About This Model
Sheaffer's Balances, both Lifetime and non-Lifetime, appeared in 1929 and were Sheaffer’s top production lines from the early 1930’s until after WWII. They were available in numerous lengths, girths, colors and patterns, filled by lever or plunger, and were well enough made that now, with a cleaning and filling system restoration, they make excellent and durable pens. There were two distinct levels, Lifetime and non-Lifetime, and numerous models at different times. The Lifetime designation was carried over from before the Balance's appearance, and was kept to designate higher level pens. They carried Lifetime nibs and a white dot to signify the pen as a Lifetime; in addition, they came with the Lifetime guarantee, which continued for many years until the courts struck it down. After WWII the White Dot was used to denote higher level pens, and then became Sheaffer's brand identifier. Non-Lifetime pens had lower trim levels but were made of the same components; their nibs were very good and were often much softer and easier to write with than Lifetimes. Balances were also designated with numerous sub-model names after the mid-1930s, and the use of Balance was ended altogether after WWII, with the obsolescence of lever-filled pens.
About This Pen
This Balance Valiant Lifetime is a wartime pen, 1940-42, easily identified by its clip, which wraps over the top of the cap. This design both enabled the pen to be carried lower in a regulation uniform shirt pocket so that the flap could button over the pen, and used less metal than the traditional Balance. The white dot proves that it’s a Lifetime model. This pen is in Golden Brown, as was so often seen in the wartime production. It’s in very nice condition, with no deep scratches or marks, although there is some typical microwear. The gold-plated trim in clip, cap ring and lever is completely clear and clean; the imprint is complete and deep. The view window is unobstructed. This pen carries the expected Lifetime nib, which writes a smooth, wet fine; it’s typically firm but not too firm. There is a tiny twist at the tip of the nib, but this does not affect writing. This is a very durable, reliable pen that would be perfect in a case or bag.
This pen is not for sale.