What's up at Ravens March.

Vintage pens-Handmade books-Silly statements

Modern Vintage Old New Love Hate

Posted by Dirck on 6 March, 2013

There’s a statement of theme, eh?  I have only a couple of items to consider through the filter of the title, and that’s probably a good thing.

Thing one– yesterday’s pen.  This guy:


This is a very complete blend of Modern and Vintage, Old and New, since the carcass is an all-new production of a vintage shape, and it has been filled with the guts from a 1943 pen with some body problems, and the refitted filler mechanism I was going on about last week.  It’s pretty neat… to look at.

I find, however, that I cannot wholly endorse the Kullock-made vacumatic body.  I won’t go into tedious detail (as you know I’m capable of) but will merely say that the machining of the tail is such that getting the blind cap and the body to present a smooth face took far too much wrestling, and even getting the filler to fit at all was a misery.  For those who know the process– the only way to keep the diaphragm from twisting was to set the pellet in the cup after the assembly was in the barrel.  Yeah.  Honestly.  It looks neat, but it’s not worth all that effort.  The aero shells are probably less of a struggle to deal with.

But… I love it in a way, because it writes so nicely.  Getting the writing parts mated to the body also took more work than I welcome, but it seems very happy in there.  This doesn’t reduce my simmering low-grade hate the shell, because those parts have been writing sweetly since before the Axis surrendered in Tunisia, and do so now less because of what they’re mounted in than despite it.

Thing two—


I discovered yesterday something very exciting about Wahl-Eversharp Pens:  they exist!

This is not the result of my having a mild stroke at some point after writing my site’s reference page about the company. Rather, I had not noticed until the very day that the new website got up and running that the company is once again a going concern.  Happily, I kept my excited, fannish squealing internal, and thus avoided unemployment and likely commitment.  I’m more excited than I can say about this development, this modern revival of a old marque, turning out vintage designs in new materials.  Even better, the pens are… well,  not inexpensive, but within the realm of possibility for even a low-income pen loonie.  The most expensive, all-metal, plated versions will only require me to put up a dollar a day to get one within the next year (and, since I’m not convinced that those have the same cool blind-cap access for filling, I may get a lesser model all the sooner).

So… love the pens, love the fact of their production, love the prices (with limited fervor).  Where’s the hate? Oh, Ive got it, and it’s the pure stuff– self-loathing.  This is an item of startling news to almost no one who isn’t me.  Somehow, despite my constant creeping about of fora and intent sniffing of the virtual winds for the scent of pens, this long-growing and far-from-secret effort at regeneration eluded me.  The website’s appearance was, it seems, the final event in the process; the culmination of all the chatter I totally missed was really a grand unveiling at the LA Pen Show back in mid-February.

Apparently I’m still watching too much TV.

...and I've got it set up the wrong way up, too.

…and I’ve got it standing the wrong way up, too.

Today’s pen: Parker Falcon 50
Today’s ink: Iroshizuku Fuyu-Syogun


5 Responses to “Modern Vintage Old New Love Hate”

  1. Maja said

    Wow, how did you miss all the chatter about the new W-E company? I’ve been waiting to see the full line-up ever since Syd “the Wahlnut” Saperstein posted some photos back in mid-January on FPN 🙂 I guess I shouldn’t give you too hard a time; Eric hadn’t heard about the company and missed his chance to interview Syd at the L.A. Pen Show (and is getting grief about from one reader on FPGeeks 😦 )

    • I’m glad to find I’m not alone in my disability. I can only assume it was something in the same neighbourhood as hysterical blindness; my subconscious, doing its best to protect me disappointment in the event of the relight not coming off as planned, hung drapes and strategically repositioned the potted ferns so I wouldn’t notice the thing at all. At least it didn’t rely upon distracting me with a false pregnancy or memories of being abducted by a band of little green Striebers.

      • Maja said

        I refer to them as “the grays” myself 🙂
        I am very happy with the W-E relaunch (well, the *second* relaunch—the new Skylines came out in the mid-1990s) and was pleased to see the prices weren’t astronomical (if we’re keeping with the UFO theme ;))

  2. Flounder said

    I completely missed all the chatter too. Lots to explore! Looking at the Eversharp site, it seems like the extra long blind cap is there to reveal the piston converter’s turning knob. I really prefer this to the join being at the section.

    • I was on the verge of calling this a “unique” approach, but I realized that it was very similar to the Pelikan Ductus and a Waterman whose name escapes me for the moment, and also rather like the Sheaffer Intrigue. Non-uniqueness aside, though, it is an unusual and rather neat way of getting at the guts, and gives a converter some of the cachet of a piston filler. Pennies are being scraped, even now….

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