The pen came with a ink converter (which did not have the Jinhao name on the turning stem) in place, but I haven't tried using it with ink cartridges yet (the pen did not come with any cartridges). I did try putting a standard international ink cartridge on it, but the opening wasn't wide enough. I'll have to look into that later, but for now, the supplied converter works well.

Remember how I said the Jinhao's nib was very "Lamy-like"? Well, as soon as I saw the pen, I was instantly reminded of my Lamy 'cp1' fountain pen --the top pen in the photo above.

When I started researching the history of the Lamy 'cp1' on Fountain Pen Network, I found out that there were two versions--- one made before 1983, which was shorter and skinnier (like my example from 1978 - model 58), and a later version which was longer and thicker. The Jinhao '65' appears to have been inspired by the earlier Lamy 'cp1' version.

The later Lamy cp1's came with the same nib and feed as Lamy's 'Safari' pens, whereas the nib on my early 'cp1' is completely unmarked and also lacks a breather hole. The Jinhao '65' also lacks a breather hole, which adds support to my theory that it was based on the earlier 'cp1' version.

I wasn't able to slide the nib off my Jinhao but I believe Joe was able to do so, and I think he put a Lamy nib on it (Joe--please correct me if I'm wrong!). The other parts of the pens (caps, barrels and sections) are not interchangeable, though, as the Jinhao is ever-so-slightly wider (it's just over 0.9 cm in width vs. just under 0.9cm for my Lamy 'cp1').

Another difference--the design of the Lamy 'cp1' clip (top) looks much nicer (and the clip feels a lot more robust) than the simple clip on the Jinhao. The Jinhao's cap top and barrel ends are flat and unadorned, and its clip has no markings on it. In fact, aside from the Jinhao name and logo on the nib, there is nothing else on the pen that indicates it's a Jinhao writing instrument.

Above: I thought the Jinhao's barrel was closed (like the Lamy cp1's) but it actually has four small vertical slits in it. I'm not sure why it's like that---perhaps for safety reasons (to prevent choking should someone swallow the cap)?? Both the Jinhao and Lamy post via friction, but the Lamy posts with a nice "click" whereas the Jinhao doesn't make that sound. I haven't used the Jinhao long enough to tell how well its black finish holds up to repeated posting (or general use, for that matter).

The Jinhao '65' is a cool-looking, very portable fountain pen---it's light in weight and fits in the narrowest of journal loops--but the writing experience and build quality can't compare to that of the Lamy 'cp1'. For $4 CAD shipped, though, the Jinhao is worth buying if you're looking for a lightweight, modern-looking fountain pen. Many thanks to Joe for inspiring this purchase!

(photos & review by Maja)

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 390

One more marvelous vintage Parker fountain pen, courtesy of Christopher! This one is his Parker Oversized Silver Pearl Vacumatic, Circa: 1936

 Christopher writes: "By far my favourite vintage fountain pen has to be the Parker Vacumatic, and right at the top of my list is the first generation Oversized model. This is a very big pen, both in overall size and girth. In fact, there is little reduction in the size from stem to stern. Brought out by Parker in 1933, it retained its consistent tubular shape until it was streamlined in 1937 when Parker tapered both ends of the pen to create an entirely new look. Also, the triple cap banding was changed to a wider single band and the well-established lockdown Vacumatic filler was replaced with the second generation Parker Speedline Vacumatic filler. So, the Parker oversized Vacumatic lasted five years but coupled with a much higher price, which was and is not in everybody’s pocket book (both for the original buyer and more currently for the vintage pen collector), to my mind makes it somewhat of a rare item."

(photos courtesy of Christopher ~ please click on image to enlarge)

"Other impressive feature regarding this fine writing instrument are the matching finish on the barrel, cap, blind cap and double jewels. In the US, these pens also had a matching finish on the grip but in Canada where this particular pen hails from, the grip section is black. Jumping out from this jet section is one big two tone Parker 14K gold arrow nib. It is interesting to note that the Canadian Vacumatic nibs were somewhat more elongated in shape over their US counterparts. This Oversized Parker nib definitely is a medium broad with a flexy delivery and truly a joy to write with.

Finally, yet one last interesting feature, in that the Vacumatic lockdown filler tube is not the commonly made aluminum one but nickel plated. This in itself is a blessing because the aluminum lockdown filler notch tends to wear down more often, thus not allowing the filler to lockdown as it was intended. The nickel plated version is a lot stronger to stand the test of time. As for size, this pen posts at 6 13/32nd inches but caps back to 5 13/32nd inches with a wide girth of 17/32nd inches or (0.53”). Is there any more that I can reflect about this wonderful vintage pen other than it will be in my weekly pen round up on a most regular basis."

We'll be back with a modern pen-related new acquisition on Friday. Until then, our thanks to Christopher (and everyone else who has sent in stuff for our blog) for sharing!

Monday, June 20, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 389

Today we're featuring another great vintage Parker find. Our thanks, as always, to Christopher for his informative write-ups and wonderful photos!

Christopher: "I think it is safe to say that green is my favourite colour and that does apply to vintage fountain pens as well. So, in this case, it is a very fine condition Parker Emerald Green Vacumatic Major sporting double jewels with the typical second generation Parker Blue Diamond warranty 14K gold filled arrow clip. This model also features the somewhat new Parker ‘Speedline’ filler - a filler which remains out and ready to use, but covered by a long jeweled blind cap."

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

"In 1940, Canadian Parker Vacumatic pens sported black jewels along with black grip sections, but this in no way takes away from the sheer elegance of this fine early 40s pen. The Parker Vacumatic Major came on board in the Vacumatic line up in 1937 - not as a replacement for any of the other models, but as a brand new Parker Vacumatic kick at the can. It was identical to the Standard Streamlined sized Vacumatic in every aspect save only a single but medium broad cap band with an inverted chevrons chasing. The Emerald Green and Pearl coloured Parker Vacumatics were introduced, by the way, in 1935. The Parker Vacumatic Major model went on to become one of Parkers best sellers until it was discontinued in the US in 1948 and in Canada as late as 1953 (it was drowned out by the incredible success of Parker’s ‘51’). 

Other outstanding features of this Emerald lovely are its brilliant pearl/emerald ‘Pyralin/Celluloid’ laminated plastic luster finish, its noteworthy barrel transparency and a stunning 14K gold with platinum mask Parker arrow nib. This nib sits on a Vacumatic W marked or wide Vacumatic feed (the wide referring to the ink channel along the top of the feed) which was intended originally for the likes of broad, stub and oblique nibs. So, needless to say, the nib in this case is a medium broad with impressive flex. What more can I say about this vintage Parker other then it will be well used with my writing hand."

Saturday, June 18, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 388

 Today's featured new acquisition is a vintage Parker 'Magnetix' desk set belonging to Stuart!

Stuart writes: "I’ve got another great desk set for my collection, and you’ll recognize it from the 1947 Parker ad you recently linked to on the club blog! I got it from Pendemonium, and as they don’t ship through the infamous Global Shipping Program of eBay, the set arrived in eight days."

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

"The base is solid Lucite, and see the colour!"

"From Richard Binder’s website, I determined that this colour is Plum, the same as was used in Aerometric 51’s. It’s a very deep, rich colour, and I love it."

"It works beautifully with the gold anodized aluminum piece in the centre. And I like the contrast between the curves of the base and the straight lines of the insert."

"The pen’s a 21, with a lovely smooth steel nib, described by Pendemonium as an XF, but I think it’s a Medium - it writes too big a line to be an F or XF. I’m thrilled with this one, it’s a great addition to my collection."

Wow, what a looker! Stuart - congrats on this great find, and thank you for sharing it here :)

Thursday, June 16, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 387

Continuing with classy black vintage pens, here's another one recently acquired by Christopher -- a Parker UK AF Duofold!

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

Christopher: "The Brits' approach to Parker pens has always fascinated me but, initially, Parker had their Commonwealth pens produced in Canada for export to Britain. When a company in England was finally bought by Parker to produce their product overseas, the company that stepped up to the plate was the Valentine Pen Company.

For the British pen market, a newly designed Duofold pen was introduced in 1946. This pen followed its predecessor as a metal button filler, more or less the same as the original North American Duofold, but in 1948 an aluminum button filler was applied. This aluminum filler was also in use in the British Parker Victory line of pens where it had been quite successful and well received until it was duly replaced.

The new British Parker Duofold was more of a streamlined design and sported the wide feather 14K Gold Filled Parker arrow clip. Around 1953, the aluminum filler was replaced with the Parker aerometric filler, which had been in use in the Parker 51. Throughout its history, the UK Parker Duofold held its own and, for me, this pen is a total winner."

For more information on this model, check out this article on Thank you, Christopher, for sharing your newest find with us!

Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 386

As promised, here's that handsome vintage European fountain pen that Christopher recently acquired...

Christopher writes: "When it comes to vintage German pens, I never have had many in my collection. Still, I will admit when I ran across this Melbi Transparent, I was truly smitten. This pen is definitely German in overall design in that it has a rather short squat shape, but the design and placement of the different elements that comprise this pen definitely make up for its dimensions.

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

He continues: "The finish is a high quality black plastic, but whereas the barrel and twist knob at the barrel’s end are smooth, the cap is smartly chased. The fittings are 14K Gold Filled and the cap has a long inner cap screw, with an outer part that forms the top end of the cap. The cap screw locks down a long ring clip that sports an oak tree branch acorn-ended 14K gold filled clip. This rather large clip also has the Melbi branding running vertically down from the top. Finishing off this cap at the open end is a very thin 14K Gold Filled cap ring. 

The barrel is deeply imprinted with the Melbi Transparent model branding and company logo. Below,  divided by a circular line into the barrel plastic, is the letter ‘M’ for Melbi. Below this is the turning knob to operate the piston filler mechanism. At the other end of the barrel is a long clear plastic ink view window and, above it, a jet black grip. This grip section sports a polished stainless steel medium flex, broad Melbi engraved nib. And what a great point I have to say. 

A further note about the German maker of this fine pen. The Merz & Krell Company were located in Groß-Bieberau, Germany and founded at the beginning of the 1920s. The company was initially a division of a pharmaceutical business and produced pens and mechanical pencils under the branding of Melbi until 1936. After the war and in the 1970s, Merz & Krell produced some pens for the Pelikan company and continued into the 2000s with ballpoints." 

Our thanks, as always, to Christopher for his contributions to our ongoing virtual "show & tell"!

Sunday, June 12, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 385

Just a few shots of a Jinhao fountain pen I very recently acquired-- an all-orange version of the same Jinhao '100 Centennial' (a/k/a Jinhao 'Century 100') model I reviewed (in depth) a couple of months ago here...

I didn't realize there was an all-orange version until I saw a YouTube review of it ... and immediately fell in love with the pen. I was worried it might sell out quickly, so after I found it on Aliexpress
, I purchased it right away (on April 7) for $28.52 CAD including shipping.

(please click on images to enlarge)
I got a tracking number from the seller, so I was able to follow the parcel's progress online as it made its way from China to Canada. On May 10th, I got email notification that it was successfully delivered by Canada someone in Sainte-Luce, Quebec! Turns out the logistics company in China put the wrong address on my parcel 😞

I contacted the seller (who was very apologetic) and she sent another pen to me, pretty much immediately. It arrived last week, safe and sound. Whew!

Unlike my other orange Jinhao '100 Centennial', this one has an orange cap finial, orange barrel end, and an orange section (and a different clip -this one has a beautiful arrow clip vs. the other's ball-ended clip). Both pens have the same nice, big Jinhao #6 size two-tone steel nib, but this one just says "Jinhao" and "F" (for Fine) on it, not "Jinhao 18 KGP" like my other one. Interestingly, the nib on this all-orange pen lays down a true Fine line, whereas the other Jinhao nib (without any nib width marked on it) lays down a Medium line.

The seller told me that the original Jinhao box was now out of stock but I said I didn't mind, so the replacement pen came in a small, narrow cardboard Jinhao box. It got a bit squished in transit, but the pen inside was undamaged. I never noticed that there were two figures in the horse-drawn carriage in the Jinhao logo until I took the photo above for this review 🙄

Anyway, that's it--a very brief look at a lovely pen & smooth writer that I got for a very reasonable price (and a bit of postal delivery drama ;)

(~photos & review by Maja~)

Stay tuned for a review of a handsome vintage European pen belonging to Christopher that'll be posted here on Tuesday!

Friday, June 10, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 384 & National Ballpoint Day!

Happy National Ballpoint Day! 🖊️

Today is a day to celebrate the ballpoint pen, so I thought I'd post a review of my new Retro 51 'Slim Tornado' ballpoint:

(the photo above was part of a contest I entered--please excuse my drawing skills, or lack thereof --but I liked the way the pen looked in that light ;)

I love just about everything made by this
Dallas, Texas-based company (which also makes desk sets & accessories, card holders, gadgets and other cool things). I've been collecting Retro 51 pens for over 20 years and I've posted photos of pens from my collection before, but I haven't done an overview of their most popular writing instrument line, so I thought I'd do that in this review.

The Retro '51' Tornado:

The first Retro 51 'Tornado' pen burst onto the market in 1999 (with the tagline "This pen will blow you away!") as a capless rollerball, but the product line grew to include ballpoints, mechanical pencils, underliners and fountain pens. A small handful of models are made of bamboo, but the vast majority are lacquered metallic-bodied writing instruments. They come in a variety of imaginative designs, colours, sizes and writing forms, but all of the 'Tornado' writing instruments are capless (except the fountain pens, of course) and share one distinctive feature---their knurled cap tops, which twist to propel & retract the ballpoint/rollerball refills and pencil leads (the lone exception is the 'Snapper Tornado', which has a knurled cap top, but uses a click-action). 

I mentioned that the 'Tornado' pens came in various sizes--here's a photo I found online that shows three 'Tornado' models side by side:

The 'Slim Tornado' ballpoint (the model featured in this review) first appeared in the 2016 Retro 51 catalog in the "Electron", "Graphite" and "Ocean" designs:

There weren't that many 'Slim Tornado' designs made --the three from 2016 (above) and four others which appear in the 2017 catalog - the "Aquamarine", "Lavender" & "Moonstone" (which all had metallic lacquer barrels) and the "Deco Slim" (which had a .925 Sterling Silver barrel).

Retro 51 also made five 'Slim Tornado' pens with the Apple logo on them -- four in colours that matched the iPhone 6S/6S Plus colours ("Space Grey", "Silver", "Gold" & "Rose Gold") and one in "Matte Black". Unfortunately, these pens were only available from the Apple company store at their HQ in Cupertino, California.

Ok, enough background info....Onto my pen!

 (please click on images to enlarge)

 The 'Slim Tornado' does not appear in any Retro 51 catalogs after 2017, so it appears to be a short-lived Retro 51 model...and it's becoming more and more difficult to find. That's why I was so happy to see that Buchan's Kerrisdale Stationery & Gifts in Vancouver still had a couple left for sale. I acquired my "Aquamarine" version from them a couple of days before my birthday last month (the chocolate was a little birthday treat from them :)

The pen comes in a slimmed-down version of Retro 51's famous graphics tube, which --fittingly-- has a retro aesthetic. Every time I get a new Retro 51 pen, it seems to come in a tube with a different design on it, which is very cool (apparently, some people even collect the tubes). The tubes used to be made of metal, but the company switched over to cardboard at some point, presumably for environmental reasons. Retro 51 has produced bamboo 'Tornado' pens to raise money for environmental groups like the Arbor Day Foundation, and the Retro 51 wooden pen tray is also made of bamboo, which is a sustainable material.

The tube also acts as a pen stand or a carrying case, thanks to its molded foam cushioning...

Above: The pen's aquamarine finial, which matches the colour of the pen. Other 'Tornado' models have more decorative finials that match the patterns/designs of their respective pen bodies.

(my pen and my Paper-Oh 'Quadro' B6 size lined notebook - I reviewed the B6.5 size in March)

According to Retro 51, the 'Slim Tornado' is 5 inches/125 mm long, 0.4 inch/10 mm in diameter, and weighs 0.8 oz/22.6 grams. In comparison, a standard Parker 'Jotter' ballpoint weighs about 15 grams and the Parker 'Jotter XL' ballpoint about 19 grams.

The pen comes with a black Retro 51 'Easy Flow 9000' ballpoint refill, which lays down a dark, smooth line, but you can also use a Parker-style refill in it (note: the refill that comes with the standard/'Big Shot' 'Tornado' capless rollerball pens--a Retro 51-branded Schmidt capless rollerball refill--is too wide to fit in the 'Slim Tornado').

I love the colour of the pen and its matte finish -- it matches the matte finish on the chrome trim so well. Its smooth, cool finish is also very pleasant to the touch. The 'Tornado' line of pens and pencils are known for being well-balanced and the 'Slim Tornado' is no exception. They are well-built and feel durable, too. 'Tornado' pens are designed in the U.S. by Retro 51's designers (with the exception of a few limited editions), and are hand-assembled and made in Taiwan.

Above: my Aquamarine 'Slim Tornado' next to a standard 'Tornado' Classic Lacquer in Pink (it looks purple, but it isn't). As some have remarked, the difference in size between the two pens is less obvious in photos.

The standard 'Tornado' is the same length as the 'Slim Tornado' but its max diameter is 12.3 mm and it weighs 1.0 oz/28 grams (data from The Classic Lacquers are made of stainless steel, but there are other standard-sized 'Tornados' that contain brass or copper, and are heavier.

Retro 51's motto is "Life is too short to carry an ugly pen!" and I'm so happy I was able to add this very pretty pen to my Retro 51 collection and support a great local pen store at the same time :) Many thanks to Buchan's for the stuff I bought at their store last month (I'll be reviewing the other items in a different blog post) and the birthday goodies, too!

photos & review by Maja)

Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 383

Today's featured new acquisition is this lovely vintage pen made by an American manufacturer from Boston, Massachusetts:

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

Its proud owner -Christopher- writes: "I will admit that the Moore Fingertip fountain pen has always been an item that I have been after but, along the way and recently, I ran across its predecessor, a Moore 94-A Life Maniflex. And may I add that in no way is this particular Moore model any less desirable in my estimation. To start off with, the finish on this Life Maniflex is outstanding. Truly a feast for the eyes with a multicolour application of pearl, grey and jet with a transparent overlay of brown. The mix of colours is separated diagonally with thin black lines to create a superb overall appearance on barrel and cap.

The ends of both barrel and pap are flat rounded off and the 14K gold filled arrow style clip has a rivet fastener similar to the Waterman Ideal clip. And to add a finishing touch on this stylish clip, Moore has featured their branding between the feathers at the top end. The cap band, which is also 14K gold filled is similar to the Parker ‘Stacked Coin’ jeweler’s band. This is a lever filler fountain pen with a jet black grip section. But, by far to my mind, the best feature on this vintage writing instrument is the Moore Maniflex nib. Rendered in 14K gold, it stands out with a sharp crisp application of ink on paper. Truly a thing of beauty and a joy to write with. I am so pleased to add this fine vintage pen to my collection."


I asked Christopher if the cap's finial was the "bullseye" type (commonly seen on this particular Moore model) as the first photo in this blog post doesn't show the top of the cap. He quickly sent in the photo directly above, and added more information: "Regarding the Moore, there is no Bullseye cap finial. What it is, is a 14K gold filled ‘Conical Disk rivet’ that holds the clip down on the top of the barrel, much like the method used by Waterman with their Ideal clip. I had the disk tested because I was curious and it is 14K gold filled. I think a lot of collectors just take for granted if some of the fittings are identified as 14K gold filled that all of the fittings are as such. Oh sure, on a quality vintage pen like this Moore, I was pretty sure but, hey, it never hurts to check. I have attached a photo in support of my description."

Many thanks to Christopher for sharing this vintage beauty (and his vintage pen knowledge) with us!