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Sheaffer Targa 1003 - Different Versions?

targa sheaffer 1003

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#1 lisadan

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Posted 17 November 2014 - 01:35

I have three Sheaffer Targa Classic 1003 later model fountain pens that were purchased in three different places. The pens have 14 K nibs, two have M nib and one has F nib.

 

I noticed a few differences between the pens.  Two pens, which I would call "style 1" have the words "Sheaffer USA" engraved on the crown on the top of the cap, while the other pen ("style 2") has "Sheaffer USA" printed in black on the bottom of the cap.  The nibs are also marked slightly different. Style 1nibs have the gold standard stamp on the middle left side of the nib, while style 2 has "USA" instead of the gold standard stamp.  Other than that, both nibs seem the same, and I haven't noticed any other external or internal visible differences.

 

Here are some pictures.  Does anyone know the reason for these differences?  Different production locations or production dates?  One of the style 1 pens was bought new (or NOS) at a store Israel in 2004. The two others were bought on eBay from different sellers in the US (style 1) and in Australia (style 2) in 2014.

 

This picture shows part of the "Sheaffer USA" printed in black at the bottom of the cap

 

IMG_3767 copy.jpg

 

This picture shows both types of nibs. The left one has "USA" above the 585 (style 2), the right one has the gold standard stamp (style 1).

 

Targa 1003 nib 2 copy.jpg

 

Here you can see the two nibs, and the engraved "Sheaffer USA" on the top of the cap in style 1.

 

Targa 1003 nibs copy.jpg


Edited by lisadan, 17 November 2014 - 02:04.

Dan


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Posted 17 November 2014 - 02:08

The Targa line was produced for around 23 years from 1976-1999 with 70ish finishes and around 120 models including slimlines. I suspect that Sheaffer made multiple small changes in placement of information over the period of those years.


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#3 lisadan

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Posted 17 November 2014 - 02:39

That is my assumption as well. Different production lines, different machines, little design tweaks due to manufacturing issues.


Dan


#4 BillLS

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Posted 17 November 2014 - 08:13

The Sheaffer Targas were made in several different factories: Fort Madison, IA, USA; Canada; England; France; and Australia. At times, parts were shipped between factories so that an Australian made pen might have a Canadian nib unit, for example.

 

I've only seen three types of the little cap top ornaments, they are either marked SHEAFFER USA, just plain SHEAFFER or not marked at all. I have seen nib units marked USA, CDN, AUST and not marked with a country, but I have never seen a nib unit marked as originating in either England or France.

 

I'm pretty sure that Fort Madison marked USA on all parts intended for sale within the USA, and omitted any country designation on parts made in the USA but intended for sale outside the country. Pens assembled at any plant could be composed of locally made parts and/or parts from other plants (usually Fort Madison.) That explains the variations that you have observed.

 

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In 1989 there was a cost-saving redesign across much of the Targa line. On the model 1003 the visible aspects of this were: the black top ornament was changed to gold and the bottom end of the barrel was changed by adding a gold-plated brass button, making the pen about 1/8 inch longer. In addition, the barrel construction was changed from a plastic barrel with a thin brass overlay to a thicker brass barrel without the plastic inner barrel. This required the addition of a metal coupler with the threads for the nib section to screw into.

 

Original pre-1989 version of Targa Model 1003

SH190_Sheaffer_Targa_Matte_Black_with_Go

 

 

1989 and on version of Targa Model 1003

SH28_Matte_Black_Targa%2C_Gold_Trim.jpg

 

 


Bill Sexauer
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#5 lisadan

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Posted 17 November 2014 - 11:21

sexauerw

Thank you very much for clarifying that. 


Dan


#6 BillLS

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Posted 22 April 2015 - 00:55

I would like to correct an error in my previous post. The 1989 redesign that changed the barrel construction from plastic to brass did not apply to models 1002 and 1003 because they had brass barrels and a metal coupler from the beginning.


Bill Sexauer
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