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Thread: New pen suggestions.

  1. #81
    Senior Member Ray-VIgo's Avatar
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    For new pens - a Pelikan M200 or similar series model, depending on what kind of color and trim you like.

    For vintage - an older Sheaffer (Flat Top, Balance, Touchdown, etc - they're all pretty good) or Pelikan pen (400, 120, 140, etc) - it depends on your taste in nibs. If you like a firm nib that writes in a more "modern" way, go with the Sheaffer. If you want a softer nib with a little flex and usually a little more generous line, try the Pelikan. A Parker Vacumatic may be an option too, again probably a firmer nib based on what commonly is out there - again, your call as to taste. The Vacumatics are also excellent pens. For English pens, I'm partial to the Stephens pens. The ones I've used all had good nibs and all were fairly cheap because it is a lesser-known brand name.
    Last edited by Ray-VIgo; January 16th, 2020 at 10:12 AM.

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    Senior Member azkid's Avatar
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Looks like you have a Jinhao 51A inbound? I've had fairly good experiences with the hooded versions of these pens so far (bought several). All but one wrote out of the box. That one I did some minor work on and it is now a really nice writer. The one open nib version I bought had issues.

    I got one with the dark wood which, unfortunately, cracked in the very dry Denver climate. I'm thinking about turning a new barrel for it one day.

  3. #83
    Senior Member Deb's Avatar
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Quote Originally Posted by DumDum View Post
    Ta muchly. It's a lot to learn in what little life is left.
    Indeed, and we're mostly old fogeys tottering towards the eternal but get a few reference books (good ones) and deploy google and you'll be surprised how much you'll pick up in a short time. I know it's a race against the looming dark but you might become quite knowledgeable before the lights go out.
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Quote Originally Posted by stub View Post
    THROW THAT BOWL OUT IT IS BROKEN.
    That repair is beautiful!

  6. #85
    Senior Member Deb's Avatar
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Quote Originally Posted by stub View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by DumDum View Post
    doesn't the celluloid get brittle and prone to breakage?
    That's ebonite. Cellulod can shrink and deform. It also burns easily. Ebonite cracks and can not be plastic welded.

    Correct me if I am wrong. Not a pen repairererer. Just a user.
    Ebonite discolours but doesn't get brittle. With the exception of metal, most things that pens are made out of are subject to cracking in the cap lip. It's true that cracks in hard rubber are, at least at present, unrepairable. Some celluloids do get brittle.
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Ebonite discolours but doesn't get brittle.
    I'm sorry, but it does get brittle - sometimes very brittle, especially in colors that don't contain carbon black, like olive ripple, blue ripple, pink ripple Watermans, and the RHR Duofolds. Its one of the things that makes opening a vintage hard rubber pen "entertaining." The reason is that black absorbs the UV rays in light, and so nothing or little to absorb the UV, which breaks down the bonds in the material.

    Celluloids in colors other than black also can get brittle. The Mandarin yellow Duofolds are known for being fragile, but I've also found that some of the red Duofolds can be brittle as well - especially the cap lips. If I have to replace the cap lip I use material from farther up the cap, which is thicker, so hasn't become quite so fragile.

    Visit Main Street Pens
    A full service pen shop providing professional, thoughtful pen repair....

  8. #87
    Senior Member Deb's Avatar
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Z View Post
    Ebonite discolours but doesn't get brittle.
    I'm sorry, but it does get brittle - sometimes very brittle, especially in colors that don't contain carbon black, like olive ripple, blue ripple, pink ripple Watermans, and the RHR Duofolds. Its one of the things that makes opening a vintage hard rubber pen "entertaining." The reason is that black absorbs the UV rays in light, and so nothing or little to absorb the UV, which breaks down the bonds in the material.

    Celluloids in colors other than black also can get brittle. The Mandarin yellow Duofolds are known for being fragile, but I've also found that some of the red Duofolds can be brittle as well - especially the cap lips. If I have to replace the cap lip I use material from farther up the cap, which is thicker, so hasn't become quite so fragile.
    That's true. I was thinking only in terms of BHR
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Quote Originally Posted by azkid View Post
    Looks like you have a Jinhao 51A inbound? I've had fairly good experiences with the hooded versions of these pens so far (bought several). All but one wrote out of the box. That one I did some minor work on and it is now a really nice writer. The one open nib version I bought had issues.

    I got one with the dark wood which, unfortunately, cracked in the very dry Denver climate. I'm thinking about turning a new barrel for it one day.
    Yeah, some peeps earlier suggested a Parker 51. The Jinhao 51A seemed a good bet for finding out if a hooded nib suits me writing style and angle of attack.

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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    The Jinhao might be a hooded nib, but it writes nothing like a Parker 51. The Jinhao is cheaply machined and made from lighter material. The nib is steel and somewhat crude.

    The Parker 51 was the leading pen in the era -- 1940 - 1960 -- when the fountain pen was the most important personal writing instrument. The 51 was carefully designed to work well, to write well, to avoid glitz and glitter but to be beautiful just by its streamlined shape. The aerometic P-51, released in the US in 1948 and in the UK in 1949 or 1950, has a filling system that does not seem to wear out. Ever. The previous version, the "Vacumatic" P-51 might need a new "sac" but nothing else. The aerometrics we find might need to have some dried ink cleared out, but otherwise just needs a nib-tuning, if that.

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    Senior Member azkid's Avatar
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    If you think you might want to try something much closer to a Parker 51, then get a 21 Super which should cost less but which will have the same type of nib, shape, etc. (They are different from a plain 21 which has a larger hood opening).

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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Or better yet (imo): a p51 Special.

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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Quote Originally Posted by DumDum View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by azkid View Post
    Looks like you have a Jinhao 51A inbound? I've had fairly good experiences with the hooded versions of these pens so far (bought several). All but one wrote out of the box. That one I did some minor work on and it is now a really nice writer. The one open nib version I bought had issues.

    I got one with the dark wood which, unfortunately, cracked in the very dry Denver climate. I'm thinking about turning a new barrel for it one day.
    Yeah, some peeps earlier suggested a Parker 51. The Jinhao 51A seemed a good bet for finding out if a hooded nib suits me writing style and angle of attack.
    For a Chinese pen, the Wing Sung 601 (at about $20) is so close to a Parker hooded experience that I've never had mine de-inked since I got it...of course if you can get a 21 at that price, sure!

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    Senior Member welch's Avatar
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sailor Kenshin View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by DumDum View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by azkid View Post
    Looks like you have a Jinhao 51A inbound? I've had fairly good experiences with the hooded versions of these pens so far (bought several). All but one wrote out of the box. That one I did some minor work on and it is now a really nice writer. The one open nib version I bought had issues.

    I got one with the dark wood which, unfortunately, cracked in the very dry Denver climate. I'm thinking about turning a new barrel for it one day.
    Yeah, some peeps earlier suggested a Parker 51. The Jinhao 51A seemed a good bet for finding out if a hooded nib suits me writing style and angle of attack.
    For a Chinese pen, the Wing Sung 601 (at about $20) is so close to a Parker hooded experience that I've never had mine de-inked since I got it...of course if you can get a 21 at that price, sure!
    Right now there is a Super 21, medium point, gray, on Ebay for $20. It had a crack in the barrel which, the seller says, someone repaired with a clumsy dose of glue. Seller says it works, which is reasonable, since the all the 21's and the aerometric 51 and 51 Special just use the barrel to cover the squeeze part of the filler.

    Ebay: https://www.ebay.com/itm/Parker-Vint...kAAOSw~G5dTuLE


    Someone else is selling Super 21 / Parker 41 barrels at $10 each. Has a gray one. I did not know that those barrels were interchangeable, but I never held a Parker 41. Here's the link:

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/VINTAGE-PAR...YAAOSwupVeFfwx

  18. #94
    Member DumDum's Avatar
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    Now, now, now then, boils and grills. Let's see what this 51A is like before I go spending more spondulicks on other pens that may or may not be as good or better.


    Edited to add that the Wing Song 689 on me desk is the smoothest nib so far experienced.
    Last edited by DumDum; Yesterday at 05:02 AM.

  19. #95
    Senior Member calamus's Avatar
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    Default Re: New pen suggestions.

    I'm not a fan of Chinese pens in general, although some of them are good writers. I've had them break on me just from use, something that's never happened to any of my pens made elsewhere. Also, Chinese pens have gradually become more and more expensive, so that now many of them cost as much as a Pilot Metropolitan or Prera, or a Lamy Safari or TWSBI Eco or Kaweco Sport, all of which have great (and well-deserved) reputations as well-built, reliable, inexpensive writing implements. If I were going to spend $15 or $20 on a pen I'd much rather get a Pilot Metropolitan than a Moonman, even though the Metropolitan looks plainer than the Moonman.
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