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Archive for March 5th, 2012

Imperial March

Posted by Dirck on 5 March, 2012

I know everyone is on the edge of their collective seat, so…

My son’s rather minor dental surgery on Friday went swimmingly!

Oh, wait.  This is a platform from which I can shout at (fellow) pen obsessives; the family stuff, while important, isn’t the main point.  Right, then.  How about that Imperial I that was mentioned last week?

There's the handsome oddity!

Is that not a nice example of a strange, low-end, and little-regarded pen?  I’m just getting my thoughts together for the entry on the website, so I don’t have anything very profound to say about this thing.  I would like to find some primary source material regarding what possessed Sheaffer to put the entirely different version of their pneumatic filling mechanism into this pen.  Does the retooling pay off in the lesser cost of production?  I’m inclined to say that it clearly doesn’t, as it never appeared again, while the “normal” filler continued in use until the end of the 1960s.

For the curious, here’s a look at the two fillers distended:

Short throw, plastic shaft... and a bit of a handicap.

An Imperial II which just happened to be lying about, with the usual Touchdown guts

What is this handicap I mention?  The capacity, although that handicap is only a relative one.  In comparing the ink load between these two Sheaffer mechanisms, there’s little to chose between them.  However, looking at the similar Esterbrook Safari… that’s not much ink, dispite the loss of a quantity of interior mechanism.

I am still pretty happy about having one of these things in my collection.  It fills a hole, it shows a different way of approaching the question of filling, and it’s not unattractive.  It also helped balance out a weekend in which a certain little fellow learned the limitations of pain medication… in the very early hours of the morning.

Today’s somewhat more commonplace pen: Lamy 2000
Today’s ink, chosen while somewhat bleary: Pelikan 4001 Brilliant Brown (it actually looks great coming from this pen)

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