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Pen Brands World Wide


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#161 Johnny Appleseed

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Posted 12 January 2007 - 18:25

QUOTE
I'll illustrate just with Century... Early in the last century, Century had two sub-lines of pen: The Student Pen and The Victory Pen (note that Fultz' writings don't include any mention of Victory). Should these consitute seperate entries in your list?


In answer to this question, I would say "Yes" they should be included as seperate entries, or at least as seperate brands.

To elaborate a little on what Lexaf said, this originally started as a list of brands and no other information, posted by MaxPen, as a "lets see how many we can find" sort of game. With Gerry's coordination and the help of a few of us, we morphed it into the basic database of pen brands. Along the way, some models got listed as seperate brands, and some typos got listed as seperate brands etc. Lex has taken it in a more in-deapth direction with the development of an actual database with linked reference material.

I think the key piece of information that the database should be the "Brand". The definition of a "Brand" is somewhat slippery, but the main purpose of the list is to help identify unknown pens. So if the pen would only say "The Victory Pen" and "Whitewater MN.", then it should have it's own entry, and be listed as a brand or sub-brand of Century. This someone with a pen imprinted "The Victory Pen" could search for that brand and find a little basic info on who made it and when, and possibly direct them to sources for further research. They may find there are several "Victory" pens from different manufacturers, but at least it narrows the search. There should be a brief summary in the notes section about the ownership issues, or that it was formerly under X name, or belonged to Y, etc. but it need not get into debates about the details - only a brief summary that directs to more info elsewhere.

John
So if you have a lot of ink,
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Always looking for pens by Baird-North, Charles Ingersoll, and nibs marked "CHI"

#162 Lexaf

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Posted 13 January 2007 - 16:50

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Hello Thomas:

You're priceless!

QUOTE
No it`s not a Merkurit it is a Markant, subbrandname "Merkur"
VEB Schreibgerätewerk Markant
Singwitz Kreis Bautzen
German Democratic Republic
The pen is from the late 50th. Don`t lay it in water or treat with an ultrasonic cleaner, the painted surface will disappear! (Potjomkin`s celluloid pen)


So Theresa, be careful!

And thank you Thomas... I'll correct the entry. blush.gif
Also thanks for the picture of the model 130, I'll add that to my (personal) data file as a reference.

To make the confusion still a bit bigger: the following might also be interesting.
Another Pen friend, Mr. Michael Miloro, who is a collector from Nebraska, USA, is an expert on Danish FP's, especially Big Ben and Penol pens. In a publication about Penol pens, he sent me some time ago, he mentiones the following subbrands that were produced by Penol: Merkur, Nicroma, President, Parlament, Regina, Rex, Royal and Skribent.
The Merkur pen I own and a Rex pen I have, were already identified by him as definitely not Danisch but most probably German.
So there is still another Merkur.... isn't this funny! lticaptd.gif
It also implies that what Dave Johannsen writes is very true:
QUOTE
I think that the multiple occurances of names and the issue of sub-brands/sub-lines are going to be quite difficult to deal with satisfactorally.

he also wrote:
QUOTE
I think that the list is a noble effort, I just fear that it may become a morass into which you sink ever deeper.

OK! but being Dutch and having ancestors from Zeeland (south west coast) I can say: Luctor et Emergo ("I wrestle and emerge").
So lets see where it all ends... Espescially where German fountain pens history is concerned I think we can come far with your help Thomas.

Have a nice Sunday!

Best Regards,

Lex eureka.gif

#163 jhmclearly

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Posted 13 January 2007 - 17:28

Hello All

Just registered and I'm very impressed with what I've read so far.

I've of course looked through my own small collection and come up with 4 more brands that I can't see listed (I might have missed one though)

Accurate - Mines an early celluloid flat top and I'm pretty sure it's American. The names on the clip.

Smooth-Point - Another American brand I think. This one a large caramel swirl lever fill with the brand name on the clip and on the nib. This is a big one.

Zemax - Looks like a German Brand but I could be wrong. The model is a Zemax Super. Imprinted body and named nib.

Vaitermass - This ones an octagonal gold filled safety pen. A quick google showed up a named pen in a South African auction. But very little else.

Any info anyone can provide on these would be definately interesting. If photos are helpful I'll try and see what I can do, although I'll have to work out just how to post them.

Keep up the good work.

John - jhmclearly

#164 Lexaf

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Posted 13 January 2007 - 23:13

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Hi John, and all other readers of this topic.

This is going to be a long story, sorry, hope you can find the time to read it.... rolleyes.gif

QUOTE
QUOTE

I'll illustrate just with Century... Early in the last century, Century had two sub-lines of pen: The Student Pen and The Victory Pen (note that Fultz' writings don't include any mention of Victory). Should these constitute separate entries in your list?

In answer to this question, I would say "Yes" they should be included as separate entries, or at least as separate brands.


Yes I agree. Strongly. Especially if such a brand name is (original meaning of brand:) branded into the pen. A burn mark!

The question with identification of a pen that has a 'burn mark' is not the mark itself, but to what firm this mark - and then we talk about a trade mark - is joined, in other words: we seem to have a problem when the imprint on the pen is not the same as the name of the manufacturer. E.g. When a Parker pen has the marking (or branding as Max originally called it) 'Parker' then it is totally clear what we have: a Parker, but then we still do not know anything about the model yet. So more research is needed for that field to complete. When a pen has the marking 'Parkette' we must do some research and eventually find that Parkette is a sub-brand of Parker. Problem is however that sometimes companies use only a model name as a 'branding' and the trade mark from the manufacturer is nowhere to find, maybe sometimes on a box or in accompanied papers. But unfortunately it is rather exceptional to find a vintage pen with complete boxing and papers! sad.gif

So, often one has to make a decision if the mark is a brand, model or sub-brand name. In the case that research does not come with a solution an arbitrary action must follow. But you can maintain a priority rule: In case you know the imprint ABC belongs to manufacturer XYZ, and there is no indication or reference to XYZ having specific sub-brands, the 1st priority is to denominate ABC as a model name of XYZ.
2nd: If brand XYZ is known for having numerous sub-brands and there are indications (document research, technical details etc.) that imprint ABC is manufactured by XYZ, ABC is determined as a brand, with XYZ in the sub-brand field ( E.g. Conway Stewart). In case of doubt, also the doubt can be documented or explained in one of the memo/text fields (DESCRIPT & REMARK). The REFerence field gives also extra info, i.e. the user that consults the data list can see where the geek that made the wrong(?) input got is info from. That might even be an E-bay ad., as long as it exists its usable.
But this is Cyberspace man!
Yes, Internet provides volatile information. When it's gone it's gone. So are all these beautiful pens we do NOT have in our collections.... gone forever. That's why we collect them. (In Dutch collecting and saving is the same word: sparen)

Now a little thing about data bases as we can use them on a computer (PC):
What if the denomination one enters in his file is in the wrong field?
A disaster? No, the info might be historically wrong and from a documentary and archival point of view not totally correct, but we can retrieve it! All the associations we made are there, in the record, and if one finds out it could or must be corrected, correct it and subsequently send a nice posting to FPN tongue.gif to let the world know of your findings.
Practically all database applications work with a search mode that can find so called 'free text strings'. So when I ask my system for "Century" the system will return all references to that string and if the response is too big you can narrow your question. How do you think Google works? Ok, not all of us have sophisticated database applications that support SQL and Boolean query facilities and all that jazz, but with some creativity you can even do an intelligent query in an Excel file. Remember also that a database not only helps to answer your questions, but also can help to order your data. But remember also: if there is a zero, nill, 0 response, your database or computer system can not find it! No system whatever can find it.

And that, IMHO, is what is all about. I have this pen and where the .... did it come from..... So I need a system that gives me answers on questions about details I already know or I can find. A no name will be extremely difficult, but in that case e.g. a comparison with pictures of 'look-alikes' can help. Make a picture and post it, with some relevant questions. Once a name is found that gives any hold to the pen you have in your hands the database is going to help. The Merkur story in the thread of Theresa, Thomas and myself are a nice example that shows how some research and a fruitful communication on FPN can lead to a successful data set on a certain brand that else would maybe be forgotten forever. (Theresa's pen was not a Merkur, but a Markant, model Merkur. Proof built up by a combination of Theresa's Pics and Thomas' convincing documentation info and me acting as an intermediary!)
Parker, Waterman, Sheaffer's, etc., the top firms, can be difficult because of the numerous models and colours and modifications and varieties they made. Heinz Tomato Ketchup (57 varieties…. remember?) is nothing compared to Parker & friends. The 2nd and 3rd tier brands are even worse, because there is so little documentation about it. But: once found and entered in this list, even sometimes mixed up in the wrong fields: Hurray for ever!

A Herculic task? I do not think so: I've been (in a past life) involved with the research and documentation of a huge Photo and Film Archive with more than 6 million meters of documentary 35mm newsreel film and more than 1,5 million press photo's covering the period of approx 1895 to 1980. More than half of it seemed undocumented. But 90% of this collection has been documented now and it is now a major part of the collection of the Dutch National Broadcasting Museum and can be consulted by everyone who needs to know something about what happended in The Netherlands, its former colonies and some other for Dutch history important parts of the world. That was a professional job, ok, but it can be done! And believe me, the complete Dutch government thought we were nuts when we started the job, 25 years ago. With no computers, no Internet, no digital scans.... Last month, December 2006, the Museum was officially opened by our Queen Beatrix.

Maybe this "Pen Brands World Wide" list will never be complete, actually I am sure that will be the case, but I am convinced that this compilation of brands and names and manufacturers and references will add to improve the knowledge of how and where and by whom these ink spraying little cylinders were made.
People like Gerry and Thomas and John and Antoniosz and myself and many others who contribute with comments and findings, we will build an instrument we can really use. It may be not our live work or magnum opus, but it’s sure a lot fun.

Have a nice Sunday!
Lex eureka.gif

P.S. Here is a tough one: ( see picture below)
Imprint directly under the section: Hallmark. Imprint at the top end ot the cap: 18K gold filled (brass?). 14 K warranted no 3 standard f flex nib. The metal seems an overlay on a HR body and cap. Lenght capped: 12,5 cm. Posted: 15,8 cm.
Special: the clip is not yellow, but red gold (no... not brass! wink.gif ) .
This is not a test tongue.gif I honestly cannot find anything about this pen!
Any ideas? Please! Make me happy! :bunny1: :bunny1: :bunny1:

Lex wallbash.gif

Edited by Lexaf, 13 January 2007 - 23:30.


#165 Kaweco

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 11:52

Hi Lex
Just browsed through the Kaweco catalogues and found ca 600 different types. Most of them are imprinted with "Kaweco" and a type number and some types got names. The following names had been used. Some brand names appear seveal times because they used a name sometimes after many years again for a totaly new type.
Merkur (!!!) - Ideal - Perfekt - Universal - Perkeo - Swallow - Liliput - Sport1 - Omega1 - Helios1 - Meisterklasse - Colleg1 - Perplex - Dia - Adjutant - Luxe - Colleg2 - Original - Special - Sport2 - Elite - Carat - Präzision - Schulkaweco - Helios2 - Monopol - Stenograf - Kadett - Durchschreiber - Omega2 - Sport3 - King -
Kind Regards
Thomas

#166 Lexaf

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 15:42

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Hi Thomas,

Again I quote Dave Johannsen:
QUOTE
I just fear that it may become a morass into which you sink ever deeper

QUOTE
Merkur (!!!) - Ideal - Perfekt - Universal - Perkeo - Swallow - Liliput - Sport1 - Omega1 - Helios1 - Meisterklasse - Colleg1 - Perplex - Dia - Adjutant - Luxe - Colleg2 - Original - Special - Sport2 - Elite - Carat - Präzision - Schulkaweco - Helios2 - Monopol - Stenograf - Kadett - Durchschreiber - Omega2 - Sport3 - King
rolleyes.gif
But never mind!
These Kaweco subbrand names generate only 32 short records that crossreference the Kaweco 'main' record (where Kaweco is in the BRAND field)
And that's nothing if one can expect this database wil grow to at least 10.000 records if not much more! 10 or 20K records BTW is peanuts for a current PC to handle. The only problem is that they all must be entered in the computer and I'm afraid its me who has to do the typing... sad.gif

Before I enter these in the list I'd like to have more info if that is available in your catalogues, Thomas.
Question: Is it possible for you to make a little list with the subbrand name, approx. production year(s) and filling system of these 32 sub-brands? That would make the info about Kaweco pens in the database really worthwhile!

Hope I didn't ask too much!

Have a nice week! Regards,
Lex eureka.gif

#167 Lexaf

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 16:13

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Hi John,

QUOTE
Any info anyone can provide on these would be definately interesting. If photos are helpful I'll try and see what I can do, although I'll have to work out just how to post them.

Concerning your references of these pens: Accurate; Smooth Point; Zemax; Vaitermass, I'd really like to have some more information as far as you can provide me: approx. prod. year? filling system? Anyway some clear pictures with detailes of imprint on barrel and or clip and nib would be very welcome.
If you have a good flatbed scanner, you can try to scan them: it's faster and easier than photograph them. In this case it doesn't have to be artwork. Most scanners give nice pics, set 300 dpi for the full pen and 600 for details such as imprints and nib. Don't forget to crop to the actual part you want to see. A full A4 or B4 scan is multi megabytes!!. See the compiled picture of my 'Halmark pen' in my posting yesterday, these are scans, no camera used).
If you have trouble to post the pics to FPN, you can send them directly to my E-mail address, then I can compile the pics for you and post them later on. (I'll send you an PM with my mail address). If the amount of Mb's is too big all together, zip them in one archive file and use http://www.usendit.com to mail the set to me. yousendit = free!).

Hope to hear from you soon!

Regards,

Lex eureka.gif

Edited by Lexaf, 14 January 2007 - 16:14.


#168 jhmclearly

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 17:18

Hi Lex

I'll try my best on the pictures.

Also just to add a further one from my collection.

Record - This is another octagonal goldfilled pen, but I think this one is Italian. It was bought in Italy. It's circa 1920.

And with regards to the brand Orium - I'm pretty sure this is a sub brand of the English company Wyvern.

Of the previous pens the Accurate looks to be c 1930 and the Smooth-Point just slightly later. The Zemax is probably 1950's, and the Vaitermass in likely 1915-1920.

All the best.

John

#169 Lexaf

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Posted 14 January 2007 - 17:38

sm_cat.gif Ok John,
That's a fast reply!
What about the way these pens are filled?
Button filler, Lever Filler, Piston? Other? If you do not know and I can see it on the pictures its okay also...
Regards, Lex eureka.gif

#170 jhmclearly

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 19:37

Okay

The Vaitermass Safety Pen

I know the body looks like a banana but thats the scanner - it is actually quite straight.

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#171 jhmclearly

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 19:38

And the cap of course - havent worked out how to add multiple images yet.

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#172 jhmclearly

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 19:55

And now the Accurate lever filler

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#173 jhmclearly

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 20:11

And the next one.

The Smooth-Point lever filler

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#174 jhmclearly

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 20:23

The Zemax Super piston filler

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#175 jhmclearly

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 20:40

Last but not least the 'Record' gold filled button filler. The only imprint is around the bottom stud the start of which is just visible in the photo.

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#176 jhmclearly

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 21:15

And while I'm on a roll....

Someone earlier in the thread mentioned the Harlin company from Glasgow.

Here we have a lovely heavy celluloid button filler with a covered nib. Probably from the 1950's.

#177 Lexaf

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Posted 16 January 2007 - 07:23

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Hello John,

you wrote:
QUOTE
I'll try my best on the pictures.
Also just to add a further one from my collection.
Record - This is another octagonal goldfilled pen, but I think this one is Italian. It was bought in Italy. It's circa 1920.
And with regards to the brand Orium - I'm pretty sure this is a sub brand of the English company Wyvern.
Of the previous pens the Accurate looks to be c 1930 and the Smooth-Point just slightly later. The Zemax is probably 1950's, and the Vaitermass in likely 1915-1920.


And nice pictures too! Thanks.
I'll add your pens to the list. I suppose all the pens you mention are USA made, exept for the Record from Italy. If not, please let me know, so I can correct the record. I'll try to find more info about these brands, so I can add a reference.
It will take some time before I can publish the updated list, there are still a lot of references that have to be checked and completed.

Tip: if you want to upload your pictures in one file, you can compile them first as one picture using a photo editor like e.g. Adobe Photoshop, Corel (Jasc) Paint Shop Pro, Micrografx Photomagic, or The Gimp (=linux & free! biggrin.gif ).

Lex. eureka.gif

Edited by Lexaf, 16 January 2007 - 07:28.


#178 jhmclearly

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Posted 16 January 2007 - 08:59

Hi Lex

I'm pretty sure that the Zemax is European and possibly German/Danish. The Vaitermass is an unusual one, but again I think it's probably european or as mentioned it could even be south african ?

The Accurate and Smooth-point are definately USA.

The Harlin is of course Scottish.

All the best.

John

#179 Lexaf

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Posted 16 January 2007 - 12:57

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Hi John,

you wrote:
QUOTE
I'm pretty sure that the Zemax is European and possibly German/Danish. The Vaitermass is an unusual one, but again I think it's probably european or as mentioned it could even be south african ?
The Accurate and Smooth-point are definately USA.
The Harlin is of course Scottish.


I did some research on internet and found some more details:

The Zemax is an Italian Brand: ZEme MAXimliano, Turin, Italy, there where some E-bay offers to veryfy:

http://cgi.ebay.com....1QQcmdZViewItem

http://cgi.ebay.co.u...em=300051076258

http://cgi.ebay.it/1...1QQcmdZViewItem

The last reference has no picture but is a good confirmation for the name of the maker.

The Vaitermass is IMO almost certainly also Italian, Look at the picture en this advertisement:

http://www.cosevecch...om/speciali.htm

Scroll to the last two pictures and there is the Vaitermass. The manufacturing style is definitely Italian 1920's and here it is offered by an Italian dealer... The other one seems to be a brother or sister of your Record Pen.

I didn't find a verification of the connection Harlin - Wyvern yet; same for the Accurate and the Smoothpoint. But these last two look very USA made to me also.

Regards, Lex

#180 Dave Johannsen

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Posted 16 January 2007 - 13:40

QUOTE(Lexaf @ Jan 11 2007, 03:25 PM)
Concept:
A simple database model that can be distributed and consulted trough a forum such as FPN, with as much reference material as possibly can be brought together about as much brands and models of pens available.

Lex:

I apologize if I sounded like I was criticizing your efforts, as this was not my intention. It sounds as if you are resrticting the scope sufficiently that you are likely to achieve something that is both useful and reasonably accurate (as accurate as the rather simple entries that a database permits can allow one to be). I do think that this will be a useful enterprise when complete.

What I long for is something more akin to Wikipedia: a collection of contributed articles of unrestricted length and scope that are updated by knowledgeable users as new information becomes available. My dream would serve a significanltly different function from what you are undertaking, so I apologize if I have measured your project against something that you aren't trying to accomplish. Thank you for the work that you are doing on this, I look forward to using the database.


Dave




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