English Parker 61 Set

About This Model

The Parker 51 was a hard act to follow, but Parker in the 1950s was determined to move ahead with a technologically advanced successor. So, starting in the mid-1950s, Parker developed prototypes. Parker and Sheaffer both thought clean filling was the next step, so while Sheaffer created the Snorkel, Parker went for a capillary filling unit in the 61. Turn the pen upside down and dunk the filler end into ink; it absorbs ink; wipe it off and put the barrel back on. It was a wonderful idea that really never succeeded, although one can't tell today if the problem was the filler or the 51's durability or continued success. At any rate, the MKI appeared in 1956, with small decorative shields riveted to the caps; rainbow "Heritage" caps also appeared then. These were luxe pens. Over time, more ordinary versions appeared, with plastic barrels and Lustroloy caps. In 1962, a slighter more slender version, called MKII, appeared; then MKIII in 1969, when the capillary filler was replaced by a cartridge/converter unit. 61's were made in diminishing varieties and quantities through the 1970s, and were finally discontinued altogether in 1983. It was a highly successful model history, but that success was dwarfed by the 51 and the contemporaneous 45.

About This Pen

This is an English Parker 61 pen/ballpoint set, in a navy blue (not capitalized because I couldn’t find this color listed anywhere…) with gold cap, so one can say it’s smashing! It carries the Parker gold mark, but the mark’s details are gone, so one can’t tell how rich the cap’s gold is. The cap is in the relatively common “nine vertical lines” pattern. The fountain pen is without significant wear, so is unscratched. The English 61s are all aerometric-filled, for most people a good thing. Even better, the nib is a full, wet, luscious medium, so this is a writer. To make it even better, the matching ballpoint pen is in the cap-activated Jotter style, and uses current Jotter refills. The ballpoint is in equally nice condition. This set would make a wonderful present or user pen set. Give it a case to preserve its appearance. 

Buy the pen alone: $135; buy the ballpoint alone: $50

Price: $170 Sold

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