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Advice On Choosing New Townsend Fp, Please

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3 replies to this topic

#1 Chaz


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Posted 02 January 2013 - 13:45

Hi, I am new to the forum but have been reading the excellent advice on pens and Cross Townsends in particular. Thanks to all that have posted in the past.

I suffered a "bereavement" two weeks ago when I lost my Townsend fountain pen after a meeting - something I still cannot quite believe happened. I checked the purchase date this morning and I have owned the pen for almost thirteen years. It was my first serious adult fountain pen and I spent ages trying alternatives before settling on this one. It gets described now as a gunmetal grey finish with gold coloured appointments, but was described at the time (and on the bill I still have) as titanium, which I believe I was told was a electro-plated Ti coating over the brass barrel. If anyone is interested, the coating scratched a little over this time, but given the number of times I've dropped it etc, nothing to write home about (sorry for the pun). The other interesting characteristic is that the surface discoloured where my thumb would hold the pen (just about the section) and looked almost as if heat had been applied in an oval thumb-print shape (so that there are faint rainbow rings around the oval). "Were" I should say - I miss the character the pen had developed over time and the pleasure of using it every day.

Anyway, all that is a long story as a preface to asking for help in the decision to replace the pen. I never did get around to buying a gold nib for the pen, so this time I am thinking of buying another Townsend in a different finish with a gold nib. The two that have caught my eye are these, about which I have a few questions.

1) Sterling Silver - I gather that this has a solid silver barrel and cap and weighs 45g, which should make it a little heavier than my old pen (which is OK). Has anyone had problems with the silver tarnishing or getting marked or scratched easily?

2) I have also seen a Townsend described as being in black lacquer with rhodium plated appointments and a gold nib, but the barrel colour is a matt grey in comparison to the same pen in black lacquer with gold-plated appointments (which is the glossy black you'd expect). Can anyone suggest whether this is a photography issue or was the rhodium plated version produced in a lighter finish? (This would be a US made pen, by the way.)

By the way, can anyone else confirm what I was told about the gunmetal/gold version being titanium coated? I am still likely to buy one of those to take around the world and let it acquire character over another dozen years or more.

Thanks in advance


Edited by Chaz, 03 January 2013 - 10:10.

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#2 dadoody


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Posted 03 January 2013 - 11:17

I still remember a few years back when Cross had that insane Black Friday sale, and engraved gold nib Townsend pens were selling for $30 shipped.

Trying to place an order on the website took hours.

#3 JohnZ



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Posted 03 January 2013 - 15:53

Sorry to hear that. I'm new here and cannot help you. I just wanted to say that I ordered a townsend to be my first fountain pen a few days ago. I hope my townsend lasts as long as yours did.
EDC: Pelikan M200

#4 swright007



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Posted 04 January 2013 - 10:25

I have a few fountain pens. My favorite is a Cross Penatia. However, I use Cross ballpoints and have religiously for years including a Townsend that I just picked up yesterday! Yes, all silver will tarnish. I have read on other forums about Townsend and Cross appointments in silver tarnishing. To combat this I usually go for Chrome appointments as they look similar but are much easier to care for. I haven't bumped into anything a quick wipe with a common microfiber glasses cleaning cloth wouldn't fix. However, if you DO choose silver you might have to take it to a jeweler for a light cleaning/polishing every, say, 6 months or so give or take use and exposure to skin contact and outside air. Hope you have a wonderful time shopping and I would love to hear about and see a pic of the pen you do choose.


P.S. I did look up for you the current line of Townsend Cross pens. The appointments they use are mainly Chrome, Gold, Rhodium, and there is one pen that goes for about $490 that has Platinum appointments. Gold over time also tarnishes but I have found a half water half distilled vinegar solution cleans them up nicely.

Edited by swright007, 04 January 2013 - 10:38.

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