The early 99 has a slip on cap and it is better made than the similar 27 (the metal cap, trim and clip are heavily plated).
I have to differ with you on this. The 27 came first and was produced for about 15 years. The 99 was a replacement to the 27 line, as a cheaper variant. I don't have DM price quotes, but I remember seeing them listed lower. I have both 99 and 27 model pens and the 99 feels a little cheaper. In my experience, they never came with gold caps, only chromed metal, brushed metal, and plastic. Also, the clutch ring on a 99 is a very thin piece of metal, while the 27 clutch ring is much thicker (and appears better made).
Why did Lamy introduce the 99? From what I can see, the introduction of the 2000 would be at a price point comparable to the 27. So, the 27 was retired. Rather than mothballing the tooling, Lamy kept the 27 going as the 99... a cheaper alternative to the 2000.
That said, the 99 is still a great pen. It is essentially a slightly dressed down 27. There are some rare variants of the 99 that will cause collectors to pitch prices rather high, but in the end I'd choose a 27 instead. Especially the 27m, which has a thicker barrel that matches the Parker 51 width.
Hello again! Very sorry for the late reply, but I was very sick (my doctor said I had pneumonia, but I think it could have been the Swine flu). Anyway, I feel much better and I remembered to check back here.
You are probably correct about the 27 and 99. Although I bought the mint 99 from a respected store in NYC, I think I paid too much for it (blue plastic barrel with guilloche-like steel cap). The 99 clutch ring is as you described, but it appears that the 99 cap is nicer than the 27 cap of a, similar, blue plastic barrel model. The two pens actually look like twins except for the clutch rings. I will attempt to photograph them and include them in this thread. I would also like to post a photo of the all-plastic 99.
Here's another Lamy mystery: I have a smaller version of an all-plastic red 99 with gold-plated clip and trim. Instead of a model number, the barrel is engraved "LAMY" with "Akkerman" under Lamy. Also, on the piston knob, "44" is engraved over the nib size "EF." Who was "Akkerman?" It has a gold-plated nib, I believe (I have not dismantled the pen), the cap is threaded and has a small ventilation hole, and the feed is transparent. It is about 12.5 cm capped, and about 14 cm with cap posted. The all-plastic 99 is about 13 cm capped, and it is about 14.5 cm long with cap posted. The older, metal-capped 99 has the same dimensions as the 27.
I would like to see Lamy reissue the model 27.
By the way, have you seen the new Dialog 3? It is a fountain pen with, what appears to be, a"vanishing" nib! There is a photo of one on the homepage of Bertram's Inkwell: http://www.bertramsinkwell.com/
I will try to upload the picture. Here it is!
I hope you enjoyed this reply. Perhaps others can add more information to this thread. Remember, the famous baseball player Yogi Berra said something like, "You can observe a lot just by looking at things."
Peace be with you!
Edited by Robert Alan, 08 June 2009 - 05:00.
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