1940s Parker Duofold Aluminimum Filler ('AF')
This Duofold was manufactured in England sometime between the late-1940s and the very early 50s. It sits firmly between the earlier 'New Style' (NS) Duofold and the Aerometric version. All three having a similar design and size.
I quite like the design of the AF, though it is not as pretty as its predecessor - the NS - as it does not have double jewels, but still, it does have the quirky blind cap. It is more of a functional, understated, everyday pen. But some may see it as elegant in its simplicity.
The AF is fairly straightforward to use, being a button filler. Unscrew the blind cap, and press the button a few times, leaving about 12 seconds after the last press to fill the pen. I do find the mechanism a little stiff though (being a longer 'push' than other button fillers) and thus really needs two hands for it to feel comfortable. The ink capacityisn't great compared to the Aerometric versions, but I think the quirkiness of a blind cap makes up for that.
I find this a great user pen, and very comfortable to write with for extended periods. The section, being slightly flared, is just right and the pen is well balanced when capped. It has a nice weight - not heavy, not light - and a good solid feel. The cap is a screw fit, and pretty secure without having to overtighten. The material has a nice sensuous, almost waxy feel. It posts well, but you do have to be careful with these Duofolds as caps are prone to cracking at the rim. Though this particular one doesn't feel like it would.
This has a great sized, open nib. Its a fine to medium with just a little give, and for me, the perfect flow of ink. It seems to work well with Parker and Waterman inks, which are the mainstay of my everyday writing. It is probable this is a later replacement (Yep it is, thanks to Martin from the Writing Desk for pointing this out)
I think these are great everyday 'writing' pens. They're reasonably common in the UK, so good examples can be bought at reasonable prices. This also alleviates the worry of it going missing and being able to replace it. In summary, they're nothing glamorous (only available in a few plain colours), but great performers and reliable - well mine have proved to be so anyway!
Edited by london, 16 August 2006 - 08:00.