Sunday, October 2, 2011

This is what started it all, 3 old Waterman's

Over the Independence Day weekend while searching for a wooden box I stored in one of my file cabinets I found these 3 old Waterman USA fountain pens.   I have had a fascination about these and other dip and fountain pens from a very early age, perhaps pre elementary school.  Fountain pens are just plain neat!

Later (about the mid 1970s) I got to see some hand-written records in our fire department from the late 1800s to early 1900s -- all written with a fountain pen.  What neat penmanship those fellows had!

As best I can tell the two amber ones are Waterman 302 Flex pens.  One has a fine nib and the other has a medium nib.  I could not find any information on the pens on the Fountain Pen Network so I inked them and measured both the line and the nib width with a calipers.  One pen as shown later still has the label on the cap.  These two pens were inked and tested.  I used the fine nib pen until the ink ran dry.  The pen in the middle is a 100 Year pen, maroon barrel (missing the end jewel) and the gold star and stripes snap fit cap.  All are lever fill.

This is the cap with the label.  It is difficult to distinguish from the photo whether the first digit is a 3 or 8.  Examined under a stereo microscope shows it is a 3.

This is the barrel and the nib of the 100 Year Waterman pen.  This is a very smooth writing nib.  I believe it is a fine nib as measured with a calipers.  I wanted to use this pen as a regular on my rotation of pens, but the fill lever is broken so it is relegated to use as a dip pen at my desk.

Here is a photo of the nibs on the number 302 pens.
I did not notice the ink residue in my haste to take the photo to post.  These are the nibs of the 302's.  The fine nib is a smooth writer and the medium is a bit scratchy and ink flow is a bit difficult to start if the pen sits over night.  Both pens have a vent hole in the cap that does not help with restarting an inked pen.  Neither pen writes as smooth as the 100 Year pen.  Then I do not know how my sister and I may have tortured these pens as we played with them as toys when we were very very young. (ooooooh what a terrible thing to do with fountain pens)

My present pen collection is quite small and consists of about 15 pens; mostly Waterman from France, a few Shaeffer and a Parker.  I always thought; who needs more than one pen?  Then I got bitten by the collecting bug.

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