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Parker Duofold and Sonnet

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6 replies to this topic

#1 Bluefinntuna



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Posted 16 November 2009 - 00:49


I am new to fountain pens in general. My collection includes a Lamy Vista, Pelikan M215, and just ordered M600.

I started looking into the Parker line and the modern Duofold checks caught my eye, but is awfully hurtful to the wallet. To the untrained eye, like mine, the Sonnet looks very much like the Duofold, but at a 1/5 the price. I've tried searching this forum but the search function really is AWFUL (not like the search on Candlepowerfourms). Can some please tell me the difference between the Duofold and Sonnet? I am guessing the construction is better...


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#2 argonavis


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Posted 16 November 2009 - 12:05

This will probably generate quite a few responses. My 2c:

My Duofold is a modern International Green Check, my Sonnets are modern, in Steel, with a steel nib, and in Vertdegris lacqueur, with the gold nib. The size and weight are similar, the Duofold feels a little lighter, but I don' have them both here right now with me so I won't swear. The Sonnets are metal. The Duofold is plastic, but one of those very special plastics... It' really beautiful, more so than the Sonnet, (and I like the Vertdegris color a lot). As for writing, The Duofold nib is completely smooth, with completely steady ink flow, quite perfect in these respects, besides being very beautiful, however it is totally non flexble, quite stiff indeed. The sonnet nibs are also very smooth, though the lower price tends to produce the occasional quality control issue, which you'll see turning up in other posts here. They are much more flexible, and softer on the paper, (and correspondinlgy more fragile also). Note that all the nibs I'm talking about are medium. In other sizes I have no idea. Summing up, a Sonnet with a good nib is as good to write with as anything you can find, a highly functional, pretty plain looking pen. The Duofold check is a work of art, higher quality build, but some might judge the nib to be too stiff. It's the better of the two pens all round, make no mistake, but I'd say that most of the price difference is artwork.

#3 arashdeepsinghmann



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Posted 16 November 2009 - 17:01

I am a great fan of Parker Sonnets. I have few sonnet fountain pens and they all are working fine. I never had any problem with any
of my sonnets.
I have
Parker Sonnet Fougere Fountain Pen F and M nibs
Parker Sonnet Crocodile Vermeil Fountain Pen M nib
Parker Sonnet Cisele Fountain Pen M nib
Parker Sonnet Special edition silver/blue Fountain Pen M nib

all of these are very nice pens. I love the design of Sonnet series and they have so nice looking nibs also. I never tried any duofold but would love to. I dont have experience of Duofolds but I can tell you about Sonnets. They are very nice pens if you just flush your pen out clean it before you put the ink for first time it will write smoothely the flow of ink is v good.
I love my Sonnets and recently I bought Parker Premier fountian pen that pen is bigger than Sonnet and little heavy too but that pen is also a good looking pen and writes butter smooth.
Good Luck with you first Parker. I am sure you will like it.
Take Care

#4 MJ Vesuvius

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 17:46

I have a Duofold black and pearl Centennial and a Sonnet Cisele, both medium nibs.
And I love them both, for different reasons.

The Duofold has a bold classic profile and its various finishes are spectacular. The nib is big and
beautifully decorated, if, as argonavis points out above, a bit stiff. But it is a striking
pen that will surely attract attention. It is a joy to own.

The Sonnet Cisele is more low profile but is a terrific daily writer. With its rugged
grid-pattern silver build, it is one of the toughest pens out there. In fact for years I
carried it in my pants pocket with change, pocket knife, whatever ... and the wear and
tear just made it look better. The nib on the Sonnet is one of the best, especially if
you like a bit of flex. It's small, not showy like its Duofold brother, but man, it's
buttery smooth. I know it's tipped with alloy, but writing with the Sonnet always
feels like you're writing with GOLD. Which you are. 18K.

Bottom line: they're both great pens. Try them out at a pen store and you'll see what I mean.


#5 Bluefinntuna



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Posted 16 November 2009 - 20:10

Thank you all for the feedback and good info. There seems to be quite a few models within the Sonnet line and I am intrigued about the flexy nib. I shall need to do more research in the Sonnet. Looks like my wallet may not be too happy soon.

#6 jips123


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Posted 16 November 2009 - 20:45

These are very different pens. I own several sonnets and duofolds (international and centennail size). The sonnet gold nib is not flexy but a bit soft (the older ones feel softer than the newer ones). The duofold nibs are rigid but good writers. It is a completely different feel to these pens.

#7 Samskara


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Posted 07 December 2017 - 05:06

I wonder if somebody can elaborate on this topic from a marketing viewpoint.  By way of introduction, I'm new here (it shows) and while I've been using fountain pens since the 1950s I've never paid much attention to them except that, in a sense coming from the 1950s, still the age of the Parker 51, Parkers were the best pens -- end of discussion.


Anyway, now it seems as if Parker has three lines of fountain pens but with a substantial overlap in price.  To the extent that there's any element of conspicuous consumption here would anybody pay $400 or so for a Sonnet when for the same money they could have a Duofold?  What am I missing?  

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