Pen of the Day: Pelikan M605 White Transparent with Papier Plume Bayou Nightfall

Pelikan M605 White Transparent with Papier Plume Bayou Nightfall

Pelikan M605 White Transparent with medium nib. My new pen and my almost new ink. A winter white pen with a blueish gray ink.

This M605 has palladium trim and a rhodinized nib. The ink has beautiful shading and a quiet, lovely, almost zen-garden, feeling.

Pelikan M605 White Transparent with Papier Plume Bayou Nightfall

The pen barrel is made of transparent clear plastic with translucent white stripes. The stripes are both a fig leaf and a nod to Pelikan traditional design, but except for the stripes, the ink is fully visible in the transparent barrel.

People will have different feelings about that. I’m a demonstrator fan, and I would rush to buy an M605 clear demonstrator pen, should one ever be produced. But many people don’t like Pelikan demonstrators because ink will get trapped in places usually hidden under the section.

This M605 White Transparent is a nice compromise: you only see the ink in the barrel, which will come clean when you flush the pen.

But you do see the ink in the barrel.

And if you really, really love white, that may bother you. If so, a white converter pen is a better idea.

Pelikan M605 White Transparent with Papier Plume Bayou Nightfall

I don’t love white, so I’m good with it.

But you know what I really do love? Look at that photo, at the part of the barrel that’s filled with ink. You can see an oval that looks golden, in the upper part, near the section. That’s the sun, glinting through a tiny bubble where there’s no ink.

Pelikan M605 White Transparent: Winter is Here

Pelikan M605 White Transparent

It took a while, but my new Pelikan M605 White Transparent finally arrived, and it’s gorgeous. If you’ve been hesitating, it’s safe to come out now. Maybe not safe for your wallet, however.

I had been very unsure about ordering this one. Why? Mostly because it was white. But then, even after I took a chance and pre-ordered it, I was nervous: I saw some Instagram posts of the pen that didn’t wow me, honestly.

But, in person, it’s a total “wow.” The transparent part with white stripes looks neat, and the rhodinized trim cools off the warmer white plastic used on the rest of the pen. The combination of warm and cool materials keeps the pen from looking either syrupy or stark. It’s really kind of dazzling.

The cap, section and piston knob are made of the same off-white as on the M605 Pink and the M600 and M400 White Tortoise models, but the effect is different with the different color trim. Here are all three of mine, the two M600-size pens and the M400 White Tortoise.

Pelikan M605 White Transparent, M605 Pink and M405 White Tortoise

I love them all, but I prefer silver-color trim, and so the M605 White Transparent is icily perfect for me. It’s also the only one of the three that looks sleek. Even, perhaps, a little contemporary.

All of the trim is palladium-coated, and the nib is rhodinized, like the M605 Marine Blue.

Pelikan M605 White Transparent

The internals are white, which means, as you can see from these photos, that the piston mechanism is nicely unobtrusive. But because the ink chamber/pen body is transparent, when you ink up the pen, you will see the ink inside. Here’s the obligatory “before” closeup.

Pelikan M605 White Transparent

I inked up the M605 White right afterwards. I’ll post some photos of the pen filled with ink tomorrow.

Wahl-Eversharp Doric Second Generation in Black with Center Barrel Ink View

Wahl-Eversharp Doric black with center barrel ink view

For posterity, and future pen detectives, as well as for your viewing pleasure, here are some photographs of a stunning vintage pen: an oversize Wahl-Eversharp second generation Doric plunger filler in black celluloid, with a central ink view area in clear, black and brown celluloid.

Another shot of the whole pen.

Wahl-Eversharp Doric black with center barrel ink view

Below is a photograph of the barrel: the ink view region is approximately in the center of the pen. You can see where the pen body goes from black celluloid, to the mottled clear part, to black celluloid again.

Wahl-Eversharp Doric black with center barrel ink view

Now, a closeup of the ink view area. That’s the metal plunger rod inside.

Wahl-Eversharp Doric black center barrel ink view closeup

Another closeup, this time from another side. I think of this as a tortoise pattern.

Wahl-Eversharp Doric black center barrel ink view closeup

This Doric is probably about 80 years old, but luckily it has escaped most of the ravages of time, and you can see that the clear celluloid is still remarkably clear.

The Doric design is similar to the original Paragon from the Italian company Omas. And this particular Doric reminded me of my vintage-style Paragon Extra Lucens. Here are both together. They are about the same length, but the Omas is slightly thicker.

Wahl-Eversharp Doric black with center barrel ink view + Omas Vintage Paragon Extra Lucens

Here are the cap ends, showing the facets of both pens.

Omas Vintage Paragon and Wahl-Eversharp Doric caps

This Doric is from an estate that we at Chicago Pen Show are handling. There are more photos of it and some other Wahl-Eversharp fountain pens here. We’re bringing these and more to the Ohio Pen Show in a few weeks. Come visit.

Vintage Wahl-Eversharp Dorics and Stenographer’s Pens

Wahl-Eversharp Dorics and Stenographer's fountain pens

I’ve been surrounded by vintage pens lately, not my own, but from an estate that we at Chicago Pen Show have been working to sort through and sell. It’s been fascinating, and I’m learning a lot, but it leaves me less time to blog. So I’ll share some photos.

First are those five beautiful Wahl-Eversharp fountain pens, dating to the 1930s.

The three on the bottom are Doric fountain pens, two second generation vacuum fillers and one first generation lever filler. Dorics are celluloid pens, made in the US, in a 12-sided faceted design that reminds me of the Omas vintage Paragon. They are gorgeous, and the nibs are supposed to be excellent.

All three of the Dorics have adjustable nibs, with a slider which the user can operate to make the nib more or less flexible. Here’s a closeup of the three Doric nibs, which feature three different nib sizes, and two different slider models.

Wahl-Eversharp Doric adjustable nibs various sizes

The nib on the bottom is the smallest Doric nib, a number three.

Apart from the Dorics, we’ve got two green Stenographer’s pens. The Stenographer’s fountain pen is a long, slim pen, with a long, slim nib. It has a nice, lightweight feel in the hand. And it’s a bulb filler.

Wahl-Eversharp Stenographer's fountain pen bulb filler

I like these, a lot. At every pen show, I ooh and ahh over the Dorics. Now I get to add Stenographer’s pens to my “someday” list.

Parker 75 Sterling Silver Plain Fountain Pen and Pencil Set

Parker 75 Sterling Silver Plain fountain pen and pencil

Parker 75 Sterling Silver Plain. This Parker 75 set has a fountain pen and mechanical pencil in a finish called “sterling silver plain” on Parker Pens Penography. I hadn’t noticed this finish before, and I couldn’t find photos online, so here we go.

The look is posh, elegant and formal. Mine was manufactured sometime between 1966 and 1970. It’s fun to think that in those same years the Rolling Stones were releasing Aftermath, Between the Buttons, Beggars Banquet and Let It Bleed. This pen set is for Mr. and Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate, not Benjamin.

And still, I’m totally into it. It’s a beautiful object, sleek and stylish. The un-ornamented sterling silver is simple and feels almost contemporary. Next to this plain sterling silver, the iconic 75 finish, sterling silver ciselé, looks much more traditional.

Parker 75 Sterling Silver Plain and Cisele

The plain sterling silver looks lighter and brighter. It’s shiny, but in a restrained way, because it’s sterling silver.

And here’s a nice touch: Because the smooth silver finish is liable to show scratches, fingerprints and tarnish, Parker provided two little pouches made of silver cloth.

Parker 75 Sterling Silver Plain set

My pencil and pen are filled and in use right now, but I love having them in their pouches. I’m sorry, it’s adorable.

The sterling silver ciselé 75 makes a good companion, and a good contrast.

Parker 75 Sterling Silver Plain and Cisele

The ciselé is crosshatched, which gives it texture. This grid makes the finish easy-care, with no polishing or special precautions needed, whereas I suspect the plain silver may need a light polish every now and then. The plain silver finish may pick up some marks of use over the years, too, just like the Kaweco AL-Sport in raw aluminum.

So even if the plain silver 75 were commonly available, it wouldn’t be for everyone. But it is for me. I wasn’t kidding that I am not interested in buying fountain pens these days. But when I saw this one, boom, interest.

Parker 75s are great user pens if you don’t mind a thinner pen, and the nib is a pleasure to use if you write like I do — quickly and without flex. A Parker 75 isn’t very expensive, either: in fact, the more common ciselé is a veritable bargain, and has always been one of my favorite pens. Now I will enjoy using them both.

Parker 75 Sterling Silver Plain and Cisele detail

It Is a Very Good Thing I’m Off Pens

Okay, I was supposed to be enabling everyone else last week. So what the heck? How is it fair, or right, for people yesterday to start enabling me? That is not how this is supposed to work. I am officially “off pens.”

But if that happened, hypothetically, and those very bad people did that, it’s possible I ended up buying another pen yesterday. But that probably would be okay, right? Because it’s totally their fault.

And then, if you think about it, I actually saved someone else from having to buy it. I mean, looked at a certain way, that’s helping others. Maybe, and I’m just going to say it, maybe I am a hero.

Which means, and again we’re talking hypothetically, if there were two pens, I’d be twice as good, right?

Well (and maybe don’t listen to this part) but what if there was a mechanical pencil, too? That’s a little harder to just glide over, perhaps. Maybe we’re on shaky ground when we come home with three writing instruments, when we are “off pens.” But if the pencil was included, say, in a set, then maybe it shouldn’t even count. I didn’t seek it; I had to take it. Also, looked at a certain way, I kept a family together; I did something good. Really, I’m seeing similarities to Clive Owen in Children of Men. And Pongo and Missis when they escaped with all the puppies, not just their own.

Well, wow. Good for me! Some people would reward themselves with a pen. But I’m not like that.

Lamy Safari Your Holiday: Halloween

Lamy Safari Halloween Holiday

I have breaking fountain pen and hockey news: The Chicago Blackhawks beat the defending champion Pittsburgh Penguins last night by the score of 10-1, (For those who don’t follow hockey, a team doesn’t often score that many goals, especially against a top opponent. It would be like Barcelona beating Read Madrid 10-1.)

Now, I’m not saying that yesterday’s Chicago Blackhawks Lamy Safari is what spurred on the Best Team Ever last night. All I’m saying is, clearly, it didn’t hurt.

So with Karma on our side, let’s keep going. As much fun as it is to Lamy Safari our favorite sports teams, some people don’t actually like sports. And that’s okay: Lamy Safaris are for everyone. So let’s start a round of Lamy Safari Your Holiday, with Halloween.

First up is the Halloween Candy Lamy Safari. It bears the colors of a piece of candy corn, the ubiquitous symbol of Halloween. But despite the popularity of candy corn, it is a fact universally acknowledged that the best Halloween treat a child can pound the pavements for, and bring home to mom, is a box of Milk Duds. So to inspire the children, I’ve filled the Halloween Candy Lamy Safari with a chocolate brown ink, Waterman Absolute Brown.

Lamy Safari Halloween Holiday Candy Corn

Next is my Wicked Witch Lamy Safari. A black cap and pen body represents the witch’s hat and clothes, while the lime green section calls to mind the face of the Wicked Witch as played by Margaret Hamilton in The Wizard of Oz.

Lamy Safari Halloween Holiday Wicked Witch

The Ink is Graf von Faber-Castell Midnight Blue, for added spookiness.

So there you go. I hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of Lamy Safari Your Holiday.

Pelikan Hubs 2017: Chicago

Pelikan Hubs Chicago banner

Sorry i couldn’t get this up more quickly, but “better late than never” is the motto made for me. So, better late than never, here is my report on the 2017 Pelikan Hub in Chicago, held this past Friday night.

In two words: so fun! For (many) more words, it’s on to the next page.

(click Page 2 below to continue)

Deep Thoughts, of Pelikans, Lamy and Kaweco

Pelikan M605 White

1. To buy or not to buy, that is the question. For the first time in a long time, I am tempted by this new Pelikan, the M605 in white, that’s coming out in mid-October in the US.

I’ve been on the fence a bit. On the positive side, as an M605, it’s my favorite Pelikan size and my favorite rhodium trim. I like the silvery look of the stripes. The pen looks like a cross between a demonstrator and a pinstriped suit.

On the negative side, well, it is a fountain pen, and I have way too many of those already. I’d have to sell something to buy it. And it’s very white. Do I like white pens? I don’t. Though, strictly speaking, the cap and section of this “white” Pelikan are off-white, the same as on the M600 Pink and the M400 White Tortoise. It’s still going to lack any color, which those two pens have.

But I like it when I see the photo. It’s frosty.

Normally, I like to wait to see Pelikans in person before buying, because sometimes the pens look different in person. A number of excellent European stores are offering tempting prices, but without US warranty. And I’d have to buy without seeing it first.

On the other hand, I just found out from Dan Smith, the Nibsmith, that the MSRP in the US will be $475. Which means it will sell for $380 with the standard dealer discount.I think that’s still a bit more than the European price, but it comes with a US warranty. That’s incredibly tempting. Heck, that’s lower than the price of a standard green striped M600. Maybe we should all buy one quickly, before Pelikan changes its mind.

It’s a special edition, too, so not available forever.

Hmmm. Anyone else have any thoughts on this pen? Anyone else tempted?

2. Can you keep a secret? Someone I know is going to become a Kaweco and Lamy pen dealer. And I’m just super excited. Those are the two pen brands that I use all the time. The Lamy Safari is my favorite pen, and has been since it first came out. I love Lamy so much if I were seven years old some other kid would say, “you love Lamy so much why don’t you marry it?!” and everyone including me would laugh. But my laugh would be different; my laugh would be thoughtful. Because I would think it’s a pretty good idea.