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Mabie Todd Help

mabir todd bchr flex swan

30 replies to this topic

#1 TXKat

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 00:50

Okay, I need some expert help, please. FINALLY, I got myself a flex Mabie Todd. Now I'm having trouble figuring out what a 42 is. The imprint says (and shows)Swan, but the clip shows the patent date with no Swan. Is that correct??? Is the clip gold or gold filled? It sure is shiny.

Is this a Swan or a Frankenpen and about when was this lovely made?

I'm so excited!! :)

Attached Images

  • 0813151943.jpg
  • 0813151946.jpg
  • 0813151942.jpg

Edited by TXKat, 14 August 2015 - 12:44.

So, what's your point? (Mine is a flexible F.)

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#2 TXKat

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 02:01

Here are the images I was originally trying to load, but were too big. Sorry!

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  • full-swan.jpg

So, what's your point? (Mine is a flexible F.)

#3 Greenie

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 06:24

The clip is the typical early Swan clip. Lever is a typical Swan lever. The cap with a screw cap marking indicating direction is an early feature in the transition from slip caps to screw caps "safety" caps. the color is so crisp, I almost wonder about it being a later black chased celluloid, but my black chased celluloid are leverless or have the later clip style.  This appears to be a beautifully preserved very early lever filler.  1920 give or take a couple of years in my opinion. Probably on the late 'teens side.

 

Love to see some flexy writing examples out of this!

 

Clip is gold filled. If no brassing on the high points, this is an excellent example. Also the levers on these are commonly pitted. Yours looks great. This is a VERY CLEAN pen. Jealous.

 

What are you referring to by "42"?  Clip is the patent date for the clip itself. Markings on the side of the end of the barrel, or on the butt end are not always present, but the style number preceeds a slash or line, and then black is a "60" typically, seen after the slash or below the line.



#4 Cob

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 09:18

What a beauty.

 

Greenie (as I would expect) has covered all the salient points.  I should say that that pen would be rare in any condition and yours exceptionally so. 

 

You are fortunate indeed to have found it.

 

best wishes

 

Cob


fpn_1428963683__6s.jpg “The pen of the British Empire” fpn_1423349537__swan_sign_is.jpg


#5 MalcolmH

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 09:37

It looks Swan...and it looks mint!

 

I think you have every reason to be excited. Congratulations.



#6 TXKat

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 12:52

...

What are you referring to by "42"?  Clip is the patent date for the clip itself. Markings on the side of the end of the barrel, or on the butt end are not always present, but the style number preceeds a slash or line, and then black is a "60" typically, seen after the slash or below the line.

 

On the bottom of the barrel there is a '42'. On the end. Similar to what you would see with a Waterman. I don't know about any other brands.

 

So, everything appears to be correct?? (About ready to launch out of my chair...)

 

Thank you all for your expertise as you see, I have none in this area! I love this site!  :wub: 

 

I DO want to write with this, but would that be against the rules for the collectors? I know the sac is toast as I pulled the section (gasps heard 'round the world) and large pieces of the sac fell out...after that large pile of powdered sac. (It is still on the paper towel in the kitchen, nothing thrown away, lol. Just in case.) To write, a new sac would need be fitted which brings another question. Do you need a special sac for these?

 

Last question...I promise....what is the proper nib for this particular pen?


Edited by TXKat, 14 August 2015 - 13:10.

So, what's your point? (Mine is a flexible F.)

#7 Greenie

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 15:04

By all means, restore it and use it.  Or just send it to me, since clearly it is becoming too much of a bother for you  ;)

 

Keep it dry, and do not let it sit exposed to sunlight. The black hard rubber material is prone to fading and discoloration when exposed to water or prolonged sunlight.

 

The proper sac is the one that fits easily but is not too loose. I always have all the sizes and try try a few to find the right one. I don't know what to tell someone looking to restore one pen. Usually a 16 or 18 will do fine. And you need talc and shellac.  Not a hard job at all, but your first one costs closer to $20 to buy all the supplies. After that, each repair is only about $1.50 - $2 for the cost of the sac. Still a lot less than sending it out.  Throw out the old sac debris. You need to be sure you get all the old sac out with alligator foreceps, long picks, etc. And be very mindful of the lip of the barrel while working - getting too eager can lead to damaging the barrel threads.  And use heat when replacing the section.

 

Just use this tutorial.  http://www.richardsp...replacement.htm

 

Nib:  could be a mabie todd & co or Swan, and either a #1 or #2.  Pics please.  

 

Please try to post pictures of the nib imprints, and barrel imprints along the side, and the 42.  

 

Cob - I don't have a similar model.  What is a likely model number for a very early BCHR lever filler, no cap or barrel bands?  Later it would be a SM 100/60, but all my early hard rubber lever filler Swans are 130s and 230s with barrel bands.



#8 TXKat

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 16:20

I will have to wait to upload photos of the nib, number and imprint I'm being told. I've hit my max on attachments.

 

It is put away in a small case with no light nor water near! I will have to find a proper case for this thing. I saw a photograph somewhere of a lovely leather, stitched presentation box, but can't seem to find anything that nice anywhere. What to look for in a proper case that will not damage the pen/rubber?

 

As for the sac, I do believe I'll give it a new one, keeping this. I don't think it proper to gift someone something...in need of repair!!  ;)  For that reason I shall resac this pen and not burden you with having to make repairs and keep it safe. I will take on that burden.  :D

 

Photos...later (if i can).


So, what's your point? (Mine is a flexible F.)

#9 Cob

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 16:22

By all means, restore it and use it.  Or just send it to me, since clearly it is becoming too much of a bother for you  ;)

 

Keep it dry, and do not let it sit exposed to sunlight. The black hard rubber material is prone to fading and discoloration when exposed to water or prolonged sunlight.

 

The proper sac is the one that fits easily but is not too loose. I always have all the sizes and try try a few to find the right one. I don't know what to tell someone looking to restore one pen. Usually a 16 or 18 will do fine. And you need talc and shellac.  Not a hard job at all, but your first one costs closer to $20 to buy all the supplies. After that, each repair is only about $1.50 - $2 for the cost of the sac. Still a lot less than sending it out.  Throw out the old sac debris. You need to be sure you get all the old sac out with alligator foreceps, long picks, etc. And be very mindful of the lip of the barrel while working - getting too eager can lead to damaging the barrel threads.  And use heat when replacing the section.

 

Just use this tutorial.  http://www.richardsp...replacement.htm

 

Nib:  could be a mabie todd & co or Swan, and either a #1 or #2.  Pics please.  

 

Please try to post pictures of the nib imprints, and barrel imprints along the side, and the 42.  

 

Cob - I don't have a similar model.  What is a likely model number for a very early BCHR lever filler, no cap or barrel bands?  Later it would be a SM 100/60, but all my early hard rubber lever filler Swans are 130s and 230s with barrel bands.

Inevitably I reached for my copy of Mabie in America but though there are various photographs, Moak has nothing to say about model nomenclature.  I should imagine that MT referred to the pen as SF1 or 2 or just possibly 1SF or 2SF.

 

The 42 is interesting; I have no idea what it might mean I must say.

 

It would be helpful - possibly - to know any patent numbers that are stamped on the barrel.

 

As for using the pen - well TXKat, what are you waiting for?  You most likely have a very pleasurable experience awaiting you!

 

Incidentally I have a Frankenpen with an identical cap except that the Pat. 1915 clip is chromed; the cap does not belong to the pen which is marked Advance and is fitted with a Conklin Toledo No 2 nib!

 

Cob


Edited by Cob, 14 August 2015 - 16:28.

fpn_1428963683__6s.jpg “The pen of the British Empire” fpn_1423349537__swan_sign_is.jpg


#10 Cob

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 16:24

I will have to wait to upload photos of the nib, number and imprint I'm being told. I've hit my max on attachments.

 

It is put away in a small case with no light nor water near! I will have to find a proper case for this thing. I saw a photograph somewhere of a lovely leather, stitched presentation box, but can't seem to find anything that nice anywhere. What to look for in a proper case that will not damage the pen/rubber?

 

As for the sac, I do believe I'll give it a new one, keeping this. I don't think it proper to gift someone something...in need of repair!!  ;)  For that reason I shall resac this pen and not burden you with having to make repairs and keep it safe. I will take on that burden.  :D

 

Photos...later (if i can).

Use the Upload feature (link at top of the page).  Unlimited capacity there.

 

And Greenie and I would like to see the nib!

 

And don't give your pen away - unless of course it is to me!  I don't even mind if it has a new sac...

 

Mind you, you'd be horrified: no fancy cabinets here; my pens are stored vertically (in the shade) in old jam jars and beakers!

 

Cob


Edited by Cob, 14 August 2015 - 16:27.

fpn_1428963683__6s.jpg “The pen of the British Empire” fpn_1423349537__swan_sign_is.jpg


#11 TXKat

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 16:52

If I can get this to work....

 

 

http://fpn_1439570964__42.jpg

 

 

http://fpn_1439571029__nib.jpg

 

If this works, I owe you guys BIG time! I will have learned yet another tidbit from the wonderful peeps here!!  

 

 

(OMG...this is the coolest thing since sliced bread!! Thank you!!)

 

I will try to get a clearer photo of the end and of course the imprint this evening!


Edited by TXKat, 14 August 2015 - 16:53.

So, what's your point? (Mine is a flexible F.)

#12 Cob

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 17:29

You have a very nice MT NY No 2 nib there and it appears, like the rest of the pen, to be excellent.

 

No idea on the 42 - sorry!

 

Cob


fpn_1428963683__6s.jpg “The pen of the British Empire” fpn_1423349537__swan_sign_is.jpg


#13 TXKat

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 17:48

How do you suggest I clean the nib? The clip could use a little shining, but not much, yet the nib looks a little skuzzy! Suggestions? I know I cannot put the section in an ultra sonic cleaner to clean and I would be terrified to pull the nib and feed, thus I can prop the section up with pen cleaner up to almost the section and let it soak for a bit. If you have better suggestions I'm all ears!

 

As for the 42, is there some faint something below it? Can't really tell and I'm blind even with a magnifying glass or cheaters! Using both doesn't help either, lol!


So, what's your point? (Mine is a flexible F.)

#14 Cob

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 18:38

I think that you should buy yourself a cheap pen to play with before tackling this one.

 

And study carefully first/

 

It might be enough to flush the section/nib with a rubber bulb filled with cold water., but probably that might not be enough.

 

Be patient!

 

Cob


fpn_1428963683__6s.jpg “The pen of the British Empire” fpn_1423349537__swan_sign_is.jpg


#15 Greenie

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 18:55

Ditto the advice from Cob.

 

Too nice a pen to tackle first. Buy any cheap lever filling wreck of a pen, and pick out the sac, flush the feed and nib, and resac. Get the hang of it.  

 

Your pen is absolutely pristine, and while a black chased hard rubber lever filler is usually not that interesting, this is not a very typical Swan pen.  Swan clips are always brassed a little and the levers are always pitted. Not with this beauty.

 

The 42 is, well, a bit odd. No numbers like this on a prominent list in progress  http://www.mabietodd...o.uk/index.html

 

Just flush the section/feed with a bulb syringe over and over.  I personally like a sunshine cloth for polishing up nibs that I am not pulling from a pen. Using an actual polish (like simichrome) gets in the vent and slit. Polish OK in a loose nib, since you can wipe the top and bottom with a microfiber cloth.  Attached nibs - Sunshine cloth (or two sided rouge cloth).



#16 TXKat

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 22:29

I resac ed an Eberhard Faber under the war haul eye of Science hi k, but make (snicker) leave this to Danny at the pen show.

Okay, imprint photo.
On phone so can't see hyperlinks k option.


fpn_1439591224__20150814_171814.jpg
So, what's your point? (Mine is a flexible F.)

#17 MarcShiman

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Posted 15 August 2015 - 08:22

The 42 is Swan nomenclature for their standard lever ("self") fillers - "4" is for full length pen ("5" for vest pocket) and "2" is nib size / girth. In the early 20's, they marked the butt end of the barrel for nib size / girth only - towards the mid 20's, they started marking length as well.

 

I wouldn't expect to see anything underneath the 42 - in 26/27, they came out with a line of celluloids that indicated the color using a double digit number scheme. On the eternals, you would see "ETN" underneath. In the 30's, they dropped the color coding (on the American pens) and went back to barrel length / nib size numbering. So we can reasonably guess that this pen is 1921-25

 

The chasing on that pen is remarkably crisp, fabulous find.

 

In 1928, they started making the clip with the swan on it.


Edited by MarcShiman, 15 August 2015 - 08:29.


#18 Cob

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Posted 15 August 2015 - 10:18

The 42 is Swan nomenclature for their standard lever ("self") fillers - "4" is for full length pen ("5" for vest pocket) and "2" is nib size / girth. In the early 20's, they marked the butt end of the barrel for nib size / girth only - towards the mid 20's, they started marking length as well.

 

I wouldn't expect to see anything underneath the 42 - in 26/27, they came out with a line of celluloids that indicated the color using a double digit number scheme. On the eternals, you would see "ETN" underneath. In the 30's, they dropped the color coding (on the American pens) and went back to barrel length / nib size numbering. So we can reasonably guess that this pen is 1921-25

 

The chasing on that pen is remarkably crisp, fabulous find.

 

In 1928, they started making the clip with the swan on it.

Oh dear! I should have worked that one out!

 

Yes 44ETN, 46ETN, 54ETN etc, 

 

It was a question of being hidebound with all those SF2s I suppose, which does beg a question:  the patent date in the imprint shows that this pen was definitely made after May 1918.  I should like to know when the SF nomenclature was introduced.  I had a SF2 with an engraved band dating the pen to January 1922.  There is also the mystery of some pens being named 2SF as well.

 

All of these variations must (judging by the appearance of these pens) have occurred before about 1926.  I have in front of me a Swan stamped as follows: (The Swan Image precedes the lettering as usual).

 

Swan Self filling Pen

Mabie Todd & Co Ltd London

Pat No 118118 May 1916 - Pat Pend.

Made in U.S.A.

 

Nib is a MT NY broad stub No 2 size

 

Next to it I have a a Swan of almost identical appearance with Swan SF2 stamped on the cap.  The barrel reads

 

Swan Self-Filler

Mabie Todd & Co Ltd

Made in England.

 

Note the absence of patent information.

 

The cap is fitted with a Swan Clip - i.e. not a Pat 1915 one, but I should be surprised if this pen were later than 1924.  Of course MT in London would fit a clip for a nominal sum so perhaps it was retro fitted.  I cannot read the bottom of the nib and I don't want to pull it as the pen is writing nicely at present; as it states "14ct" one might assume that it is English - but perhaps made in NY for English applications before the English nib facility was established.

 

There seem to be endless possibilities for speculation with old Mabie Todds.  What a shame we so not have a Mabie Todd (ALL) section on FPN.

 

Cob


fpn_1428963683__6s.jpg “The pen of the British Empire” fpn_1423349537__swan_sign_is.jpg


#19 TXKat

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Posted 15 August 2015 - 13:55

Well, thank you all for the fabulous education on my little pen!!! I have learned so much (although I'm confused, still, about the MT number with letters but I'll leave that for another day ).

It is so nice having people willing to share their knowledge and teach the rest of us. This is why this site is still going. This is what makes fountain pens fun , for me anyway!

Now I must dip and see what this pen can do.
So, what's your point? (Mine is a flexible F.)

#20 Greenie

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Posted 15 August 2015 - 16:54

Well don't I feel silly.     :headsmack:    Yes, I also have 44ETN and 46ETN pens, so 42 alone makes total sense. 





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