Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 457

The pen we're featuring today is a modern classic that (arguably) should be in every serious fountain pen collector's collection--the venerable Parker '75'! This one belongs to Christopher...

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

Christopher begins: "Regarding complete casing metal fountain pens, I will admit that I am rather fussy about what I like, and what I don’t like regarding the chasing on the finish. Then again, when this Parker 75 was gifted to me, it kind of grew on me until I found myself quite liking it.

The 75 was introduced in the mid 1960s to boost sales and reclaim market share for the Parker company. It was the brainchild of Kenneth Parker, George Parker’s son who was commander-in-chief at the time and definitely at the driving end of the Parker’s success. Well versed with what a newly designed and innovated product could do, he had targeted the upper end of the pen market in the over ten dollar price category. Subsequently, the Parker 75 was a thoughtfully designed writing instrument well suited to any man’s pocket or lady’s hand bag. Strikingly elegant in its own unique way, let us start off with the stacked coin ends of both the barrel and cap. Add the Parker signature arrow clip and any number of barrel and cap finishes. In fact, the selection seemed endless. Something for everyone and anyone. But the good quality design did not end on the outside but followed suit on the inside with a very comfortable faceted and ribbed jet black grip. This rather longish part, under the cap sported an easily adjustable 14K gold nib. Adjustable for any hand by rotating a calibrated chromed metal ring. This set up was brought forward from the Parker VP where it had proven most successful. There was also a choice of fillers regarding a Parker converter style, or one could just apply a Parker ink cartridge to allow for quite a bit of writing.

My 75 has a 14K Gold Filled casing and falls under the Parker branding of an ‘Insignia’ model. The chasing on both the barrel and cap is a very attractive cross hatching. Which brings me to the pen’s size. It definitely is not a small pen, but does have a wee bit of tapering in its overall design from top to bottom and does sit very well in the hand posting at a full 5 ½ inches for writing but capping back to 5 inches for the pocket or purse. Definitely a elegant addition to any vintage pen collection including mine."

Our thanks to Christopher and everyone else who has sent in pen/ink reviews -- keep 'em coming, folks! We'll be featuring one of my own reviews (of an obscure modern German fountain pen) on Saturday :)

Sunday, January 29, 2023

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 456

As promised, here's that review of a vintage classic (courtesy of Christopher) that I promised in the last blog post...

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

Christopher: "I will admit that I have not had much of the Conklin Crescent Fillers, but when this one came up the other day, it was hard to pass by. Right away, I noted that it is a pre cap clip model and with a very attractive black hard chased rubber finish. The Crescent filler was the marvel of its day and made the Conklin company one of the big four before Eversharp stepped up. The arc of the crescent is engraved as the trade mark, ‘Crescent Filler’ and finished in 14K Gold Filled. The rounded grooved keeper that holds the crescent filling mechanism in place works extremely well. Just such a simple but well thought out filler! The round ended cap, which covers a lovely flexy 14K Gold No.3 Conklin branded nib, is quite lengthy. And to get around the absence of a cap clip, the original user added a beautifully designed Deco Eagle Pen & Pencil company brass accommodation ball ended clip.

This is a wonderful pen to write with, in that even a slight pressure applied to the nib tip and the tines open up to increase the width of any given line, impressively. Saying that, the grip section is more than adequate, with the pen posting at a full 5 ¾ inches but caps back to a very pocketable 4 ¼ inches. The condition of this pen is brilliant considering its age. A pen that would have seen the first world war but still lives to write about it. I am adding this jewel to my collection, but this week it will be in my pen round up."

Many thanks to Christopher for his review! The next review will be of a modern classic fountain pen--stay tuned! :)

Friday, January 27, 2023

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 455

Today's newest acquisition is this handsome Sheaffer fountain pen belonging to Christopher...

Christopher begins: "I am not much on the newer fountain pens, but this Sheaffer 444 Imperial caught my eye and grew on me immediately. Couple this magnetism with the fact that a lot of Sheaffer steel nibs are ground to write super smoothly. And once inked, I found this Imperial to be no exception." 

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

He continues: "The finish is a full casing buffed steel with a thin chrome cap band to set it off. The clip is also Chromed, with the Sheaffer ‘White Dot’ as a sign of quality, which the Sheaffer company applied to their better pens and is also legendary. This clip is quite short and, for that matter, straight but does hold the pen well in a jacket pocket. The barrel has a good sized girth and is round flat ended. Under this barrel, which acts as a blind cap for a well made aerometric filler. Above this business, is a smart jet grip section sporting the metal hold for the cap at one end and a beautiful inlaid Sheaffer Triumph steel nib. 

All and all, the make up of this writing instrument was made to last and I can say without a doubt, that it is in near mint condition. And may I add, thanks to its maker, it has quite a modern and space age appearance for a pen from the mid 1970s. Of course, it will help grow my Sheaffer collection and be used by yours truly regularly."

Our thanks to Christopher for his review! We'll be featuring a vintage classic of his in the next blog post, so stay tuned...

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Spotlight on a special Hero fountain pen

Today we're shining a spotlight on one Sherman's wonderful red fountain pens that were featured two days ago, at the start of the Chinese New Year!

Sherman writes: "It was a surprise gift from my buddy who works in Shanghai. I asked him to help me buy a genuine Hero 329-2 for the reminiscing of my late mom. I believed it was the first fountain pen she bought me. It’s a very low cost pen, and he sent his employee to get it for me. He bought two since the sales rep had to go to the warehouse to grab it (nothing at that entry level at the Flagship Store). Then, he also bought this pen for me."

(all photos courtesy of Sherman ~ please click on images to enlarge)
...and here it is -- a special edition Hero fountain pen, created to mark the centennial anniversary of the Communist Party of China

According to this article, the pen's elaborate packaging "...features the Red Boat on Nanhu Lake in Zhejiang Province where the last day of the Party's First National Congress was held."  
The pen was released in the year 2021, which also marked the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Hero pen company. From that same article: "The pen factory was created in 1931 by Chinese entrepreneur Zhou Jinting in the name of Huafu. It moved to the Taopu Industrial Zone in Putuo in 1954. The brand changed its name to Hero in 1966."

The pen's 0.5mm nib, with the familiar Hero floral logo...

Many thanks to Sherman for sharing this interesting bit of  history with us (along with the his excellent photographs :)

Monday, January 23, 2023

Happy Chinese New Year 2023! (Sherman's collection of red fountain pens)

Today's post is courtesy of Sherman (thanks, Sherman!), who sent these photos in for the first day of the Chinese New Year of the Rabbit...

He writes: "I would like to take this opportunity to share my humble collection of fountain pens in Red for this special day! Red symbolizes good luck in the Chinese culture, in general. Maybe that’s why I love red colour in particular, wohahaha…. All the best everyone!😍😍😍

For the 2nd photo: For Fountain Pen Lovers, showcasing the nibs I believe is essential, wohahaha…. Wish you all feeling happy today!!


(~ photos courtesy of Sherman~ )

(To see close-ups of the photos, left-click on a photo to enlarge it, then right-click & select "Open image in new tab" or "View image", then left-click on the image in the newly-opened tab)

Sunday, January 22, 2023

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 454

Happy Lunar New Year 2023!

It's the Year of the Rabbit now, so I thought it only fitting that I post a review of the Hongdian 'N7' "Moon Rabbit" (aka "Gray Resin") fountain pen I bought last year...

I was drawn to it because the symbols on its barrel (rabbits, suns, moons, et al) were mysterious... and cute -- as Amy said of her own example of this pen at our January meeting, "It has a rabbit on a ladder. Need I say more??" 😆

(all photos below taken by Maja ~ please click on images to enlarge)

I purchased this Chinese-made piston-filling fountain pen from seller 'esybuy'on etsy.com last April for the equivalent of $38 CAD shipped. The barrel is made of a swirly grey acrylic, but the cap, section and turning knob are made of brass with a satiny-smooth dark grey finish that looks nice, but isn't slippery. The metal trim is gunmetal in colour.

The pen's total weight is 38.0 grams, but it's very well-balanced
and not overly-heavy when used unposted (as I prefer to use it). Unposted, it weighs 23.6 grams and measures about 12.3 cm (nib tip to barrel end). The posted pen is about 15.6 cm long from nib tip to cap end, and the capped pen about 13.3 cm..

 My pen has a black steel nib with the Hongdian logo (the Temple of Heaven in Beijing) and the letter "F" (for Fine) engraved on it. There is a Medium nib available for this pen, but it's silver in colour and I wanted the black nib as it matches the pen's colour so nicely. My Fine nib is a smooth writer, but there's also an Extra Fine black nib, if you prefer a nib that lays down an even finer line.

The barrel has a clear ink view window that lets you know if you're running low on ink. The clip attaches well to fabric and paper, but it is very stiff.

Now, here are some photos of the designs on all sides of the cap....

Each of the six vertical rows on the cap has a different combination of symbols; one YouTuber took the time to count them all and found seven suns, five moons, three rabbits, three circles, and one spiral...

 ...but if you're looking for a pattern to the symbols, good luck --- deciphering the Zodiac's letter-writing code is an easier task!

Some close-ups of the two special rabbits on the cap:

This rabbit symbol directly below the words "Month Rabbit" at the top of the cap is the same symbol that's on the cap's finial...

...and there's that adorable bunny trying to climb a tiny ladder!


The pen's clear cap finial (jewel) is shown above; the bottom of the barrel is flat and unadorned.

The pen was supposed to come with the special Hongdian tool seen above (a flat metal wrench) that allows you to disassemble the piston-filling mechanism. It was missing from my order, but the seller added it to my next order after I contacted her (I've always had good customer service from Sally --'esybuy' on etsy). Now, you don't really need to disassemble your pen, but I feel better having a tool that I can use to do that, if the piston needs to be lubricated or the pen needs to be serviced.

The Hongdian 'N7' "Moon Rabbit"/"Gray Resin" model is currently the 39th most popular fountain pen on Amazon.com. It's a smooth-writing pen that also feels solid in the hand. If you're not a fan of rabbits, there's also a Hongdian 'N7' fountain pen model called the 'Blue Peacock' (which looks lovely, but only has a peacock feather motif -- no actual peacock birds on it).

 Wishing you all a very happy, healthy & prosperous Year of the Rabbit! 🐰

(Blog post by Maja)

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 453

From Stuart's vintage Parker 'Jotter' desk set to the Parker ballpoint that started it all --- here's a review of Christopher's first year Parker 'Jotter' ballpoint!

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

Christopher writes: "Vintage ball pens have been a background focus in my pen collection. Usually a backup to complete an original set. But, and saying all that, I admittedly do have a special place in my heart for the Parker Jotter. Subsequently, when this rouge beauty surfaced, I was the first one at the table to scoop it up.

"Just such an attractive mating of metal and synthetic but, in this case, being a first year Jotter. the barrel is made of corded nylon and not sporting the steel end, which was added in all the Parker Jotters to follow. The barrel cording was a brilliant way to steady the fingers on this part of the pen to provide for a very comfortable grip. The nylon is also soft enough not to tax the fingers when gripping the barrel for lengthy periods of time. The cap has the Parker lustraloy brushed steel finish and sports a Chromed ‘Trough Clip’, similar to the one found on some models of the Parker 21 fountain pen. The clicker mechanism, which was part of a nine year Parker research program to develop their ballpoint, works extremely well. And the clicker mechanism revolves the ball tip of the refill ¼ of an inch every time the clicker is used, which extends the life of the Jotter ballpoint refill ball. Sheer genius in my books! 

 The only point I can add to this description is the fact that this pen had never been used and housed the clear cream ended inkless Parker Jotter refill, which originally came with the pen, possibly to demonstrate the Parker Clicker mechanism before the new owner visited his or her local drugstore or department store pen counter to acquire a regular ink Parker Jotter refill.

In closing, I should mention that Parker first year Jotters have a very good value on the current pen market. They can be found in five attractive colours. Red as this one, along with Black, Charcoal, Orange and Green and are easily identified. If you are very lucky, you might just run into a prototype colour as I did years ago. My prototype is a mustard colour and very attractive." 

Great find! Our thanks to Christopher for his review :)

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 452

As promised, here's Stuart's "space age" vintage Parker 'Jotter' ballpoint desk set that he brought to our January meeting last Thursday!

Stuart begins: "This arrived on Tuesday from Peachland - it took one day to come."

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

He continues:"In the 1956 Parker catalog, it’s described as “Free Form”, and sold for $12.50, not cheap at the time."

"The pen holder unit pivots up and down to adjust the height and angle of the two Jotter BP desk pens, which have satin stainless steel front barrels and black plastic tapers.  I fitted them with new Schmidt refills, as the old ones were dry and both Black ink, which is too boring - now I have Blue in one pen and Red in the other.

I don't show it, but the stainless steel or aluminum Parker name plate on the rear of the pen holder is mounted upside down!  I wonder how it passed inspection?"

"I’m thrilled to have one of these finally!  The price was reasonable and it’s in great condition.  This set seems only to have been available in the Jotter desk set range, not FP’s"

"From any angle this looks cool, so Space Age-y and mid-20th. Century futuristic.  Parker certainly had a talent for modern design! I haven’t been able to learn anything about who the particular designer was on this one.  So another beauty for the collection!"

"One more shot of the Parker set from a cool angle, done on my desk as the weather brightened a bit."

What a great design! Many thanks to Stuart for bringing this very cool desk set to our meeting, and for sending in this review, as well.

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Just one more thing ... (re: our Leonardo 'Furore' "Mosaico Hawaii" Vancouver Pen Club LE pen)

I was reading Glenn Marcus' wonderful review of our pen club's brand-new Leonardo limited edition fountain pen on his GlennsPens.com website (link), and there was one part that puzzled me. It's this bit, the last paragraph in "The Cap & Body" section of Glenn's review:

"The patterns changes from one side to the others. Want to nicely line the body and cap up? Turn to unscrew the pen three times, then close. You may have to do it once or twice, but you will be amazed how it all lines up." 

I wasn't sure what Glenn was referring to because I didn't notice different patterns (I guess I was mesmerized by the pen!)...but then I thought back to what the official Leonardo website said about their "Mosaico" resin (which I quoted in my review): "The material (is) spaghetti resin, Italian production new* concept the horizontal cut of the slab gives life to a real mosaic, the result is a squared side texture, while on the front (clip side) and rear side a texture is visible that I would define "ringed Arco" (*about 2 years ago we started experimenting with this new concept)."

After re-reading that a couple of times, I realized that the Leonardo website was saying that the manner in which the resin is cut results in two different types of patterns--one mosaic-like, and the other ringed!

When you look at the front of the cap and the back of the cap (ie. 180 degrees apart), the "Mosaico" resin has a ringed appearance - the "ringed Arco" that was mentioned on the Leonardo website above:

(photo of the back of the cap)


.....but when you look at the other two sides of the cap, the pattern looks like the "real mosaic" that the Leonardo website alluded to:

(two photos of the sides of the cap below ~ click on images to enlarge)

My photos don't show the sides of the cap as well as I'd like, but I think you can see the little black, tan and blue squares in the resin that make up the mosaic-like pattern....

Think of it like a Battenberg cake:

 (photo from "The Great American Baking Show", taken from the ABC.com website)

Viewed from the top (before the icing is put on), you see three parallel lines---pink, white and pink--- (like the ringed resin on the front and back of the pen cap).....but if you cut the cake and look at it from the side, you see a series of tiny squares....like the mosaic-like pattern on the sides of the pen's cap.

The pen's barrel has the same patterns as the cap---two sides have ringed resin, and the other two sides have a mosaic-like pattern. When Glenn talked about lining the cap and body up (in his pen review), he was talking about aligning the two types of patterns on the cap with the same two patterns on the barrel. When the pen is assembled in the factory, I'm pretty sure they line everything up before it's packaged (mine came that way), but when you remove the cap and then screw it back on, the patterns might not line up...but you can do what Glenn suggested in his review. Glenn---thanks for that useful bit of information, and for your great review & photos of our beautiful new pen club pen!

I hope that all makes sense. All of this might be obvious...but if not, then I hope it makes you appreciate Leonardo's 'Mosaico" resin a little more :)

Monday, January 16, 2023

Our newest pen club pen -- the Leonardo 'Furore' "Mosaico Hawaii" Vancouver Pen Club Limited Edition!

Here it is--- the newest limited edition pen made for our pen club -- the Leonardo 'Furore' "Mosaico Hawaii" Vancouver Pen Club Limited Edition fountain pen!
(all photos by Maja ~ please click on images to enlarge)

This is the third fountain pen made exclusively for our pen club and, like with the first two, this project was initiated by our fellow pen club member Glenn Marcus, who worked with Salvatore Matrone of Leonardo Officina Italiana to have this very special pen made for us. Salvatore worked with our club to have our previous pen club pen (the lovely Leonardo "Momento Zero" Vancouver Pen Club Limited Edition in the "Sand" resin) made in 2019, as well as our very first pen club pen (the gorgeous Delta 'Dolcevita' Caruso Vancouver Pen Club Limited Edition produced in 2014), while he worked at Delta.

After the pen model, general colour and type of resin were finally chosen, the pens were ordered in late October, manufactured and engraved in November & early December, and then shipped from Italy on December 7th. Due to some Canada Customs red tape and delivery delays due to snowstorms in the Lower Mainland, the pens didn't arrive until shortly after Christmas... but they were well worth the wait.

My pen came well-protected in two boxes--- a black gift box with soft, cream-coloured lining and the Leonardo name & logo embossed on the inside of the lid, and a black cardboard box also with the Leonardo name & logo on it (not shown above). The boxes were in a cardboard sleeve with a floral design, which had the pen's model name and "FATTO A MANO IN ITALIA NELLE OFFICINE ITALIANE LEONARDO" ("Made by hand in Italy in Leonardo's Italian workshops") on it. Classy packaging from a classy company!

We chose the beautiful "Mosaico Hawaii" resin  for our 'Furore' model as this material had never been used in a 'Furore' before (since our pen was to be a Limited Edition, it had to have a model/resin combination that hadn't previously been used). The "Mosaico Hawaii" resin was used in a  Leonardo 'Momento Zero Grande' model, but never for a 'Furore' or any standard-sized Leonardo pen. 

The "Mosaico" resin is currently available in "Chiaroscuro", "Hawaii" and "Mango". Leonardo's official website describes the "Mosaico" resin in this way:"The material (is) spaghetti resin, Italian production new* concept the horizontal cut of the slab gives life to a real mosaic, the result is a squared side texture, while on the front (clip side) and rear side a texture is visible that I would define "ringed Arco" (*about 2 years ago we started experimenting with this new concept)."
(*for more information on this, check out my follow-up post here*)
It's a beautiful material and when it catches the light, you can see all the different blue and brown/tan tones...
(Look at that resin!!)

We were very fortunate to have the opportunity to use this resin for our club's limited edition pen...
The 'Furore' was launched in 2018, making it only the second model that Leonardo Officina Italiana released (the first was the "Momento Zero', the model we chose for our previous pen club pen). It was inspired by "a magical place, where land and sea meet" that's also a UNESCO World Heritage Site - the tiny village of Furore, on Italy's Amalfi Coast. These beautiful pens are handmade in Naples, Italy by expert craftspeople who take great pride in their work...and it shows in the quality of the writing instruments they make.

Leonardo's website says that the Furore model has a "vintage shape" -- it instantly reminded me of the vintage Sheaffer 'Balance' (the world's first streamlined fountain pen), which came out in 1928. The cap and barrel ends of the 'Furore' are softly rounded, while the stacked appearance of the resin accentuates the pen's smooth styling.

Included with the packaging is a lovely illustrated booklet with information about the "Furore' and the inspiration behind it. The booklet doesn't mention it, but there is a lifetime warranty against any defective part, according to the official Leonardo website. As an aside, I was delighted to see that Glenn--who is an excellent photographer-- provided one of the photographs in the booklet! (you can see his name in the photo above)

When I opened its presentation box, I was surprised at how large the pen was; for some reason, I was expecting a shorter, slightly narrower pen (probably because there is a larger version of the 'Furore' called the 'Furore Grande'). The size was a very pleasant surprise, though, as the pen is comfortable to use both unposted and posted.

The pen posts deeply and securely with a posted length (nib tip to barrel end) of 168 mm, by my measurements. If you decide to use the pen unposted, there are two shiny gold trim rings (by the section threads and the barrel's blind cap) for you to stare at, in addition to the mesmerizing resin :)

Dimensions (from the manufacturer's website):
Length closed: 146mm
Cap length: 66mm
Body length: 131mm (nib included)
Weight: 27g
Diameter cap: 15,5mm
Diameter grip section: 10,6mm

The pen fills via cartridge or the supplied screw-in converter. The converter can be accessed via a turning knob hidden under the blind cap, or by unscrewing the section (Note: the converter is screwed into the nib-section unit, so don't try pulling it out). I didn't photograph it, but the converter that came with the pen has a polished metal turning knob with the Leonardo name and logo on the clear barrel of the converter. The colour of the turning knob matches the pen's trim, which is another nice touch.

We chose gold trim for this latest pen club pen; I think the warmth of the gold trim balances the cooler colours of the resin. Another consideration was that we thought it'd be nice to have a different trim colour than the silver trim used on our previous pen club pen.
The cap is a screw-on type and it unscrews in about one and a quarter turns, which is handy if you're in a hurry to cap or uncap your pen. The pen's wheeled clip is flexible and attaches easily to a pocket, notebook, or pen case. The newer 'Furore' models (like this one) have a narrower clip than the original models.

Each pen made for us has "Vancouver Pen Club" engraved on it in elegant cursive lettering... and yes, it's in the same font as our Leonardo "Momento Zero" pen (but larger).

The 'Furore' usually comes with two narrow metal cap bands, but in order to accommodate the special engraving on our club's pens, a wide middle cap band was added.
The pens are individually numbered on the back of the cap, just above the cap bands. Thirty pens in total were made and mine is number 07/30 (the same number as my two previous Vancouver Pen Club limited edition pens :)

The nib material options were steel or 14K gold (I chose a steel nib) and the nib width options were a-plenty for this limited run -- our members had the choice of: Extra-Fine, Fine, Medium, Broad, Stub 1.1, Elastic (aka Flex) Extra-Fine and Elastic Fine. Further options (which cost more) included the choice of an Architect nib or a Cursive Smooth Italic nib in either Medium or Broad. All of the nibs are #6 size JoWo nibs. 

The nib on our pen club pen has an older-style engraving --the Leonardo Officina Italia winged logo and, below that, the words "Leonardo" and "Italy". The pens with steel nibs come with ABS feeds (made in Germany), while the gold nibs came with ebonite feeds made in-house by Leonardo.

I chose the Cursive Soft Italic nib in the Medium width, and it writes beautifully. I am very impressed with both of the nibs on my two Leonardo pen club pens---the Bock Stub 1.1 steel nib I chose for our previous pen club pen, and this one by JoWo.

(Last, but certainly not least...)
Three things I love about the pen's section:
  • its "milk bottle" shape. Our previous pen club pen--a Leonardo "Momento Zero"--has the same shape, but the sections on the redesigned "Momento Zero Grande" (aka "Momento Zero Grande 2.0") fountain pens have a different shape (standard "Momento Zero" pens still have that milk-bottle shape... whew!)
  • it matches the material used for the rest of the pen (this is extremely important to me lol)
  • it doesn't have a metal trim ring at the nib end of it (because trim rings there can corrode over time from being dipped in ink)

"Grazie mille!" (a thousand thanks) to Salvatore and his sister Maria Francesco at Leonardo Officina Italiana for their work and support in getting our pens made, and to the craftspeople at Leonardo for producing these wonderful writing instruments for our club members! And of course, huge thanks to our fellow club member Glenn, who was in charge of this project from start to finish, and who successfully steered it through some choppy Canada Customs and DHL waters to get the pens to us :)

(~Blog post by Maja~)

Sunday, January 15, 2023

January meeting report (w/lots of photos)!

We had excellent attendance at our January meeting, held on the 12th at the Kitsilano branch of the Vancouver Public library -- 25 members (including five brand-new members  - Anna, Gaelen,  Marissa, Nurzhan and Renz) showed up, making it one of our top 3 best-attended meetings! 

Our topic was newest acquisitions, but it was also the night that members who pre-ordered the pens made for our club (Leonardo "Furore" limited edition fountain pens in the stunning "Mosaico Hawaii" stacked resin) picked them up. There was a lot of excitement when fellow VPCer Glenn showed up with the long-awaited pens (which I will review here tomorrow). Big thanks to Glenn for his efforts to get this beautiful limited edition Vancover Pen Club pen made, and to Salvatore Matrone of Leonardo Officina Italiana for allowing us to use this beautiful resin for our pen!

Now, onto the meeting photos.....

(~all photos by Maja, except where noted - please click on images to enlarge~)
(~photo courtesy of Sherman~)

Above: (L-R): Phil, Gaelen, April, Glenn, Nurzhan and Liz (who has her brand-new Leonardo 'Furore' Vancouver Pen Club pen in front of her)

(~photo courtesy of Sherman~)

Above: (L-R) Stuart, Chris (who joined a while ago but attended his first in-person meeting in January), me --Maja-- welcoming everyone to the meeting (lol), Renz and Anna. 

Anna's lovely snow-white marbled PenBBS '489', which uses a touchdown-filling mechanism

Chuck brought along several pens he'd acquired since we last saw him, including these two eye-catching dragon-themed fountain pens by Jinhao.

It was great to see another member we hadn't seen in ages, too - longtime VPCer Bruce, who showed me a wonderful faceted OMAS 'Dama' fountain pen he acquired. I wish I'd photographed it, but I did get to try it out (and yes, it's a really nice writer!).

Phil's handsome Parker '61' set (in original box) with the coveted "rainbow" caps.....

April brought along several Hongdian fountain pens, including the hard-to-find 'Mount Everest (pen furthest from camera) which has a 14K gold nib, a Hongdian 'Blue Wave' (second from the front) and a Hongdian 1845 all-metal fountain pen. The ivory-coloured fountain pen is a Jinhao '80'.

Jerred's Delta Markiaro 'Posillipo' fountain pen and a brushed stainless steel Parker 'Jotter' fountain pen that was part of a set (gift-boxed, with matching ballpoint) that Jerred bought at Staples.

Sophia attended her first regular meeting (her first was our November get-together hosted by the Vancouver Pen Shop) and brought along this gorgeous blue Caran d'Ache "LeMan' "Grand Bleu" rollerball which features a guilloché design, lacquered finish and rhodium-plated accents. I always tell prospective members that our club isn't just about fountain pens, so it was great to see this rollerball at the meeting because online photos don't do it justice.

Sherman's Montblanc knockoff ballpoint--yes, it's a knockoff, but it's adorable! You can see just how small it is in Sherman's pen group photo near the end of this blog post.

Yen brought along a lot of fountain pen eye candy for us to see, including a Leonardo 'Supernova' in "Starlight Blue", a Gioia 'Partenope Avorio", and a Laban '325' Sakura. Yen's husband Alvin brought some pen eye candy of his own (not pictured) --- a Nahvalur (formerly Narwhal) 'Nautilus' Mariana Trench fountain pen and a Nahvalur 'Original' made exclusively for UK pen deaier Cult Pens!

Amy's cute pen case and her cute Hongdian N7 'Moon Rabbit' piston-filling fountain pen

This colourful  Conklin 'All American' Rainbow Limited Edition fountain pen belongs to Kelley. It's made of solid brass, so it has some heft to it, but it felt comfortable in my hand when I held it.

Its section, clip *and* nib have the same finish as the rest of the pen (yay, Conklin!!). The pen's Rainbow PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition) finish is very durable and scratch-resistant, according to the manufacturer.

Stuart acquired several new pens in the last few weeks, many of them from the Vancouver Pen Shop! The handsome Faber-Castell Ondoro "Smoked Oak" and Kaweco 'Sport' in "Mellow Blue" in the photo above were among his recent Van Pen purchases.

More of Stuart's new acquisitions! The two Platinum 'Preppy WA' fountain pens at the top of the photo are limited editions (the blue one is the Seigaiha LE and the yellow one is the Urokomon LE) purchased from the Vancouver Pen Shop.

The Sheaffers below them are both vintage pens---a beautiful carmine-striped Sheaffer 'Balance' (which sports an unusual W.A.S.P -style clip, often seen on Canadian-made Balances) and a Sheaffer 'Snorkel' Sovereign in Buckskin Tan colour that Stuart purchased from fellow pen club member Jerred that night. Stuart also brought along a "space age" vintage Parker desk set that we'll be featuring here later this week.

Chris was sitting next to me but I only remembered to snap a quick group shot of all the great pens he brought to the meeting.  I distinctly remember one fountain pen that he praised very much--the multicoloured "Pocket Six" fountain pen in anodized aluminum made by Schon DSGN (the pen closest to the camera). I think I need to add one to my own collection...

I snapped the photo above when I got home, because I forgot to do it during the meeting. That's my new(ish) Pelikan Pura on the far left, a handmade fountain pen by RJ Custom Pens (in Australia) in the middle and my Hongdian N8 'Maple Leaf" fountain pen on the far right. 

The pens are in a Galen Leather 6-pen zippered case in "Crazy Horse Brown" leather that I bought from the Vancouver Pen Shop the day before they closed their store's old location (they're now at 555 Howe Street in downtown Vancouver)

(photo courtesy of Sherman)

Sherman had the same idea as I did---to photograph the stuff he brought to the meeting at home! I'm glad he did, because there were a lot of élysée fountain pens amongst them, and it's a brand you don't see in person very often nowadays. The two elegant pens in the photo above are an élysée Classique (70 Line) Laque Cobra fountain pen with a 14K-585 Gold Flat Nib (Rare) and an élysée Classique (70 Line) Laque Cobra ballpoint pen (with a Parker refill in it--Sherman's comment about the refill brand not matching the pen's brand was "sorry, wohahaha…").

(photo courtesy of Sherman)

Above: Sherman's group photo of the other pens he brought to our meeting, along with his captions below (many thanks to Sherman for all the photos he provided for this blog post!)

(From left to right)

1) Leonardo Furore Blue Mosaico Vancouver Pen Club L.E. #26/30 Steel Broad Nib

2) Leonardo Momento Zero Pen Chalet L.E. Blue Hawaii Fountain Pen Steel EF Nib (Not for presentation, just to compare the newly acquired Mosaico)

3) élysée Design (80 Line) Rolled Gold Fountain Pen Gold Plated EF Flat Nib

4) Ferris Wheel Press Sandcastle Clay Brush Fountain Pen Steel M Nib

5) Pelikan Souverän® K400 Black-Green Ballpoint Pen (Sheaffer K Refill Black)

6) Pelikan Souverän® M400 Black-Green Fountain Pen 18K-750 Gold 2-Tone M Nib (rare nowadays)

7) élysée Jewelry (90 Line) Laque Intarsia Antique Greek Black Ballpoint Pen (Set)

8) élysée Jewelry (90 Line) Laque Intarsia Antique Greek Black Fountain Pen Gold Plated Flat F Nib (Set)

9) élysée En Vogue (30 Line) Laque Lapis Fountain Pen Gold Plated M Nib

10) Toy « Montblanc » like Ballpoint Pen which was gifted by a friend in late 90’s

11) Monteverde Ballpoint Refill for Sheaffer K series - Poorly made:

i) Longer than Sheaffer,

ii) Very sharp tip,

iii) Not just scratchy, but can cut through paper!

12) Esterbrook Estie Honeycomb Oversize GT F Nib

13) Esterbrook J Blue Pearl & Chrome 1555 Nib

I meant to take a photo of the wonderful pens brand-new VPCer Renz --who was sitting right next to me!--- brought, but in all the excitement, I forgot (sorry, Renz ---I do remember a couple of good-looking vintage Parker '51' sets you showed us--Update! Renz later sent me his own photos of the sets ---see the very end of this blog post!). Renz, however, has an active Instagram account and a YouTube channel -- both under the profile name pen.traveller -- where he posts pen-related photos & videos, so check them out if you like beautiful calligraphy and amazing journal entries that look like works of art!  Brand-new VPC members Gaelen and Nurzhan also both brought some cool pens for us to see, but I didn't get around to snapping photos of them --my apologies, guys. I know Gaelen brought a stylish Lamy 'Studio" fountain pen in Imperial Blue, and Nurzhan brought another Lamy (the '2000') and a very nice vintage Parker Vacumatic in the Debutante size. Thanks to the three of you plus brand-new members Anna and Marissa for joining our club and coming to our meeting last Thursday!

Many thanks to everyone who showed up for our January meeting, whether you had anything for the topic/theme or not; our meetings are about seeing and learning about pens and inks and stationery ... and having fun!

Hope you can make it to our February meeting --- details will be posted on this blog in late Jan/early Febeuary. Please check the top of our homepage for future meeting info (which will be in big red letters :)

(~Blog post by Maja~)


Renz was kind enough to send me his own photos of the two vintage Parker '51' sets I mentioned above!

I asked Renz about their filling systems and he said: "They are both aero metric yes and the green and gold is a fine nib and the black is an extra fine nib!"

Thanks, Renz!