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Thread: Parker 51 Pan American Green

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    Default Parker 51 Pan American Green

    The best way to guarantee someone wants to do something, is to tell them they aren't allowed to...

    On that note...

    Parker "51" Ink Pan American Green

    An ink so deadly to pens, they had to invent a new pen just to handle it!

    Imagine a time when the only writing implements around were dip pens, pencils and fountain pens. It was called the 1930s!

    Ink and Pen manufacturers are in a race to make the fastest drying ink. Everyone is carrying around a blotter, they are so common that they are used for advertising the way match books and ballpoint pens are now. Smearing ink is an everyday inconvenience. To get an edge, manufacturers need a faster drying ink. First, Parker invented Quink (a portmanteau of quick and ink) but then, they invented the fastest drying ink they could. It didn't really "dry" by evaporation so much as it soaked into the paper.

    There was only one little tiny problem... It ATE PENS. Especially celluloid pens... oh, and it also dried out on nibs... Of course, the only OBVIOUS solution was to invent an entirely new pen just to handle this one ink! (available in 4 colours)

    And boy did they. The Parker "51" was so successful that after making the first 12 million or so, they just stopped counting.

    Learn more about the ink here: http://www.richardsp...care/51_ink.htm
    Learn more about the pen here: http://www.richardsp...profiles/51.htm
    Too bad the ink was still semi-deadly to that pen too... so it was only made from 1941 to about 1948. (when it was replaced by the SLIGHTLY less deadly Superchrome MTF on that...)

    That makes the bottle in question at least 72 years old.

    Now then, in Monty Python fashion GET ON WITH IT!

    Obligatory "artsy" glamour shot (yeah... it's no where near PenHero's level, I know. #photographygoals)




    There was some sedimentation... but don't worry, I shook the bottle vigorously to ensure all the dyes got back into suspension (obviously not solution...) After all, we need as true of a representation of it's original colour as possible!


    And now the writing... My handwriting is bad enough that I may as well have just written out the first 6 pages of Lorem Ipsum... legible text typed out below the page
    Rhodia Notebook


    Parker "51" Pan American
    Green 3oz Bottle bought
    on eBay April 2020.
    But the ink is over 70
    years old. "51" ink
    was only made from 1941 to 1948!
    The ink was designed to
    dry quickly. It was so aggressive the "51" pen had
    to be developed just to
    handle it. This bottle doesn't dry especially
    quickly (actually, it's pretty good) The colour is
    not saturated by today's
    standards

    Would buy again? Not Applicable :P

    Shading: OK, not great
    Saturation: Low
    Feathering: Low/Nil
    Spread: Low/Nil
    Bleed: Low
    Cleaning: (not evaluated yet as it is still in the pens)

    Water test Results: Water Resistant to a reasonable degree as can be seen

    I take it back,
    dry time is pretty
    good. Especially in
    dryer pens.


    You can't / shouldn't realistically buy this ink... but but... but what if i LOVE the colour? Well have no fear, a reasonable approximation of it can be achieved by mixing Noodler's Squeteague 7:5 Water:Ink
    Yes, it says 7:1 in BOTH scans... that's a "typo" it should be 7:5 water:ink
    Clairefontaine Notebook

    Clairefontaine Notebook
    Legible text typed out below... Lorem Ipsum caveat from above applies here


    Parker "51" Pan American
    Green
    TWSBI Eco Medium nib
    Wing Sung 601 Fude nib
    This ink is new old
    stock.

    The bottle is nearly full,
    accounting for only a little evaporation

    The ink does not seem
    to be drying at any
    kind of special rate.

    It's not a "slow" drying
    ink by any means,
    but it's not excepti-
    onally speedy either

    By today's standards
    this does not qualify
    as very saturated
    But 70 years may have
    had some effect on that



    Notes:

    I initially put this ink in a Wing Sun 3006 (a cheap copy of a "51"/61 CC). The nib dried out over night... but then again, the cap on these is not great. Still, the irony was not lost on me.

    So then I put it in a TWSBI Eco, it was fine.
    I wrote with it for a couple of days. Today I refilled the TWSBI and then eyedropper filled a Wing Sung 601 with a fude-esque nib (not wanting to stick the pen in the ink and risk contaminating it, and not having a decent sized sample vial... I pulled the hood, and collector from the 601, dumped some ink in and reassembled the pen.) That was a couple of hours ago.

    The 601 is now experiencing hard starts and general dryness at the nib. The irony of this happening to a pen that is a VERY VERY faithful reproduction of a Parker "51" is, again, not lost on me. It should be noted, I think this particular pen writes relatively dry in the first place. But still...
    I will leave it capped, horizontal on my desk overnight, and update this thread WRT dry out.

    The Eco is fine. Seems to really like this ink, Most of the review above was written with the Eco.

    Conclusion:

    So there it is. the Colour of Parker "51" Pan American Green.

    It's like a pale Noodler's Squeteague that will kill your pen in the long run and cost you a ton of money for the privilege!

    My curiosity is satisfied... for now

    The bottle of Tunis Blue is already on it's way ...
    Last edited by INeedAFinancialAdvisor; May 5th, 2020 at 11:33 PM.

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Fascinating. I wonder how it would work in a period correct "51" Vacumatic.

    I'm really curious about the saturation. Seems like the handful of old writing examples I've run across are similarly faded-looking.

    I assumed that the writing had faded over time but maybe inks a lot less saturated then? Or did the ink somehow fade in the bottle? Hmm.

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Quote Originally Posted by azkid View Post
    Fascinating. I wonder how it would work in a period correct "51" Vacumatic.

    I'm really curious about the saturation. Seems like the handful of old writing examples I've run across are similarly faded-looking.

    I assumed that the writing had faded over time but maybe inks a lot less saturated then? Or did the ink somehow fade in the bottle? Hmm.
    I have considered loading it into a REAL "51", but the ink is known to rapidly ossify vacumatic diaphragms, and Superchrome (the slightly less deadly version) eats silver breather tubes from Aerometrics... Neither of which is likely to happen quickly/from a single filling, but still...

    If I do try it, I will update this thread

    I think generally inks were much less saturated back in the day. Although inks have been known to lose some vibrance even in the bottle. From what I've read, the extreme saturation is what made Parker Penman inks different from any before and that was in the 1990's. Now of course we have Noodler's and Private Reserve and Diamine.

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    UPDATE on the Wing Sung 601

    This morning the nib was considerably dryer. to the point of not writing reliably.

    Then I accidentally left the cap off for 10 mins or so... the nib completely dried out.

    The pen has now been cleaned.

    CLEANING: Not Bad. A little residue left that a quick wipe got rid of. It helps that a WS 601 can be easily completely disassembled.

    The TWSBI Eco remains unaffected and writing perfectly

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Fascinating review. Thanks a lot. I assume it works well in TWSBI because it's well sealed unlike the other pens....

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Quote Originally Posted by Yazeh View Post
    Fascinating review. Thanks a lot. I assume it works well in TWSBI because it's well sealed unlike the other pens....
    Thanks!

    Glad you liked it

    Yes. I think the TWSBI is OK for the same reason: An excellent sealing cap

    I AM surprised that for as faithful of a copy as the WS 601 is to the Parker 51 that it dried out. I may try it in another one. One I use more regularly and know the performance of better.

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Quote Originally Posted by azkid View Post
    Fascinating. I wonder how it would work in a period correct "51" Vacumatic.

    I'm really curious about the saturation. Seems like the handful of old writing examples I've run across are similarly faded-looking.

    I assumed that the writing had faded over time but maybe inks a lot less saturated then? Or did the ink somehow fade in the bottle? Hmm.
    do you have pictures of old writing samples that you KNOW to be Pan American Green?
    If so, PLEASE, add them to this thread! I would LOVE to see them!

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Quote Originally Posted by INeedAFinancialAdvisor View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Yazeh View Post
    Fascinating review. Thanks a lot. I assume it works well in TWSBI because it's well sealed unlike the other pens....
    Thanks!

    Glad you liked it

    Yes. I think the TWSBI is OK for the same reason: An excellent sealing cap

    I AM surprised that for as faithful of a copy as the WS 601 is to the Parker 51 that it dried out. I may try it in another one. One I use more regularly and know the performance of better.
    I don't know much about Parker 51 or its clone... I'm not a fan of hooded nibs...
    Try it with different nibs and pens, you'll be surprised

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    That is a beautiful ink and it reminds me of Kyo-No-Oto's Hisoku. It's a very popular ink because of it's unique shade. I would love a bottle of the Parker!

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Quote Originally Posted by sfarkhan View Post
    That is a beautiful ink and it reminds me of Kyo-No-Oto's Hisoku. It's a very popular ink because of it's unique shade. I would love a bottle of the Parker!
    I guess you meant Kyo No Oto Urahairo?

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Quote Originally Posted by sfarkhan View Post
    That is a beautiful ink and it reminds me of Kyo-No-Oto's Hisoku. It's a very popular ink because of it's unique shade. I would love a bottle of the Parker!
    You can get a bottle of the Parker on eBay but it will cost you. And given the deadlines of the ink, it makes more sense to use or mix a look a like. I did this out of curiosity of the colour. There were NO colour swatches of it on the Internet. And part of me NEEDED to know what this ink looked like.

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Quote Originally Posted by Yazeh View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by sfarkhan View Post
    That is a beautiful ink and it reminds me of Kyo-No-Oto's Hisoku. It's a very popular ink because of it's unique shade. I would love a bottle of the Parker!
    I guess you meant Kyo No Oto Urahairo?
    No, I meant Hisoku - The second picture from the top with the swatch card next to the box, in clear light, looks more blueish than the faded green of Urahairo. The images further down are more green in hue but so is the rest of the image.

    https://www.jetpens.com/Takeda-Jimuk...ottle/pd/22345
    Last edited by sfarkhan; May 8th, 2020 at 12:46 AM.

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Quote Originally Posted by sfarkhan View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Yazeh View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by sfarkhan View Post
    That is a beautiful ink and it reminds me of Kyo-No-Oto's Hisoku. It's a very popular ink because of it's unique shade. I would love a bottle of the Parker!
    I guess you meant Kyo No Oto Urahairo?
    No, I meant Hisoku - The second picture from the top with the swatch card next to the box, in clear light, looks more blueish than the faded green of Urahairo. The images further down are more green in hue but so is the rest of the image.

    https://www.jetpens.com/Takeda-Jimuk...ottle/pd/22345
    I see what you mean

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    I just looked at my ink stash and found a bottle of Hisoku which I got as part of a lot. Didn't like it as it looks washed out. Maybe I should try it on a wetter pen.

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Comparing my coloring card to that jet pens swatch, its VERY close. Pan American Green is maybe just a tiny tinge greener. i think if you mixed that with a little of the undiluted Noodler's Squeteague you'd probably end up with a near perfect match.

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    EBay should have some of the mid-40's Parker advertisements for their Parker51 inks. I don't remember the equivalent of swatches, but Parker explained that 51-ink had three or ten times the dye concentration of normal inks, giving brilliant colors. I suspect that the ink from INeed's sample must have lost much of its color. I've seen that in old Art Deco bottles of Quink Royal Blue. For another example, I found a half-full bottle of Cart's American Blue, but it was a thin washed out blue.

    Best target pen is probably a living and breathing Parker 51. The ink and the pen were made for each other, and Parker would have immediately withdrawn the ink if it had immediately damaged their flagship pen. That must have taken a few years, since Parker kept Superchrome on the market until 1956.

    http://www.richardspens.com/ref/care/51_ink.htm

    Be careful, of course. Richard shows an example of what prolonged use of Superchrome did to a silver breather tube. Somewhere else, he says that if you use Parker 51 Ink or Superchrome, your pen will lead an exciting, but short, life!

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Ah! Here is that advertisement saying Superchrome has a "dye content 3 to 10 times greater" than ordinary ink.

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/1947-Parker...e3de4d1b006817

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Over on the right-hand side of this Parker ad is a more detailed explanation of their claim that Superchrome dries faster and lasts longer than ordinary inks.

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-194...wAAOSwAThb8F-C

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Wow, a very informative thread without anyone getting wound up and becoming toxic.

    How refreshing!
    - Will
    Unique and restored vintage pens: Redeem Pens

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    Default Re: Parker 51 Pan American Green

    Well, I blame everyone here because last night, while "EBaying after midnight", I must have bought a half-bottle of Superchome Blue. Will put it into an aerometric P-51 and see what it looks like. (And then flush it). A 51 aero is pretty easy to squish clean, and, best I can tell, Superchrome only hurt silver breather tubes, and then only over time. Might also be a good excuse to disassemble the 51.

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