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 is an early Sheaffer Lifetime Balance, from 1929-30, model H74TC, in marine green. It is a longer pen, at 5¾” capped, with the “humped ball” clip and flat white dot of the time. The celluloid is in excellent condition, with no apparent deterioration. The gold trim is clean; the cap ring is missing a little plating. This pen has received repairs to three small cracks at the edge of the cap; such cracking is more the norm than the exception for these early celluloid pens. The repairs are secure and do not affect the cap threads. The imprint is complete and clear, and there is a personalized imprint for “Alvin S. Hopkins”. $10 discount to anyone with that name! The nib is a large Lifetime, very firm and, typically fine/extra fine.
Price: $54 Sold