Parker 51

1948

About This Model

The Parker 51 is generally agreed to be one of the genuinely iconic fountain pens, for its timeless design, revolutionary construction, efficiency, unparalleled durability, and for being a great writer. It is also among the most sold pens of all time, having been available from 1941 until the early 1970’s, manufactured in plants around the world, and sold millions. Within each major model there are myriad combinations of color, cap, and other details that have made collecting 51s a serious sport around the world. 51s are available in two lengths: the typical 51 is 5.4" long, but demis, a half-inch shorter in cap and barrel, were also produced. They are excellent writers, hold a great deal of ink, and are great shirt/jacket pocket pens. Parker 51s are readily available today, although some of their colors and cap patterns are rare.

About This Pen

A very nice 1948 Parker 51, in dove grey. It is unmarked by any noteworthy nicks or scratches, and cleaned up very well. The very faint imprint is seen just below the top edge of the barrel. The Lustraloy cap is one of the many standard models, with a groove that creates the appearance of a separate cap ring. Its nib is a fine, although not as fine as Parker’s extra fine. This is a pen that can be used for many years to come. There is a subject in Parker history that is of interest here: in 1947, the Federal government established a ruling that banned manufacturers from providing lifetime guarantees for their products. The ruling’s logic was not that the products might not last, but that the manufacturer or distributor might not be around to take responsibility for any repairs. Its prescience is clear: seventy-five years later, Parker Pen is now a product of Sanford’s Gillette division, and the factory in Janesville is long gone, but Parker pens with Blue Diamonds signifying the guarantee are still widely used. This pen’s cap, assuming it was original to this pen, would have been part of the pre-1948 made stock that was used up in the following year or two.

Price: $80 Sold

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