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Thread: Mystery pen

  1. #1
    Senior Member Robalone's Avatar
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    Default Mystery pen

    IMG_5379.JPG

    Edit ....it was in French.

    IMG_5381.jpg

    Odd that this is the ONLY mention I've ever come across of this pen / model !!

    And, the one depicted seems to have an 'ink view' barrel.

    Perhaps this is a frankenpen ?? 🤣
    Last edited by Robalone; February 2nd, 2022 at 03:11 AM.

  2. #2
    FPG Donor ♕ Chrissy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mystery pen

    I found a couple of images by searching Google but I'm unsure about the glass cartridge filling system being available in the 1930's. The first image shows the Scintia available as a lever fill and some sort of a pump cartridge system. Not sure if either are the same as yours.

    Waterman Scintia

    Waterman Scintia ebay
    Last edited by Chrissy; February 2nd, 2022 at 03:22 AM.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Senior Member Robalone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mystery pen

    Quote Originally Posted by Chrissy View Post
    I found a couple of images by searching Google but I'm unsure about the glass cartridge filling system being available in the 1930's. The first image shows the Scintia available as a lever fill and some sort of a pump cartridge system. Not sure if either are the same as yours.

    Waterman Scintia

    Waterman Scintia ebay
    Chrissy. Yep that's the ad ! The two other pens are different models, it says it's a Scintia, but it looks like a completely different model to the French ad. . One looks like it has the clip of a 3V, but I didn't think the 3V came with an 'ink view' barrel, and it has a military clip . the other has a different clip.
    The clip on my 'Scintia' is unlike any I've ever seen again.
    I have many catalogs from around the time this pen should be from, but none of them show this clip .....hmmmm. Very weird.

    Also, I suspect that 'pump'looking thing may be a glass cartridge, I've seen graphics like that, of a figurative person inserting a glass cart....

    The hunt goes on !
    Last edited by Robalone; February 2nd, 2022 at 05:30 AM.

  5. #4
    FPG Donor ♕ Chrissy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mystery pen

    Maybe it could have been adjusted to take that glass cartridge? The barrel on the ad looks like it's full of ink and you can see it's level inside there.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

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    Senior Member jos's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mystery pen

    If the pen has no opening in the barrel for a lever or a button, one can safely assume that the pen was a cartridge filler from the start. The glass cartridge can be seen in many French Waterman ads from the late 1930s and was probably introduced in late 1936 because it was described as being "a sensational innovation" in a September 1936 advertisement. Many of these cartridge fillers had a barrel with a blind cap that could be unscrewed, allowing to push the cartridge in from the top of the barrel. The artwork of these pens indeed looks as if it is a pump filler but it is actually the top of the cartridge that is depicted. Other ads indeed praise the ink visible barrels of these cartridge pens, which is odd, but I think that the remaining ink in the transparent cartridge could simply be seen through the transparent barrel, hence the "visible ink level" barrel.

    Your pen remains a mystery indeed but you likely have to search 1930s French Waterman catalogs, if these exist. There are many French Waterman advertisements from the 1930s, most of them appeared in the weekly magazine "L'illustration", but I can't find any pen that resembles yours in the ads that I have available. Nevertheless, I think that your pen is not a Frankenpen. The clip in the ad that you found comes close to the overall design of the clip on your pen, and the resemblance includes the narrow cap band and the stepped cap dome. The pen in the ad seems to be an high end model: the text says that it has a cap dome in gold or in silver and a clip with marcasite stones set in gold or rosettes set in platinum! So your pen could be a more economical version of that model. The clip on your pen has the appearance of solid silver, is that correct?
    Last edited by jos; February 3rd, 2022 at 08:50 AM.

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    Senior Member Robalone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mystery pen

    Hi Jos. the French advert was the only image and mention of the name Scintia I'd found after almost obsessive research , until Chrissy put up that other ad with the name Scintia, but a completely different looking pen. ??

    That was interesting that you said the clip on the one I have might be solid silver ......a piece of the puzzle I'd not considered.....so I broke out the Simichrome and a cotton bud , and by golly the bud went black straight away!!!!!!!
    and the clip shined up amazingly.

    It certainly looks to be silver ! Good spotting.

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    Senior Member Robalone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mystery pen

    I'm starting to get the distinct feeling that this pen , whilst not being a 'frankenpen' as such ...may very well be ,
    The barrel / section/ nib of an indeterminate ( as yet )model glass cartridge pen , which has been mated to a Scintia cap .

    There seems to be enough evidence now that there was a model called the Scintia, but the pics available do seem to point to it having an 'ink view' barrel, ( not a glass cartridge) despite the little image of the man putting a glass cartridge into a barrel.. ( If that were an option for another model of Scintia, why would it not have shown it ?!)

    I'm totally open to correction....in fact I welcome it 🤣

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    Default Re: Mystery pen

    I have one of these as well, but no nib. Solid black barrel, full Waterman USA markings, with the same clip as shown on the longer pen on the right side of the add Chrissy provided (same clip as used on USA Waterman Junior and full length Thorobred). I have also seen a barrel for one with a visulated spiral pattern like the advertisement that you show. Mine takes same glass cartridge as the Post-War French-made
    Waterman models. Eclipsed by the C/F I suppose. The clip on yours is certainly interesting.

    Bob

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    Senior Member jos's Avatar
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    Default Re: Mystery pen

    Quote Originally Posted by Robalone View Post
    I'm starting to get the distinct feeling that this pen , whilst not being a 'frankenpen' as such ...may very well be ,
    The barrel / section/ nib of an indeterminate ( as yet )model glass cartridge pen , which has been mated to a Scintia cap .

    There seems to be enough evidence now that there was a model called the Scintia, but the pics available do seem to point to it having an 'ink view' barrel, ( not a glass cartridge) despite the little image of the man putting a glass cartridge into a barrel.. ( If that were an option for another model of Scintia, why would it not have shown it ?!)

    Advertisements would typically show the most attractive and luxurious pen models in a given range. The fact that your pen has a clip in solid silver (and not steel) may indicate that it belongs to the same model range but with a more affordable (less bling) finish. The absence of an ink view barrel could fit in this assumption. If these "Scintia" pens were introduced in late 1938 (e.g. October and December 1938 advertisements), this model range likely also had a very short production period given that France entered WWII in late 1939 and that production of items with precious metals must have been halted for at least a few years.

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    Default Re: Mystery pen

    I decided to take a fresh look at my pen to see if my recollection was correct. Turns out I have a couple of extra barrels and that one had a nib... an American Watermans nib. However, the inscription was a bit odd. Where a typical 1930s Watermans #2 would say "U S A", this one had "U S" on one line, with "AMERICA" spelled out below. Made me curious, so I pulled nib. I could see the raised bumps that usually mean hallmarks. Flipped nib over, and there are two punched marks which are vague, and what appears to be a cojoined group of circles? with "18" below. French 18k marks? It would make sense. FWIW, the feed is strange, as well. More pockets and notches than a pre-war US feed. It had the tail that was necessary to mate with the cartridge section, so I know that it is correct for the pen, just looks unusual.

    In looking over this pen in more detail, the only failing of these pens (beyond the obvious lack of new glass cartridges) is the limited working life of the vulcanized rubber seat/nipple that allows one to "plug in" the glass cartridge and have an ink-tight seal. At some point, the rubber splits or tears when a cartridge is replaced.

    I assume that these were test marketed by Watermans in a Waterman-friendly and less populous country. Less risk and cost than trying out a new product with marketing campaign in the US. No doubt the War got in the way. Ironically, it was some of the advances in injection molding and plastics technology developed during the war which made the soft plastics available for easily pierced self-sealing cartridges which made the concept practical.

    Bob

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