Thursday, 29 June 2017

Old dogs, new tricks

Leigh Reyes has a wonderful post on old nibs in new fountain pens. Of course we often call these little babies 'Frankenpens', and they'll never be collector pens - collectors want the original setup. But like Leigh, I prefer to see a good old pen salvaged.

And there's nothing new about nib-swapsies. Plenty of Gold Starrys, Onotos, Edacotos, Conway Stewarts turn up with anonymous 'warranted' nibs that must have been swapped over at some point, perhaps when the pen hit the floor nib-down or little Johnny decided to try to use the pen as an arrow in a Cowboys-and-Indians game.

Pens that don't get their nibs swapped? Parker 51s, because it's too darn difficult to get them apart. Parker 65s and 75s, because no other nibs will fit. But I've seen older Duofolds with all kinds of nibs, so it's clearly not associated with the brand - it's purely and simply about the ease with which the nibs can be exchanged.

I always head for the junker trays at pen shows. I've managed to save some very distressed individuals indeed - and where pens really can't be saved, you can still find a great nib to transfer to another pen.

Meanwhile, Leigh's pictures are just gorgeous - marvellous nibs! beautiful pens! and a bit of good advice on the practicalities of swapping nibs.

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