After reading The Clicky Post’s review of the Retro 51 Jefferson Metalsmith Series rollerball I had to order one and give my Lincoln some company. And while I was there I decided to give in and include the Franklin in the order. Complete lack of will power.
I’m glad I’m not the only one who didn’t get the relationship between the pen names and finishes. But a commenter at The Clicky Post suggested it was related to the coins, Lincoln being on the copper penny and Jefferson on the nickle, but that only works for those two pens. Eisenhower has stars on it so that makes sense. But the now discontinued Monroe and the Franklin defy logic. The closest I can come for Franklin is that the pattern on the pen is reminiscent of his mapping of ocean currents.
My Lincoln is smooth copper so I was concerned the raised grooves in the Jefferson would bother me. But they don’t bother me at all and are mostly smooth. They’re obviously raised, but not at all sharp. The raised design on the Franklin isn’t bothersome either. If anything, the raised design helps grip the potentially slick metal.
I always liked the designs used on the Metalsmith pens and these two pens exceed the pictures. The Jefferson has a brushed nickel finish where the indented areas are slight darker as the raised areas reflect light. The Franklin is a darker finish but it’s highly reflective and looks bright.
Ever since Brad Dowdy reviewed the Schmidt P8126 refills I’ve been using them in my Retro 51’s due to the slightly thinner .6 mm line so I did swap out the stock refills.
Rather than repeating what’s already been written I’ll post some pictures and refer you to other reviews. The Jefferson is linked to above. The Pen Addict reviewed the Lacquer Retro 51 (similar design) and the Schmidt P8126 refill.
Now I’m off to search for the Monroe which is discontinued.