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Uncle Bud
May 10th, 2015, 06:45 AM
Having used modern pens exclusively up till recently, I took a dip into vintage and got a Mabie Todd Blackbird, which I used on one of my reviews. That pen has a wee bit of flex to the writing and I decided to try some more vintage. Here are my next two purchases:-


Swan SF 300b - Olivey Ebonite


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I just love this pen, and as it turns out ebonite, I like the feel of it in hand. The nib on this pen is fantastic, and that's why I like it so much.

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Whal Eversharp - Deep Red

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I really like the styling of this pen, although it is smaller than I expected, I also love the colour of the pen, I'm a sucker for Burgundy. The nib on this one is a nail, but Oh so smooth, love it.

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What I would really like is a vintage Pelikan, with flex. I am really fond of the Pelikans in my collection, and would love to try a vintage model, I guess I'll be doing some research.

Hope you like my new pens.

Cheers,

Bud.

jar
May 10th, 2015, 07:11 AM
Nice Bud. The Wahl/Eversharp Skylines came in three lengths, a demi (just under 5"), the standard (just over 5") and the Executive (around 5") which was the largest.

migo984
May 10th, 2015, 09:12 AM
I love that Swan. It is my kind of pen I prefer. I bet the nib is great. I have a few MT pens (ably encouraged by Cob :)) & they all write beautifully. I like the appearance of the Wahl/Eversharp, but I somehow can't write with firm nibs, even when very smooth.

fqgouvea
May 10th, 2015, 12:15 PM
I'm very much a beginner when it comes to vintage pens, but I have already figured out that these two brands deserve attention. I have a Mabie Todd that is marked "calligraphic" and has what seems to be an oblique nib. It's a lot of fun to write with it!

Fernando

Uncle Bud
May 10th, 2015, 12:56 PM
I love that Swan. It is my kind of pen I prefer. I bet the nib is great. I have a few MT pens (ably encouraged by Cob :)) & they all write beautifully. I like the appearance of the Wahl/Eversharp, but I somehow can't write with firm nibs, even when very smooth.

Hi Migo,

Is there an easy way to flush pens with sacs, or is it just a case of, fill with water, empty, fill again etc. it took ages to clean the Wahl.

Cheers,

Bud.

migo984
May 10th, 2015, 03:06 PM
I love that Swan. It is my kind of pen I prefer. I bet the nib is great. I have a few MT pens (ably encouraged by Cob :)) & they all write beautifully. I like the appearance of the Wahl/Eversharp, but I somehow can't write with firm nibs, even when very smooth.

Hi Migo,

Is there an easy way to flush pens with sacs, or is it just a case of, fill with water, empty, fill again etc. it took ages to clean the Wahl.

Cheers,

Bud.

There are no real shortcuts to cleaning these, so I'm afraid you'll just have to suck it up (pun intended :))

They are tedious (but oh so worth it). I actually don't mind as it's part of their charm.

I just fill with water, repeatedly.

I try to:

a) always write until the pen has emptied itself rather than deciding to change inks with some left in the pen (don't always manage this as I get bored with some colours)

b) only use inks that I know flush & clean more easily & avoid overly-saturated reds & some purples, and some brands. (again, I fail at this one sometimes & use a 'clingy' ink just cos I love it!)

c) when most of the initial ink has been cleaned out, fill with water, give the pen a gentle shake, then hold it tight & flick repeatedly into the sink. This seems to loosen remaining stubborn bits.

d) I sometimes fill with water when I think it's clean & leave to stand vertically on kitchen paper for a couple of hours. It's amazing how much more colour leaches out.

I don't use pen flush or ammonia solutions in vintage pens. Plain cold water seems to work best.

It can depend on whether the pen has a new sac or not. Those with older sacs often have remnants of old ink in them & may never have been properly cleaned. They seem to 'hold onto' ink somehow. Wait till you get a vintage pen with a cap that's never been cleaned inside. I've had caps so full of old dried ink that I'm surprised they fit on the pen!

Sorry, I've not been much help. I'm hoping others will answer here so I can pick up some clever tips myself :)

Uncle Bud
May 10th, 2015, 03:20 PM
O


I love that Swan. It is my kind of pen I prefer. I bet the nib is great. I have a few MT pens (ably encouraged by Cob :)) & they all write beautifully. I like the appearance of the Wahl/Eversharp, but I somehow can't write with firm nibs, even when very smooth.

Hi Migo,

Is there an easy way to flush pens with sacs, or is it just a case of, fill with water, empty, fill again etc. it took ages to clean the Wahl.

Cheers,

Bud.

There are no real shortcuts to cleaning these, so I'm afraid you'll just have to suck it up (pun intended :))

They are tedious (but oh so worth it). I actually don't mind as it's part of their charm.

I just fill with water, repeatedly.

I try to:

a) always write until the pen has emptied itself rather than deciding to change inks with some left in the pen (don't always manage this as I get bored with some colours)

b) only use inks that I know flush & clean more easily & avoid overly-saturated reds & some purples, and some brands. (again, I fail at this one sometimes & use a 'clingy' ink just cos I love it!)

c) when most of the initial ink has been cleaned out, fill with water, give the pen a gentle shake, then hold it tight & flick repeatedly into the sink. This seems to loosen remaining stubborn bits.

d) I sometimes fill with water when I think it's clean & leave to stand vertically on kitchen paper for a couple of hours. It's amazing how much more colour leaches out.

I don't use pen flush or ammonia solutions in vintage pens. Plain cold water seems to work best.

It can depend on whether the pen has a new sac or not. Those with older sacs often have remnants of old ink in them & may never have been properly cleaned. They seem to 'hold onto' ink somehow. Wait till you get a vintage pen with a cap that's never been cleaned inside. I've had caps so full of old dried ink that I'm surprised they fit on the pen!

Sorry, I've not been much help. I'm hoping others will answer here so I can pick up some clever tips myself :)

Yeah I guessed as much, thanks for the tips though. I suppose it's part of the vintage pen charm. Cheers Bud.

mhosea
May 10th, 2015, 03:41 PM
c) when most of the initial ink has been cleaned out, fill with water, give the pen a gentle shake, then hold it tight & flick repeatedly into the sink. This seems to loosen remaining stubborn bits.

d) I sometimes fill with water when I think it's clean & leave to stand vertically on kitchen paper for a couple of hours. It's amazing how much more colour leaches out.


In keeping with my general lack of patience, I perform a kind of combination move of (c) and (d). I wrap the nib in a tissue, napkin, or paper towel, and do the thermometer shake to empty the feed. This is noticeably more effective than flicking at the sink alone, without the wicking action of having the tissue/napkin in contact with the nib, and the color of the water on the tissue gives a pretty good indication of "where you are" in the flushing effort. Another thing I like to do is, after I think I might be done, filling it with water and waiting about 10 minutes before emptying the pen and doing my thermometer shake again. I often find that I'm not quite done yet, but then again, I'm probably just being a little obsessive at that point. :)

Cob
May 10th, 2015, 05:26 PM
Well Uncle Bud,

I'm inevitably with Migo on this one; I'll bet that 300B has a glorious nib and it would be nice to see a close up of it - and even better with a writing sample.

Tell me, is it stamped "Swan" or just "Mabie Todd"?

Enjoy your pens!

Cob

Uncle Bud
May 10th, 2015, 10:35 PM
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Well Uncle Bud,

I'm inevitably with Migo on this one; I'll bet that 300B has a glorious nib and it would be nice to see a close up of it - and even better with a writing sample.

Tell me, is it stamped "Swan" or just "Mabie Todd"?

Enjoy your pens!

Cob

Hi Cob,

I'll try and get close ups on tonight. The cap is marked '"Swan" S.F. 300B', and the barrel is '"SWAN" Self Filler, Mabie Todd and Co. Ltd., Made in England" , and the nib is '"SWAN" 2, 14ct, Mabie Todd and Co Ltd'.

Does those mean anything in particular?

Cheers,

Bud.

Cob
May 11th, 2015, 09:19 AM
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Well Uncle Bud,

I'm inevitably with Migo on this one; I'll bet that 300B has a glorious nib and it would be nice to see a close up of it - and even better with a writing sample.

Tell me, is it stamped "Swan" or just "Mabie Todd"?

Enjoy your pens!

Cob

Hi Cob,

I'll try and get close ups on tonight. The cap is marked '"Swan" S.F. 300B', and the barrel is '"SWAN" Self Filler, Mabie Todd and Co. Ltd., Made in England" , and the nib is '"SWAN" 2, 14ct, Mabie Todd and Co Ltd'.

Does those mean anything in particular?

Cheers,

Bud.

It will help to see a close up of the nib. The pen was probably manufactured in the early 1920s - about 1923 at a guess, perhaps a year or two later. I do not know when nibs were first fitted to English Swans that were stamped Mabie Todd & Co Ltd. Some pens made around that time had Mabie Todd New York nibs - I mean stamped as such. I have been told that Mabie Todd's nibs all came from America until 1931; of course they were most likely stamped Mabie Todd & Co Ltd in New York! There is an early "type face" which can help date a nib.

Ultimately the problem is that when one is dealing with pens that are around 90 years old, one never knows what might have happened in their lifetimes!

Cob

Uncle Bud
May 13th, 2015, 03:17 AM
Hi Cob,

Sorry for the delay. This is as close as I can get with my camera. Are they any good.

Cheers,

Bud.

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