Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – August 18, 2019

A trio of vintage vacumaticsOne of these links has an expiration date, and I had a few minutes, so unexpected Trail Logs on consecutive Sundays.

In another surprise (at least to me) I inked up three vintage pens, all Parker Vacumatics, and I’ve been using them the last few days. Once I verify how well they are working I’ll probably put them up for sale since they haven’t been used in years. I did pick another one to keep.

I’ll also mention here, to give readers advanced notice, that my broken Sheaffer Balance Oversize Lifetime (Marine Green) is for sale. The pen is broken as shown here. The celluloid is still gorgeous, but the nib isn’t suited for me so I’m ambivalent about finding a replacement cap or paying to get it fixed (if even possible) despite the beautiful celluloid. I won’t be able to grab new photos until late in the week, but it hasn’t changed since that post. It’s a custom stub nib, and I’m looking for $75 OBO plus $7.90 US shipping. It’s broken, so as-is.

I also added re-sacing two other Balance Oversize pens to my todo list. One is ready for the new sac, the other still needs to be opened up and I’m hoping a new sac will fix it. With my recent moving i’ve been unable to find some of my repair supplies, so I ordered the essentials (shellac, talc, sacs) from Anderson Pens and will hopefully get to it this week. Naturally, the supplies will re-appear when I’m looking for something else.


Unbranded MHR Lever Filler – Goodwriterspens’s Blog

Are Fountain Pens Really Better? – Goodwriterspens’s Blog

My Personal Hall of Fame: Favorite Stationery Products in Every Category — The Gentleman Stationer

Traveler’s Notebook Stamp Caravan and TN Meet-Up – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

Fountain Pens & Inks – Universe (Airtable) // Via Pen Addict Member Newsletter (Refill) // It’s coincidental that this showed up in the newsletter the day after I played around with Airtable to create a inventory of my fountain pens. There was also a link to an ink inventory/community site, but you’ll need the membership to see that one.


For Sale – Some Sheaffers

The remaining Sheaffer for saleIt’s time to make some painful cuts to my accumulation. It’s time to pass some beautiful Sheaffers along to people who will use them. These are Sheaffers I don’t use despite them being terrific pens. The Crests, Snorkel and Targa are too thin for me to use comfortably for extended periods, while the PFM I is a duplicate and I’m keeping the better color.

Boxes and paperwork are not included. Converters are included for pens that use a converter, see the listing for the type of converter that is included. Converters are recent purchases and probably don’t match the style of the original converter.

Shipping in the U.S. is $7.90 (small flat rate box) for as many pens as will fit in the box unless otherwise noted. Payment is via PayPal Goods & Services and ships only to addresses in the PayPal payment. Sorry, no international shipping for these pens. U.S. based forwarding services are OK as long as the U.S. address is in your PayPal payment.

Prices are firm, although multiple pen purchases won’t increase shipping costs as long as they fit in the box. Plus I’ll take 5% off the pen prices if you purchase more than one pen at the same time.

The first firm “I want it” gets the pen and I’ll send a PayPal invoice. Contact me using the contact form on this page, or email me at ray[@] (remove the brackets).

Click any image for a larger size.

The remaining Sheaffer for sale - uncapped

Sheaffer Crest (1996-1998) Nova Green Laque (aka Emerald Green) Model 583. 18 ct. gold extra-fine nib. Includes a piston style converter. Excellent condition. More info on this model is here. $75 + shipping

Sheaffer Crest (1996-1998) Nova Red Laque (aka Flame Red) Model 581. 18 ct. gold extra fine nib. Includes a vacuum type converter. More info on this model here. I reviewed this pen here. Excellent condition. $75 + shipping (Sold)

Sheaffer Targa (1997-1999) Green Marble Model Laque Model 1186. 14 ct. gold nib. Includes a vacuum type converter. More info on this model here. Excellent condition. $70 + shipping. (On Hold)

Sheaffer Snorkel Saratoga Burgundy (Non-White Dot Model) (1955-1959) 14 ct gold extra fine two-tone open nib (not conical nib). More info on this model here, scroll down to the section on non-white dot models. I wrote about this pen here. Very good condition, plastic body shows minor signs of wear. $40 + shipping. (Sold)

Sheaffer PFM I Blue, Fine PdAg nib (Palladium Silver) I reviewed this pen here. Excellent condition $199 + shipping (SOLD)

The Snorkel and PFM I are both snorkel fillers. Information about the filling system and instructions for filing a snorkel can be found here.


Contact me using the contact form on this page, or email me at ray[@] (remove the brackets).

Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log – August 11, 2019

Sailor Pro Gear Regency Stripe posted on eagle pen standWell now, it’s been nearly a month since my last Trail Log post. You may have seen some (or all) these links since some date back a few weeks.

My own fountain pens got consistent, although low use. The Vanishing Point with a XXXF nib went dry and I immediately popped in a new Pilot Black cartridge. My Fisher of Pens Hermes went dry about two weeks ago and then sat waiting to be cleaned. I gave it a quick flush to remove any dried ink and loaded a Peliken Edelstein Aventurine cartridge. The remaining water makes the first bits of ink a little thin. Lastly, I added the Sailor Pro Gear Regency Stripe to my rotation (pictured above). I loaded it with a Sailor Blue-Black ink cartridge. It has an extra fine nib.

My Newton Eastman and Pelikan M805 Stresemann went dry and were put back in storage after cleaning.

Rounding out my currently inked pens are:
* A Kaweco Brass Sport (EF) with Montblanc Petite Prince Red Fox.
* A Montblanc Meisterstück Ultra Black LeGrand (Oblique Medium) with Montblanc Bordeaux.
* A Sailor Pro Gear KOP (M) with R & K Blau-Schwarz LE.

I’m continuing to thin my accumulation. I’m going through and trying to pick a small group of core pens. Of course, “small” should probably be “smaller”. I’m not sure how many people would consider 30 to be small. I hope to have more pens listed for sale soon.


How to Buy Your First Vintage Fountain Pen – Writing at Large

Pens and Stationery for Traveling: My Travel Kit in 2019 — The Gentleman Stationer

Going equipped (inside my EDC bag) | UK fountain pens

My Italian fountain pen line-up. | Fountain pen blog

Francis THEO: Fountain Pen Ink & Wash

Life Stationery Factory and Warehouse – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

Traveler II // Muji x Traveler’s Notebook DIY – Weirdoforest Pens

2019 Travelers Notebook Review: Part 1. — The Finer Point

State of the collection: August 2019 | UK fountain pens

Visiting Pilot Pens Fountain Pen Factory in Hiratsuka – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop

A personal journey with the Montblanc Agatha Christie Writer’s Edition | UK fountain pens

Crónicas Estilográficas: A Pen Is A Pen

DC Pen Show 2019 Recap | The Looped Square

Montblanc Inks, Part 1 — Mountain of Ink

Recapping the 2019 D.C. Pen Show: It’s Still The Big Show! — The Gentleman Stationer

Lamy eBay Confusion

I know there’s been some talk of counterfeit Lamy Safaris, but I never paid too much attention. I tend to buy new pens from authorized or at least well-known retailers, so I didn’t have any reason to look deeper. I figured there couldn’t be a big market for counterfeits of a low-cost pen. (Low-cost knock-offs are another story, I’m talking about pens that claim to be Lamy.) Two unrelated events happened one-day last week which triggered a two hour time sink into (what must be) counterfeit Lamy’s on eBay.

The first was a review of my remaining accumulation to see if there were any other pens I can sell-off. I came across my two remaining Lamy Salaries, a Petrol along with a Dark Lilac. I made a mental note that one of them could go. It would probably be the Petrol, but there wasn’t any rush. An hour or two later, I came across a Reddit post of someone wanting to buy a Lamy Petrol. So, as usual, I started by looking for recent eBay sales. The Petrol was a 2017 Special Edition. While not limited by numbers, it had a limited manufacturing timespan and the authorized retailers sold out long ago. So I didn’t expect to find many recent sales.

I was utterly wrong.

Lami Safari Petrol (EF) with Blue Ink Cartridge

Lamy Safari Petrol 2017 Special Edition

Let me digress a bit and define my two Lamy pens. The “Lamy Safari Petrol, released in 2017, is a distinctive teal color. The “Lamy Safari Dark Lilac” was released in 2016 and is a purple color. All the authorized retailers I’ve seen have called the pens by their quoted names. Ok, back on track.

A search for “Lamy Safari Petrol” on eBay resulted in a mess. There were 55 listings, 54 of which were for new pens. Many of the listings were for multiple pens. There were all variations on the name, such as “Lamy Safari Petrol Blue,” “Lamy Safari Petrol Purple,” and even one “Lamy Safari Petrol Black.” Most (maybe all, I didn’t check every listing) sellers of the new models were in Vietnam, Hong Kong, and China. Many were priced at one-third the price that the pen cost from an authorized Lamy dealer back in 2017.

Recently completed sales did include a couple used pens that seemed legitimate and sold for twice the cost of recent “new” sales.

I did find a couple “safari petrol” listings that avoided all mention of Lamy and didn’t say Lamy on the pen barrel. So those sellers probably met the letter of the eBay law by not misrepresenting anything in the listing. They even used a lower case “s” for Safari. They were called limited editions, but that’s not a lie since there’s a finite number made at any one time. So I’d consider these knock-off trying to pass as Lamy. But, the rest all clearly claimed to be real Lamy pens. I’m not an expert on Lamy, so while it’s possible they were all legit (and a couple did seem legitimate), I find it impossible to believe that many were not counterfeit.

Like I said, I was wrong. There’s a significant market in counterfeit Lamy Safari pens. While I only looked at eBay, there are claims that Amazon has a similar problem.

Some people may be happy buying a look-alike pen at a lower price and may know what their gettings. Plus, I’m sure it harder to sell legitimate models, either used or new old stock at a reasonable (i.e., profitable) price. If I do decide to sell either of my Lamy Safari pens, I doubt I would list them on eBay.

###Additional Reading

My Experience With a Counterfeit Lamy Safari – The Desk of Lori

How to Spot a Knock-Off Lamy Safari – Goldspot Pens

Fountain Pen Quest Trail Log -July 14, 2019


Much like the frequency to these Trail Logs, my fountain pen usage has dropped.

I did write my Pilot Vanishing Point dry but immediately reloaded it with another Pilot Black ink cartridge. But not much else tase changed.

There’s about a month’s worth of links below.


Passing The Torch: 70 Years Of Service « The Pelikan’s Perch // Pelikan is a 181-year-old company. One man has worked there for 70 years, finally completely retired after his 90th birthday. His replacement has yet to break the 50 years mark a Pelikan.

Stationery Supplies and Set-Up for Travel, Part 2 – Wonder Pens – Life Behind a Stationery Shop // After reading about her setup, read about the trip in future posts.

The simple joy of mucking about with pens | UK fountain pens // Things to do with a parts bin or a finicky pen.

The “Active Service” Parker Challenger Set – Goodwriterspens’s Blog // A nice bit of history – and marketing.

How I do ink swatches | UK fountain pens // I no longer feel compelled to do ink swatches anymore, but this sounds like a good plan of I ever decide to do them.

Six long-gone pens I miss — and what I’ve done about it | UK fountain pens // I’ve yet to miss any pens that I’ve sold, at least not to the point of regret.

The Waterman Keyhole Nib – Goodwriterspens’s Blog // Another trip back in time.

1920s Black Hard Rubber Blackbird – Goodwriterspens’s Blog // A tire pen.

Bentley Will, In Fact, Sell You a $700 Pen // I like reading about fountain pens in mainstream publications which make fun of the price. I have no idea if this pen is worth $700, but I’ve spent that much on a pen.

Why (and how) I just sold 70 bottles of ink | UK fountain pens // I still have a lot of ink and may try the same thing.

PEN SHOW VISIT: DUTCH PEN SHOW (UTRECHT) | The Pencilcase Blog | Fountain pen, Pencil, Ink and Paper reviews // I always like pen show write-ups.

It’s the Little Things | From the Pen Cup // I can relate, I came very close to buying this pen.

State of the collection: July 2019 | UK fountain pens // Maybe I’ll eventually get down to 25 pens. I’m not sure I could move pens in and out on a regular basis for variety.

Let’s Talk About Sepia Ink – The Well-Appointed Desk // I’ve always been confused about the modern definition of sepia ink.