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Tips on How to spot a fake Mont Blanc


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#1 kavanagh

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Posted 04 February 2007 - 19:42

Dear Colleagues,

I have just perused ebay in the UK and I am surprised at the amount of fakes being brought over from Dubai and the Far East and then sold without 'box and papers'. So I am offering the following tips ( which I hope are useful ) and would welcome any additions ( I have also attached pics of some fake mont blancs bought in New York on my trip from the UK so that you can get a feel for a fake ):

1) The nib is the most difficult aspect to fake. Always ask for a close up picture of the nib section - iridium tip and 'made in germany' stamped on the nib is a dead give away. To my knowledge, Mont Blanc do not stamp 'iridium tip' on their nibs. The exception to this is the Genuine Mont Blanc Starwalker pen - it does have the words 'iridium' stamped on the nib section, is nearly always silver ( hence, this pen is faked more than any other ). Always ask for a pic of the floating star on the cap, if it appears to be irregular or not dead centre, it is likely to be fake. The best tip I can give is go to a genuine dealer and actually take a picture of a starwalker ( barrel and cap ). That way you know what to look for.

2) Ask for a picture of the underside of the nib section. A genuine Mont Blanc's black section will be aligned perfectly with the ink aperture between the tines ( a genuine article is accurately produced down to the smallest detail ). If the black section is not aligned and is either side of the aperture, then it is likely to be a fake.

3) Before you bid, get an emailed assurance from the seller that it is a genuine Mont Blanc - because if turns out that it isn't , you can ask for your money back or get ebay involved. If you get a vague response to your question - don't bid.

4) Another dead give away, ask the seller if he has more than one item and if you can purchase more than four. A faker always buys in bulk and then sells them individually. Genuine Mont Blancs are expensive, and if a seller has more than four - it's likely that he has bought in bulk.

5) A sure thing about a fake Meisterstuck legrande 146 is the nib section - it always has a nib similiar to the cheap german fountain pens with the words 'iridium tipped' made in germany - it is definitely a fake. The original nib is beautifully crafted and a faker will not spend more money on trying to recreate this.

I hope this information helps

Regards,

Kavanagh

Edited by kavanagh, 04 February 2007 - 19:57.


#2 kavanagh

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Posted 04 February 2007 - 19:43

Fake Mont Blanc's bought in New York.

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#3 kavanagh

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Posted 04 February 2007 - 19:44

Some more fakes.

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#4 vibin247

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Posted 04 February 2007 - 20:18

When I had my Meisterstuck 146 inspected for authenticity at the nearest Mont Blanc boutique, the biggest indication is if it doesn't have the company trademark "Pix" followed by the registered trademark symbol, then it's definitely a fake. The sales associate, who seems to know about Mont Blancs quite a bit, including the vintage models, has seen very good fakes with serial numbers and Germany stamp and everything else BUT the "Pix" trademark.
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#5 George

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Posted 04 February 2007 - 21:26

Look under the clip, and you can read Pix. Thats always a good first look to see if it is fake. A fake will not have it.

#6 patrick_y

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Posted 05 February 2007 - 04:59

Add this to your list:

6) Hold the pen up to the light. The black plastic should be somewhat transparent.

7) Montblanc's pens are made of resin (except for the solitaire line) and this natural material is able to hold an electric charge (much like amber). This material also feels more animate and doesn't feel cold to the touch.

Edited by patrick_y, 05 February 2007 - 05:33.


#7 Allan

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Posted 05 February 2007 - 05:08

First off thank you for the valuable information you posted, we all need to be well informed to avoid being taken to the cleaners. Now if I may offer a little bit of constructive criticism....

You refer to the nib section and under the nib, the black section. You may not be aware that the piece of the pen that holds the nib and feed (the feed is the black piece underneath the nib) is called the section which confused the heck out of me when I first read your post. I finally understood that you were referring to a generic section of the pen, and not THE section.

No big deal, we all have to learn, and I am not trying to be picky just lending a helping hand. Thanks again for the post!

Allan

#8 Nikolaos

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Posted 05 February 2007 - 11:31

All of the above are great points and good indications of authenticity.
George, you are partially right about the Pix engraving underneath the clip. It is only in the more recent years that it appears. I hope someone can tell us when it started to appear. So if you are buying a brand new MB or a very recent one it is good to look for that. For the older, vintage models though there is no Pix there, just like the serial number in the Meisterstuck lines.
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#9 *david*

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Posted 05 February 2007 - 16:49

If I were making fakes, first thing I would do is put Pix in there.

To spot a fake, hold the potential fake beside a known authentic pen.

#10 gene

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Posted 05 February 2007 - 19:42

QUOTE
To spot a fake, hold the potential fake beside a known authentic pen.


then what can you find? nothing.....

Ok, I have seen different grade of fake MB. first the lowest grade, which will cost the least for them to counterfeit it is very easy to spot them. the material and the overall quality is really bad compare to the real one, any one with some experience can spot those.

Now gets little tough, the middle grade counterfeits. cost little bit more than the lowest grade, so the overall quality is better or say close the real thing, but not as detail as the real one. so look close into the detail work in those grade of conterfeits.

Now the "A" class grade counterfeits, those are extramly tough to spot by just look at them. I can promise you if you ever find one of those in the market you won't be able to tell the different by just look at them. they are weight the same, looks the same, and feel the same.

One of my German friend who has a friend is one of the engineer for MB, he bought some "A" class grade counterfeits MB pen back to the factory to exam them. (BTW,they are only $100 less than the real thing, ain't cheap) He had many those expert workers to exam them, the result.... without break the pen or take it apart, they CAN NOT tell the difference between them. how are they perform?? No difference. So the MB's engineer took the pen to a writter whom has been use MB pens for more than $30 yrs and write more than 1000 words with the pen every day. Result.. at the first few lines, no difference. but the more he writes, the more he felt uncomfortable. so the Engineer took the pen and the report back to the factory, and break the pen and melt the nib to exam them. final result.. First, the feed design is not near close to the design of real MB, therefor the ink flow not as good. second, the ratio of gold and other elements in the nib is total wrong, which cause the uncomfortable feeling during writing. other wise every thing is very very close to the real thing.

What do you all think the skill of counterfeit?

#11 Kalessin

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Posted 06 February 2007 - 04:56

I believe the "Pix" on the underside of the clip doesn't appear on pens until after about 1990... Does anyone have any better information on this point?
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#12 Bill

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Posted 06 February 2007 - 14:37

QUOTE(gene @ Feb 5 2007, 02:42 PM)
...I have seen different grade of fake MB...the "A" class grade counterfeits, those are extramly tough to spot by just look at them...the skill of counterfeit?

Gene,

Thank you for the your insight into levels of counterfeit quality of Montblancs. This is something I was curious about.

Many years ago I bought a fake Rolex watch in a flea market. The vendor had two grades of them. I bought a better one for about $70 instead of the $20 version. Later, I handed it to two different owners of real Rolexes who closely examined it and never knew it was a fake. It probably would have taken removing the back to expose it. The watch actually turned out to be a good timepiece in its own right.

Other than the infringement/legal/ethical issues, could the middle and higher end MB fakes be worthy as decent writers themselves?

Bill

#13 ptitmax

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Posted 17 February 2007 - 15:40

So is it possible that a MB have a serial number, but not the "pix" trademark ? As they seems to have appeared at the same time, I wonder. I have bought one on the internet look quite authentic, with a serial number, but under the clip it's written "laiton", and not "pix". Can someone help me ?

#14 mgshn

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Posted 17 February 2007 - 16:06

So, you're saying that the Montblacn (at least that's what was stamped on the steel nib) Copernicus I bought in Bangkok for $35 last summer may not be genuine?

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#15 gene

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Posted 17 February 2007 - 18:31

I have nerver ever seem or heard about a fake MB149 or 146. Why?? i guess the porfit margin aren't higher enough for a good counterfake. cheap ones are easy to spot. all the fake one are highend LE pens.

For those of you looking for 149, don't have to worried about the authentic issues. but again, if some one sell you one for $30, common sense should tell you those aren't real.... biggrin.gif

Edited by gene, 17 February 2007 - 18:31.


#16 gene

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Posted 17 February 2007 - 18:34

QUOTE
Other than the infringement/legal/ethical issues, could the middle and higher end MB fakes be worthy as decent writers themselves?


i am sorry, i forgot about this post. bill to answer your question, yes those are decent writers. only if you are a professional writer and only use MB pens. any tips that is round and smooth should be a decent writer. right?

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#17 sheafferkid

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Posted 18 February 2007 - 03:59

Ptitmax, my Mont Blanc Meisterstuck Le Grand has a serial number and "Laiton" too! I sure hope mine isn't a fake; I paid good money for this pen. I had to pay for half of it for my own bday present! Ptitmax, what kind of Mont Blanc do you have that has Laiton? Mont Blanc experts, please help us!

Evan
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#18 Bogtrotter

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Posted 19 February 2007 - 22:38

For what it's worth, a quick Google search showed "Laiton" to mean "brass".

My MB Boheme FP has the Pix trademark preceded by the word "metal", in lowercase letters. I believe the Boheme to be authentic, because I purchased it at a Montblanc boutique.

My 1989 MB146 has no markings on the underside of the clip.

bt

#19 Bogtrotter

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Posted 20 February 2007 - 01:18

I just shined a powerful flashlight through the barrels and caps of my Montblancs. Even though the pens were black in normal light, they were all transparent ruby red when illuminated from behind by the flashlight.

It might be interesting to try the same experiment with known fakes.

bt

Edited by Bogtrotter, 20 February 2007 - 19:56.


#20 Chris

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Posted 20 February 2007 - 13:55

That ruby red colour is one of the things I like about my MBs.

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#21 sheafferkid

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Posted 20 February 2007 - 23:02

I searched laiton on dictionary.com and found it to not only mean "brass" but illegal, illegitimate, wrongful, etc. I have a feeling though, that the clip is not gold but brass. What does pix mean on the real MBs?
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#22 Dave_g

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 04:07

Hi,

Can anyone tell me if the Montblanc von Karajan has a serial number on the pen?

Dave

#23 ptitmax

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 18:16

Ptitmax, my Mont Blanc Meisterstuck Le Grand has a serial number and "Laiton" too! I sure hope mine isn't a fake; I paid good money for this pen. I had to pay for half of it for my own bday present! Ptitmax, what kind of Mont Blanc do you have that has Laiton? Mont Blanc experts, please help us!

Evan



---------------


I send it to Monblanc for a nib repair they probably will tell me about that too ;-)

I keep you posted...

Max

P.S. Sorry, I'm still learning this "quote" thing

Edited by ptitmax, 21 February 2007 - 18:19.


#24 Nikolaos

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 18:30

QUOTE
Hi,

Can anyone tell me if the Montblanc von Karajan has a serial number on the pen?

Dave


Hi Dave,
there is no serial number engraved on my von Karajan and i did buy it from a MB boutique so i am certain of its authenticity
thanks
Nikolaos

#25 Dave_g

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Posted 22 February 2007 - 04:36

Hi Nikolaos,

I'm crazy. I found a MB on the web in Hong Kong. The guy said it didn't have a serial number on the pen. I guess he was telling the truth. Said it was new and perfect.

I will see when the pen comes.

If it comes???

Thanks for the note.

Dave



#26 Kalessin

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Posted 22 February 2007 - 22:23

It's important to remember that genuine MB's made previous to about 1990 will not have any serial number, or any words on the back of the clip. There are many thousands of these genuine MB's out there.

It also seems that there are MB models made post-1990 that don't have serial numbers or other secret marks.

Probably only MB company organizations have definitive guides, and they don't talk to us mortals. biggrin.gif

Edited by Kalessin, 22 February 2007 - 22:24.

-- Joel -- "I collect expensive and time-consuming hobbies."

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(from The Devil's Dictionary, by Ambrose Bierce)

#27 greencobra

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Posted 27 February 2007 - 17:37

The following is the text of a post I made a while back concerning serial numbers and the PIX logo. The info was obtained from MB in Bethlehem, PA. Some might find it useful and I repost it from time to time when the subject comes up.

Just to bring you up to speed, I was trying to determine if 2 146's I got in a trade last year were indeed genuine. Some people on the boards told me there were a certain amount of digits in a MB serial # which didn't match what I had, that's why I'm talking about the digit count. And as for the PIX, well, I thought that was "THE FAKE" tipoff before I knew better. When I took my pens to a store to have someone look at them, he told me they were trained in MB fakes and there are seven items they look at closely. He wouldn't tell me what they were but he spent a lot of time on the nib and the star with a glass. Of course he looked at the middle band and did something I thought was strange, snapped at the cap and body with his fingernail, almost as if it produced a certain sound. He also told me the fakes he had encountered screamed fake. That is, if you knew even a little about a MB you could tell the difference instantly. I don't know about that, never seen one in person.


"I have more information on MB's I'll share just in case anyone is interested. I talked to a nationaly known pen shop as well as Montblanc again this morning regarding my serial numbers and other issues regarding my recent trade for a couple of older Le Grand's. Both were on the same page.

Serial #'s don't have a specified number of digits. Older models will most likly have fewer digits than current production. Some of the #'s started with GE or GER on the first pens to be produced with serial #'s in 1991. There is no database at Montblanc of serial #'s except for limited editions. Serial #'s are now being reissued or reused, so the same # might be found on 2 different pens made years apart. The logo "PIX" was introduced on the underside of the clip in 1997. And lastly, Montblanc does not confiscate counterfeit pens. They said that is not company policy. At the Boutique they will hand them back over and if you send it to the factory service center, they will send back your pens and a letter stating either way if your pen is genuine or fake.

The person I talked to in Bethlehem, PA was super. If she didn't know the answer, she went and got it. The "PIX" logo was in question here with mine. And hey, she even got out her own pen and counted digits! (7 in case anyone's interested )

So after all this, I'm pretty much convinced my pens are genuine after a brief scare. I intend to send them off to get the letter and put to rest the doubt."

JELL-O, IT'S WHATS FOR DINNER!

#28 ptitmax

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Posted 03 March 2007 - 12:29

QUOTE (ptitmax @ Feb 21 2007, 06:16 PM)
Ptitmax, my Mont Blanc Meisterstuck Le Grand has a serial number and "Laiton" too! I sure hope mine isn't a fake; I paid good money for this pen. I had to pay for half of it for my own bday present! Ptitmax, what kind of Mont Blanc do you have that has Laiton? Mont Blanc experts, please help us!

Evan



---------------


I send it to Monblanc for a nib repair they probably will tell me about that too ;-)

I keep you posted...

Max

P.S. Sorry, I'm still learning this "quote" thing

[QUOTE]

My pen was repaired at Montblanc (great service). So I guess it means it's not a fake one. They would'nt have repaired it, and put their name on the reparation if it was a fake.

Edited by ptitmax, 03 March 2007 - 12:29.


#29 sheafferkid

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Posted 03 March 2007 - 22:32

Thats good to hear. I hope mine is also a real MB. I'm fixing to send mine off to their PA location this week. I'll keep ya posted.

Evan
Sheaffer all the way!

#30 Dizzy Di

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Posted 27 April 2007 - 11:06

Gees, you guys are the best! I just went & pulled a MB Meisterstuck apart that I've had put away in a drawer for years believing it to be a fake. Well, blow me down, if it isn't authentic and now I dont' have to go in to the oh so snooty boutique here and make a complete a$$ of myself whilst they raise their eyebrows disapprovingly at that "ebay" word lol.
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