Tuesday, April 11, 2023

Newest Acquisitions (Virtual "Show & Tell") ~ part 479

We'll be featuring some of Christopher's latest vintage finds here for the next week or so, starting with this nice Parker fountain pen. Our thanks to Christopher for this informative write-up and accompanying photo!

(click on image to enlarge)

Christopher writes:
"For some reason unbeknownst to me, there does not seem to be an abundance of the lovely azure blue pearl Parker Challengers around. And I would have to add, especially in their last incarnation. In over a decade of serious vintage pen collecting, this has to be the only one I have run across.

The Challenger was first introduced by Parker as part of their economy line around 1935. It came, subsequently, in two sizes - the larger Standard model and the smaller Slender, both selling for the attractive price of $2.75. And as with most Parker fountain pens, there was also a matching Challenger mechanical pencil priced at $1.25. Plus, an attractive range of colour finishes offered in a smart Grey 1935 - 1939, an exquisite Burgundy 1935 - 1940, a Jet Black 1935 - 1939, an azure pearl Blue only in 1940 and a deep range of Green 1935 – 1940. The clips of this first generation were ball ended with the Parker branding running vertically down the center. But as with a lot of Parkers pens, in 1939 the company chose to streamline the entire model range and, in doing so, redesigned and tapered the clip but, at the same time, retained the company branding.

Post dating the 1939 redesign, this pen which I am featuring in this article, sports the smartly appointed tapered arrow clip with a medium width cap banding. All of the fittings on this pen are 14K gold filled, which, in turn, really complements the striking blue pearl finish on both the cap and barrel. At the end of this barrel, under a well designed jet blind cap, is the typical and totally dependable Parker button filler. The button itself in this pen is nickel plated, unlike a lot I have seen in brass. Holding the clip fast in place is a matching jet plastic conical cap screw. Atop the barrel on this Standard sized Parker Challenger is a jet black grip, which sports both a well made feed and just a brilliant 14K Gold, Canadian imprinted, medium flex nib. Both nib and barrel are Parker date Coded the fourth quarter of 1940. As for posting, this pen hits the 5 ¾ inch mark. but caps back to a more than pocketable 5 1/8th inches. One last feature, which should not be overlooked, is that the section comes complete with a transparent ink view window. As for condition, this pen came to me hardly used and is, in turn, near mint. It also is a great writer, laying down the ink on paper both with an even flow and consistency. It is too bad that in less than a year, having to my mind hit the nail on the head, Parker took the Challenger line off the market."

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