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Thread: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

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    Default Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Good evening,

    I came across this website recently and wanted to post my story and ask for some help from the experts! I know nothing about fountain pens... so bare with me.

    When I was about 8 years old (early/mid 1990s) I found a really neat item at a thrift/antique store in Texas. We would spend a lot of time at thrift stores when I was young. I thought I had found the coolest thing I had ever seen. It was a shiny fountain pen. This fountain pen also came with a matching ballpoint pen. Both pens fit into a leather case that shared the same logo as the pens. I convinced my parents to purchase this item for me (I remember it being relatively inexpensive). I have kept both pens and the leather case in my "memory box" that I have had since I was around that age, only taking it out a handful of times to play with.

    I was going through this memory box over the weekend looking for some old photos of my grandparents. I ran across the case and decided to take it out for the first time in probably fifteen years just to look at them again. Due to high quality of the case, fountain pen, and ballpoint pen, I thought it would be cool to see if I could find any information on these items online. Again, I know nothing about this stuff nor do I have any interest in being a "collector", so it was a totally random thought. I thought they were just regular cool looking pens. Well, I started with a Google search of the brand noted on the pen caps, Montblanc. My interest heightened after going through their website and realizing how expensive their items were! I further searched for the additional item noted on each of the pen caps, which read "Hemingway". As it turns out, the pens and case I have had stored in my memory box for over twenty years were in fact rare collectible items! In fact, fairly rare AND valuable items. I was shocked. I couldn't believe how far these things have made it with me over such a long period of time. Here is a link to the Montblanc website for information on this specific limited edition set:

    https://www.montblanc.com/en-us/disc...hemingway.html

    I have attached a picture of my set.

    Unfortunately, they're not in perfect shape. I remember vividly that one of those handful of times I played with the fountain pen and ballpoint pen when I was young, I made a couple of bad decisions. For the fountain pen, I lightly chewed (I know - I am not very smart...) on the end that unscrews to add ink. Other than that, its in pretty good shape (as far as I can tell). The ballpoint pen is in a bit tougher shape. I remember trying to "unscrew" the cap of the ballpoint pen to open it up out of curiosity. Well, this style of pen is a push type. I snapped the plastic piece connected from the pen to the cap. I tried the ballpoint pen and the ink is actually still good somehow. I have attached a couple of pictures of the damage. The case is in near perfect condition and I have confirmed it is calfskin with crocodile print. A sort of maroon color. The black foam on the inside has become very brittle and is deteriorating due to age.

    I recently asked asked my parents and they do not remember getting this for me. The folks who ran this business obviously had no idea of the value.

    My questions for the experts here are as follows:

    1. What do you think the estimated value is of the items (fountain pen, ballpoint pen, and case) in its current condition as a whole package and individually?
    2. Do you think that the damage (small bite marks) on the screw-on cap for the fountain pen can be repaired? If so, what is the estimated cost and wait time from Montblanc? Probably a long shot - just curious.
    3. Do you think that the damage (plastic piece inside of the cap) can be repaired for the ballpoint pen? If so, what is the estimated cost and wait time from Montblanc? This seems doable... maybe?

    I intend to keep the pens at this time since I have held on to them for so long. I just think it would be awesome to get them back into their original condition and fully functional! I live in Colorado and there isn't an authorized dealer. I am flying to California next week and intend to visit an authorized dealer to discuss at that time.

    Any help or feedback or tips on a right direction (sale, keep, DIY fix, etc.) is appreciated - thanks for letting me share as I thought you all would get a kick out of it as well.

    Thank you, J
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Hello and welcome to FPGeeks.

    The best way to find out if they can be repaired is to ask Montblanc who will need to see them first. They are the only place that will have spare parts for either of these pens.

    Currently the FP filling unit is broken and it will need to be replaced back into the pen properly by an expert, using the correct specialist tool, before the pen will be working again. The black end cone is not a part that should be unscrewed like it is in your picture. As it has bite marks on there, the only place that might possibly have a replacement end cone is Montblanc.

    I don't know about the BP, but if anyone can repair it then, again, Montblanc can.

    You will need to send them to Montblanc and they will quote you a price to repair them. It won't be cheap. Parts are rare. Expect to wait for at least 4 weeks turnaround time. You can take them or send them into an authorised dealership, or Montblanc HQ in Texas, but these will need to go to Hamburg in Germany to be fixed.

    You could look on ebay for approximate values, but values on there will be for pens in a useable condition, and they will vary depending on condition, plus whether the boxes and papers are present. Montblanc Hemingway is usually a valuable pen. $2,000 or so for a working FP.
    Last edited by Chrissy; February 1st, 2019 at 01:43 AM.
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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Welcome to the forum.
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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    The only source of replacement parts for your Writers Edition pens is Montblanc. Montblanc does not make parts available to customers or third parties. Due to the value of your pens, I strongly recommend you let Montblanc make the repairs. It is likely they will return the pens to you looking like new, with brand new correct replacement parts.

    The down side of this is (1) out-of-warranty repairs by Montblanc are not cheap, and (2) the pens have to be delivered to Hamburg Germany. You either take your pens to a Montblanc boutique or authorized retailer, or mail to Montblanc's service facility in Texas for shipment to Hamburg. Montblanc will send to you a repair quote which you in turn either authorize or decline. It was over three months from start to finish the last time I sent a Writers Edition fountain pen (a Proust) for repair, via my local boutique.

    There are skilled pen restorers who can make repairs to the damaged parts of your pens, without replacement parts, but as good as those repairs may be, they will greatly diminish the market value of your valuable pens. For that reason, I recommend you wait until you have the finances to have Montblanc Hamburg perform the repairs.

    Your pen purchase in the thrift shop is what we jokingly call a "sumgai find." "Some guy" found a super-valuable collectable pen for an absurdly low price. You are to be congratulated.
    Last edited by FredRydr; February 1st, 2019 at 12:43 PM.

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Welcome! I'll try to be polite, even though I am very envious!!
    Quid rides? Mutato nomine de te fabula narratur. — Horace
    (What are you laughing at? Just change the name and the joke’s on you.)

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Thank you for the quick reply and help FredRydr and Chrissy.

    It sounds like I will go the route of taking the items to the authorized dealer when I go out to California. I am going to try to get them repaired and will post an update once I get some feedback from Montblanc.

    I am gaining interest everyday as I read and learn more about the collectible pen world. Maybe one day I wont just be that "sumgai" and share the true appreciation you all have!

    Thanks again! - J

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Where in California?

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    They have to go to Texas HQ first, then Texas will send them to Hamburg.

    If you're not confident about mailing the pens to Montblanc HQ in Texas, then it's possible you may find an AD in California. It might need to be an official Montblanc boutique for them to not charge you the shipping to Texas in any event.

    Just one thing: Don't leave the pens in the case when you give them to the AD in California or mail them to Texas. You might never see it again, and it's a nice case.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Where in CA, I know the manager at two locations.

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Thanks again Chrissy.

    Farmboy I will be in San Diego and LA for a week so I'm not sure which authorized dealer or outlet I will visit. I will also visit Texas in March so perhaps I'll wait until then if that's where the US HQ is located. I will be in the DFW area, does anyone know the exact location?

    Thank you, J

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    It would appear that you really are "Sumgai" - as in "Some guy found an expensive pen in a thrift store for peanuts and when it needed repairing, he just happened to be travelling to the city where the manufacturers repair centre is located".

    IIRC, the TX HQ of Mont Blanc is (drum roll...) Fort Worth!

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Thank you DB I appreciate your help

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Hello! A quick update:

    Dropped both pens off to a MB boutique in California. The manager at the store tells me they can repair most of the structural issues. Cosmetic issues are TBD based on what MB in Germany has in stock or just leave as is.

    They are headed to Texas for initial stop and then to Germany!

    I was going to take them to Texas myself but that trip is a couple of months away and I wanted to get the clock started.

    For anyone curious, they said it could take 4 - 6 months for final repairs to be complete. The initial estimate is $110 + $72 for the BP and $135 + $72 for the FP. The $72 on each is for a certificate of authenticity. Since they'll be over there I figured might as well get them officially certified by MB.

    That's the initial estimate based on their book in the store. Who knows what the final will be.

    Edit: I forgot to mention it felt as if I was giving my children away. I've had them so long this is the first time they'll be out of my possession for as long as I've had them.

    Thanks!
    Last edited by elouadj; February 12th, 2019 at 11:58 PM.

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    At leat you've got the clock started and the prices don't sound too bad. Montblanc don't usually do anything they consider as "cosmetic" only. They will replace parts needed for the pen to function as it was designed to do.
    You wouldn't have specially needed a certificate of authenticity, because they will each be returned with a letter from Montblanc detailing everything that has been done by them to the pens. If they weren't authentic then they wouldn't do anything.
    Fingers crossed that the "book prices" will apply, and they might if the FP only needs a new piston.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Default Re: Hello! New User - Need Help on Rare Find!

    Thanks again Chrissy .. helpful as usual.

    They won't give me a tracking number so I intend to call in 3 or 4 weeks. Chat then!

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