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The Platignum School Cartridge Pen


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42 replies to this topic

#1 Malcy

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Posted 17 May 2012 - 19:38

I was at Junior school in the late 1960s and it was there that I graduated from pencil to fountain pen. I have happy memories of scruffy writing and ink stained fingers. The pen that I first used was the Platignum school pen, possibly an even earlier version than this one. Show it to any adult of a certain age and the memories flow back, they were widely used in UK schools.

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It's a strange looking pen with a shape more akin to a dip pen. Most of the pen appears to be made from polystyrene and it is very light. The barrel screws on to the section and houses a short international type cartridge, I think that there is enough room for a converter. It's well enough made but obviously not an item of great cost.

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An item of mystery is the cap. It screws on to the section and turned around it pushes on to the end of the barrel. I guess that the shape is largely shaped to stop the pen rolling off the desk but the narrow side has a strange slot in it that no-one seems to know the reason for.

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The nib is made from folded stainless steel. It has no tipping but writes a very smooth medium line. Unlike some expensive pens that I have used, these pens have a good ink supply at the tip of the nib within a very short time after pushing in a cartridge and the flow is constant with no skipping.

I have located a limited supply of NOS pens and am selling them to my pupils at cost and they are selling like hot cakes and the children find them great to use. It is nice to see these pens getting used for their intended purpose after probably around 40 years in a cupboard. If anyone wants one I will make them available in the market place once I have secured the rest of the supply. Let me know if there is any interest, the price will be mainly made up of shipping costs.

So there you are, more of a curiosity than anything. They are a practical writing instrument if somewhat individual in design but they don't half roll back the years for some of us. :)
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#2 watch_art

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 01:23

Pretty cool. One of my kiddos got a pen with a nib like this from the Pens for Kids booth at the last pen show. Pretty good writer.

Strange looking cap that. :)

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#3 Lorna Reed

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 06:55

I used to have Platignum school fountain pens in the late 50s. I used to get them from the local stationers and I think they cost half a crown. (2/6d in old money)
I usually had grey or maroon as they were my school uniform colours. I would love to be able to get those colours again for old-times sake. This is the only one I've managed to find on ebay.
[attachment=144972:P1000276.JPG]
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#4 Malcy

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 19:27

I used to have Platignum school fountain pens in the late 50s. I used to get them from the local stationers and I think they cost half a crown. (2/6d in old money)
I usually had grey or maroon as they were my school uniform colours. I would love to be able to get those colours again for old-times sake. This is the only one I've managed to find on ebay.
[attachment=144972:P1000276.JPG]


I have one of these in teal blue, given to me by a colleague. It was NOS but the nib was bent. It needs a bit of work to get it writing again.

Well, I have sold 24 of the review pens in two days to my pupils, the head of department and a nostalgic dad. They work really well, it is a shame that there is not an unlimited supply. I must put one aside for my self.
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#5 rwilsonedn

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 19:58

Thanks! It is wonderful to hear about Platignum pens from people who grew up with them. My only experience out here in the colonies has been with the really dreadful calligraphy sets. Those convinced me that no Platignum pen was ever simultaneously leak-free and able to write. Now I know that's not true.
ron

#6 Tom Aquinas

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 04:07

My mates and I in the late 1950's wanted them because they looked so super, but we found out later that our teachers told our parents that Shaeffer washable blue cartridges in their pen was better for shirts and also that the Platignum was better for fountain pen fights ( they were !!). Thus sadly our primary school and parents shunned the Platignum.

#7 Malcy

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 09:08

My mates and I in the late 1950's wanted them because they looked so super, but we found out later that our teachers told our parents that Shaeffer washable blue cartridges in their pen was better for shirts and also that the Platignum was better for fountain pen fights ( they were !!). Thus sadly our primary school and parents shunned the Platignum.


If I remember correctly in my junior school there was a class set which monitors gave out during lessons where writing was required.
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#8 dalliance

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 13:27

Ah, the memories indeed. It was using that pen that put me off fountain pens for years! As a spidery writing left-hander learning the basics, it was a nightmare with smudges all over the page and my shirt sleeve.

Good to see though. ;)
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#9 Rowingbiker

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 09:51

Thank you for your review, it certainly brings back memories!
I lived in Lowestoft, UK, in the early 1970's and was at Woodsloke primary school.
We used Platignum school cartridge pens, but they were slightly different, in having a normal nib (similar to those found in the platignum calligraphy pens) and the cap was round. It could be posted easily, but did not stop the pen rolling from the desk.
I seem to recall we used quite long cartridges.
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#10 Mike 59

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 10:52

Hi All, At my middle school in the late '60 north of London, we were never pressured into using fountain pens, but I do remember a standard ballpoint being available for anyone to use if they forgot to take one.
The colour in the photo above is much the same as 'our' ballpoint, and I have done a drawing of what I think it looked like.
The grey acorn shaped part unscrewed to changed the refill, and I thought they were very comforable to use.
I think they were by Platignum.

#11 Malcy

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Posted 21 May 2012 - 16:57

Hi All, At my middle school in the late '60 north of London, we were never pressured into using fountain pens, but I do remember a standard ballpoint being available for anyone to use if they forgot to take one.
The colour in the photo above is much the same as 'our' ballpoint, and I have done a drawing of what I think it looked like.
The grey acorn shaped part unscrewed to changed the refill, and I thought they were very comforable to use.
I think they were by Platignum.


I like the drawing! One of our TAs at school said that she used a ball pen like this when she was at junior school.
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#12 Opel

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Posted 22 May 2012 - 15:19

Hi All, At my middle school in the late '60 north of London, we were never pressured into using fountain pens, but I do remember a standard ballpoint being available for anyone to use if they forgot to take one.
The colour in the photo above is much the same as 'our' ballpoint, and I have done a drawing of what I think it looked like.
The grey acorn shaped part unscrewed to changed the refill, and I thought they were very comforable to use.
I think they were by Platignum.



Wow good drawing, I'd forgoten all about those! :clap1:

I can remember using them as well. :embarrassed_smile:

#13 GradesWithFPen

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Posted 23 May 2012 - 18:15

Thanks! It is wonderful to hear about Platignum pens from people who grew up with them. My only experience out here in the colonies has been with the really dreadful calligraphy sets. Those convinced me that no Platignum pen was ever simultaneously leak-free and able to write. Now I know that's not true.
ron

I too have a calligraphy pen (not the whole set) with a pretty broad stub nib called "fine." It's very difficult to write with because of the scratchiness. It has a press-to-fill squeeze type filling system which is in good working order.

(1) Does anyone know what these are worth?
(2) Does anyone think that a nibmeister may can help the scratchiness? I'm afraid to tackle it myself.
Stay addicted, Penlovers!

#14 Mike 59

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Posted 24 May 2012 - 14:18

Hi All, Was surprised to hear that anyone else remembered the blue school ballpoint I drew.
I had forgotten it too, but looking at the pen in the first photo of this thread brought it back to me, that's odd, it's just that particular blue. I remember the top point of these pens would be chewed during lessons!
But my memory of school pens is mainly using Bic crystal ballpoints, we could use blue, the teachers used red.
So now I cannot use one, they are banned from my house.
I also remember that Bic used to run a competition, where pen users would build scale models using empty pen barrels, glued together, and I would look at the pictures of the aircraft and cars that others had built using hundreds of old Bic pens.
I could never work out how they used so many pens!

#15 Tom Aquinas

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Posted 24 May 2012 - 23:28

This is a good thread for nostalgia. Pens in my collection evoke memories, some of them not happy. Most of the school memories with pens are tolerable. We had to purchase our own pens in grade 5 and all the school provided for the "copy book" session was dip pens, and the ink was mixed up from powder, not a happy memory especially if you were rostered on to mix ink. So a fountain pen , which we could use with homework - not at school until grade 7- was a pleasant memory.

#16 GradesWithFPen

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Posted 25 May 2012 - 00:02

Hi All, Was surprised to hear that anyone else remembered the blue school ballpoint I drew.
I had forgotten it too, but looking at the pen in the first photo of this thread brought it back to me, that's odd, it's just that particular blue. I remember the top point of these pens would be chewed during lessons!
But my memory of school pens is mainly using Bic crystal ballpoints, we could use blue, the teachers used red.
So now I cannot use one, they are banned from my house.
I also remember that Bic used to run a competition, where pen users would build scale models using empty pen barrels, glued together, and I would look at the pictures of the aircraft and cars that others had built using hundreds of old Bic pens.
I could never work out how they used so many pens!

The conservationist comes out in me when I hear the name Bic because I have always attributed the mass-produced Bic Crystals to the beginning of our throw-away society. Maybe unfairly, but fountain pens leave a much smaller carbon footprint!
Stay addicted, Penlovers!

#17 alc3261

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Posted 25 May 2012 - 09:05

When I was in primary school in the 60s we mostly all had Platignum cartridge pens but they were a more standard fountain pan shape not like a dip pen.
Some kids had Sheaffer (that was posh) and some had Conway Stewart (that was rubbish!!)
Funny how things change!! I still subconsciously have that view of Conway Stewart.
I didn't realise that Platignum and Platinum were 2 different pen makers for quite a while.........

#18 entity999

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Posted 25 May 2012 - 12:20

When I started prep school in the UK in the mid 70's this pen was compulsory at my school in the first year (after that you could use any pen so long as it was a fountain pen, biros etc were definitely not allowed :thumbup: ).

I still remember going to the local stationers and asking for the specified fountain pen and, even at the age of 8, wondering why it was such a daft shape! If I recall, it worked pretty well and put up with lots of ham-fisted use and the long barrel made it good for flicking ink :embarrassed_smile:

Not sure of the current value of one of these but Andy's Pens in the UK had one for sale recently and, whilst I can't recall the value, I didn't think it's increased much in value over the years!

#19 nilling

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Posted 25 May 2012 - 15:04

I had a Sheaffer through school, so I must have been posh ;) Though I do remember some kids having the Platignum with the filling lever(?).

My teenage daughter still uses her pink Lamy Al-star I bought her in Primary school, bless ;)

#20 minimax447

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 21:56

One shilling and threepence. I remember the horid thing. Most of us had a Platignum hooded nib cartridge pen of our own. I got through quite a few. Writing was a chore then. I was slow and left handed and often broke my pen which meant that I would have to use one of those. Is there an emoticon for "shudder"?






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