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Richard’s Pen Collection : Vintage American Ballpoint Pens & Pencils

Writing instruments on this page are part of my personal collection and are not for sale.

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The Pen That Almost Killed Eversharp

LogoThe first ballpoint I decided to add to my collection was the Eversharp CA. Original CA refills are no longer available, but it really doesn’t matter because they didn’t work anyway — which is why the CA was a disaster — so I have refitted both of my CAs to accept standard Parker ballpoint or gel refills. The Fifth Avenue version (a second-generation model, either 26 or 27) is 5" capped and 5" posted, and the Skyline version (model 25) is 5" capped and 5" posted. As long as these babies remain capped, they can masquerade as real pens. The Fifth Avenue version bears my favorite color scheme, a blue body with a silvery metal cap featuring gold furniture.

Ballpoint pen
Ballpoint pen
Jobbing It Out

LogoJust because I stumbled across it at a show, left it on the table, and later had someone hand it to me with a “You need this,” I’ve added this Eberhard Faber ballpoint to my collection. Interestingly, it’s a close ringer for the Fifth Avenue-style Eversharp CA, and in fact that’s exactly what it is except that it’s trimmed up a little differently with a cap designed for Eberhard Faber by Joshua G. Lippincott. It’s 5" capped and 6" posted, and I will convert it for use with modern refils one of these first days.

Ballpoint pen
Flying High at Sheaffer

LogoAt 5" capped and 5" posted, my 1948 Sheaffer Stratowriter ballpoint is a perfect match for my 1949 Touchdown Sentinel fountain pen. As with the CA above, original refills for early Sheaffer ballpoints are no longer available (although they would be far more likely to work if they were to be found), so this pen has also been refitted to accept a standard Parker gel refill.

Ballpoint pen
Jot It Down!

LogoParker’s first venture into the ballpoint game came in 1954 with the introduction of the fabled Parker Jotter. Because Parker had taken its own sweet time in bringing a ballpoint to market, the Jotter was a success from Day 1. The Jotter has changed relatively little through the years; the most significant change happened in 1957, when Parker upgraded the refill by replacing the polished ball with one of sintered tungsten. This new ball, with its porosity and cratered surface, proved the ideal vehicle for reliable ink flow, and the T-Ball Jotter has been a Parker staple ever since. First is my red “First Year” Parker Jotter, whose most distinctive characteristics are its Nolan Rhodes-designed “Trough” clip and its grooved Nylon barrel. This pen is 5" retracted and 5" extended. (It’s not completely original, however, because it carries a modern T-Ball refill.) My second Jotter is a Navy Gray powder-coated prototype that came to me courtesy of Ron Zorn.

Ballpoint pen
Ballpoint pen
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