Pilot 78 g

A European-model Pilot 78 g does indeed take a Waterman converter.

A Chrome Cross Fountain Pen

This narrow, chrome Cross fountain pen hasn't had much attention from me, and now I am thinking should I try to sell him or not?
The pen feels so good in my small, size 5 hand, and is easy to clutch. I have not, however, inked him, but I did find his original converter.

What is his pedigree?

Is he one of the early Classics?

Is there more value in selling the pen? Or should I reconsider and keep him?

He has been identified at the FPn as a Cross Classic Century, chrome, stainless steel nib with possible overlay.


After checking and double checking some examples of Slimline Montblancs, I am 98% certain that what I have is a twin-set--fountain and ball point pens.

A little polishing and they'll look as new as when I bought them.

Confirmed as a Slimline with steel nib by FPn member.


Whatever happened to Ballpoint Pens?

Here's a Parker Ballpoint, with a clip, made in England and marked AE.


This pen has a 2556 nib, and appears to have been made in SA.

PS - In the hands of H.


Remington & Everready keeping company with an Esterbrook!

In the hands of H.


What about Paris?

For the longest time I thought this was a Lepine, but when I checked with Papers, they came back with no information.

Then I realized that although it was in a Jean Pierre Lepine box, it is in fact a D. Nore made in France pen, with a Schmidt Iridium nib.

I can't seem to find anything on the internet about this all!


Parker on the net

I discovered that the other Parker fountain pen I have is something called a Parker Vac (a Jr. or a Sr.). I will have to get into touch with this fine gentleman and collector to discover which it is and what to do with it after its pedigree has been determined. But for now I have learned a great deal from the Parker Pen site.

I must check out this site

And Ricard Bender's excellent identifiers here.

Markings: Geo S. Parker Vacumatic (6). Nib, Parker USA (Arrow)

In repair with H.

Retro 51 Azo

An unidentified Retro 51 in a beautiful colour yellow--similar to an Azo or Cadmium.


First Impressions are Important! Canteo Journal

Thanks to Rolf Gerber at Biella CH, I received a beautiful A5 black unlined journal in my rural postbox.

If first impressions are important, and they are to me, the packaging is very impressive.

The journal came sealed in cellophane, and contains a beautiful matching black pencil with the Biella seal and an envelop of index clips.

The diagonal closure across the front right corner holds the pencil in place firmly and may also hold a lighter weight fountain pen.

In both the front and back covers are paper slip holders--undoubtedly great for bank depository and other papers that can and do accumulate during our day.

The smooth paper feels good in the hand.

The test will be how well it takes various fountain pen inks in numerous fountain pens?


Retro 51 Scriptwriter

This Retro 51 was identified, indirectly, and by chance as a Scriptwriter. I have a vague memory of purchasing it. It came in a large, black tube container--which I still have.

I managed to find one of my many converters to fit, but haven't inked it.

Coming around the turn

With the identification of Aurora, Montblanc, a few of the oldie and goodies like the Parker Vac, I am more than half way through my fountain pen collection.

The pile on my dresser of identified fountain pens now far exceeds those on the unidentified side.

Perhaps this project will be over before the end of the summer.

Morriset Inkwell

She came to me overpriced and in need of a cleaning. Now she is polished, her glass bottle insert mirror clean, and her stopper easy to use.

The pen that came with her works like a charm and it is now easily my favourite fountain pen accessory.


Now it's time to write

With a new assignment from our newspaper's magazine editor, it is now time to write with all these wonderful fountain pens and stop admiring them.

I have three assignments, one for the local newspaper, a second to develop a follow up story on dairy farms which I'd like to pitch to a pre-selected environmental journal.

I called one of our local, and wonderful photograpers and he has agreed to work up the article with me, and in fact had some terrific ideas about its focus. So, camera and notebook in my pocket and fountain pen(s) in hand, I hope to work with MdG in August.

I have two or perhaps three farmers who seem agreeable--a lucky break. I will also probably bring in some of my other contacts like N and Z to sort through some of the earlier issues that came up in my barn story, and seek out some more technical and statistical information from the Wayne County and Penn State folks.

My third and most challenging assignment is to review all my previously written stories and poems on L's old Macintosh computer, and see how they read more than 10 years later. It appears she has one printer ribbon, and after checking the net I see that replacement cartridges are still available.

One of the stories, in three or more drafts, I have hard-copies of, and I hope to finalise this story and submit it to an appropriate literary journal.

This story was written when I worked in Boston and participated in a Wrting Workship at the Women's Theological Center. It received praise from the group, but instead of finalising it and sending it out, I allowed it to languish in a purple folder.

It's time to move!


It's nearly the end of the road

It's been a long trip from owning pens to learning about them, and then identifying them.

And, I am nearly there--just a few odd balls here and there, a few to photograph and hope some kindly member at the FPn will identify them.


I've taken photographs of the three oldies; the Parker and the Snake. I've also taken a decent photograph of the French transparent fountain pen I bought at Papers.

I will post them this week for possible identification and pedigree.

I've also determined that a PR ink bottle will fit into a Morriset inkwell.


A Parker, not the usual Anorek

Here is one of several Parkers I own. Most are inexpensive throw-away Vectors, but nice to use.

This one and another seem more upscale. I haven't a real clue which model it is although I am beginning to suspect it falls into the 51 model category or perhaps an Parker 21. It is a simple pen, and as I search my memory, I begin to recall it is either one I bought early in my collecting life or one I might have picked up second hand. The gray matte is very unpretentious, rather like a gentleman's office pen you'd find on a clerk or clark's desk.

Perhaps I bought it when I was a Republican? If so it would make it a 40-year old pen.

I have to read this article carefully and others like it to determine which of many 51s I own.

A sad postscript, examining it with a magnifying glass, I saw a hairline crack in the barrel, obviously not a good thing.

The fat on Mole-skines

The article (see link above) about the origin, use and present state of Moleskinerie is worth reading and noting.

I can't recall when I bought my first Moleskine, but I can remember the last three: December 2003, Palermo, Italy.

In fact, I was so enchanted with the idea of buying Moleskines in Italy that I bought a diary, a sketchbook, and an address book, all in black.

I've been using the diary as scrap paper; the address book is nearly empty and the large Moleskine sketchbook is filled to the brim with notes, lists, and diary entries from my ontheroad travels, up to and including my relocation to this rural country road.

Parker Vector Fountain Pens

Even after years of neglect, these Parkers write like the day I bought them--decades ago, look nearly new, just need a polishing cloth, and a rub, and are good to go.

It is the simple things that generally stay simple.

Then why did I complicate my life and my fountain pen fetish with more than these?


Waterman Safety Pen

This Waterman Safety was sold to FPn member in exchange for pen advice.


Starting with the letter "A"

This Navy Blue pen finally has her own pedigree. She was identified at the FPn as an Idea, an inexpensive Aurora, but one I am rather fond of and use often.


Converters, Cartridges and Self Fillers: Ink

It is a process, some sort of feng shui notion that it, whatever it is, should or must be in perfect, harmonious order. Hence, I am attempting to put these fountain pens I own into good order.

Some of the lovelies will go to some other home, some will stay close by, but regardless of where they live, I'd like them to be clean, refreshingly clean, have the appropriate converter, or cartridge, and a pedigree of some sort.

It doesn't seem enough to know that a fountain pen is a Pelikan or a Mont Blanc. I'd like to know their personal name, something like being able to separate all the Williams in the world, or all the Smith's in the phone directory.

It gave me a great sense of satisfaction to learn that the two Waterman I have go by the name, Waterman Gentleman, and Waterman Lady Charlotte. There is something almost intimate about having that information.

So in order to accomplish this I've ordered some converters from Swishers, and will order some repair and cleaning materials from Pendemonium early next week.

Here's an article on converters that hss some historical value.

I have two growing groupings on my dresser, one with all the pens that have surnames, and another with those that remain orphans, but are still very much loved.

And today when I went into town, and after I brought B to her physical therapy session, I went over to the pharmacy, and bought an ear syringe to clean the pens better than the dripping water faucet. The use of this syringe was a most edifying moment. Several of the newly cleaned, hardly dried fountain pens still had quite a bit of ink still in their nibs.

Now these are sparkling clean inside. Next week they will be sparkling clean outside.


Levenger's Ink Colour

They may be more beautiful in person!

Diamine colour sample

Nothing like a beautiful hand to show off these colours. Courtesy of K.

Pelikan M200 - Grey

Paper! Paper! Paper!

It does take planning, buying, organising, and some motivation to figure out how to get those thoughts in your head on paper.

With the Gulliver down, I had high hopes for Apica, and I believe it just may do the trick.

The Apica's are not my usual fare.

Anyone interested in inexpensive journals, with excellent paper for fountain pen use should try these out.

In terms of appearance, they are just one notch above a Mead, but the paper is fabulous!

Right now Molly Taylor has them listed on ebay. And it also appears for a few more cents, the Daily Planner also has some stock of these journals.

So, with hope in my heart, the World as my daily card,

I am off to Liz's house to see if I can retrieve 20 years of writing from an old Mac and transfer those words in red.

And then just as I think it will be an afternoon of poetry, MG calls to say they'd like me to do another feature for the newspaper!

The Art of Convivium is dancing in my head!!!


Gulliver Didn't Travel Well

I bought a refillable 5x7 Exacompta Gulliver journal/diary recently. It is smart looking and the right size.

Unfortunately, although the paper weight is good (80g/m) and the texture smooth, it bleeds through badly with all the fountain pens I tested on it.

Diamine not Diamonds

I am a sucker for colours.

Even with the adventure with the J. Herbin tins, I was craving a few colours from the Diamine Ink line.

Then K put up some calligraphic representations of these fine English inks, and I nearly hit send on their website. I resisted. I so resisted.

But I did get Vermillion here in the States, and will probably fall prey to my own addiction sometime soon.

Thank you, K, for letting me use your calligraphic hand to show these inks.

A break in the whether!

One month ago, more or less I started thinking about fountain pens, and discovered that after five decades of collecting them, I knew virtually nothing about these except that I loved writing with them. Now I know better, and have succeeded in figuring out something about most, not all of these lovelys.

But I need a break in determining the remaining identifications because several have small imprints I need to copy; some need to be photographed to be sent out for identification and third and most importantly, reading the FPn is making me an obsessed pen collector--and a collector adding to rather than decreasing the number of pens I own.

Since participating in FPn, I've coveted another dozen or more pens; bought my very first desk set, and accumulated another half dozen ink colours.

The Giving Tree

What about paper?

First comes the pen, then the ink, and then the paper. As much as I have collected pens, fountain pens, calligraphy pens, gell pens, ballpoint pens and pencils, I have also collected paper.

I remember stroking paper the way some people stroke silk or satin. Some papers have the nicest feel, the sweetest smell and are amazingly beautiful in their sheen, touch and surface.

Now with the continued dimuition of natural resources, trees among them, some are coming up with alternatve sources like polypaper.

Eureka has some very interesting journals and laboratory books on their website.

I haven't tried them, but perhaps my outdoors woman daughter would like one of these!

Pelikans in Pennsylvania

How many Pelikans in Pennsylvania?

Sometime in either 1990 or 1991, I was on Thayer Street and strolled into the local stationery store across the street from the University. If memory serves me nearly 20 years later, I admired their small but fine selection of fountain pens.

One in particular must have caught my eye: a blue marbled fountain pen. However, given my penchant for duplicates I seem to have two Pelikans, a blue and another in a
lovely shade of grey.

Are they both M200?

There are several good articles on the net about the Pelikan's and their history.

Pelikan also has some wonderful history here.

And, lastly, after doing some additional searches, I found a pen in Germany that matches mine exactly, and is indeed an M200! Voila!


Who is my Waterman?

I am still not certain what the pedigree is of either of these Waterman pens!

Word has it on FPn that the blue pen which I've had for ages is a Gentlemen's Waterman, while the small red fountain pen is a Lady Charlotte. I know I bought the Lady Charlotte at the Fountain Pen Hospital--it was on sale in one of the cases in the back of the store near the inks. It was the day I also bought my first Noodler's.


The Moleskine Dilemma

I've never thought anything but good about the Moleskines I've owned, but for the most part I've only used the sketchbooks. The sketchbooks have heavier weight paper than the others, and although they are not watercolour friendly, I think they do fine with fountain pens.

Then after joining the FPn, I realized that many Moleskines were not as user friendly as others, and not all have the same quality paper.

So when I was sorting through my journals, I came upon an older, little used Moleskine diary (2004) that I bought in Sicily. Since finding it, I've been using it to test ink, write notes, and just doodle.

Today I tested the following pens, with these inks on the pages with negative and positive bleed through results, and little feathering:

Lamy Safari (Lime), 1.3 nib; Lamy blue cartridge - N/N
Lamy CP1, F nib; J. Herbin Verte Empire cartridge - N/N
Pilot Knight, M nib, Noodler's Baystate Cranberry ink - Y/N
Morriset Dip Pen, F/M nib, Diamine Register's ink - N/N

Dip Pen, F nib, with the following Noodler's inks: - Y/N
Baystate Blue
Concord Grape

Dip Pen, F nib, with the following Private Reserve inks: Y/N
Copper Burst
Sherwood Green

Reform 1745, M nib, with Private Reserve Arabian Rose - N/N

Pelican M200, M nib, with Noodler's Apache ink = N/N

Dip Pen, F nib, with Diamine Vermillion - Y/N

N/N = no bleed through, no feathering
Y/N = bleed through, no feathering

What I don't know about fountain pens?

There is so much to know about fountain pens just like other hobbies or collections and I never thought to look up information about any of the variables that might be required.

All I did was admire a pen. Buy it! Ink it! And then write, write, write.

It is almost dangerous to see how little I knew, and how much attention can be paid to a writing implement.

Richard Binder (again that you Mr. Binder) has an entire section on his site of the care of fountain pens and inking them here.

Private Reserve for Colours


The elements for writing, let's not forget paper!

While sorting through some notes in my Miquelrius, spiral bound 4, I thought I'd test a few pens to see how well they performed and if there is any bleed through.

The Lamy Safari with a Lamy cartridge wrote well, but I did experience some skipping.

The Lamy C1 with a J. Herbin cartridge worked beautifully, and lastly, the Stypen Purple, also with cartridges also performed well.

There was no bleed through at all with any of the three pens.

Monteverde Arista

I really like clear fountain pens, something about their simplicity and yes, clarity, so I bought this Monteverde Artista sometime ago as a kit. Naturally, I can't remember where, and not even when, but here it sits on my desk begging for a journal note of its own.

I had no difficulty with this pen. It flowed and glowed brightly among the fountain pen stash until last week. Then as if it had been attacked by a mad-pen-maniac, it spluttered, stuttered and stopped writing.

It is both a cartridge and converter pen, but had been used exclusively cartridge. I popped one cartridge in after another, wetting, wondering and wantonly abandoning one after another in an effort to get this member of my fountain pen family to work.

Nothing seemed to make Artista the easy writer it once was. Then I flushed, and set it aside in the wooden soap dish. After a 24 hour rest, I found its converter, and filled it with Delta Red.


More Lepine but no pedigree

Madeleine from Papers called today just as I was walking out the door.

No one she knows can identify my starkly beautiful violet-purple Jean Pierre.

She suggested it was a custom, but it could also be a knock-off.

Oh, dear, I wish I had thought to keep records of all these pens.

I did have a short mini-memory flash that perhaps, maybe, possibly I bought this pen at the Fountain Pen Hospital.


Is Lime the trick for the best Hummus?

Some of us are fair skinned, with peaches and cream complexions while others like me have a tinge of green, not enough to warrant too much notice, but enough to make it difficult to wear certain colours. One of those colours I've always admired on others, but haven't thought looked well on me is lime.

So, if a person can't wear it then why not hold the colour in the palm of your hand in the form of a Lamy Lime Safari fountain pen.

Or if you prefer, try this Hummus recipe, but use lime not lemon.


Clarification on E. S. Perry

Well, it appears one of the FPn members did know more about this pen than I could find on line. No age, no pedigree, but at least now I know that the pen I have has a model number and it is #75.

I filled its piston with some Pelikan ink and it has a very nice nib, writes well and handles perfectly.

Its only flaw is a tight piston, some lubricate might help alleviate snd remedy this problem swiftly.

An obsession with colour!

Like all the watercolours I have, ink colours can easily become an obsession--for me. Take the J. Herbin inks for example below:

I first discovered J. Herbin's small round containers at Papers in Albuquerque or perhaps at Oblations in Portland.

These containers are compact, hold six cartridges and can be carried in a bag, or tossed into a suitcase with no fear of ink mess.

Naturally they captivated me.

I bought a half dozen. I still have some of the cartridges in each container.

Now, however, with my zealous attention to identifying fountain pens, I am finding that my ink collection is expanding. A terrible, but colourful dilemma.


Papers came through. One down!

Madeleine called last night from New Mexico. The phone line was scratchy so she hung up and called again to inform me that she and the shop identified one of my Jean Pierre Lepine fountain pens.

And here it is, the last one on the right, a Casanova. I wonder now if I bought it for the name or the splendid autumn colours.

She also gave me an estimate of what I paid for it. I was stunned.